Most empaths are dissatisfied with their friend relationships. It’s not that we have problems making friends, although we might have issues with trusting people. The real problem we have in our friend relationships is that most of these relationships are one-sided.
Empaths are excellent listeners, and this is because most of us are extremely accepting of others, and very non-judgmental. People sense this quality about us and are drawn to us. Many empaths have the experience of strangers sitting down next to them on the subway or the bus, and these strangers strike up a conversation with us and then end up telling us their secrets and their life stories. This is because we feel like a safe space for other people, and so they feel comfortable being vulnerable with us and sharing personal information.
This extends to friends as well. Our friends feel safe coming to us with problems. While we do enjoy being in this role, at times it can become too much. When being the constant counselor is all we do in the friendship and it doesn’t feel like an equal exchange, that’s when we experience burnout in the counselor role.
I talk more about this in the video below:
I’m teaching a new class all about this topic. It’s called “Empaths and Boundaries” and it starts on Wednesday, May 31. Boundaries are such a huge problem for empaths that I wanted to create a class that only focuses on this issue—the causes, the effects, and the solutions.
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I’ll see you soon with the next video in this series: Empaths as the “lonely chameleon” in relationships.
Lauren Sapala is the author of The INFJ Writer, The INFJ Revolution, and the creator of Energy and Intuition for INFJs, an online course for INFJs on intuition, relationships, creativity, and more. She is also currently offering a free copy of her book Firefly Magic: Heart Powered Marketing for Highly Sensitive Writers to anyone who signs up for her newsletter. SIGN UP HERE to get your free copy.