"Too, Sensitive", Huh? Well, Maybe They Are "Insensitive"?

Hi, y'all. The other day I sent this total ESSAY on "sensitivity" to individuals but I need to post it as my flagship intro. to this experience group, since I frequently get that comment (about ME) and resent that it generally has a NEGATIVE connotation. So then, I want to share my ALTERNATE philosophy/perspective on being sensitive with as many "sensitive" people as I can, and this seems like the place to do it. See what you think of this. It's a long read but really worth it in my opinion. I mean HSP is one thing but please don't let yourself be classified as having some sort of social disorder just because ******** like to step on you with minimal friction!

I think that there are instances where people can be "over-sensitive" but I have to say that the line about what is and isn't too sensitive can be all over the map, depending on your own personal level of sensitivity.

I acknowledge that I'm a sensitive person. I also have to acknowledge that there are multitudes of people in this society that are plain INSENSITIVE, which is of course the flipside. If two people are not on the same page about their levels of sensitivity, it can lead to a lot of blaming.

"Oh God, you're so sensitive!", vs.

"It's normal to be sensitive if you're being treated callously. If you weren't being insensitive to me then you wouldn't be saying that."

If two sensitive people get together, then they are sensitive NOT ONLY about themselves but also are likely sensitive to their partner's needs. This in my opinion is the normal state of a human being. EVERYONE is sensitive. Society and BUSINESS tends to make people repress it. Feelings are not PRODUCTIVE or CONVENIENT, but they are HUMAN. Since people that can't think for themselves always look to authority to dictate their morals, they tell you you're too sensitive because callousness (which flows down from business superiors), is the standard of human interaction. In this day, people are mostly corporate slaves, so they accept that their person and even their very behavior is the property of the employer. Hell, you could easily be fired for fervently venting the wrong opinion, can't you? The fact that callousness in human interaction is considered the norm is in fact an understatement. You are UTTERLY EXPENDABLE, as a human being. You might as well be a robot for all they care.

So, here's something with a little sensitive emotional charge for you: "You're damn right I'm sensitive and guess what? I'm proud of it!" If people weren't such robots they wouldn't go to a place where they're putting me down for it when in fact they happen to be the offending party in many instances.

Of course there IS such a thing as overreacting and getting overly sensitive. BUT frequently the more callous individual is ACTUALLY doing something unacceptable, and hurtful.

If you stand me up for a date, don't call and have no better reason than you had to take care of some other stuff, and then I get to find out later THAT IS BEING disrespectful, cold-hearted, selfish and decidedly INSENSITIVE. I am not going to sit there and be criticized for being TOO SENSITIVE. NO NO NO. You'd better check yourself.

I'd far rather deal with a person who's sensitive. At least then I can console them. An insensitive person is impossible. They're generally arrogant about their behavior and don't want to hear the flipside. They refuse to take responsibility for their callous, maybe even ruthless behavior patterns. They'd rather take the cop-out route, which of course invalidates my feelings but so what?

That being said, I also want to acknowledge there are people I consider hyper-sensitive, even by my standards, and I have had to acknowledge that I have been too sensitive, overreacted to things and even jumped to "paranoid" conclusions. HOWEVER, I also see a LOT of people using the coined phrase "too sensitive" as an excuse for their inexcusable behavior. DON'T LET THEM!

I have a lot of charge on this topic since it's been a point of contention in my last two significant relationships. Sorry but I'm not going to be used as the scapegoat for being perfectly human, so you can be in denial about your ruthlessness. How convenient for you that I'm TOO SENSITIVE!!

-- A proud sensitive person's perspective.

BobArctor BobArctor
41-45, M
12 Responses Mar 1, 2008

Bravo! All true!

Hey just wanted to say thanks for that story! I'm always worrying that I take things too personally, but you make a lot of sense. I think I may be, in fact, just making excuses for people who are actually treating me like crap. Thanks for showing me I'm not alone and that it's okay to feel that way!

My significant other tells me often I take things the wrong way and I'm too sensitive. He won't take responsibility for his rudeness -- he made a remark to me in a public place! All heads turned and stared. I was terribly embarrassed. He says he doesn't care what others think. And, he says he didn't do anything wrong, so, no apology, of course. I'm tired of being told I'm over reacting, so we are now taking a breather from this relationship. I can't believe his attitude. He just doesn't get it!

I'm not cruel but have noticed sometimes I can be pushy. When I turn out to be a hypocrite I will shamefully eat arsenic or something, 'cause I'm a Libra and hate hypocrisy. Though I consider myself highly self-aware, I find some of my behaviors are knee-jerk and then I have to eat crow.<br />
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BTW you a Fresh-Start vitamin fan? I'm referring to the handle here, which is one of their vitamin paks.

im the worst kind. insensitive and also too sensitive. anyone else feel the same?

Yes, this is def. one that I'm very proud of.<br />
I've thought about it a lot, and it's "alternative" because the consensus seems to be that being overly sensitive is the sensitive person's problem.<br />
This is usually wrong!<br />
Anyway thanks again and hold your head up.

you are the one with the problem ...<br />
Yes, I've noticed that; it's sad. Let's start a movement. :)<br />
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prefer sensitive people as they are more in touch with their feelings<br />
I DO TOO! Power to the sensitive.<br />
The meek shall inherit the Earth!<br />
Thanks for the compliments. I'm glad my insight inspired you and helped you to accept your sensitivity as an asset. Let's stick together, sensitive ppl!! :)

Your story was brilliant BobArctor! I am constantly being labelled, by my partner, as too sensitive.....but I never looked at it the other way around. <br />
I guess when someone tells you that for long enough, as though it is such an awful thing, you start to believe you are the one with the problem and it is a negative state to be.<br />
I have been having terrible problems with my late husbands family and apart from being ignored at his wake, I am now having them threaten me and tell me that they are disappointed in me...blah! blah! blah!<br />
When I cried because of a recent hateful and spiteful email, I was told to stop being so sensitive and toughen up!<br />
Please, if anyone knows, how do you change the person you have been all your life, just like that???<br />
I prefer sensitive people as they are more in touch with their feelings and my current partner often comes across as cold-hearted.<br />
Your post was an inspiration to me and I will take a lot from it and it has made me realise that I am not too sensitive...he is, in fact, insensitive and he has the problem!<br />
Hoorah for sensitive people! x

Hi, I just went down memory lane and I really appreciated your response to my sensitivity story. Are you on Facebook? I'd like to friend you on there, if you are. Well actually you'd have to friend me, because of stupid FB problems I'm having right now. Message me on there in any case, if you can. I think I'd like to have more SENSITIVE friends like you!!

Hugs, Bob

my profile page:

AYE AYE. Yeah all part of the robotic business and money corruption. Money talks period now bend over and take it. Well )(*)(*& that!! Right?<br />
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We're human beings first, then workers. People just don't even understand that any more! Tube watching Sheeple.

WOW! I couldn't have said it any better myself Bob! I am always being told I am way too sensitive, and I hate it too! It's almost like people can't have feelings anymore. I can relate well to the sensitivity in the workplace thing all too well! I have been told don't take it personally if someone is rude to you or hostile, just brush it off and go on with your day. I have been in the customer service industry for a very long time and I find that on a whole people treat customer service workers like total crap! They think that just because you are serving them they can be rude and you have to take it because that is your job! and heaven forbid you give it back to them, then they go whine to your boss that you were rude to them! There is no need to be hostile or rude and I wonder why so many people act this way, I see this alot in my job. People can see you are very busy and that you are only one person, that you can only serve one at a time, yet they stand in line and hum and haw and act all impatient, then when they do get to you, they act cold and hostile! That to me is very rude and insensitive! So then why do I have to treat this person with a smile on my face and all friendly like!? Or they come to you for advice on something they bought or a product then stand there and tell you your wrong and criticize your opinion! Or they want to return something and want their money back, but don't understand that it isn't your fault because the company policy is "No cash refunds" then to them your enemy #1. Seems like people can't use any common sense anymore either! Then they whine to my boss that I'm not friendly and I don't smile! Well maybe if you were friendlier to me I would be friendlier back! I hate that people think they can treat people this way and just get away with it, it really ****** me off! That I should have to treat this kind of person with a smile and friendly attitude for fear of loosing my job because i give back the same treatment I'm getting! I will never, nor have I ever, kissed anyones butt and i won't start now! So to these people I say, Complain all you want because untill you start treating me with respect, you will get back exactly what you give!<br />
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I don't care how many times a waitress screws up my order or how long I have to stand in line, I will never treat that service worker with hostility. They are doing me a favor by serving me, that waitress has to bring me my food and clean up after my mess, all for lousy pay, often times a boss that is a total *****, and unless it's me tipping, a lousy tip to boot! That customer service worker is putting up with ******** all day they don't deserve another one!

We're on the same page! Once any concept no matter how faulty, gets imbedded in the public consciousness it becomes cliche yet considered a truth, like Oh You're German; Oktoberfest, duh he he. It's like that kid on the Simpsons, "Ha Ha". Then the rest of the town chimes in, in unison, "Ha Ha", like a bunch of moonies.<br />
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"Sensitive, sensitive", like a bunch of parrots. No one even really thinks about the real meaning, or the flipside.<br />
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CONSIDER: Sensitive can actually have good connotations as well as bad ones. Insensitive has one and it's bad.<br />
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So, "Insensitive, Insensitive; na-na-na" TO YOU! he he<br />
All I can say is don't fall under the spell of mass hypnosis.<br />
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There I go again. Thanks a lot for the acknowledgment xBrace. :)

It's true, labeling "oversensitivity" can be very convenient for people. It drives me crazy when I really think that what somebody said was rude and mean, and they brush it off with "You're too sensitive. Like, chill" or something equally stupid. And then sometimes people jump on the bandwagon and say the same thing every time I get offended by something.. <br />
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But whatever. Like you said, YES! I can be a sensitive person! A world of robots would be one boring place.