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Can't Stand It.....

I feel ashamed when I think of how much I care when other people are in emotional pain. There is a guy at work I hardly know and his girlfriend died of cancer the other week. I literally cannot stop thinking about it and am really worried about him and everyone concerned, but especially him. Two days after she died, he came in to check his emails and he looked so vulnerable and distraught that I had to stop myself from going to him and hugging him. It was almost like I could feel some of his pain and anguish and I just wanted to help but knew and know there is little I can do. I was moved by his pain and also moved by his courage. To have woken up, got dressed, out of the house and into work so soon after the death shows immense courage and strength.
Her funeral was this week but I have no idea when he will be back in work and I am just worried for him and really hope he will be ok.
I have also cried privately when I have comforted a friend through the terminal illness and death of her mother. I could see the pain and anguish in her eyes, hear it in her voice and I just wanted to hold her and make it all better for her but again, knew I couldn't.
That's the thing about bereavements. What always gets me is that there is little you can do to make things better. In other cases you can but with grief you can't. I hate feeling so powerless to help others in pain and hate how unpredictable and unfair the world can be. I feel stories like these make me angry as she didn't deserve to die and he doesn't deserve to go through this. Death of a loved one is the crueliest and hardest thing a person will have to go through I feel and it makes me sad I can't do more.
Jenni855 Jenni855 26-30, F 3 Responses Nov 23, 2011

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Do you also get affected by other people's happiness?? If someone is overcome with joy, do you also find it contagious?

I find sadness more contagious than happiness, but it could be because of my own tendency towards negative thinking/depression.

Yes, I get emotional then as well. Like if I watch a quiz show and someone wins something then I always cry. Stupid really.

But that just means you are an emotional, empathetic and sensitive person. Nothing wrong with it at all. It's a strength. The power to understand and feel what others are feeling is not to be taken lightly. You may not know how to use it to your advantage just yet, but I am sure one day you will, and you'll be thankful to have access to a dimension that other people don't.

I think you are awesome. I don't think you should worry about caring. I do understand your worries about giving off that type of impression to others.... I am the same way. YOU ARE FREE. hmm, maybe care and grieve for those people in private (if you feel a surge of emotion, maybe step out of the room or take a bathroom break etc.) and carry on in public? I think I know what you're going through, b/c I used to have panic attacks and a part of that was being sensitive to emotional stuff and it was hard for me to not show that in public (I myself got very embarrassed for this and this didn't help my panic attacks at all). Anyway, YOU ARE FREE. = )

Why do you feel ashamed for caring? It's an admirable trait to have compassionate. :)

Because I think it comes across as abnormal to feel so much for people you don't know. Also I feel it gets exploited a lot x