Empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of another human being. It’s an excellent mark of character whenever an individual displays empathy. Caring and thoughtful people have this mark about them as they meet their fellow life travelers. Having the character trait of empathy makes life sweeter for the person who has it while also benefitting humanity as a whole. Apathy states that he doesn’t care, but empathy says she cares wholeheartedly.
Special moments for me happen when I share with someone else that I have bipolar disorder and I can see the empathy on their countenance and in their eyes. The person with empathy often proceeds to tell me about someone they love dearly who also has bipolar or they begin to reveal that they personally have bipolar. These moments, and these individuals who understand and care, have been some of the greatest moments in my life thus far. People with mental illness know how rough it can be. People who have loved ones with mental illness know how tough that can be. When the contestants in the human race stop racing, to help a man or woman who has fallen down, and help that woman or man to their feet again, by extending a helping hand, then something beautiful has happened and empathy has been preached and practiced simultaneously.
There are also the moments that aren’t special at all concerning my conversations about bipolar. These times occur whenever I share my story with someone and I can tell they don’t get it, don’t understand, and don’t ever care to put forth any effort at all to understand. People who don’t care to comprehend mental illness are taking the lazy man’s road down apathy lane. Empathy makes time for others in their pain, but apathy just cannot be bothered with another’s problems.
Make a choice to be one of the beautiful ones in the human race. Extend a helping hand to those who most need the help. Embrace empathy like the quality of others lives and the quality of your life depend on this embrace. Apathy won’t understand the embrace, but he doesn’t care either.