HPI Diagnostics: This narrow-minded believes that there is a “diagnostic business”

The terms child – gifted child, premature infant, zebra, or “high intellectual potential” (HPI) … are developed, but all tend to diagnose a disease, especially in children or adults with advanced intellectual ability. According to the WHO, 2.3% of children between the ages of 6 and 16 who go to school are intellectually premature. It will represent 200,000 children in France.

The final episode of Season 2 of “HPI”, a detective story that was a hit on TF1, will air this Thursday, June 16 at 9:10 p.m. Audrey Fleurot has played the role of a mother with “high intellectual potential” and this second episode of the episode has already won over 9.87 million viewers.

While waiting for Season 3, Emanuel Pickett, a psychotherapist, gives us a look at the opposite of what we sometimes consider a “diagnostic business”. Inside Our children under the microscope: ADHD, high probability, multi-disc and co: how to stop the diagnosis epidemic“Co-authored with Alessandro Elia and published in 2021 by the Pewet edition, he is concerned about the growing systematic cataloging of atypical children.

LH: Have you noticed an increase in advice to identify precedents?

EP: If we are in the basic definition of “HPI”, which is a child with a high intelligence quotient (IQ), then nothing more. But if we replace the measurement of IQ with a criterion that, according to research on the subject, has little to do with the need for justice and pre-sensitivity, such as hypersensitivity, then obviously many more diseases can be diagnosed. It is logical, the number of concerned children is more!

How do you explain this?

Putting people in the box and telling them this is a very reassuring answer: it is because the child is the one who works in it. It makes sense, it makes sense and it is very comforting because the child says to himself: “We are going to stop saying that I am arrogant or lazy because of my failure”. It’s very crime-free for the adult world, which tells itself it has nothing to do with it, because it is. So this is a very “practical” answer from that point of view.

Wanting to draw inspiration from psychiatric medicine and especially pediatric psychiatry general medicine, says: We have a symptom, we have a biological marker and so we have a treatment. For HPI, for example, the key indicator is the calculation of IQ.

If IQ is one of the least suspicious, most identifying child psychiatrists disagree. So it is easy to find and diagnose a disease. In the last ten years, when IQ has not been very high – described as “odd” – the focus has shifted, for example, to children’s hypersensitivity.

We can talk about a “diagnostic business” when we look at the prices charged: 98 euros for first consultation, 410 for IQ test, 98 for report, 88 for family guide counseling …

“It’s a very reassuring response to keep people in the box and tell them: because the baby is inside her so it’s flawed.”

– Emanuel Pickett, Psychotherapist

In your book, you even talked about a “diagnostic epidemic”. How problematic do you think this is?

We are going to diagnose children who do not need to be diagnosed by saying “you are like this, you can never do this” or “it will be complicated for you”. And so we make self-evident predictions.

From the moment we say that a child has HPI, we will assume that he is very sensitive and we will start to see what is wrong with his relationship with others. We will check her, which will create a lot of anxiety and she will feel less comfortable with others. All of this will reinforce the notion that, in fact, his behavior is problematic.

When you see a child as problematic or troubled, he becomes one. That’s the argument. If some people refuse to accept what is projected in front of them, the opposite often happens.

What “self-evident predictions” are you talking about for children with HPI?

HPI children, for example-and it is very inherent, will integrate the fact that they are so intelligent that things cannot go well with others who are jealous. And the problem is that as valuable as it is, it can develop a kind of arrogance in some children.

It’s as unproductive as telling a little girl who is teased in the yard because she’s “pretty.” It doesn’t help. And what’s more, we’re not at all in the context of interaction. These children use this arrogance as armor, which is deeply ineffective. We have to work with them so that they work differently and come out of this inevitability.

In your book, you write: “Labeling is cutting context”. What does this mean?

The idea is to take care of the relationship more than the children. Determining the context in my opinion is a very wise thing to do, so the interaction that the child has with his ecosystem or with himself. And proposing their relationship rather than individual solutions considering school and family context.

We need to change our perspective and stop seeing a baby explode, for example, as a symptom of hyperactivity, but also as a sign of a bubble of creativity. Instead of immediately diagnosing his brain to try to find failure, we can see what we can do differently in this context and in these interactions and see what he does with these symptoms.

And if it does not lead to a reduction in suffering, there will always be time to diagnose cerebral or mental illness. We don’t throw everything overboard, but we try to look at the interaction and context in advance before looking at the child’s failures.

“We’ve moved to another sphere, where even emotions are pathological.”

– Emanuel Pickett, Psychotherapist.

Is it a way for parents to benefit from special benefits for their child?

Yes, of course. If there is no diagnosis, there is no support to go with it. And we’re in a vicious cycle, because consistency at certain times helps as much as necessary and much, sometimes it has the opposite effect.

Having plenty of experts to see if a child has a failure, we think with Alessandro Elijah that this is part of the problem and trouble. However, the parents are very reassured.

You do a lot of work with teachers. Do they talk about their difficulties in the face of the spread of this disease?

For teachers, it’s terrible. To separate them from the moment such restrictions exist, it is as if they have been transformed into waiters, who go from table to table, with different drinks for everyone.

Every child is different and every parent is considered according to their expectations, because they are obviously worried. And so it becomes uncontrollable. It is not the education of thirty people. There is something collective that we are losing.

You further write that “40 years ago litter children were considered‘ normal ’children and today they have a‘ nervous disorder ’.

The latest DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Editor’s comment), We speak of “pathological grief” when a person cries more than twice a week a year after disappearance. We can clearly see that we have moved to another sphere, where even emotions are pathological.

From parental instruction, “I look after you until you are an adult and then you manage” – because it was a kind of idea – “I listen to you and I meet your needs”, it was a good idea. But it has given children much less modesty. And less humble children, we do not know how to do. One way to “tame” them is to diagnose them and give them medicine. In fact, we want butter and butter money.

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