Being an empath means having an innate ability to understand and feel the emotions, sensations, and emotional experiences of others.
Empaths are often very sensitive to the emotions of others and can feel those emotions as if they were their own. This can include the ability to perceive the emotions of others, feel their emotional or physical pain, and connect deeply with others on an emotional level.
They are often very attentive to the emotional needs of others and inclined to offer emotional support, actively listen, and provide comfort to those around them. However, being an empath can also be emotionally draining, as absorbing the emotions of others can be overwhelming and result in stress or fatigue.
It is important to note that empathy is a personality trait and emotional capacity that exists on a spectrum. Some people may be more empathetic than others, and this can manifest itself in different ways depending on the individual.
There are also other related terms, such as hyper-empathy (a high sensitivity to the emotions of others) and emotional hypersensitivity (a high emotional reactivity), that can be used to describe similar experiences. It is important for empaths to take care of themselves and find emotional balance to avoid emotional exhaustion.
In the real world, empathy is not a superpower. It is a conditioned response based on a lifetime of trying to meet the perceived needs of others, sometimes to gain their approval.
Empaths have a good sense of what someone is feeling and are often right, but when they go beyond what is reasonable, they run into problems.
Here are 4 ways empaths can sabotage their relationships:
1. They compromise boundaries (without being asked to do so)
Empaths may have an innate belief that they must constantly sacrifice themselves to be loved.
The empath will give up personal freedoms and limits of commitment in order to appease the other person, even if they haven't asked for anything. Over time, this can build up resentment, and it is all based on an expectation that the empath has placed on himself.
2. They forget or neglect themselves
In the name of altruism, the empath will become involved in their partner's well-being. They will give up their friends, hobbies and all the little things that make them who they are in order to care for someone else.
Eventually, this will lead the empath to feel neglected, and because he does not express his needs, his partner may not know how to love him.
3.they speak for their partner
Because empaths have a deep understanding of their partner, they may feel the need to speak for them. This behavior takes away the partner's autonomy.
This pattern will also build resentment, because it will always be up to the empath to do the backbreaking work of meeting the other person's needs.
But this work is self-assigned, and it teaches the other party that they don't have to express their needs, because someone else is there to do it for them.
4.they think on behalf of their partner
Empaths often handle both sides: arguments and difficult discussions in their heads. And often, the empath will resolve the conflict themselves, but it's unfair to the other party who has no idea that a conflict occurred in the first place.
Empaths must allow their partner to express their own opinions. This is a double-edged sword, and empaths, no matter how noble their intentions, must learn to stay in their own lane.