On growing up
On the Highly Sensitive People dvd by Jim Hallowes, psychologist Pat Allen, PhD, MFT recalls her mother using the phrase “Still waters run deep” to refer to her – something many of us could relate to.
(I think my own mother used the phrase, as a subtle form of affirmation of my shyness.)
“In school, I had to sit at the back of the room,” Allen notes, about being too sensitive to be too close to others. “While other kids were reading ‘Dick and Jane,’ I was reading the Encyclopedia Brittanica…”
She talks about the issue of self-medication [which I address in my article Gifted, Talented, Addicted]:
“I took up drinking at five. I drank my father’s leftovers. I was sedated from five to thirty five; that was my street medicine. But at thirty five, it was destroying me.
“Coming out of alcohol, I had to go on medication, and I was unable to sleep more than two hours a night on and on and on. But in those hours of staying up and staying up, like I was on cocaine, I was being driven mad. My blood pressure was 250 over 148 for much of my adult life.
“Now it’s 110 over 70, and I’m much healthier than I ever was when I was young, and it’s because I know, I have always known, that I was different, that I was gifted, that I was brilliant, that I didn’t fit…”
Now, she notes how this high sensitivity serves her career in helping others:
“The ability to be sensitive to another person’s vibrations is how I make a living. They say I’m psychic. I’m not psychic; I’m just an old HSP.”
Highly Sensitive People site by Jim Hallowes
Her site: drpatallen.com