“If you suffer from HSP…”
I saw this in a tweet the other day.
It made me wince.
HSP is not something you suffer from.
That’s like saying you “suffer” from being left-handed.
It’s not something that needs to be cured or fixed. It’s not something to be pitied.
The other day, a friend said she saw my blog for the first time and didn’t know I was “hyper sensitive”. It was a simple mistake, but I felt uncomfortable correcting her.
HSPs are just a different way to be…like being introverted.
My college-age cousin stayed with my husband and I for a few weeks. She often stayed home on Friday nights and studied a lot. My extrovert husband talked about it sadly, as if there was something wrong with her. “What is she doing home on a Friday night?”
I replied, ”Why do you say that like it’s a bad thing?” I thought it was completely normal that she was home.
How odd is it that “going out” is the expectation? In my mind, staying home on a Friday night sounds great. Even when I was a college kid, I felt similarly.
Introversion has been a highly publicized topic in the past few years and people are learning more about it.
So, let’s spread knowledge about high sensitivity, too.
There’s nothing wrong with being highly sensitive or introverted. There are a lot of us out there. And we understand.
I am a college-age student and I completely agree with you. I am currently working on trying to let myself be okay with doing my own thing. I want to be able to not have to feel like I have to jump on the band wagon just because that is other people’s idea of fun. I hope one day we can all stop caring that we’re not doing what everyone else is doing! Though that isn’t the way society works, I have faith that we’ll be able to out-step those stereotypes and just be what makes us comfortable!
-the girl who stayed home last night like every Friday night #shameless
haha Leena! Love your sign-off. 🙂 It’s definitely hard to try to do your own thing sometimes. I do think college was around the time I started caring less and less about what other people thought, too. Good for you!
-Enjoying Saturday night watching a movie with my dog
Yeap! happens to me too… Friday nights and a goooood book! cup of tea… it’s paradise!
I have recently found your website and i am really surprised to find out that other people feel exactly like i do and there is a reason for that, high sensitivity. I am introverted too and i can’t stop thinking about how I should behave on my vacation with my friends or when I’m with a big group of people. I finished school this year and i wonder how it’s going to be like in university..
Hi Emma, I think I know how you feel–when you said you “think about how you should behave.” I do that too. It’s hard to be present when you are overthinking everything you do. In a perfect scenario, you could just be yourself, but I know that can be challenging when you don’t know if “yourself” is “normal”. Sometimes when I didn’t know how to act in my younger years, I would stay quiet and try to blend in to the background. The good news is that when you get older, it all becomes less important, plus, you find people you can be yourself with a bit more. I’m sorry I don’t have a lot of good advice–just try not to be too hard on yourself. Please know there are other people like you out there. 🙂
What a bullseye, Kelly!
I’m HSP and I actually think it is something you suffer from. Yes there are positive aspects but there are negatives that impact quality of life. For example, I tend to stress very easily and when I do it’s not easy to stop. Once the sympathetic nervous system is in gear it’s fully in gear. The issue I have with Aron and particularly Ted Zeff is the munging of the physical traits of being HSP and extending that the hypersensitivity expecting accommodation from others. We are a minority no matter how large and, in my opinion, need to learn to cope with the non-HSP world. I like a lot of what you write here and am just frustrated that short of tranquillisers to slow my sympathetic nervous system down with their inherent side effects that there is very little I can do to cope with this “trait”.
I chose to listen to your audio book because I have been having difficulties with my HSC. Upon listening, I learned that I was very much an HSC and definitely NOT an HSP an adult. You say it’s not an ailment to be “cured”. I strongly disagree. Living in this world is much easier an an adult that is not an HSP.
I identified my son as an HSP and listened to your book in hopes of hearing some recommendations about how to encourage him out of those tendencies. I was very disappointed to listen to your lack of insight on this. I work in the medical field and a direct correlation between HSP and fibromyalgia, chronic pain and other physical ailments. To say suggest that these are not conditions to be cured is ridiculous. We live in a society which would prefer to medicate these conditions away. I would love to see what your research would have to say about the benefits of recognizing the HSP characteristics in fibromyalgia (etc.) and and focusing treatment on the underlying characteristics. This book was a huge disappointment.
Thanks for your comment. I don’t have an audio book…..I’m curious how you were able to hear an audio version of the book? (Or are you referring to the podcast?) High sensitivity is not a diagnosis, which implies that it is a disorder or a problem. Perhaps you are thinking of sensory processing disorder? That is different from high sensitivity. They are also not “tendencies”; we are born highly sensitive (with sensory processing sensitivity). I recommend reading Dr. Elaine Aron’s website for research & more info: http://hsperson.com
I get your point. But what if your high sensitivity controlls your entire life. Thin walls mean i cant sleep when i need to. i can’t eat what i want becasue the wrong taste at the wrong time makes me gag. Other peoples music (which you sometimes can’t avoid) can throw me in a full fleged panick attack if it’s too loud ok simply the wrong type of music. And those are only 2 examples. So then what? cause to you it might not be a bad thing. But i cannot live like this…
i did see your list of helpfull tips, but each of those are made impossible due to other issues (i’ll need 3 pages to list it all but i have various other mental and physycal problems)
i don’t know how to hang on anymore.
I use noise cancelling headphones (Bose quiet comfort) for the noise, and that helps me. I can play some calm music over them too.
I’d say that it’s not the HSP controlling your life, it’s the environment controlling your HSP which is making it seem like the HSP in controlling your life.
You are correct. Highly sensitive persons belong in this world like everybody else and definitely have permission to embrace their sensitivity. <3 Thank you, you've gained a new follower.