The queer empath and multiple outsiderhood

Another snippet from a facebook discussion, this time initiated by one lamenting his situation of being not just an empath, but also gay. Knowing all this and more, I had to add my two cents, which I’m recycling here for the sake of preserving this personal document for posterity and those who can relate, or in whom it provokes thought.

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I’m an empath and also queer (perhaps a bit more hardcore, I still feel I’m stuck in the wrong gendered body, but am making peace with it in some way on a spiritual level) and have been in relationships with people of most possible genders.

I’ve also grown up bilingually as an immigrant and was typically the only “foreign” kid at school etc. Plus the only kid that spent most breaks reading books.

So yes … I’d guess that I can relate to your situation. On the level of always being the odd one out, no matter what kind of group you go to – join an empath group, you may be the only gay person (don’t mention being trans), go to an LGBT event and most people are non-HSP extraverts, etc. Not to mention that nobody gets that my views are influenced by having migrated in childhood and later lived in like 6 different countries (so i always do something “weird”, i either eat weird stuff or use weird words or dress weird or whatever) …

I was depressed and in fatigue for a long time, but overall I’ve tried to take what life dealt me to mean that I have to make an effort to find authentic human connection regardless of labels and classifications. At least, well I have to if I don’t want to feel isolated. Not always easy, of course … in fact, usually hard 🙂

But somehow always do bump into various exceptional individuals that I appreciate deeply (even if sometimes the meetings are briefer than wished for as I’m still on the road and so is my mind).

For me it’s basically just been a huge prod towards personal development … in a sink-or-swim way (that I’ve been pissed off about for years until I got too tired to be that).

Do you relate?

Wish you the best on your journey!

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If any of this resonates or thought-provokes (or feeling-provokes), please feel free to share or comment.

If this is your territory, you might also enjoy the posts Can empaths be autistic? and Catch-22, which are dealing with similar topics of multiple outsiderhood and include mental health perspectives.

Thanks for reading!

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4 thoughts on “The queer empath and multiple outsiderhood

  1. Interesting read, what’s it like to be queer, (I hate that word, don’t take it personal) an empath and have Asperger’s? It must put alot of constraints on relationships?

    I agree with the fitting in parts but depends on how determined one is to fit in, is it a necessity? Is it to be able to feel a sense of belonging somewhere? Is it even possible to find a unique category of a person/s to find or have that familiarity or place of belonging? Sorry for the questions I am an ‘askhole’. 🙂

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    1. Hi there, thanks for commenting and questioning 😉

      I use “queer” mostly as an umbrella term for a bunch of things I can’t really categorise. A lot of people would question that, but … ya.

      Concerning constraints on relationships – not quite sure what that means? Everyone has their preferences and certainly in the right places you can find those with matching ones.

      Concerning the necessity of fitting in and belonging, I think if you more or less fit in/belong, you won’t even be aware that you do. You’ll just be aware that your life is not made up of one social collision after the other 😉

      So my standards for fitting in aren’t really demanding – just means not constantly getting blank stares for things that are natural for me to say or think (or be), and not constantly having to hide parts of my identity to avoid backlash. I don’t mean some utopian vision of perfect harmony and homeliness. So certainly, communities and social groups differ with regard to that – some circles are more liveable than others, although yes – that can’t always be predicted from their “packaging” / labels.

      To give you an example, I was with mostly with women for a long period. Then my best friend who is a guy was visiting me for a while, and somehow everyone started assuming we’re a couple. People were incredibly nice and accommodating to him and us together (compared to the weirdness and uptightness that happens when I’m with a girlfriend), just on the presumption that we’re a straight couple. I was kind of shocked by the contrast. And thought – ok, so that’s what it feels like when society is built for (in some ways) people like you / sees you as “normal” / when you “fit in”.

      Not sure if that answers – otherwise, what’s your take on fitting in / belonging?

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  2. Thanks, I just wanted to ask in regards to fitting in etc, it seemed from Ur posts, I get the impression it’s a big part of what you’d like? Not necessarily with everyone or in groups be they categorised or not but 1 person we could meet can be sufficient, no?

    Constraints, was in the contexts of where you’ve talked about autism/Asperger’s, if I had to give an example, sometimes unless you mentioned a mental illness associated to yourself people wouldn’t perceive anything other than usual norms, unless there were significant traits that become apparent upon interactions that probably wouldn’t ‘seem right’ to others? .. So couple days ago I was curious to know what it would be like to date someone with an illness since I’m more interested in it as I’ve never come across this type of experience before, so one of the things that stood out to me amongst a few others were verbal communication and social cues, I like to read people’s comments and watch real-life documentaries before I make an assumption of anyone, (strange I know!) But it just give me a broader understanding and another way to have my thoughts provoked on what I read, everyone has they’re own uniqueness whether we’re placed in boxes or not, so from they’re own opinions and thoughts I get to learn more about them than the picture say a professional may have painted of them.

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    1. Hm, first off Asperger’s isn’t a mental illness – it’s more like a personality type / human variant. Although due to being in the minority, aspies can frequently struggle with depression due to isolation and such.

      Second, I’m sure you’ve come across people with mental illness, they may just not have told you. Cause statistically, it’s really not rare and you’re guaranteed to know some – just very few people wear this on their sleeve and will tell you, unless you get close.

      I think it’s a good idea, as you say, to approach every person from a point of uniqueness, because just knowing someone has a specific mental illness, or is a specific neurotype or personality type, won’t automatically give you a manual on who they are. however, education is still very helpful if you find certain things puzzling and can’t really ask, or to know some general do’s/don’t’s. for autism specifically i recommend thesilentwaveblog.wordpress.com

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