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Copying others emotions?

Well, I've been considering telling my doctor i want to talk to a therapist, and finally get the help I've always wanted. With the thoughts of seeing a therapist i begin to wonder what i might tell him the problem even is. One of my biggest issues being that I'm terrible at socializing or connecting with anyone on an emotional level. Well i know that I've always acted out in attempt for people to notice i needed help, because I've always been too afraid to ask anyone. But when i started thinking about all the times i acted out for that attention, i realized something. I was always copying someone who had gotten help before. I realized this because at 8pm after just getting home from work and taking a shower i decided to go to bed. Normally i wouldn't go to bed till 10 or 11. But i started to wonder why i was even going to bed so early. Well a friend of mine was just recently in partial in-patient treatment for anorexia and when she told me she was depressed she said she had been sleeping alot. Well basically only sleeping. I realized thats why i wanted to go to bed so early. I just was doing it so people would think im depressed. Am I? To be honest im not sure. I often feel emotionless or that i lack the capacity to understand my own emotions and i shut them out. This also isnt the only instance ive done this type of thing. What i also realized is that in social situations i copy parts of the personality of the person im with. I feel like that may be why i feel like i dont know what to do around groups of people or strangers. But, at work i can talk to customers no problem. I think thats because i can just take on a professional persona, non reflective of the person i am and just of the work im doing.

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Hmm interesting personal observation JBJosh454! Self-awareness is good as you can start to address some unhelpful behaviour patterns. Maybe what you are describing is a form of vicarious learning or observational learning and adopting behaviours observed in other people which you attempt to model. It may help to have some CBT (Cognitive behavioural therapy) as you can start to address the thought processes that affect your behaviours and try out new ones that are more healthy and helpful. Ask your GP if they can refer for some 1:1 sessions.

Take care

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Hi this sounds familiar to me when I was young. I am not saying this is the case but have a look at CEN (childhood emotional neglect). This rang many bells for me. x

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This was very helpful and I've gained some new insight into what could be causing all this. Thank you

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Good. Like I said it rang a few bells for me too. I only came across it last year and wish I had known about it a lot sooner. x

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Thank you for posting this, and for the replies. I too feel this numbness. I have just had a meeting at work where I was criticised for various things that stemmed from a bad relationship with my previous boss. I finally explained that she had been snapping at me and excluding me. I always find it hard to have a strong appropriate emotional reaction when I am on the receiving end of bad behaviour. I stand there not saying anything to defend myself, feeling like crying but trying to think it through, and to judge if they are being fair or not, or to find a reason for their attitude, an excuse if you like. My emotion ought really to be outrage, not upset, but that is my goto feeling. I know it is supposed to be mature to try to see both sides, but a mature person would also stand up for themselves, either to the person or through the proper channels. I think I only got half the message and help I needed as a child.

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