For a long time I used to stay awake at night trying to figure out what I could do or say to help my children the most with their special empathic gifts. Or their empathic burdens as it might at times be seen. I know every parent worries about their children, but as the parent of an empath, it just feels so much more intensified, right?
Because for our empathic children, the simple act of living means amassing a large assortment of cumbersome weights that they often pick up and carry, without their choice from every place or person with whom they interact. I actually think a lot more children are carrying this same “gift” than we adults might think, but…..
I am going to share some personal examples in order to explain what I am talking about and to clarify just how important it is for a young empath to be told, and to ultimately understand one vital truth.
Here is the truth, the examples will follow.
Just because an empath can feel or knows something that a “normal person” does not see, understand or feel, it does not mean that they are responsible for EVERYTHING that happens. Or that they are responsible for the happiness and well-being of those they love and care for the most.
You would think this type of mentality should be evident right? Because who in their right mind feels responsible for bad things that they have nothing to do with?
An empath will.
So here are the examples.
Right before the pandemic, I mean before we were even aware of COVID 19, one of my children started having dreams that there was something scary out there that was going to “get” us. In their dreams nowhere was safe, but when we left our home we were really unsafe. This dream repeated over and over again until finally the virus did arrive at our doorstep and everyone went into quarantine. At that point, they finally understood what the dream was about, but then when a dear family member fell gravely ill to the sickness, almost at death’s door, this child felt responsible for not shouting from the rooftop and for not stopping that family member from activities that might have kept them safe. They felt terrible.
This child felt responsible for COVID 19….. Geesh, how do you even counteract that?
By reinforcing with them the truth that just because they know or feel something, it does not make them responsible for EVERYTHING.
Here is another example.
One of my children had a feeling about someone that they would interact with in a frequent family public setting. My child didn’t have any real or lasting interactions with this person, but in the minimal interactions they did have, things just felt “off”. Even more unsettling for them were the emotions that they were pulling off of friends when they interacted with this person. My child could not understand what was happening but knew it felt “not good”. To protect themselves, my child distanced themselves from the person they felt uncomfortable with. But they still knew something wasn’t right with their friends. Flash forward to 2 years down the road when we discovered that this person they had felt uncomfortable with was being charged with some fairly significant and terrible charges for activities in a private setting. My child finally understood and berated themself for using distancing as a coping mechanism rather than wading into the muck and emotions to figure out what was going on and to “save” their friends.
They were a young empath and couldn’t have changed anything about this situation, but they still felt responsible.
Empaths always will.
I have many more examples just like the ones I shared above, but it’s not the examples that matter, but the truth that lies within and all around them.
Empaths need to be told that they are not responsible for EVERYTHING.
If you are the parent of an empath or if you are an empath yourself, you need to teach them and to learn this truth for yourself so that it becomes your own truth and you live it.
There are some people, things, and situations that you can positively influence, but not everything. As an empath, you cannot make someone happy who isn’t. You cannot right every wrong. You cannot fix every broken person. You cannot stop bad things from happening, even if you knew about them beforehand and because of that pre-knowledge, it makes you feel somehow culpable.
This truth, however, doesn’t mean an empath is powerless. There are many things empaths can help with and that is why they have been given this unique gift. Sometimes others just need a light in the darkness and an empath can certainly be that.
I also feel an empath really needs to hear one other thing, and that is that prayer works. It really does. This is true for both empaths and non-empaths, but I believe prayer is critical for empaths.
I believe in a loving and all-knowing Heavenly Father and have always encouraged my children to reach out to Him in heartfelt and sincere prayer. He knows and loves them and has given them this gift. And because He knows and understands everything, I encourage my children to ask Him what they can and should do to help others. Or to ask for His help in carrying the burdens and weight that they amass that are not their own. And when they have done this, it has worked. Not always in the way they might have planned, but it works.
I have a favorite children’s church hymn that has words that have always rung with truth for me:
It is called a Child’s Prayer.
“Heavenly Father, are you really there?
And do you hear and answer ev’ry child’s prayer?
Some say that heaven is far away,
But I feel it close around me as I pray.
Heavenly Father, I remember now
Something that Jesus told disciples long ago:
“Suffer the children to come to me.”
Father, in prayer I’m coming now to Thee.”
“Pray, He is there;
Speak, he is list’ning.
You are His child;
His love now surrounds you.
He hears your prayer;
He loves the children.
Of such is the kingdom, the kingdom of heav’n.”
Hugs to you my fellow parents of empaths, I promise the miracles and amazing things you will see because your children are who they are, will far outweigh the bad. They will literally change the world!
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