Anxiety has been a big part of my life for a long time. I don’t really know what it’s like to not be anxious to some degree. It’s normal for me, but even with that being the case, it sucks.
Beginning as a little girl, I was sensitive to everything around me, I still am. I am what is known as an empath. Some people don’t believe empaths exist but I’m walking, talking, living and breathing proof of the empath’s existence.
This is the official definition from the American Empath Association: An empath is someone who understands the mental or emotional states of others in a way that defies conventional science and psychology. Empaths have the ability to sense the feelings, thoughts, and energies of people, plants, places, or objects. In addition to sensing, empaths absorb the energy of those around them. Empaths can also use their abilities to help others by imagining themselves in someone else’s situation and connecting with them on a deep level. https://urbandictionary.com
It’s not a gift, trust me. If it is a gift, who do I talk to about returns because I’m pretty sure this is not what I ordered. It sucks! I feel everything and everyone around me. Sometimes it’s very difficult to differentiate other people’s feelings from my own. It’s maddening.
One can imagine I’m sure, the amount of anxiety this little “gift” causes in my life, especially if I am in a crowded place. Imagine feeling 50, 100, 200+ different people’s emotions during a single trip to WalMart.
There are 17 different types of Empath according to The American Empath Association. I have traits of 3 types; emotional, claircognizant, and telepathic.
You might have already known about emotional empaths as it’s what most people think of when referring to an empath. I feel what other people feel.
Claircognizant means I can intuitively sense others intentions, often being able to tell if someone is lying. It’s the type I dislike the most. I can’t tell you how much denial I have had simply because I don’t want to be hurt or I don’t want to believe the sinister intentions of others.
Telepathic is what some call a “mind-reader”. I began to show telepathic abilities as a very small child. By the time I was 4 years old, I read my mother’s mind quite often. I didn’t think it was strange because I didn’t know any different.
I have a vivid memory of reading my mother’s mind once. She was in the kitchen thinking about getting me a swing set for my upcoming birthday. I remember hearing her just as if she were speaking out loud. To me, there was talking while moving our mouths, and also talking while saying nothing. That was normal. When I told her that I, in fact, would like a swing set, she picked her jaw up off the floor.
The telepathy isn’t anywhere as powerful as it was when I was a kid but I still pick things up randomly.
Mental illness and anxiety go hand in hand. When you are an empath as well as mentally ill, the anxiety can often be unbearable.
I go to great lengths to avoid situations which I know are likely to cause anxiety. For instance, I haven’t stepped foot inside Walmart in about 6 months. My wonderful boyfriend does all the shopping, bless him.
It’s so difficult for me to go inside a crowded place that there have been many times I have left full grocery carts because I had to leave. Shopping, in general, is not fun for me. I always have to absent myself at least once and go outside. That has mainly been happening in the past 5 or 6 years.
I am in no way belittling the anxiety of those who are not empaths, so no hate mail, please. I know anxiety can be debilitating for anyone, no matter their “superpower”.
Not very many people know these things about me. I wasn’t ever comfortable talking about it before. I have always been scared of what people would think or if they would even believe me. At this point in my life, and with the amount of bullshit I have endured, I do not care anymore. Believe me or don’t. This is me. I’m weird.
Deal with it. I have to…