You don’t need those sunglasses. It’s not that bright.
You don’t need that jacket. It’s not that cold.
You can’t be bothered by that smell. I barely notice it.
You can’t be tired yet. It’s only eight o’clock.
You don’t want to go home yet. This is so much fun!
When you are a highly sensitive person, these are the types of things people say to you. All. The. Time.
Innocent remarks. From well-intentioned people. Who innocently imply that your experiences are not real and well-intentionally invalidate the shit out of your feelings.
It starts when you’re a child. When you’re the only person who gets a headache from the paint smell. When you’re the only person who needs to wear that silly hat outside to protect your eyes. When you’re the only person who startles so easily.
It gets worse as you grow. When you’re the only person who gets overwhelmed by emotions. By people. By life.
And you start believing those people. You start believing that you are the only one. That there is something wrong with you. That you must be crazy.
You start berating yourself for being so sensitive. You start berating yourself for FAKING being so sensitive.
Because you must be faking it. Because it can’t be real, right?
How could your feelings be real when so many people are telling you your feelings are wrong?
So you stop trusting yourself. You stop listening to your feelings. You stop responding to them. You stop addressing them.
You decide to live like they do. You decide to fake it until you make it.
Except you never do make it. You put on a good enough act, but inside you feel worse and worse and worse.
And tired. Always tired.
You don’t do anything about it. Because those feelings aren’t real, right? You are not really tired, blinded, nauseous, achey, stressed out, overwhelmed. That’s just the crazy in you making you think you are. So you don’t do anything about it.
Until you just can’t keep it up anymore. You break down. And they can’t fix you. They try. You gotta give them that. They try with their protocols and medications and scientific research papers.
But they can’t fix you.
Because their fixes were not formulated for the likes of you.
Because the only person who can fix you is you.
Dear highly sensitive person, you have the power to heal yourself.
All you need is to trust yourself. All you need is to trust your own experience. Trust that your feelings are real. And then address them.
Start listening to your own body. Start paying attention to your own intuition.
Start giving your body and your mind what they need.
Sleep when you are tired. Escape the chaos and overwhelm when it gets to be too much. Protect yourself from the discomfort. Make your own definition of fun.
Let their voices go in one ear and out the other.
Listen to your own inner voice.
It will tell you what you need to do to thrive.