I linked to this blog post in my previous post but I’m linking again because I think it’s really good and important. There is a BIG BIG difference between empathy and sympathy. I’ve gotten a whole of a lot of sympathy, not much empathy. Everyone, everyone felt super-duper bad for me when this happened – that’s sympathy. Feeling bad for someone else is sympathy. Only a couple of people in my life empathized with me. Fellow stroke survivors can automatically empathize because they know the absolute HELL that I’ve been through. My family and friends do not. The point of being empathetic is trying to determine what someone else is feeling and going through and trying to understand that and be sensitive to it. You never, ever will completely understand it unless you’ve experienced it but you better TRY to understand. Not many people were very empathetic with me.
Empathy vs. Sympathy