I've always understood that empathy normally develops around the age of 4 years old. A simple test of empathy with children is to show them a board that is white on one side and black on another, and holding it up between the child and someone else. If the child is seeing the white side, are they able to figure out what color the other person is seeing? If so, they are demonstrating empathy...
Fascinating. In such a case, how can they tell the difference between empathy as an emotion and just logical, deductive reasoning? (If not X then Y)
Sympathy to me, means taking one's own feelings and applying it to another's situation.
For example, if someone miscarriages, another woman who has also miscarriaged in the past, can empathize with the greiving mother. They understand because they've experienced a similar loss...
That's my understanding as well -- though I think the terms are often misused or understood as interchangeable.
I do think that people with PDs are often either too hyped up on their own emotions (the "fight or flight" response) or too disconnected from their own feelings to be be either calm enough or reflective enough to concern themselves with what another person must be feeling.
Very good point. And that makes the intimacy question more understandable. If someone less close to X were to have some similar issue to mine, he/she would be treated with more kindness, patience, concern. Case in point -- my car sustained some damage one night and X wouldn't stay on the phone with me to make sure I got safely home. (Because I was chewing gum when I called him from the road!) A few nights later, a friend's car broke down and he was out the door Johnny-on-the-spot to help his friend.