Tag Archives: empathy

Still waiting for “2nd-hand embarressment syndrome” to become the diagnosis of our generation

Most people I know have at some point jokingly suggested that I’m on the spectrum, but I’m pretty sure I’m a bit TOO empathetic sometimes. Or what do you call it when you have to close your eyes and cover your ears when something embarrassing happens to fictional characters on TV? I got told off yesterday by my boyfriend who yelled “No! You have to watch! Seriously, you can’t be cripplingly embarrassed by an animated children’s movie!” Well, yes I can and yes I was. I find comedies terribly hard to watch for that reason. I know some people mute the TV during the scary bits in horror movies, and that’s basically what I do but with rom-coms or pure comedies instead.

And what is that thing called when you subscribe feelings to an object incapable of having feelings? I feel really guilty when I forget to water my plants. Sometimes I move my stuffed animals around in the flat “just so they have something fun to do”. I also feel bad when I think of how every terrible thing my mind can come up with has probably, statistically, happened to someone at some point. My empathy is haywire. I’m probably confusing the word empathy with sympathy again, but it’s too late in the evening and I’m too lazy to look it up.

I like doing personality and IQ tests so I took the Baron-Cohen empathy-systematizing test just for fun, and then I made my boyfriend do it. Some of the questions were really weird or stereotypical, but it could be that they’re dummy questions. Anyhow, I was amused to find that we received nearly identical scores. I think he got 22 and I got 23 on the empathy test and we both got 31 IIRC in the systematizing bit. It’s not really a result I’d humblebrag about on Facebook, but hey, we’re well-matched in our deficiencies.

In the end I’m not too fussed, seeing as I can enjoy this chocolate frog without feeling like a horrible human being:

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To clarify my last post, it wasn’t my own.

I just wanted to say that I haven’t had the chance to watch the newest episode of Dexter yet, but from the first episode of this season Dr Vogel has annoyed me so much! She’s supposed to be an expert on psychopaths but she keeps saying “Psychopaths feel no empathy :l”. You have ONE JOB WOMAN get it right! Stop confusing sympathy with empathy. Psychopaths lack the ability of sympathy, which is being affected by other people’s emotions. People with autism often have problems with empathy, being able to understand what other people are feeling, but they have no problem with sympathy. I get that a lot of “psychopaths” or people with anti-social personality disorder also have problems with empathy but Dr Vogel keeps saying empathy when she means sympathy and it makes me annoyed. Do your research, writers! 😛 /nerdrant

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