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  • Michaela Patel


Unhealed empaths grew up in environments where they have been forced to process others emotionally.

Our carers knew nothing, and didn't want to know anything, about their own emotions. Their inability to deal with their dramas and stress made us their emotional supporters, because as children we were acutely tuned to their emotional vibe: we internalised their unexpressed anger, carried their anxieties, sadnesses and emotional confusion. We tried to help, ease the emotional atmosphere, but there is only so much one can carry...

This is also why an emotionally unaware person, even though emotionally intelligent (an empath who is more than capable of reading others emotionally) will in time exhibit the behaviour of emotional dissociation with narcissistic traits.

In fact anyone, who has carried emotional burden long enough will be forced to an emotional shut down.

It is a necessary, protective, usually a short term mechanism, ‘AN EMOTIONAL REBOOT’ of you like. If however, the outer conditions persist, so does the emotional shut off to prevent further pain. So being brought up by someone with narcissistic traits, in your DISSOCIATION PERIOD you will exhibit learned (narcissistic) defence mechanisms: self-centredness and lack of empathy.

It is therefore hard to discover and fully embrace your empathy when surrounded by people who are emotionally unhealthy. This could be friends, family or co-workers.

Because of poor emotional boundaries between our own and their emotional bodies we couldn’t clearly separate our emotions from theirs and TOOK RESPONSIBILITY for the emotional load as a whole. We did this largely subconsciously, automatically, which is also how we continue to absorb stuff today.

In a situation where there are three family members, one totally emotionally disconnected, one partially cut off, and one emotionally intelligent person (an empath), it will be the empath who will carry the drama for the two other family members. If an empath removes him/herself from the equation by withdrawing his/her 'help', the most dissociated person will offload onto the (relatively) more emotionally aware member. Essentially, the reason for more emotionally aware members to take on the supporting role stems from their belief that the others are emotionally weak. Empaths see right through the confident mask of a narcissist. They feel their pain as if it was their own and because they deem a narcissist incapable in an emotional arena, they automatically take over. This is the point in any empath-narcissist relationship where the narcissist’s deeply hidden misery becomes the empath’s pain.

QUESTIONS you need to ask yourself when with people who like to gossip and dump emotionally onto you repeatedly:

How do I feel around him/her?

Whos drama is it?

What is my role in this?

Why did I make myself responsible for his/her pain?

Am I being loving towards myself by being on stand by for others to offload their unresolved stuff?

Thank you for reading. If my article contributed to understanding yourself, please be generous and share it with others.

Copyright © 2018 Michaela Patel

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