Even as I type these words, there is a hesitation within me. I had no intention of writing a blog post such as this when I awoke this morning, however something I saw on Facebook (of all places), has compelled me to share this experience with you.
As you are probably aware, I am a HSP (Highly Sensitive Person) and an introvert. I have certain social phobias. Just being in a room full of people, especially a small confined room, takes an enormous toll on me emotionally and even physically. As an empathic being, I tend to soak up the energy of all who surround me, whether I want to or not, and sometimes I even have trouble distinguishing between my own feelings and those of the people around me. Actually most of the time, truth be told. So just being in a public situation is difficult enough to begin with.
But throw into the mix a dressing down by one of the group leaders and you have all but pushed me right over the edge.
I was making a sweeping mass generalisation to illustrate a point. Personally I don’t like sweeping mass generalisations, however having heard everyone in the rooms story, I feel that what I was saying was very relevant. I was wrong to generalise, and getting pulled up for my comments was totally justified. What was not justified was the manner in which it was handled. Now to be fair, this person doesn’t know (or obviously understand), that I am WAY more sensitive than most. They didn’t realise that the tone of their voice or the energy of their posture was going to reduce me to a blubbering mess. They were just speaking through the filter of their own life experience.
It was obvious to me that this individual was coming from a place of their own hurt and pain as a result of being “spoken for” in the past. You just don’t speak with such passion and conviction otherwise. And whilst I felt true compassion for where they were coming from, having had the same experience myself… my own wounded little introvert was crushed. It took every ounce of strength I had not to go running from the room. It took even more strength to prevent the tear drops that were welling up in my eyes from spilling out into the public. I felt my entire energy field shrink down to the size of a walnut. Barriers and walls went up faster than light speed. My capacity to say anything much after that point was severely diminished.
But I held it together to my great credit, and I was extremely proud of myself for handling the situation. I don’t believe anyone in the room could detect the full extent of my hurt and embarrassment.
So why did I decide to share this experience with you?
Because I feel that people need to understand that there are people on this planet who don’t function the way everyone else does. We don’t process the world the way that most do. It was not this persons words that wounded me so deeply. They were correct in what they said, and most probably justified in saying it. It was their energy. The sheer force with which they delivered their message. At one point I think I even blanked out and stopped hearing the actual words, I was so taken aback with what felt like a full frontal attack on my very existence.
There are gentler souls in this world. Those of us who communicate in a manner and with a language that is completely foreign to most. And we wound easily. I am not sure that is a weakness, although I can certainly see how the traditionally strong, would view it that way. In many ways it is a strength. We are privy to things that others are not even capable of imagining. So when you step on us, as a show of your strength, or just from a place of your own ignorance… you are doing not only us, but the world a great disservice.
We are small in number, but mighty in heart.
We have a voice, and a contribution to be made.
We can be hurt…. we can be wounded…. but we can’t be stopped from being who we are. And I might be completely bias, but I believe we are this planets greatest hope.