from http://naturalpatriot.org/2011/02/05/empathy-enmity-and-the-future-of-civilization/Empathy. Empathy is a human reaction to another person’s feelings. For example, when a child hurts himself and cries in pain, a mother empathizes and reacts by comforting the child. Even if the child just stubbed his finger or toe, the mother recognized that THIS event hurts the child (it may not be life-threatening, but her child needs some comfort, and she gives it to him.) The mother hugs him. By doing this, she demonstrates her empathy. She is also teaching her child how to empathize with others. This is modeling behavior. Good parents do it every day without a second thought. It happens and children grow to be caring and empathizing adults.

Now, imagine for a moment not having a mother or father who models empathy. Imagine, as a child, getting hurt and being ignored or being told it’s nothing to cry about. What type of person is that child going to become? Would you suspect the child would grow to be uncaring and non-empathetic? Unless the child has other influential adults in his life modeling empathy and hugging him when he needs hugged, the child will more than likely become an adult who lacks empathy and understanding of the afflictions and heartache of others.

How do you identify someone who lacks empathy? Easy. Watch a universally sad movie. If the person next to you isn’t crying right along with you, that’s a HUGE red flag. (And don’t take his/her lack of emotion as strength. It’s actually a weakness and a non-human characteristic.)

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  1. I thought his reserved, quiet manner was from being a mature, self-controlled man of few words – or shyness. Right after we married I learned that this was social retardation, resentment at everyone and everything just below the surface, prickly hypersensitivity and callousness. This was a rageful, steely-angry man waiting for the first doe who would stick around long enough to treat as his whipping-boy scapegoat. “Still waters run deep.” not always pleasantly deep. Watch out for these covert narcissists.

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    • Oh, I think Josh Powell was a covert narcissist. Very frightening! (He was the man who murdered his boys and killed himself inside his home after barricading a woman from child protective services outside. His wife Susan had been missing and presumed dead for almost two years. He fooled everyone and didn’t like that his true nature was being discovered. He took the lives of his children because to him they belonged to him and had no value if he were dead.) It’s because of what he did in the end that led me to write my story. There are signs. There are red flags. We can help prevent such tragedies, I think, just by writing, reading, sharing, and commenting. Thank you.

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  2. i don’t have to imagine i grew with parents like that, but by some miracle i also grew up with empathy because i didn’t get any. my upbringing did however mess me up in ways to numerous to list.

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    • You’re a great example of the gift of nature. You were born with the capacity to empathize regardless of it being nurtured within you by your parents. I think good teachers also play a part. There must have been an adult figure or even another child who helped foster your empathy. Do you recall?

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    • maybe a teacher. although i over empathize because i never got it, so that drives my Hubby nuts. i didn’t learn boundaries which i am now learning in adulthood..ha

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    • We could all use lessons in boundaries, probably. 🙂

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    • it would be helpful!! lol

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    • I agree…not at all with the article though, sorry!
      I was raised by some very empathetic-less parents which is why, I believe, the complete opposite.

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    • You obviously had a lot of nature on your side, GayeLynn. 🙂

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