Comments on
Do Empaths Really Exist?


Empaths – a Closer Look

Recently, a friend of mine who is a psychologist shared with me during a conversation about career counseling that she has the ability to sense the emotions of others.

74 thoughts on “Do Empaths Really Exist?

  • August 24, 2014 at 3:17 pm

    I think you mean Reiki, not Rikki? 🙂

    • August 24, 2014 at 3:59 pm

      Lol goodness my spelling needs help. Thanks and yes!

  • August 24, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    Hi, John,

    I really like this topic. Yes, some people are empaths. They are not freaks or anything like that. Instead, they have some kind of ability to pick up on what other people are feeling. My sister and I are twins and I can feel her pain. I live 200 miles away from her.

    • January 22, 2020 at 8:02 pm

      Hey, Michael. I can relate to you because I am also a twin (identical) and we have shared many feelings throughout our lives on a next level psychic tip. I believe I am an empath because as someone living with major depression and generalized anxiety, I tend to relate to those who suffer or who are experiencing unseen difficulties. I have been told that I can seem like a mind reader throughout my life.

  • August 24, 2014 at 8:31 pm


    1 Do some of us have better than 20/20 vision? Certainly.

    2 Sound:Do some people possess perfect pitch (which I do not)? Yes.

    3 How about taste? Are there “supertasters”? The research says that a full 25% of humans do have this, with som3 35 (currently) known genes which contribute to it.

    4 Surely the sense of smell is not equally strong in all of us. Do you have the same range as an Oenologist?

    5 Others possess a greater sense of touch than I. Pressure, pain, itchiness, etc. vary in sensitivity as well.

    6 Empathy, according to much research, “is hardwired into the human brain.” Further research demonstrates that there is a wide range of variance amongst us.

    A “Perfect Empath” as in a ‘total mind reader’ is,I believe,derived from fictional license, and accounts for the characters sited in this article. However, do some persons have a far greater sense of touch than I? Surely it is so.

    And so on – to more sensory systems.


    • August 24, 2014 at 9:10 pm

      Hi, Richard,

      Thanks for sharing and I think you made some very good points here. I appreciate you taking the time to respond!

      • August 25, 2014 at 3:38 pm

        Thank you, John. I only wish that I had proof read, or at least spell checked my text!

        Happy trails,

      • August 25, 2014 at 4:10 pm

        Dick, I am the world’s WORST spellAr 🙂 It’s all good.

    • August 25, 2014 at 2:11 am

      Nailed it!

  • August 25, 2014 at 10:43 am

    It really seems like “empath” just means “someone with a high degree of empathy.”

    Even based on the “self-assessment.”

    Psychology already has a concept for this called “highly sensitive person.”

    • August 25, 2014 at 10:46 am

      Thanks, Steven. I kind of agree although on the assessment there are a few items there that kind of go into the supernatural arena. I do see some of the similarities. I appreciate you coming by to share!

    • August 25, 2014 at 1:47 pm

      Hi, Pawn,

      Thanks so much for sharing. Very helpful information!

  • August 25, 2014 at 2:14 pm

    I have been assessed as an empath in the sense you have discussed. I am hyper aware of moods of both animals and people and I also suffer from anxiety disorders as a result. Being in a room with a large number of people zaps my energy be cause I pick up on the “mood”. Around negative, angry people, I get nauseous and dizzy, then panic, if the people around me are positive, I feel charged and excited. I am in ahelping field (trauma therapy) and it has proven extremely useful. I also work with rescue dogs. I know a lot of people out there think I am a crack pot, but I have nailed the emotional issues correctly more often than not, based entirely on how I “feel” the other person’s emotion

    • August 25, 2014 at 2:42 pm

      I personally do not think you are a crackpot. I was hoping to see if we might get some folks respond here in a way that discusses their own experiences with being empathic. I really appreciate what you have shared here! I wonder how you did with the assessment?

      • December 7, 2019 at 1:08 pm

        I am a HSP, I know when someone is covering up, hiding or pretending emotions that are incorrect. Like, “I’m fine! Things are great!” but then something tells me, either by their micro expressions, or an energy that hits me that doesn’t fit the words or situation, they are lying.
        Bring in a crowded room forces feelings onto me, and can cause anxiety if I’m not practicing my learned skills to NOT absorb these energies from toxic environments. I used to have to leave functions, or a busy Wal-Mart, Applebees and TGIF’s really upset my system because it’s visually chaotic, and people seemed loud. There’s no calm, everything was tense.
        I’m a natural healer. I feel distress when someone is hurting, physically or emotionally, and want to help ease their suffering. All my close friends have been more like cases. All being in need of help in some way.
        All my life, animals have been attracted to me. Almost in a supernatural way…If an animal is in need, and I’m around, it seeks me out. That has included reptiles, rodents and fish, as well as furry creatures. Having a strong reliance on God, or your higher power, as you know Him, has helped me cope and flourish with this gift.

  • August 27, 2014 at 6:14 am

    Empaths could potentially sense or feel a number of different things, not only emotions.

    My “ability” at being empathetic is as good as most people.

    I do, however, have a heightened sense of (literarily) feeling where someone else is hurting in their bodies. E.g. if someone has a muscle ache in their shoulders, I can feel it (intensely) in my own shoulder etc.

    That is also a form of being an Empath.

    • May 27, 2020 at 11:16 am

      I am an engineer and must warn you of one consideration. I have hired and fired many and am now pushing 60 years old. Many good engineers are driven by elitist and egotistical personalities. Logic is typically more valuable than empathy, and often rewarded accordingly. For an Empath that does not know how to protect themselves from abusive or narcissistic personalities, they may one day discover they have avoided getting burned by jumping into a fire. I have faced extremely difficult personal experiences during my career, and I’ve had to learn a lot the hard way.

  • August 27, 2014 at 11:21 am

    My son is an empath, which has been obvious since toddlerhood. As it seems that many empaths are, he’s a “fixer”. It hurts him to see people in pain and through high school was the one who always helped people with serious problems. He seemed to collect friends who were struggling. He can’t not help when he feels their pain. Now, entering college, he decided against going into a counselling career in favor of engineering. He said that he knows that he’d be an outstanding therapist, but that that level of constant engagement would destroy him. He needs at least a few hours at work to try to disconnect. I think that he made a good choice.

    • August 27, 2014 at 12:49 pm

      Thanks for sharing Lisa! I can imagine that if he absorbs a lot of what other people are carrying, he needs to be careful with boundaries. His decision about being a therapist makes a great deal of sense given all that you shared.

  • August 27, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    Coming from a different culture, the concept of “empathy” was foreign to me (no pun intended), until someone identified me as one. Since then, I have used the term with therapists and yesterday with my orthodox psychiatrists and they all understand the concept, not even flinching at the mention of it. They all know I am a HSP highly sensitive person. I know attract problem-prone people. I think they have a chip that directs them to people who give a sh..t about them. I think I need more training to catch pain auras and stuff life that. I do detect non-path people (narcissists, for example) one second after taking a look at their body movements or hearing a word coming from their mouths. But that’s a different story. My husband does think I’m an empathy; I think I am the way we should all be. It is the rest of the world that is desensitized to others’ suffering, animals and humans.

    • August 27, 2014 at 12:53 pm

      empath// gets converted into empathy automatically

    • August 27, 2014 at 12:53 pm

      Hello, Pearl,

      Thanks so much for sharing. What I really liked about your response was the cultural dynamic. We often forget that culture needs to be factored into these kinds of discussions. I agree about how we have in many ways become desensitized to the suffering of others (animals included).

  • August 28, 2014 at 10:19 am

    Dr. Moore,
    Yes, I completely believe empaths are out there and exist – with a majority of them gravitating toward healing professions, particularly counseling. I fit the empath description, although I don’t proclaim to be anything other than “I’m just me”. With that being said, I’ve spent 10 years in the psych field, currently in the field of Chronic Pain, have studied Reiki, as well as energy healing and massage.
    Individuals who are highly sensitive to the emotions of others tend to be more isolative as the emotional “junk” of others tends to “stick” and affect these individuals.
    Thank you for a great article!
    TX Heart <3

    • August 28, 2014 at 9:22 pm

      TX Heart,

      Thanks for stopping by. I appreciate you sharing here and letting folks know about what you have seen and about your own abilities. I am glad that you liked the article!

  • August 28, 2014 at 11:44 am

    My husband does this. I do not always understand how he senses my emotions or the emotions of others but we have been in social settings where being around others that were in a bad place emotionally and by bad I mean strange/demented/psychotic has actually made him sick. We had to stop going to our friend’s Halloween party every year because their demented friends would be there and every time he was around them it made him vomit on our way home. He has a very hard time being in large crowds but can related to any one person phenomenally. I had never met someone like this before but I do believe this explains something he has a real difficult time explaining to other people.

    • August 28, 2014 at 9:23 pm

      Hello, Mellbell4heaven,

      It sounds like your husband fits the empath profile pretty well. I really do like hearing these stories and I bet readers of this blog do as well. I am so glad you shared!

  • August 29, 2014 at 8:51 am


    Until I was in my late teens I thought everyone knew exactly how everyone else was feeling and in general their patterns of thinking. Reading others or rather becoming them in an energetic sense was so usual for me that I just assumed that others did the same. It was a surprise to slowly realise that others, while having the potential, saw the world in a very different way to me. As well as being able to analyse others who are physically present I can also sense the same energy from the TV and also down the telephone. It’s an incredibly useful attribute to have but it’s also very draining as the previous commentator pointed out.

    • August 29, 2014 at 9:57 am


      Thanks for sharing your story here. Really – very interesting to read and I bet helpful to others as well!

  • August 29, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    I am a mental health professional and an empath/intuitive. I know when someone is experiencing strong emotions – fear especially is so salient – usually a day before I see them. I feel it in my solar plexus. I can also see colored sparks or splotches around people and places – black or grey appears when dissention, hiding, and defensiveness are happening. Blue and silver sparks are healing and congruence.

    • August 29, 2014 at 1:27 pm

      Thanks so much for sharing – very interesting. I have heard of this type of thing before with people being able to see energy and colors.

  • August 29, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    Wow, I didn’t know about empath, but my son might be an empath. On first grade he gave a note to a teacher because she was sad and he wanted her to feel better. No one knew she was sad. She and the other teachers were surprised because no one else had noticed she was sad. I was surprised too, he regularly ask me what’s wrong with that person why is he or she sad or angry, sometimes he just tells go talk to that person something is wrong with him. I ask and to find out yes that person is not happy about something. He doesn’t like to be where there is a lot of people and he is smart but we have always have had a hard time at school. Thank you Dr. Moore for this article I will look into this.

  • August 30, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    Several weeks ago at a job training session, I asked a fellow trainee to stop clicking her nails on the desk during a test. I then apologized to the instructor, explaining that I have a hard time tuning things out. His response, which struck me as rather odd at the time, was “Are you, what do they call it, an empath? I had no idea what he was talking about, but I said, “Yes,” and judging by this article, I was right.
    As an artist, I find myself seeing, hearing, and feeling things others are oblivious to. As an art teacher, when I walk into a new classroom, I immediately know who has emotional and/or learning issues, and last year I made the discovery that one of my students was hyper sensory, which led to a whole new(and more successful) way of dealing with him by his classroom teacher.
    When I am out in public, I find myself looking at someone and knowing that he or she is quite ill, or has certain health conditions. I find I have to avoid certain people because of the intensity of their being, and one of the strangest experiences I’ve ever had involved being bowled over by waves of sadness coming off of a man sitting in a a Wendy’s.
    I find myself being bombarded by all sorts of things I don’t want or need to know, and I spend a lot of time decompressing in my room. I haven’t been able to watch the news in years(PTSD doesn’t help), and natural disasters, mass shootings, etc., affect me for ages. I also have been known to weep at the beauty of a fruit and veggie display, so it isn’t all bad -lol. It is a strange way to be…

    • August 30, 2018 at 8:14 pm

      I can so identify with your comment…since I have read as many ch as I could on the subject of empaths, it has helped me realize that my emotions weren’t necessarily the ones that were out of whack but others around me. It’s been so eye on ending to me. I’ve always used my skills that were unbeknownst to me in my field of nursing and now as a nurse practitioner, they are helpful as well

  • September 2, 2014 at 2:08 pm

    My sister and I have a bond. She can feel my anxiety, and thoughts. We can feel each other pain, etc.
    I was on the freeway freaking out because I got lost, this panic attack woke her up from a dead sleep and she spam called me until I answered. This is just one instance that we had. I am sometimes frustrated with this because I overdosed and she searched my car to find my insulin because she knew I had done something but I wouldn’t tell her.So yes fml. Anyways it can be a blessing but also a curse

  • September 13, 2014 at 8:34 pm

    I was recently termed an empath by a therapist. After researching the phrase I knew it fit me perfectly. I’ve always felt what others feel. I can’t be around certain people because they weigh me spiritually. I’ve been able to help a lot of people (& I’m a counselor by training) because I typically intuitively know what’s going on – even when people won’t share honestly. I’ve also responded physically to certain places. One of the most vivid encounters was at an orphanage overseas where I became nauseous and almost threw up when shown one of the bedrooms. I “knew” sexual abuse was happening. I’ve also found that anytime I go to see a therapist before long the roles are reversed and I’ve become the therapist. As I’ve gotten older Ive become much more reclusive because its too draining to always be feeling what others are feeling – especially the pain. I used to be a social butterfly – now I work primarily administratively and spend time just with family.

  • December 21, 2014 at 11:56 am

    Interesting blog. I am an empathy myself I’m still trying to understand this ability but it’s more than just feeling people’s emotions or just putting yourself in someone else’s shoes. I hear I don’t like crowds because apart from the frequent mood swings I hear the people’s thoughts makes me feel like I’m going crazy sometimes. I’ve learnt how to shield and block off even send back energy cause if I don’t I become someone else for a period like a “shape shifter”. I don’t allow people to touch me often cause the energy just flow right into me but I am a masseuse by natural ability and that helps me to channel energy and transform negative energy into positive…being empathetic is understanding emotions but being an Empath is a whole different level so yes Empaths are real I am a living example some days it feels like a curse but with understanding and acceptance of who you are the days do get better….
    peace …love…. energy…..

  • December 29, 2014 at 11:57 am

    Empaths can sence the good and bad in ppl who they have neva met. Evin just reading a note that someone as rote. Like your note. And I sence you are a kind harted man. U like to seek information like Gemini’s. You like to pass ur happiness on to other. If u have done bad u no u have dun rong and u hate your self for it. All tho im not sain ur a bad sole. Just remember ppl atention do get swerved from time to time. Like mine. After reading this you should no if empaths are real. All the best my friend

    • January 8, 2015 at 6:26 pm

      Hi, Michael,

      Thanks for the post and for sharing your thoughts!

  • May 7, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    Hi John,
    While there might be nothing I can comment that would prove to you categorically that empaths exist, spend a few days hanging out with me and you will be convinced.

  • June 25, 2015 at 11:39 am

    Do some reading about mirror neurons, in particular mirror touch synesthesia. Hyperempathy can likely be explained by this condition. A reduction in grey matter in the part of the brain that distinguishes self from others has been seen in people with this condition. As a scientist with mirror touch, understanding the physiology behind my empathy helps me to live and not feel “crazy.”

    • January 10, 2018 at 6:16 pm

      Can you explain further? Thank you

  • July 30, 2015 at 6:53 pm

    I always knew I wasn’t alone,trapped, hiding, living in a world of alcohol and earphones, I am even able to not predict the weather as in the air smells damp I can emotionally as go it will thunder tonight without checking the weather and well it thunders, I don’t mean air pressure and headaches etc.. Near impossible to explain I am saying emotionally feel the weather, can read a persons signature mode say a Facebook message and 100% get a calculation of what their mindset, traits and personality is doing are they being honest, bluffing, you follow I also have a grade 5 photographic memory you should see my art work, my 7 book saga I created an entire universe based on idk it appeared one day I went right start life my way 🙂 I don’t think Empaths have a limitation or power scale per say, i’m a bloody genius using my photographic memory I can rapidly learn most things as long as I am given some English description etc. etc. I am no fool I never trust, close away and if you want to speak to an Empath that doesn’t just feel actual emotional energy past the Spiritual beliefs and can sense a car crash down the road Idk my gut sickens my Anxiety rises panic kicks in my hearings like Daredevil somethings very wrong :-O You want to take this seriously 3 things, Empaths don’t play games, they’re fast, sharp, witty and will happily laugh in your face and say it how it is put you on the spot and leave you struggle working out wtf just happened.. I am happy yo help out searching for my own kind 😀 Yes it’s an essay but that’s cos I actually am 1 😉

  • August 8, 2015 at 2:50 pm

    The term empath that many use is just another form of sensory perception. The scientific term would be ‘electromagnetic perception’.

    The sensory system responsible for this is the first order dendrites (extero-receptors). They are bare ended dendrites that are in their hundreds of millions in the human body. The largest mass of such, being in the brain. First order dendrites work very similarly to electro-receptors that evolved from first order dendrites in other animals to become more specialised to their environment.

    The why? behind some humans have EMP and not others is speculative. But there are two main reasons at the top.

    1) The filter signals via afferents to the brain & the filtering in the brain are defective. Allowing the person in question to be open to back ground noise that would otherwise be filtered out in a typical person.
    2) Heightened sensitivity of the body as a defence mechanism to protect it’s self. Whether as a result of illness or injury. Etc

    EMP is very real. Proof is in the math. A mathematical representation of the nervous system response to an applied external magnetic field. This can be correlated to electro-physiology research. The brain responds to an external applied varying electromagnetic field measurements taken and recorded. Though in most cases the subject is unaware of such a response in their neural networks. (A person with normal filtering).

  • September 22, 2015 at 12:04 am

    I’m an Empath and it’s not only what you might perceive as seeing an emotion and internalizing it it’s in the energy i can feel the emotions of a person what they felt while they wrote something even before starting to read the content i feel the day in the week the collective spirit physical pain moods emotions etc… It’s more like a sixth sense.

  • January 10, 2016 at 1:28 pm

    Hello John
    Don’t really feel comfortable leaving my name but I believe I am an empath. I’ve read threw your whole article and links, I have also done a lot of research because well I thought I was crazy or the old just to sensitive. So if you would like to pick my brain ask away. Might help me better understand my own head as well. I’ve left my email if you choose to contact me.

  • January 30, 2016 at 3:56 am

    I know this thread is old but still must comment.I am an empath that has spent the last 15 years of my life cultivating this gift. Through research and meditation I have learned to not only receive but also project my feelings onto others.I have chosen not to go into the medical or science fields but instead work a menial job that allows me to interact with more people as a way of better understanding them.I still prefer to be alone and use the early morning hours to unwind.There is an entire world to being an empath that is not just feeling the emotions of others and changing them for the better.If the subject still intrigues you please feel free to contact me by email and I will share what I have learned over the years.Thank you for your understanding and willingness to accept that we are not crackpots just gifted human beings.

    • June 5, 2016 at 12:46 am

      Just read your post on empath. I’m 55 and spent most my life trying to block it. All 3 of my kids have it too. Now I think what the heck, bring it on. Can you tell me how you cultivated this thing? I feel others pain. Mental and physical. Usually when I’m not guarding myself. I know that when I touch people w a positive mindset they feel better. Strangly though I can’t do this to my husband, my daughter says the same about her boyfriend. I rarely speak of this, my kids don’t either…can you share w me your insights?

      • June 10, 2016 at 3:38 pm

        To start with I embraced it.just grabbed it and made it my own.Meditation helps also so learn to meditate and think on it clearly.eventually you will get the hang of it and not only sense emotion but be very proficient at changing the atmosphere of entire rooms.Also always guard yourself not that you shouldn’t trust anyone just be aware of what is going on around you.Ive begun more experimenting with this gift and am now trying to see if I can feed off of others emotions.Using their anger or irritation as fuel for my own body’s energy stores. As for your husband and daughters boyfriend they may not be very susceptible to manipulation or not very emotional individuals.Empaths feel others raw emotion.if theyre good at hiding it then try making physical contact with them and projecting.imagine your happiness or anger extending from yourself to them and completely enveloping them, then sit back and watch the results. but do not try to take on other peoples sadness or despair sometimes you just arent ready for those feelings and how overwhelming they can be. Hope ive helped and good luck.ill be close if you have any other questions

    • June 30, 2016 at 7:08 pm

      Thanks so much!!!

  • July 18, 2016 at 5:41 pm

    Yez, empaths really exist. But they seem to be very rare. I’m the only one I know in my circle who has the gift not only to feel other people’s feelings (sometimes to the point that I can’t tell which feelings are theirs, and which are mine), but I also sometimes feel their physical pain or feelings in my body. My ex, for example…he could be hundreds of miles away, but if he was thinking about me, he would wake me out of a dead sleep. When he fantasized about me, I could feel in my body which part he was focusing on. When he was thinking fearful thoughts, it would make me literally freeze…I would physically shake from the chill. And when he was thinking loving thoughts, he would physically heat me up like a furnace to the point I would kick off my covers or shed a layer of clothing. If I stressed him out and have him a headache, I would get the same head ache. When he was depressed, I would also become so depressed that I could barely get out of bed. And most of these things happened workout me being aware of what he was going through, but rather confirming it with him later. And he’s not the only person who has affected me that way. It can happen with anyone I get close to…including employers, coworkers, etc.

    • July 18, 2016 at 5:44 pm

      Sorry for the typos…auto correct. Meant to say
      *if I gave him a headache
      most of these things happened *without me knowing at the time…

  • September 24, 2016 at 10:51 pm

    I scored 7. I am almost 48 & learned a year ago through my counselor and from a psych evaluation for a court case few years back. The evaluator described it without the”label” and quite honestly left me confused until clarification from counselor. After operating this way unknowingly so long it’s taken an enormous toll on me. I hope knowing now and taking time to restore and rest it will be easier in the back end of this life.

  • December 29, 2016 at 4:35 am

    My name is Noese and I am from a South Pacific Island nation.
    I would like to share my experience. At first I thought it was abnormal because I could feel peoples emotion, I could tell them what they were thinking without them making mention of it even how they were feeling.. I experience mood swings, I feel uneasy around crowded place maybe due to me sensing different energies from people. I could sense the presence of an entity. Sometimes I feel drained of my energy after been associating with people possessing negative energies. Been alone helps me gather myself.

  • February 20, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    I think on a human level we all have some level of empathy inbuilt into our core . Like for example when you see a movie like the boy in the stripped payhamas and a tear rolls down your cheek at the end, is it because you thought of the pain of the parents or was it because it got you at an emotional leg ? If you’re a human being with normal levels of empathy you will say its due to the directors creativity that got you. If you’re an empath a conscious one at that.You might get sentimental but know a movie from reality and might shed a tear at the send of wrong doing.Either ways I’m not hear to speak how shedding a tear and empaths relate, Instead I think some empaths are born , some learn how to improve on their empathetic level. And some are still learning why they have so much of emotional turbulence in them (I don’t really believe in the vernacular science of astrology either but being a cancerian, we tend to naturally be more empathetic ! )_lol.

    Okay Jokes aside.There’s a difference between genrleral human compassion and empathy. Like for example when you see a dirty , almost malnutrioned guy in The African or Indian tea stalls , serving you with tea with their fragile bodies and all you want to is hug that kid give him or her some better food, and a good home and see a smile on his face. Now that would be an empath. Compassion would be well on a slightly lighter level… You would be mindful to be nice and polite with that kid… An impulsive naive empath on the other hand might go so far as to hug the boy,and cry with him while thinking of the major suffering kids like him not just him go through everyday to just feed their bellies. My friend has done this lol. … Its more about having a conscious awareness about the struggles and the negative energy in this world…Compassion does turn into empathy if someone really wants to appreciate the vulnerable side of this life…To be honest its not easy being a empath when you consciously traverse to be one. Or even unconsciously try to be one… Because for example, when you’re watching a good romcom and you aren’t an empath but are in love with a new person in your life, watching that movie does bring about a very very different outlook on it than you would be had if you weren’t in a relationship or if you thought you weren’t in love at all..but for an empath she or he can absolutely admire the emotions behind every character and identify with them even if they aren’t in a soul filling relationship… Another example..(I know I’m boring the fuck out of you..but since you wanted to know…) Usually when it comes to narcissist we all have his mediocre understanding of how every human just lacks compassionate and empathy… Its not true..these narcissts probably must’ve have been poorly treated in their life sometime..and deprived of much needed appreciation during their childhood… And an empath might obviously see through the anger filled ride insult they might throw at the empath.and probably that’s why a girl who’s an empath might chose to stick on harder to an abusive relationship despite knowing she doesn’t need to be. Just because ehse believes she can help the guy with his emotional void. Or take an even simpler (I promise the last example..) The instinct and bond that a mother shares with her child, helps her see why alid while he’s insulting her truly means behind his anger and with patience tries to calm him down..that’s empathy..instinctive empathy… But you might on the face as a compassionate human being see it as a rude bratty kid. Instead of truly opening up to understand the be honest..empathbis more a way of livingjsut to be at peace with yourself and others…without really fighting with least that’s what I think…

  • August 1, 2017 at 11:38 am

    The most succinct way I know to describe what all true empaths know from experience, right at their solar plexus: All human beings possess an aura, and though it is spiritual and emotional in nature, it also manifests itself within a very physical plane, one that many times can knock an empath nearly physically backward. There is an invisible energy within each and every one of us, and upon meeting someone or even merely being within sight of them, it is this energy that speaks to empaths first, long before any words or greetings are ever spoken aloud.

    Short and simple. Mysterious but true.

  • November 19, 2017 at 9:45 am

    I see this post was written a few years ago but I felt compelled to reply, as I feel the need to explain that just because so many do not understand the unexplainable within our world, doesn’t mean it’s not legit.
    I am an empath and in the MBTI world, an INFJ. For years I struggled wondering if something was wrong with me, even as a child. Always a loner, independent, imaginative and always profoundly moved by the suffering of others. I silently cry when seeing living creatures being hurt in anyway. I am the person who talks to someone that everyone else ignores. People I don’t know approach me and tell me their innermost secrets without me even so much as asking them any personal questions. I often wonder why people are drawn to me like a magnet. I feel overwhelmed and exhausted when inundated with constant interaction. I need to find quiet and alone time to recharge, as I like to call it. I find solace and comfort in nature and around animals too. I feel what I call vibes around people and places. It’s energy. Certain places hold negative “vibes” as of something tragic or sad occurred. I can sense motives in people too. When there is malicious intent, I feel a strong reaction in my gut. I know to stay clear and when I don’t follow my gut I get burned. So I always trust my gut. I literally absorb feelings. It explains why I need to retreat and find solitude to reset. I suffer from migraines, to which I have run the gamut of prescriptions to which none work, leaving my neurologist scratching her head. My migraines are like a buildup of all of this absorbing and what I find is that relaxing, walking in nature or meditating help. I also love yoga.
    This is real for me. I am not some crackpot that needs a psychiatrist to push me prescriptions for something that the scientific community just doesn’t understand. I care about humanity, living creatures and the planet. The entire universe operates through energy and empaths feel energy. All life is interconnected into a framework of energy. Tesla, Einstein and some of the worlds most brilliant minds have been looked at as kooky or unusual for explaining this. Carl Jung has also offered insight to this perspective.
    I can simply sum this all up by saying as an empath I have respect for the beauty and complexity of life.

    • March 8, 2020 at 6:49 am

      All your words ressonance within me.
      Was going to write my own experiences throughout Life
      but reading your experiences there’s no need …. you’ve said it all 😀

  • December 5, 2017 at 6:43 pm

    I am an empath.

  • January 4, 2018 at 5:41 pm

    I believe I’m an empath. It has waxed and waned over the years. I’m especially sensitive to those people who are sitting on their feelings. My problem with it is that I often mistake the pain I am picking up on from someone else is mine. I believe that stems from a dysfunctional and abusive childhood where my boundaries were blurred and made me hyper alert. You can see I’ve had some counseling. I’ve had instances, not many, thank goodness, where I’ve touched someone and been overwhelmed by their feelings of pain and despair. At least those instances are very clear as to where they’re coming from. One instance was when I gave money to a homeless man and touched his hand. Another, when a co-worker put her hand on my shoulder. Yes, I did consider going into counseling, but decided against it because of my boundary issues and misinterpreting what I am picking up on. I did go through a period where I read the Tarot for friends. My readings were accurate to the point one friend tried to move me in with her so I could be on hand for readings all the time. I stopped reading for friends after that. I also have warnings when I am walking into physical danger. I never ignore those warnings anymore. This is the first time I’ve tried to write about it in this way. I have described incidents, but have never tried to summarize it, or looked at it in an overall way, or how it may have impacted my life. Thank you for the opportunity.

  • January 10, 2018 at 6:07 pm

    Up until recently I thought I was going mad or something was wrong with me until I read about empaths and their traits, then I had a lightbulb moment and it all made sense. Just wish I could other likeminded people to talk about it, as I think most people would laugh at my thoughts on being an empath. I think if people who do not have empath traits will not understand or comprehend any of it.

    I have always felt like an outsider, been told I was shy when younger, do not like to be the centre of attraction and avoid busy crowded places. I like to be on my own more than with others. Find it calming and peaceful. Can feel/sense passive aggression, anger,hatred and jealousy more than positive energies from others and even though they think they are hiding their true selves I wonder whether they realise that I pick up on this even though I don’t admit to it unless I feel they need help and their anger is not aimed at me. I stumbled on the word”empaths” 6 months ago and still have lots of questions but no one to ask. I wonder if their are any decent support groups nearby but not found anywhere yet.

    • January 11, 2018 at 10:46 am

      My empath traits earned me a diagnosis of “almost schizotypal” from a psychologist who was testing me for ADHD.

  • November 10, 2018 at 4:17 pm

    I am not sure if they exist. I believe that there are people who are more naturally skilled in reading body language and processing those data and making a conclusion which might seem as something very organic, almost as a feeling, not a result of reasoning. I am not surprised it became a thing, a subculture.
    Many people, both my friends or people l met in life randomly told me that l am one, undoubtly. They are always surprised when l notice how they feel and l am usually not even aware that they are hiding it. I become aware after l see their surprised faces since to me often that is quite obvious. I don’t know how to describe it, but l know l simply KNOW. sometimes l observe people and l can “feel” their life, what are their dreams, their emotions – but this l always assumed it is only my imagination. I haven’t still proven that since l never approached those strangers and asked them to describe me their life.
    recently one of my lovers told me it is all my imagination – l have noticed a chemistry between him and another woman which is obviously a very sensitive position l am in. I can come across as a jealous paranoid woman. However, l told him this calmly, without any anger since l believe emotions are not to be controled. I just asked him to be honest and tell me in future if they do end up together. I am simply curious here, l have pushed aside the implications of the pain. l have parallelly noticed a chemistry between two people at the party that were sitting next to us. They weren’t at all obvious but it is something l can so clearly feel. I also noticed that the cheerful casanova playboy dude is actually sad below this “let’s drink and dance” mask and later he told me his grandma just died that night when l met him. he was shocked i noticed it since we just met then.
    these are some of the examples but l tend to believe l am just good at noticing details in the way people act. l feel that believing empaths truly exist is yet another attempt to cathegorise and spiritualise which can just lead us further to the truth.

  • January 31, 2019 at 9:19 am

    I guess I was one before empath was a word. I became aware in the early 80’s I took on other peoples health issues. Just experienced them for a while then they would go away. Even from relatives long distance without knowing they were having dental issues, back surgery, an infected finger from a rose thorn, etc. I didnt want to even hear about peoples ailments. A few close friends knew of what I called “this weird phenomenon” that i experienced, and I learned to simply not accept any out of the blue symptoms as my own. 30 years later I became a reflexologist and am not sure, but suspect stuff comes through me. I want to think that when I sweat profusely during a session for a few minutes, or my sinuses suddenly and totally empty, or other such things occur to me, that there is a healing or release going on in the client. Dont know. There was a time i identified emotions, not just say, sadness, but more specific, like disappointment, futility, etc. So I do believe it is all real. But I dont care for the word impath. It is overused and gooey and reminds me of other words that were quickly worn out in my opinion, such as mindful and abundance. Such words become popular and then are exploited, resulting in exploration to even understand the word costing you money

  • February 6, 2019 at 4:02 am

    I am 40 and about a month ago I came across the term empath and everything just clicked into place. Since then I have spent dozens of hours reading and exploring everything and one thing is clear as day for me…I am an empath. I have always loved time alone. Crowds bother me to the point I desire to flee with every fiber of my being. When I meet people they spill their guts and I just know what to say to help them figure out how to get what they need and want. I love to be connected with nature and animals it’s spreads radiant joy throughout my body and makes me feel light as a feather. I know things without knowing how. I sense things about other and all I want to do in turn is help not judge. I don’t understand the violence in our world and the hurt that some enjoy inflicting on others as the pain it cause me can be felt in the deepest recess of my core. Watching tragic events sends waves of anguish throughout my body. Do I sound like a drama queen, crackpot, oddball…yep I do and I have certainly had more than a few think or call me these names… but I am none of those things…I am simply an empath and I am in tune with the world on a level that those who are not simply cannot truly understand. That is my humble opinion, perhaps I am indeed nuts but I know with absolute certainty that I am not. I will let you decide for yourself or if your an empath you will simply know I speak the truth.

  • February 8, 2019 at 11:20 pm

    I am an empath – a very high level, intense empath. I’m also a skeptic. My therapist told me I was an empath. I looked into it. I feel these things, and relate on the highest level to all the signs of an empath. By definition I am an empath. But what really is an empath? Someone who reads and feels the emotions of others. (The caring and kindness part is separate). People, as animals that have evolved, all have this innate ability. Some are more in-tuned than others, some less so. The difference with me? Trauma. Prolonged childhood trauma. Born into chaos. I developed no boundaries and learned to read micro-expressions as a survival strategy. I can’t shut it off. It’s hyper-vigilance – and it’s exhausting and debilitating, and people need to stop romanticising mental illness and trauma. Some may develop this without a caring nature, yet not be referred to as Empaths. Some may develop this and react with violence or aggression, yet not be referred to as Empaths. I developed this and have a genuinely caring, loving and overly sympathetic nature and strong desire to help and love others. This is why I am viewed as an Empath. To me, this is draining. I want it to stop. I want to go and see my friends or travel to work or visit family without pre-exhaustion with the mere thought of facing the world and noticing every little thing in my surroundings. I want to know what boundaries are, I want to have them, and I want to be able to say no, or tell others to stop unloading on me, or constantly messaging me with all their everyday grievances and crisis. I want to not feel responsible to constantly provide my support when I’m exhausted. I want strangers to stop being drawn to me and compelled to seek my help. I can’t support my own needs. I can’t find love and compassion for myself. I can’t put myself first. And I’m constantly drained and exhausted by carrying the weight of everyone else’s problems on my shoulders. This is not fun. Where it comes from is not some magical place. It is not a gift. It’s bestowed on infants who’ve experienced repeated trauma. Stop using it as a badge of honour.

    • September 11, 2019 at 3:28 pm

      Thank you so much for your comment. I am 47 years old and finally went to a therapist to get help with my depression which I have suffered from a very early age. During my assessment she informed me that I am also an Empath. I now not only have to deal with my own issues but to also block others! What the tech. I agree this is more of a curse than a gift.

  • July 25, 2019 at 7:32 pm

    No. There are people who are better at reading others, but true empaths, no. The people I know who claim to be empaths want a “special power” that makes them feel more gifted than others. They usually are very self-involved and can’t even pick up simple social clues. They claim their social isolation is because they feel others so strongly, but usually it’s because they project their own feelings on others and think that’s what others are feeling. Nope, it’s like my sister who sees ghosts…all in the head.

  • July 29, 2019 at 6:22 am

    I’ve read quite a bit into empaths… Several folks have told me they thought I was one, but everything on the topic seems to be geared at validating one’s internal feelings as how they are connected to the situations and individuals around them which is not so much my case. Sure, I avoid crowds like the plague due to the intensity levels. I do not even like to be in the presence of generally dramatic people. When I truly think about what I feel I don’t so much think it’s necessarily the current feeling an individual is experiencing, but rather more like specific intensities of emotions as related to moments in time. Active and past shadows if you will. But in all my readings on the subject I find many of the descriptions of an “empathy” often confused with individuals general empathy which is entirely different. So many articles describing working in situations in which traits of an empathy could be particularly useful, but in my reality the last thing I would want to do is work in a situation in which I would surround myself with others pain and problems. I would melt down and have a hard time imagining other individuals that experience the world as I do would want to expose themselves to those situations on a regular basis unless they were merely highly emotionally empathetic, but not an actual empathy per say…. Staying overnite or attempting to sleep in a hospital, for example, is a near impossibility for me. Not out of personal fears, but out of complete negative overload. I just wonder if anyone else experiences this in a similar fashion?

  • August 30, 2019 at 5:55 pm

    I also am an empath ,mental ,emotional and also physical .I thought I was a hypochondriac ,until I noticed that what ever symptoms I was having at what ever time would go away when I would come in contact with someone who had the same thing .is hard never knowing if the feelings are yours or someone else. I don’t like crowds to overwhelming ,before a storm is bad it must have something to do with what’s going on in the atmosphere .if a big event is coming where many people are focused on the same thing ,like a UNC state game its murder ,I live not far from Dean smith center ,and the level of emotions all around at that time is so intense .I live alone with 2 cat, animals are not a problem they have simple emotions ,they only think about what they need ,and they don’t want things unless they need.

  • June 20, 2020 at 1:16 pm

    I am an empath . it’s possible that I develop this as a child because of trauma .

    The problem I Am having is being told I don’t exist by pysycopaths like Sam Valkin. He admits he is a pyscopath and I am saying empathy do exist.

    I am tired of being told to get a life etc

    We can read your minds and tell when people are lying

  • July 15, 2020 at 2:40 pm

    Wow! I’ve been reading a lot about narcissists because I’m a victim of mental abuse by a narcissistic son. In my readings, empaths are always brought up in the articles. I didn’t pay much attention, but recently was reading about empaths because of an experience I’m having since starting a new career.
    I started working at an art gallery a few days a month. The last time I worked , the place was super busy and a lady ,that had an obvious mental disorder, came in to the gallery the last couple times I worked, right before closing. I felt so bad for this lady and felt she should not be in the store buying so much stuff when she obviously was not mentally normal. When she left I literally felt so drained that I couldn’t even count the cash register when it came time to close. I couldn’t sleep that night and felt terrible the following day. I really thought I was loosing my mind. I attributed it to my age or that my thyroid is off, but after reading this blog, I’m surprised to learn I have most all indicators of being an empath.
    Thank you so much for all the information on this site.


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