Are you a highly sensitive parent?

A Self Test

You can complete this parent screening tool either by downloading the editable PDF below or simply record on paper your answers, to the following questions.

Respond to each statement according to the way you feel. Answer true if it is at least somewhat true for you. Answer false if it is not very true or not true at all for you.

  1. I seem to be aware of subtleties in my environment
  2. Other people’s moods affect me
  3. I tend to be sensitive to pain
  4. I find myself needing to withdraw during busy days, into bed or into a darkened room or any place where I can have some privacy and relief from overstimulation
  5. I am particularly sensitive to the effects of caffeine
  6. I am easily overwhelmed by things like bright lights, strong smells, coarse fabrics or sirens going by
  7. I have a rich complex inner life
  8. I am made uncomfortable by loud noises
  9. I am deeply moved by the arts or music
  10. I am conscientious
  11. I startle easily
  12. I get rattled when I have a lot to do in a short amount of time
  13. When people are uncomfortable in a physical environment I tend to know what needs to be done to make it more comfortable (like changing the lighting or the seating)
  14. I am annoyed when people try to get me to do too many things at once
  15. I try hard to avoid making mistakes or forgetting things
  16. I make it a point to avoid violent movies and TV shows
  17. I become unpleasantly aroused when a lot is going on around me
  18. Being very hungry creates a strong reaction in me, disrupting my concentration or mood
  19. Changes in my life shake me up
  20. I notice and enjoy delicate or fine scents tastes sounds works of art
  21. I make it a high priority to arrange my life to avoid upsetting or overwhelming situations.
  22. When I must compete or be observed while performing a task, I become so nervous or shaky that I do much worse than I would otherwise.
  23. When I was a child, my parents or teachers seemed to see me as sensitive or shy.


If you answered True to twelve or more of the statements/questions you’re probably highly sensitive.

But frankly no psychological test is so accurate that you should base your life on it. If only one or two questions are true of you but they are extremely true you might also be justified in calling yourself highly sensitive.

This self-test is not meant to diagnose or exclude the diagnosis of any condition. This self test has been replicated with thanks from international High Sensitivity expert, Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D.

To meet with Sally and identify whether your child exhibits High Sensitivity or to understand the interaction between parent and child temperaments please contact us.