of, relating to, or characterized by empathy, the psychological identification with the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of others:
a sensitive, empathetic school counselor.

I am an empath. I feel not only my own emotions very deeply and act on them far too often, but I also feel others emotions. When I get overloaded, I seek commiseration. I reach out for my own empathy because I am overwhelmed by the emotions of others or my own or both. I learned the hard way not to do that on social media. In doing so, others took the opportunity to attack each other over similar incidences to the one I was seeking empathy about. It spiraled into empathic torture. It made it worse. An empath does NOT thrive on drama, but can be debilitated by it.

Being an empath, I see what’s going on in this country and in social media as a break down in the human social experiment. A failure has taken place among the human race. Man has created his own means to chip away at his own humanity. Man has utterly destroyed his own capacity for empathy and compassion. He has damaged his own ability to sense when he’s crossed the line into cruelty. He has lost his ability to put himself in someone else’s shoes.

I realize people have always failed to recognize their own faults. I once believed that when pointed out, especially by someone they love, respect or value, they could think it through and realize where they too went wrong in a situation. That they could put themselves in the other person’s shoes. I have witnessed time and time again in the last several years that not only do people NOT do this, but they flat refuse to acknowledge their own faults. And when confronted, they immediately go to pointing out the faults in someone else; often pointing out the very faults they are guilty of. I have even noticed this in myself and am actively trying to amend my own behavior.

When I was a child, I attended church occasionally. It wasn’t by any means a regular occurrence. I didn’t understand why at the time but as an adult I see my parents’ disillusionment with religion. What I gleaned from these experiences is that Jesus was loving and accepting and patient and forgiving and that He expected all of humanity to follow His lead. We have strayed a LONG WAY from that. Far too many people have begun finding ways to justify hate using the bible. They use scripture as an excuse to be nasty to other people, completely ignoring Jesus’s instructions. They use mostly Old Testament scriptures to do it and still call themselves Christian while ignoring what Jesus taught.

I’m not saying all Christians are doing this. Occasionally I do run across those who still live by the core of Jesus’s teachings. Unfortunately though, those are few and far between. Or perhaps it’s just that they’re just not as vocal or as loud about it when being vocal. I’ve been appalled during many a conversation with acquaintances and family alike over how they now interpret Christianity.

We as creatures live and believe as we do based on experiences and perception. And we are on a steep downhill slide. With each confrontation, too many people are giving up on compassion in favor of what they perceive to be self-preservation. Unfortunately, it often is self-preservation. We remain forever vigilant in preparation for the next verbal, physical or emotional attack. As a result, people have shorter tempers and get nastier with every confrontation. They often react without thinking. These knee jerk reactions more often than not end in misunderstandings that lead to the destruction of relationships of all kinds, including family and close friends. Even when one makes a concerted effort to stay out of the arguments of others, we get dragged into them by someone either in the argument or on the fringes of it trying to show loyalty to one side by forcing us to choose a side, whether we want to or not. It’s gotten increasingly difficult to remain neutral on any topic which is extremely difficult for an empath.

We need another age of enlightenment in many ways. Not only do we need to start learning again and being more open to new information and exploring such information to learn of its validity, but we also need to be opened up to new perspectives on many levels. We need to relearn how to put ourselves into someone else’s shoes; to learn again how to see things as someone else sees them and to accept when someone is trying to point out the opposing prospective. This is not to say we have to accept someone else’s opinion of any given topic as truth, but to accept that they have valid feelings on the topic and have their own set of reasons why they believe as they do. For example, I can understand that my friend who cannot conceive though she desperately wants children is opposed to abortion because she would never consider it given her history. I just wish she could understand that forcing a woman to have a child she never wanted to have regardless of the circumstances of how she came to be pregnant, disregarding the possibility that she was put through physical pain and emotional torture has a certain level of cruel disregard to it. I wish she could see that the laws being proposed do not allow for child victims of rape and incest to be protected and that some of these children are not physically mature enough to carry a pregnancy to term safely and that their lives are put in danger with these laws. Is she okay with the death of one child for her chance at adopting the resulting child? One woman’s loss is her gain and she’s okay with that as long as she gains? And what of the rapist? His actions are okay as long as she gets a child out of it? Men will be men? I wish she could understand that the laws being proposed do not allow for naturally occurring anomalies that cause a fetus not to thrive to be dealt with in a way that is minimally damaging to the mother. And that these laws are criminalizing these anomalies by making the mother seem at fault for these naturally occurring circumstances. I wish she could understand that the term abortion not only applies to the ending of an unwanted pregnancy but also the ending of a wanted pregnancy that just isn’t medically possible.

I believe that this life is a test and many people are failing it despite their religions and their teachings. They have become oblivious to how their actions affect others and further, they don’t care. Too many people are using their bibles to make excuses for their hatred, for their cruel mistreatment of other people and for simply not caring what happens to their fellow man as long as they get what they want out of this life. For an empath, it’s painful to watch.


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