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  1. #31
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    Thanks Mama C, yeah I left for ages and now seem to be addicted again and pondering life, lol. The story you told about the guy with the narcotics paints a pretty powerful picture of what I believe.

    Buttoneska, I am so sorry you went through all of that, how awful I disagree(respectfully!!) though that some people are all bad or all good, I think everyone is redeemable and it is other factors that contribute to our response. I don't know, it's a tricky one. Do you think bad people can become good or vice versa?

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  3. #32
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    Buttoneska is offline Winner 2010- Most Community Minded Thread Award
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    I dont think they are all good or all bad and I think there are far more good ppl then bad. I don't think it means they are unredeemable either.

    But I think when you met someone bad you know - I have met 3 bad ppl in my life.

    I think that is it also different to ppl with severe mental problems that impacts on their decision making/understanding - like sociopaths like Jeffrey Dahmer

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  5. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Happy2be3 View Post
    I'm a pretty "cold hearted" person and find it hard to empathise or show sympathy (or even feel it, let alone show it) for other people's hardships.

    This however does not mean I am not tolerant of others and their differences.. Everyone has a story
    This is me exactly. I find it very hard to empathise with anyone when whatever they're going through doesn't affect me directly. That sounds so cold, but it's just how I am. As well as drug abuse, crime, etc as mentioned in the OP, another example is when people around the country and the world are dying or losing their homes due to natural disasters or whatever, everyone else seems to cry while watching the news bulletins, but I don't get emotional at all. I just kind of vaguely feel bad for them then move on. Which is why I get annoyed when the media go on and on and on about stuff like this, cause I truly just get tired of hearing about it.

    That makes me sound like a horrible person, but I think I'm just very insular. I live in my own little world, and I like it here. Honestly, if I lost everything I held dear in a natural disaster, I would not expect or even want strangers to feel bad for me.
    Last edited by Sariele; 14-07-2012 at 21:21.

  6. #34
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    Witwicky is offline A closed mouth gathers no foot.
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    I have a lot of empathy for others and an understanding of particular issues due to both life experience and my chosen field of study at uni.

    My job prior to having children opened my eyes up in a way that I would never have imagined...when I hear of a crime being committed, or a person being prosecuted, I empathise with both the victim and the offender. I find myself wondering what sort of life the offender has experienced and what has motivated them to arrive to that very dark place...and then I usually consider appropriate rehabilitation programs...

    I don't think empathising is about getting overly upset upon hearing of others problems, but it is the ability to understand their situation and comprehend their feelings and circumstances, even if you have not been in that situation before and even if you do not agree with it.
    Last edited by Witwicky; 14-07-2012 at 21:22.

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  8. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buttoneska View Post
    I think it is someones core.

    I think ppl can experience the same situation/experience/upbringing whatever you want to call and depending on their core is how they respond. A multitude of things can shape someone, but deep down its their core/compass that guides them.
    !00% agree.
    And massive Button for what you have been through.

    My dad perpetuated the domestic abuse cycle he witnessed and raged against as a teenager. But he won't ever admit to hitting mum and he now idolises his deceased/abusive father. I absolutely *rage* against being even remotely like him because THAT is one cycle that does not need to be repeated within my family. Both of my sisters are married to abusive men. One is occasionally physically (and I believe sexually) abusive towards my sister and the other is emotionally abusive to my other sister. He has even emotionally abused my mother this year No one will listen to me.

    So Refresh, I suppose my answer is that yes I'm a softie, but if you keep sh!tting on someone I love then I find empathy pretty hard.

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  10. #36
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    "...Why?"

    I'm forever asking this question - I need to know more about a person, a circumstance, a story - before I form a feeling/opinion.

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  12. #37
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    I guess neurobiology suggests people can be 'wired differently'. This can explain how 2 ppl may cope differently with same experiences. But interpersonal neurobiology also tells us that even our brain function is influenced by our relationships and how we are treated. And it's not someone's fault if their brain renders them less able to manage emotions/social situations, hence I don't see how we could see them as 'bad'.

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    I agree Witwicky, and I've found most of the time the offender has had some pretty awful life experiences that have probably contributed to them ending up where they are. I usually can't help but feel sad for them as well

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  15. #39
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    Buttoneska is offline Winner 2010- Most Community Minded Thread Award
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    I honestly believe that you don't think bad exists until you meet it.

    its not just that I met ppl who did horrible things to me makes them bad - there were a few ppl who did horrible things to me but not all of them were bad ppl. likewise, im sure if you met with everyone in jail for horrible things, only few of them would be bad.

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  17. #40
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    my dad says i'm a bleeding heart, that i always collect 'strays' etc.
    but i think i was just shown empathy from my mother (and him). i honestly look at the situation from the other person's point of view, and how would i feel in that position?
    that doesn't mean i sympathise though. i think there are limits and boundaries that shouldn't be crossed, no matter what. eg. molestation. i can understand why people would feel things but not how they go against the law, morals, society and inner beliefs to act on them.
    in my opinion empathy and sympathy are completely different.
    eg. i empathise and sympathise with true refugees.
    i empathise but do NOT sympathise with people simply wanting to migrate via illegal channels.

    (i used to cry when my dad cooked marron or gutted the fish too. was a vegetarian then vegan as a teenager. i still say 'sorry' to inanimate objects when i bump into them and the movie 'toy story' had me sobbing)


 

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