helen-louise (baratron) wrote,
helen-louise
baratron

  • Mood:

Where empathy falls down.

Part of what makes me me is that I empathise strongly with other people. The more I care about them or the closer their situation seems to mine, the more I empathise. I worry about people in bad situations, and my insides get all churned up with concern. The problem I have is that the way I empathise involves transferring my emotions to other people. I read something in their journal and assume that "because x has happened, they are feeling y", because that's how I'd feel in that situation. This is not necessarily a correct assumption. To really mess up, assume that the person is feeling y - and so must also be feeling z because that must logically follow (!). Then go around being terribly stressed out because the person is feeling z, confront them about it, and then find out that actually they don't even feel y, let alone z.

I'm sorry this is cryptic, but it's meant more as a note to self and a public apology. And in writing this now, I have a horrible feeling I made a post almost identical to this one about a year ago, and with the same friend as the person I managed to upset horribly. Argh^2. When will I learn? (When will I get the emotional and rational parts of my brain working at the same time?!)
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