"Indigo Children" followers believe their kids are hyperactive because they're hyper-aware. But they might also be diagnosed as bipolar or ADHD.
Photo: Rocio Zamora, News21

Every parent wants to believe their child is special. One group claims its children are extra special.

Followers of the Indigo Children movement, which started in the 1970s, say a new generation of highly sensitive and spiritually gifted kids are here to save the world. They claim many of these kids are exceptionally smart, self-motivated and sometimes able to read minds.

But some doctors say these so-called Indigo Children exhibit characteristics of bipolar and attention deficit disorders. They worry that Indigo parents won’t provide their kids with the assistance they need — especially parents who advocate alternative health regimens in place of medication to control their children’s behavior.

The movement has gained momentum in recent years following the release of the cult movie The Indigo Evolution, and the popular book The Indigo Children: The New Kids Have Arrived, by Lee Carroll and Jan Tober.

Carroll and Tober define being an Indigo Child by the following 10 characteristics:

• They come into the world with a feeling of royalty (and often act like it).

•They have a feeling of "deserving to be here," and are surprised when others do not share that. Image:

Marchelle, top, and Sara Wertz
Photo: Rocio Zamora, News21

• They often tell the parents "who they are."

• They have difficulty with absolute authority (authority without explanation or choice).

• They simply will not do certain things; for example, waiting in line is difficult for them.

• They get frustrated with systems that are ritually oriented and do not require creative thought.

• They often see better ways of doing things, both at home and in school, which makes them seem like "system busters" (non-conforming to any system).

• They seem antisocial unless they are with their own kind. If there are no others of like consciousness around them, they often turn inward, feeling like no other human understands them. School is often extremely difficult for them socially.

• They will not respond to "guilt" discipline. ("Wait till your father gets home and finds out what you did.").

• They are not shy in letting it be known what they need.

Are you an Indigo? Take the quiz.

Voices from the Indigo Debate

Click the photos for more:

  Martha Wertz regulates her kids' diets, simplifies their environments and uses essential oils to help them calm down and focus. She says many parents are too quick to medicate their children.

Sara Wertz, 12, says she believes she's an "indigo." We asked if she's ever considered that it's not true.

Christopher Wertz, 10, has been diagnosed with ADHD. He talks about his hyperactivity and what it means to be an "indigo"

Marchelle Wertz, 22, says she's "indigo" because she has a strong intuition and desire to change the world.

Doreen Virtue, Ph.D. is the author of several books about indigo children. Virtue says "indigos" are here to save the world.

Elizabeth Roberts, M.D., is a child psychiatrist. She says parents may use the "indigo" label because they don't want to admit their child has a disorder or behavior problem.

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