How Empaths Work in Relationships
Empaths are an incredibly precious group of gems. Even in healthcare, only 30% of health care professionals developed empathy with their patients.
Highly intuitive, these empaths individuals are extremely quick to pick up a shift in the moods of people around.
- If you happen to be in a relationship with an empath, know that you are in the presence of someone truly special. They give so much love to their friends and family, and they make excellent ride-or-dies.
- If you’re an empath, celebrate who you are! You have such a beautiful energy. Once you’ve learned how to work with yourself and navigate the possible challenges, you now have the power to create such a phenomenal relationship – not just with yourself, but a truly solid partnership with the right person.
The three main types of empaths are namely:
- Physical empath, where one is attuned to people’s physical symptoms and tends to absorb those energies, including negative energies, into their bodies,
- Emotional Empathy, where one is highly attuned to how others are feeling, and
- Intuitive Empath where we’re talking about individuals with heightened intuition, telepathy, animal and plant communication, even mediums can communicate with spirits in the other realms, etc.
These abilities do bring forth challenges for empaths in relationships.
Lack of Clear Boundaries
Empathic people possess hearts of gold; they care very deeply. It’s easy to have a sensory overload if they’re not careful to set clear boundaries with people, especially when they’re in a romantic relationship. They are emotional sponges and gather positive and negative emotions due to their deep connection.
If you’re an empath: Perhaps the learning here for you is to always check in with yourself: Are these my feelings, or my partner’s? Have I taken on someone else’s energies? If you have, ground yourself with breathwork and release the energies that do not belong to you.
This ties in with the first point – With an empath, they might care too much about how everyone feels, wanting to keep peace as much as possible.
If you’re an empath: Do remember that in life, there’s no pleasing everyone. The sooner you release yourself from those impossible standards, the better.
Placing Their Partner’s Needs Above Theirs
Due to their giving nature, they often look to meet the needs of others before themselves.
If you’re an empath: Safeguard your energy. Be very, very careful as to who you choose as a life partner because opposites attract. You might have already met a few narcissists, even dated them, because where you give, they take, and they will keep taking until you feel completely drained.
Narcissists do one thing very well – They put themselves first, above all else. There are benefits to taking care of yourself first. That is probably one of your life lessons.
Sometimes, a empaths become a fixer in difficult times. The dangerous thing is that sometimes, you can’t fix everything and everyone in difficult situations. The more you feel the need to do that and watch yourself fail, the more overwhelmed and upset you might get.
If you’re an empath: You’re a helper; you don’t just want to stand on the sidelines, you want to actually make the situation better.
It’s time to let go. Let things unfold and flow naturally. Learn to move with life, and you’ll find more peace.
Be kind to empaths – They are the sensitive person of the world, the gentleness this world needs.
This might mean they do sweat the small stuff, and they might feel anxious or emotional very easily.
If you’re an empath: Breathe, and recognize the usual patterns or emotions you’re going through, and communicate them with your partner.
For example, “I am feeling a great degree of anxiety now, and I do feel much discomfort with this issue. However, let me calm down first before I speak further. Do you think you can give me time/ give me a hug/ change the subject so we can revisit this later?”
Need for Alone Time
This alone time helps empaths unpack intense emotions of the day. If you’re dating one, do not take their need for time and space personally, for it is vital for their well-being.
If you’re an empath: Ground your energies after a long and hard day. Meditation can be useful. You do not want to be misdirecting the anger or frustration towards someone else. Show yourself some compassion – Treat yourself to an ice-cream, kick back and watch some Netflix, whatever it is that helps you feel re-energized to face the next day.
Where there are people who believe the worst of mankind, empaths believe in the best of people.
Don’t we all need someone like that – Someone who believes in us, even during moments we have lost faith in ourselves?
Of course, the flip side of empaths in an unhealthy relationship is that they might be slower or even reluctant to accept the truth about someone, even when that person’s not good for them.
If you’re an empath: Hold space for yourself during a time like this, and sit alone to unpack emotionally and mentally. There’s only so much good you can believe of a person, especially if the person is hell-bent on showing you all the bad. When the cons outweigh the pros, the relationship is essentially deadweight.
Finally realizing your partner is toxic to the relationship can feel really scary. Acknowledge those feelings, and allow them to sink in. When you’re ready, have a chat with your partner, and make a decision.
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Deborah Choo loves discussing relationships, platonic or not, as that remains at the heart of human existence. She draws upon learnings from couples’ counselling, and continues to celebrate an incredible journey of growth.