Sympathy & Empathy are two twisted words that sometimes cross paths together. Someone who is unable to cope up with a loss, someone who is feeling down needs to have a support morally & needs sympathy. I’m going to spell it out guys. s-y-m-p-a-t-h-y. They feel lost, and they feel like they are not capable, not worthy of anything anymore and they feel lonely.
Empathy is when you don’t console someone who doesn’t need it in the first place and treat that person like you would want to be treated if hypothetically you were in that position. Its politically important these days to say “hypothetically speaking”, isn’t it? I’ve studied with someone who was handicapped. I promise you, I learnt it at the age of 10 that if someone is disabled, treat them like they are one among st you. Don’t write it bold letters on a card board and stick it out so that they can start thinking about it. Now having said that, I hope my words are not interpreted to over look the disability. When you are with a person who is handicapped and he wants to walk down the stairs, hold his hand and talk to him regularly, as a normal person. He knows what he is doing. He chose to walk,didn’t he? Don’t say things like “My God this is tough to do, that must be painful” “Be careful, be careful, BE CAREFUL!!” It were to be that guy, I’d shout “Shut your mouth else you’re gonna have to be careful too!”
Guys, a person who undergoes trauma, agony, pain in any form and comes out is someone with a spirit of life. They just came out of it with the idea of living, and facing the world. Don’t mellow that down. If I could use the Italian quote “what’s the matter with you?” with the hand motion I would do it. I’ve seen people sympathizing with someone who is well off and living without the slightest expression of the need for it. I love it when someone catches the bluff of another person who is showing sympathy for no reason. See the problem is they are so ignorant that they don’t even know that sympathy is not needed there. There was this guy who met with an accident and fractured his leg. His friends went to see him in the hospital and he was pretty relaxed and did not need any moral support whatsoever. He had the expression that said “Thank God I’m alive”. This friend of his walks up to him and starts galloping on sympathy. “Oh! I’m sorry that you had to face this mishap. It must have been terrible and I hope you get well soon.” [My friend who was on the hospital bed had the expression “Hope he stops it right there”, and he let a sigh out.] But alas, “I have always seen you as a good friend and I want you to know that we are here for you. Anything that you need, anything at all please brother let me know. I will be more than happy to do it. More than happy I tell you.” This next speech by the so called patient was short lived but it taught me a lot. ” Oh yeah? more than happy eh?? Well then I am in the mood to dance and since I cant, Dance for me! Dance right now. What happened Are you feeling shy? well if not then run down the hall and get me a sandwich cheese veg sandwich, and tell him not put any vegetables” The guy was back with the cheese veg sandwich and my fractured friend got another chance. Hey “Bro”, I need to use the restroom, Could you help me through it. The dumb ass got it at that point
So guys empathize and be smart when to do it. Emotionally intelligent will always have a upper hand on this one.