Finding Out At Midlife That I'm a Highly Sensitive Person

I've known I'm highly sensitive since I came across Elaine Aron's book "The Highly Sensitive Person" a couple of years ago. What a relief! Of course, I knew all my life that my reactions to many things were highly sensitive, and because of this I always felt different from others. I grew up in a big city so there was a lot coming at me all the time in terms of noise and people, but I think the worst effects came from a very dysfunctional family. The harshness of my childhood (angry, unpredictable father who I now realize was also highly sensitive, among his other issues), and also attending Catholic elementary school with nuns who for the most part were extremely harsh and unkind combined with my hsp trait to keep me in a constant state of stress and distress. So here I am at midlife, still realizing aspects of my hsp trait. It's affected very much how or whether I can relate to different types of people. Often avoidance has been my automatic way of "coping." I want friendships, yet I'm overcautious because of both my trait and the past, so I continually try to counter in my thinking what might be false negative perceptions about myself and others. I'm very glad to have found this way of connecting with others who are highly senstive like me!

seabreeze5100 seabreeze5100
46-50, F
4 Responses Feb 24, 2009

I too have found out I am highly sensitive person and although I have always known that just realized what that all entails. I have been obsessed with learning from my new favorite teacher Heidi Sawyer. She is the new book I cannot put down and do see it ending any time soon as the information she teaches is exactly what I have been searching for for years. From one HSP to another check her out also. :)

to all..."THANK YOU"

Marji, you sure weren't blubbering :) When I've heard comments like that I've wondered myself how that really works for anyone. Being HSP in itself has kept me feeling so off-balance and out-of-sync with the rest of the world all my life that I don't need any further uncertainties! Yet they keep coming! I'm glad at least that we HSPs can empathize with and lean on each other in understanding :)

IVotedForPedro, I know exactly what you mean! Sometimes I'd even come home at lunch so tense and frightened & begging not to have to go back to school because my stomach was so upset, yet I had to. I used the words "harsh" and "unkind" to describe the nuns who taught at my school, but some of them were truly abusive. I was an emotional wreck, trying my best to be good & cooperative, and suffering for the kids who were hit or screamed at. I guess none of us told. Maybe we thought we'd surely be in trouble by our parents if the nuns were mad at us!I don't think I ever said anything. And really I don't know how I learned anything at all either. Thank you so much for your comment!