What It’s Like to Be an Empath (Part 3)

From Part 2, I got a comment that mentioned I was young, lacked knowledge, and probably had a personality disorder. In which case my response is yeah, sure, which personality disorder do I have? Cause I’ll write a 4 part series on that too, baby.

I wanted to write about my experience as an Empath, and of course no two Empaths are alike. No two sociopaths are alike. Apaths are perfectly normal people, just like Empaths and Sociopaths. You get the idea. This is not some definitive knowledge. We are all exploring life together with different abilities, enlightening each other on what we know.

As an Empath, I also enjoy experiencing physical pain. They say if your finger gets stung by a bee, you should put it in boiling water. Well that’s what pain is to me. It’s exhausting feeling emotions all day long, some that are hard to get rid of, pain is a lovely escape. It’s like I’m a balloon full of emotions and the pain pops the balloon. Things like painful massages are perfect for me. Anything done with love and care including pain can be a endorphin inducing.

Empaths can feel what the other person is feeling. This for some people feels like they’re invading other people’s privacy. For me it feels very obligatory if the other person is not feeling well, that I should help the person. Which most of the time is a stupid idea. You can’t help someone who doesn’t want help. So it just ends up with me being helpless about wanting to help. I’m not a saint, but that aggravates me to no end. I want people to succeed, be happy, move on with things in life. I don’t like seeing people be stuck or distraught in any way. For Empaths it may even seem to them that they are helping, because they feel what the other person feels but that isn’t helping. That’s just feeling.

Some Empaths are emotional empaths, some are cognitive and some are physical, they experience pain in their body when someone else is feeling bad. I am emotional, but yesterday during a screen of Beauty and the Beast, I was pretty much vibrating and getting tingling sensations through the whole movie, it was pretty wonderful. It makes me wonder if physical Empaths experience positive physical sensations when people are happy?

I don’t know how to find other Empaths. I can’t recognize them. I can’t recognize sociopaths either. I can however tell right away that I’ve met an Apath, because I’ll be somewhere experience the shit out of an emotion and the Apath won’t notice and if they do, it wont bother them at all. Which can seem like they’re being cruel. They’re not. They can’t feel what you feel, but at least they don’t try and fake it to blend in and seem normal like sociopaths do. And I don’t see Empaths and Sociopaths and Apaths as definitive either, we’re all on a spectrum and some are more than others. One thing for me makes it clear that I am an Empath is that when I was in grade 6, I use to tell people that I was on fire. I was over stimulated by emotions, other people, lights and sound. I have dreams about people I love if they are distraught. I feel super negative or positive towards people right away. It’s always very strong or nothing at all. I live with extremes. Stability, shielding, blocking, and unloading are all things Empaths need to do, and these take time and understanding. The more I connect to myself, the more I feel like I can use Empath as a tool, rather than as a source of havoc.

Part 4? Why not. Over and out.

 

What It’s Like To Be An Empath (Part 2)

I had so much fun writing the last post. I had to do another. Fear not, I am easily dismayed but never discouraged.

An Empath can often feel like they are being seared alive inside out from other people’s emotions. If that person is unstable, it can be a true challenge not to become unstable as well. Emotions like anger, sadness, and even happiness can burn so intensely that it’s unbearable. I often feel shame when I’m massively overloaded and I can’t function or keep it in anymore. I find a place to hide and release as much as I can. Some people do grounding exercise or meditation or breathing. I will always try a grounding exercise first and if that doesn’t work I will experience whatever emotion I have to experience. I just put up with the anguish of that emotion coming through.

Despite being burned by the radiation of other people’s emotions, what’s even more troublesome is accidently adopting other people’s emotions. It happens often that I will feel or think what someone else is thinking and it feels so real I will mistaken it for my own thoughts and emotions. I will make choices that aren’t in line with what I wanted. It can be confusing because no one is forcing me to make them, so the aftermath can be enraging or regretful and a lot of self blame happens. This is kind of why Empaths will put up a lot of distance if they find themselves behaving out of character around a person. Through acting I learned about having a very strong core, because people will take your image and change it into many different looks. It’s the same with emotions, people can take your emotions and inject many different new ones. If the core is strong, it will be okay. You will be able to come back to yourself easily. You will be able to distinguish which thoughts are yours and which thoughts are not.

I feel very lucky to have an Apath (my term for someone who has emotions, but can’t get affected by other people’s emotions) and I would love to find more Apaths. There are articles that write about the Empath and Sociopath relationships and how much work it is, and I think it’s great for those Empaths who can make it work for them. However I do encourage Empaths to try and befriend Apaths, it has a ton more stability. An Apath is someone who probably doesn’t appeal to Empaths, but they really should. It will be very hard and confusing at first for an Empath and an Apath to get along since neither understand the natural disposition of the other and will find the other so foreign in concept, let alone in existence. They may even force the other to be more like them. An Empath will want the Apath to feel what they feel, and an Apath can’t and will want the Empath to stop having feelings. Once they get over this stage and dissolve their unrealistic expectations, this can be a very cohesive and effective dynamic. The Empath is an amazing teacher and can explain and teach lots of things to the Apath that they can’t understand on their own. The Apath can be there for Empath to off load at any time, without repercussions to themselves. The image of a little girl and Godzilla is how I picture Empath-Sociopath relationship. The image of a little girl and a Transformers is how I picture the Empath-Apath relationship. It’s similar but a world of a difference.

Lastly, you’re probably wondering well it seems like it really sucks to be an Empath (spoiler alert is does!) is there anything good about being an Empath!? Yes of course. I get very jealous of everyone who is not one, but I wouldn’t never change it. Empaths are very caring, great at nurturing, extremely sensitive and appreciative beings. Very rewarding to love and befriend, once they trust you. An Empath will worry about you and think of your needs in thoughtful gifts/actions and show you many things that will suit you that you didn’t even know of. They are a gatekeeper to the best experiences and a life of vitality. An Empath is a good person to have in your life and the investment is always worth it. Kind of like a Pokémon. Empaths are loyal to a fault, and not for everyone. If you want to be a Pokémon trainer and become the very best, invest in a Empath. They will be useful to you in life’s battles.

If you have questions, I’d be happy to include them in Part 3. Over and out!

 

What Is It Like To Be An Empath (Part 1)

I am what the Internet refers to as an Empath. I am the type of Empath that my emotions are either 0% or 100%. I usually turn my Empath off because if I didn’t I wouldn’t be able to function in daily life.

 

At 0% I am snarky and bitchy. Still better than exploding with rainbow coloured feelings. In this state I tend to be blunt and manage to insult a lot of people without wanting or trying to. Super great for my social life! Example, “Do you want to be friends?” “No, your breath smells and you’re a vapid person.”

 

I’m not invested in the responses I give nor do I think the other person should be. But then I see them get hurt. And boy do I just die inside. I drop to knees and cry and do everything I can to save the other person from all negative feelings. I cry a lot when I hurt other people.

 

It never ends well. I use to always feel guilty about that until the other person found a friend better suited for them. And I realized it was the right thing because I would have kept hurting them.

 

Empaths being friends with other Empaths is sometimes great. We can release our emotions full stop, and we understand the necessity for it! Sometimes two empaths can burn each other out by fuelling each others emotions to a uncontainable high. That’s unhealthy and not a good practice. I tend to get along with empaths who always have their Empath on 0% like me. We get each others struggle.

 

As an Empath emotions build up fast and you have to off load sooner or later. There are three ways I have off loaded emotions. The first was with other Empaths, because I couldn’t with normal people. It was too much. But then life surprised me! There’s only ever been one exception. This person is absolutely not an Empath. I didn’t know people like him existed. He didn’t know Empaths existed either. He thought only fictional Anime characters were like this not real people so I was a bit of a surprise to him. Anyways I can basically switch between 0% (and be as blunt as a fist full of diamonds) or 100% (Puppy love with all the borks) and it doesn’t affect him at all. It’s super cool! Everything affects me! Nothing affects him! He’s like a space creature with anti-influence powers! It’s great for me. I can offload as much as I want with no worries. And then turn off when I done. Easy breezy.

 

The 2nd way I use to off load is with Sociopaths. They tend to feed on empaths feelings. I don’t do this anymore. I have my non Empath now. I never found the Sociopath option stable enough. It wasn’t balanced, it was often really good or really bad. And never regular. Either not frequent enough or too frequent.

 

The third way I do it now is with writing. Writing is perfect. It’s productive and it feels really good, without being too intense. It also fills a bunch of others needs too. I genuinely like writing. My Empath journey actually started with writing, then went into self portraits and then acting/YouTube. It’s kind of nice to come back to my roots.

 

I want to write a series and would love to answer any questions to create a part 2, 3 or even 4. Just let me know! Ask away. Over and out!

Like

I have been picking up the guitar lately. And my uncoordinated strumming and singing has been the most productive thing I’ve done all week. Everything else feels like garbage.

I live in a space, inside the earth, with someone who gets angry a lot. I’m talking like 10-20 times a day. I usually almost always say, “You like to get angry.” They like it a lot. Otherwise why do they do it.

And no matter how many times I say this, it seems to fly over their head. They blame me or an event or a thing. No, it’s not any of those. It’s them. They like getting angry.

Whatever shitty thing you like to do to yourself or other people, be it anger or something else just stop. Stop liking it. Stop enjoying it.

Pick up a fucking guitar/knitting/person, and like it instead.

Meat less Poems

Poems. What the fuck are they.
I use to write them, and I have no idea how anymore.

It’s been 7 meat less days. And I’ve discovered I really love tofu nuggets from Kinton Ramen. It doesn’t feel like I’m missing anything. I guess meat never gave me that much fulfillment if I don’t even miss it. I miss the idea of meat, but not the actual thing.

Tofu will never replace meat. It can imitate it in a thousand ways on a thousand different days but it will never be the real thing. The real thing is terrible. And it shouldn’t be sought after as the ideal. Tofu is better off being like tofu.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, you are tofu. You are better off being tofu. Stop trying to be meat. Just be tofu. It’s not the worst thing in the world to be tofu.

Someone out there loves tofu, in its original blubber form. Go be tofu in full force, it will tickle that someone to the bones.

 

 

Millennials

I see a lot of millennials dismay over the state of their lives. Depreciating the good, and honouring the bad. It’s the norm. I always want to ask them, how is making fun of your life going to help change it?

I’m not here to say that I’m any better. But if I was, I would advise, take an interest in the world around you. Talk to someone new. Elevate your tolerance for your own bullshit.

Do something different.

Your world is not the problem. You are. And you can over come.

 

Pretty Girls

I am loved. By at least one person this I’m now sure of. It keeps me on the straight and narrow. I was at work, when an AD told me, ‘you’re pretty you know.’ Thanks, I thought I was an ugly butthole with a fist up my arse but I guess I’ll let you convinced me otherwise. He’s too old to be hitting on me. Way too old. He shows me pictures of girls he wants to bang. This type of thing happens to me a lot. I’m not wearing make up and my hair is Goku.

He asks me, if I have a husband. I tell him no. He asks why.
I stare into his eyes and whisper, “I’m a monster.”

He freaks out. I feel better.

Quote

“And I think about the work that I do as a designer. It’s my job to make things for other people. I get hired by somebody to make something and then that gets given to someone else. There’s three steps there already, and then if I do my job and people love that, they share it with someone else. So there’s potentially more steps after that, so how can I think about my job as anything other than giving a gift. […] And those are the times when the work is the best and the times that it’s not like that I feel awful inside. Because I’m not making mix tapes for people. My work so often as a designer that has eaten away at me has been to realize that my role has frequently been to generate desire in other people and to make them want. And the reason that I’m so prone to want to look at the work that I do from now on as a gift is because a gift offers the promise of satiating that desire in some way. So maybe if I can short circuit the system somehow. Design is just a skill and we all get the benefit of how we choose to use our skills.” – Frank Chimero

Change | Be

I learned something this week.  I was in class yesterday and my teacher, Karen was noting character study for plays, films and TV. She mentioned this to us, ‘Archetypes are characters who evolve. They have revelations, they change, and they move on to the next part in their journey. Stereotypes are characters who don’t. They learn the same lesson every week but the very next week they make the exact same dumb mistakes they made the week before. They don’t change. Sitcoms are full of these’. I didn’t think much of it at the time but now it’s become something to chew on.

It reminds me of the previous week’s class, where another teacher Sean was answering a student asking for help with change. He delivered his own version of the four stages of competence. It went something like this. ‘The first level of awareness is when you make a mistake on stage and your friends point it out. Even then you can’t recall and aren’t aware of when you’re doing it. The second level is when you make a mistake on stage and you realize it after you step off stage. The third level of awareness is when you make a mistake and immediately realize it. And then the final stage of awareness is when you are about to make a mistake but you make the realization before the action happens. You’re able to stop and correct yourself. If someone has the realization immediately after their mistake, that is great! It means you’re almost there. The next time, or maybe the next time after that, you will be able to do it. You will break the default reflex. You are this close.’ At which point my teacher made a squinty pirate face while gesturing a tiny gap with his right hand.

Both of the lessons have been thought-provoking and enhanced clarity about the material I’m learning. The four plays being studied this term each have a main couple who are detrimental stereotypes. Each couple closely represents the four stages of competence. For the most tragic dynamic, the male lead believes he is a good person who saves damsels and helps others. However the exact opposite is true and he ultimately ruins both his and his lover’s life. When I see tragic stereotypes like this, people who never change, it makes me deeply curious about my own consciousness. Have I changed? How have I changed? Do I raise the consciousness of others? Am I someone who supports the maintenance of change for others? Some people never change and some do but don’t sustain it. The plays have reinforced the idea to me that pure awareness is not enough. There needs to be a support system to make freeing changes last. Friends, lovers, and mentors should be made with decisive intelligence. A person’s circle of influence is often the threshold for permitting change from who they are to who they could be.

Quote

“Everybody has a story, this is part of my story and it has made me who I am. Never feel embarrassed or ashamed of any trails you’ve endured.”

Woman at Finch Subway

Before all of the photos and videos and nonsense goes viral, I hope that I can provide a different perspective from someone who was there at the incident.

On Friday, September, 26th around 10pm an elderly white lady with spiky short white and gray hair wearing a long black dress began shouting “This is bullshit, this is bullshit”. She shouted this in the subway on the top platform where buses are loaded and departed. People began looking at her. Soon she walked up to a young pair of individuals and did something that cause the crowd to roar. I was curious but I didn’t want to be involved. I didn’t want to look in case I saw something  I couldn’t unsee.

She began walking around, dancing. She was surrounded and it was hard to see what she was doing but it was lewd enough that young adults with cell phones in hand were video recording and picture snapping.

I don’t plan to make excuses for her. She might have been in her right mind but through the glimpses that I did see it was very possible that she was drunk or mentally ill. In any case the laughing, the smart phone waving, the pointing and talking was enough to make me wish it would stop, or that I wasn’t there.

She’s a human being. To me she looked like someone who needed help. We always talk about mental health, especially in Toronto. There are CAMH (Center for Addiction and Mental Health) bus ads and Bell Let’s talk billboards to promote against the sigma of mental illness and raise donations for mental health issues. However when it comes down to the facts, and to the face to face incidents like this, everyone laughs. They photograph. They instagram. Young black men standing near me were throwing dirty drink cups at her, half empty bubble teas and dark roast Tim Horton cups. When they ran out they fished more from the TTC garbage.

It took me about 10-15 minutes before I saw a TTC driver on the phone in his stationary bus that it dawned on me I could tell him what’s happening. I could help. I wanted to help her. I didn’t want to be recorded. Even if I was recorded helping her, I wouldn’t have known what to do once I reached her face to face. If she wouldn’t come down from the bench. If she refused to stop dancing.

The TTC driver informed me he was already calling it in. I got off his bus to return to waiting for my own when a woman strode towards me. She was middle age, Indian and had the look of motherly worry that told me she too was thinking of reporting what was happening inside the station. We talked briefly. I asked her if the woman in question had been flashing people with her chest. She confirmed to me she had.

Eventually my bus came and I saw that the crowd had dissipated as I got on. I thought that getting on the bus meant I could just forget all about the incident and push it aside in my mind. I sat in the back, in the first top row. A woman quickly sat down next to me. She chatted very excitedly with whoever was on the other side of the line. She was speaking in her own language but I was beginning to fear that she was talking about what had happened. She giggled and squealed as she spoke.  Then when she finished she happily looked through her phone, confirming to me I was right. There were pictures of the incident on her phone.

Fuck.
Do I say something.

I really wanted to tell her this wasn’t okay. I really didn’t want to be involved. After a few bus stops I decided I couldn’t accept staying silent. It was wrong and if that’s what I believed I should say something.

You should delete those pictures.
What?

The bus was pretty loud and full.

You should delete those pictures.
What? Why are you looking at my phone?

You should delete those pictures.
It’s none of your business. You shouldn’t be looking at my phone. It’s my phone. I have a right.
One day you’ll be drunk and people will be talking photos of you and you’ll know how it feels.
Why did you look at my phone? How would you like it if I looked through your phone.

I didn’t want to see her pictures but since she was sitting next to me everything she did was in my range of view. I almost offered her to took through my phone just to null her point. I was hoping to guilt her, or make her empathize. I knew I had upset her.

I wasn’t the only one to say something. Another guy spoke up at the station as he was getting on my bus. He looked at the air cadet smiling to himself about the whole thing. They were both Asian and looked like teenagers.

You shouldn’t be smiling you should be helping. You’re in uniform.

What if we were all in uniforms. What if we all obligated ourselves to focus on helping rather than ridiculing. Can this be possible?