Empaths, Highly Sensitive People and Introverts are as normal as pie. We are not mentally ill but thrown to a mental health system that does not recognize who we are or how special our trait is. We bundled into boxes of mental diagnosis, given antidepressants and therapy that, from what I have heard from many, they do little to erase the problem. I have no idea where this fury at the mental health establishment is coming from now, but maybe it's the remembrance of so many years that I had this anxiety and negative voice and a low self image which had nothing to do with what the world saw of me or my high standards for everything I did. I had heard and read about empaths and thought I might be one but no one thought to ask me if I might be 20% of the population who have extra sensitive nervous systems that can be very difficult to live with without guidance and self knowledge.
At one point, my depression and lack of direction had them try to diagnose me as something from their diagnostic book. It is so much easier to put someone in a box then really listen and get to know them. They love to put you in boxes. Once I found our that I was not alone in the very same feelings and reactions as other empaths and highly sensitive people, I began to take better self care and began to find my strength and intuition.
Most mental health people must get very tired treating day after day and some take the easy way out and ask, "how are you today?" They take the easy way out by not really asking you about who you are and what your experiences are. They just let you babble on about your sad life and send you on your way. No answers, no real insight given as to who you might really be. I got really tired with my last therapist who wanted me to delve deeper into my traumas. Oh, thanks, bud, that is exactly what an empath needs or anyone else. That's call re-traumatization. We need soft and safe and understanding for the intensity of our feelings and the depth of our confusion living in a world where the rules do not apply to us.
It is time for people to know who we are and how to help us help ourselves. There are a few books, some classes, and some meditations that can help but in my opinion, the only way to heal is to look inside yourself for answers and dismantle the mean voices, the gripping fear in our hearts and gut by believing in a higher power and getting plenty of downtime to process the overload of too much information and emotions coming at us. We need to meet ourselves as we are and learn to trust ourselves. We take in so much energy, we need more rest, more reflective time, play, fun, and being with other empaths who long for deep conversations.
I have to say that I hope more and more therapists like Dr. Judith Orloff, herself a psychiatrist and highly empathic. There has to be a screening distributed to all therapists and coaches at some point. I am passionate about the pain of diagnosis and the suffering that some sensitive people endure thinking they are weird, don't fit, not even from this planet. Highly sensitive people do not deserve to suffer believing they don't fit because they don't fit with the model of the other 80% of the population. They need information, changing their thinking, love and rest, and most of all finding others like themselves to enjoy and feel safe with.
The mental health profession is doing its best and I am sure there are many great therapists who recognize sensitive people, but on the whole, my wish is to make sure everyone knows what sensitive people need so they don't get hurt and hurt anyone else. They are the healers, sometimes called the Lightbearers, alive today to give compassion, reconciliation, and insight to a world that desperately needs their heartful energies