The torture of empathy!
I was reading about empathic personality. People who feel it on their skin what other’s feel.
Unfortunately, I am one of those. I feel my surroundings. I soak in people and their emotions even if they are just a sound or a word. It is a terrible feeling to soak in others. It is torture.
I remember reading in NY Times about Cambodian children raped by rich white men, where their legs were tied to the poles of the bed since their vaginas were too small for the men to insert. It has haunted me every day. And I am destroyed every day.
I feel guilty of sleeping well or of eating well or even smiling. Immense guilt surrounds me every time. I try to shake it off by doing things like writing, listening to music, arguing, cooking. It never comes off and it destroys me completely.
When I watched the movie, and the kid says, ‘I see dead people’ it went right into me. I am that kid, trying to tell everyone, ‘I see people’ — in their raw vulnerable form.
I remember meeting a colleague for the first time. He as smiling and quiet, and something triggered in me. He was a white male, but for some reason, I didn’t feel threatened by his presence. Usually, white males are intimidating to me. I wanted to give him a hug, the first day I met him. It was as if I could smell his vulnerability.
Months later, I came to know he was going through a painful situation when he joined our work and it broke him. I never hugged him, but it gave me a bad taste in my mouth. I didn’t want to know about his vulnerability. I didn’t want to feel guilty when I am happy around him. I just wanted some peace of mind. All that I want is that because I am unable to bear this torture.
Recently a painter woman, Fathima wrote on her wall, all she think of is to run away. I was a sleep walker when I was a kid, and all I think of every time till today is to run away. My first question if I like a person is the same, Can we run away?
I soak in burn marks of people. I soak in scratch marks, I even get them on my skin. All my writing is to escape from this. The pain ebbs away as I write.
A moment I am not writing, I am scared and tortured.