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  • Writer's pictureDr Reka Onody

The lack of empathy...

The lack of empathy, especially in childhood, can have devastating effects on our mental health. Most probably we have already met a person who did not give us empathy - who asked a question, but did not wait for the answer, who just pulled out their phone while we were talking, who seemed completely distracted when we tried to find words to tell something that was important for us. Does this sound familiar?

If this kind of behaviour is continously displayed towards a person, especially in childhood, it can result in us feeling constantly dismissed, like we were not there and would not count or matter at all. It can feel as if our needs, desires, wishes, emotions and thoughts are dismissed and overlooked and that leaves us with the feeling of not being seen and recognized.

Our authentic self slowly disappears and we will only become the reflection of the other person's expectations. If there is no response to our authentic self, only to an imagery self of us that only exists in the head of the other person, we slowly learn to get into interaction with the responses to our imagery self in order to adapt and be accepted.

As a result after a while we won't be able to distinguish between our authentic and conditioned self and it will take a long process to rediscover who we truly are. Therapy can help you excavate and rediscover your authentic self in the presence of an empathic, genuine and non-judgemental facilitator, the therapist.

If you feel you would benefit from working through your difficult experiences and would like to entangle your thoughts, feelings, bodily felt senses in order to see clearer, you are welcome to get in touch.

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