If I were truly apathetic, I don't think I'd be worried that I lack compassion. Uncaring? Not really. Self-absorbed? You bet, and I'm first to admit it. I am not sociable by nature, and am always dumbfounded when people are drawn to me. (That's dumbfounded, not pleasantly surprised; I don't want people to be drawn to me.) I'm not effusive, rarely initiate conversations, and hate small talk.
Why, then, am I such a perfect target for gasbags who confuse glazed eyes with empathy? I try to set boundaries. (Hint: when I say "I have to go now" and walk away, stop talking. Do not follow me. You're the reason I'm leaving.) I resent the intrusion, and its attendant assumptions. I'm a woman, so I must be a good listener, right? I must be willing to listen, because if I were in pain, or having an ice-cream-straight-from-the-carton, PMS sort of day, or suffering from the existential horrors, I'd be chattering away myself. Right?
Wrong. I've never understood the let-it-all-hang-out school of coping. The world would be a much better, much quieter place if people would stop to reflect before running their mouths. Just stop. Think. Write it down, blog about it, but for God's sake, don't ask me for advice unless you intend to follow it.