Posts Tagged: Empathy

Ask Polly: I Had a Stillbirth and My Husband Totally Lacked Empathy

Dear Polly,

I think my husband is spineless, selfish, and prioritizes his convenience over my emotions. 

Background: My husband is from another country. We visit for a month or so every summer, when he catches up with friends and family. I am cool with this. (I do wish he might also, I dunno, set some time aside for his *wife* during our only vacation time, but that's another letter). However, he has this one friend whom I would actually happily feed to rodents of an unusual size.

I had a stillbirth almost five years ago. It took a year to figure out what the problem was, during which I had two more miscarriages. They diagnosed [...]


A Short Story from the County Board Meeting in Arlington, VA

Two kids are testifying about why this Arlington shelter is a bad idea — cursing, 2nd hand smoke. Their parents should be horse whipped.

— Michael Neibauer (@NeibsWBJ) December 14, 2011

These two pre-10yo girls just told the Arlington board that they may take the wrong path in life if they have to live near homeless people.

— Michael Neibauer (@NeibsWBJ) December 14, 2011

Arlington Board agrees to buy (or seize) 2020 14th St. N, to serve as office space and homeless shelter.

— Michael Neibauer (@NeibsWBJ) December 14, 2011


Ask Polly: Will Our Class Differences Tear Us Apart?

Hi Polly.

I've been with my current boyfriend for three years. We're really great together—similar interests, senses of humor, great sex. I love him so much—the only issue is that of our respective backgrounds. He grew up in a tony suburb, went to prep school, then to a very prestigious college, and finally the very prestigious graduate school where we met. I went to public school in a bad neighborhood, put myself through a not-so-prestigious college, made a name for myself in my field, then got into that same prestigious grad school. Our families could not be more different. I didn't think it would matter so much, but something happened [...]


American Empathy Watch: When Suicide Jumpers Destroy Our Cars

"A New Jersey woman is devastated that her precious sports car — just repaired and fully gassed up — was wrecked by a suicidal man's 40-story attempted death leap on the Upper West Side…. "I miss it. It's my baby," moaned Maria McCormack… 'Why? Why my car out of all the cars in the city?'…. Meanwhile, a Dodge spokesman credited the car's 'high-strength steel structure' for helping absorb the blow." Really, everyone comes out a winner in this one.


This Restraining Order Expires On Tuesday

The first time "Misty" broke into the backyard to pound and scream at the bedroom window, the police handcuffed her and said—her face pressed to the hood of the idling black and white—that she was not to return. I figured we would never see her again after that early morning in 2012. But the next night, around 1 a.m., I was in bed with my new boyfriend, "Scott," and we heard the bedroom door slowly crack open. Scott jumped up. "No! You can’t be here!" he shouted, all high-pitched.

At the end of this calendar year, our second restraining order against Misty expires. The Misty saga (this is the truncated [...]


Why Is American Selfishness So Widespread Now?

I have been feeling a good amount of despair recently. Not on a personal level-I'm generally as happy-go-lucky as a leprechaun with a head injury. (It's weird!) But the constant reminder of the American lack of empathy is astounding. It's everywhere. (Do we need to drag in the case of the woman who attended the Glenn Beck rally in D.C. over the weekend and her point of view that Jesus would hate welfare?) And so it was with great wariness that I approached the comments section at the end of this first-person story by a man in Nevada who, driven into destitution by disability, family medical bills, [...]