It’s the worst side of an empath, I would say – that moment in which you don’t want to even see or hear people, because you are on the red line. You want to be left to your own devices, so that you can put yourself back together and find the energy to go back to the real world. I know. We look mad. We look disconnected and alienated. The truth is that we need time alone to recharge and regroup, especially when something or someone drained our energy resources.
When it becomes too much, when I can’t handle it anymore, I naturally get hijacked and I become unable to emotionally or cognitively respond to other people’s demands. I can’t apologise for a need that keeps me surviving in this world. This upsets a lot of people who are used to my always kind nature. Ain’t I the person who is always ready to make them feel good? Ain’t I the person who is always monitoring the environment, looking out for ways to make everyone feel good?
People get used to what is good and they bite your calves when you suddenly become unavailable. Instead of being the best, you become the beast. You get to be the ugly, once you break the satisfaction cycle of their needs. You become a nuisance, because you are shut down and they don’t know what to do about it. They criticise your behaviour and they make you feel worthless. Well, let me enlighten you: empaths need tender loving care as much, if not more, as any other person. So when we shut down, we need affection in the form of a hug or a soothing caress. The problem is that most people don’t do this and we are better off alone. In fact, we shut down because we stood alone (or we perceived ourselves left alone) on a one-way road.
I’m still running after the consequences of spending some time in overload. I’m still shut down, unable to even make a conversation. If you’re an empath and you’re feeling sad, apathetic, stressed out, worried, pained, disconnected, vulnerable, lost and disturbed for quite some time, you will eventually reach a point of no return. It’s not exactly of no return… but it’s a point in which the amount of energy you need to get you back to life is really big. If I hadn’t dismissed the early signs of needing to shut down and leave, my emotional scale wouldn’t be this damaged.
I’m at this point, nonetheless, and it doesn’t look very nice. I can’t enjoy my time and space in the present moment, because there are feelings that need to be processed and which are still being manifested in the form of physical aches and discomfort. I know I will overcome this, but I also know that it always takes me so much time and effort to just be able to enjoy life again. Why was I so careless? Why did I put my wellbeing on the line? I know it’s counterproductive to blame myself, and I know everything happens for a reason, but if I was on a path towards a drama-free life, why did I buy into drama that wasn’t mine in the first place? Why didn’t I get up and leave earlier?
I know why. I grew up with a dad and a mom whose love was mixed with anger and emotional neglect. One day you’re the best, and on another you’re a nuisance, an annoying small stone in their shoes, and you’re to blame even for the fact that they decided to sleep on the wrong side of the bed or burned their morning toast. That’s when I start crying, desperate and tired of all the unsuccessful moves I play in my head to make things right. I always try to fix things and end up punished if I start crying out of frustration. You can’t please someone who is angry all the time and yet I still trap myself within situations that mirror that back to me.
Noticing this pattern hurts like hell, but it’s there and, if it was activated, it means I need to review the way I handle and allow it to manifest. When anger runs a house on a daily basis, love comes out through a window, because it can’t stand such violent vibration. Distance between people grows larger and larger, at least if you have any healthy radar left in your body and mind. That’s why I keep a healthy distance from my parents. If you keep yourself blindly attached to someone who isn’t able to thrive through love, you’re a step closer to lose your most precious powers: self-love, self-preservation and self-empowerment. Yes, it hurts like hell to be away from people you care about but I don’t know how to live enslaved by other people’s emotions and moods. I know anger and other negative emotions are part of life, but they can’t overrun your daily life and drag yourself and others down. As for me, I need to wake up sooner to what is best for me. I’m the one who should have left the party early.