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A 16-year-old female asked:

could the lack of empathy be caused by anxiety?

2 doctor answers2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Jay Shapiro
Pain Management 54 years experience
Anxiety and more: Anxiety is one source of lack of empathy. Another is the person may be too self-involved, self-absorbed, self-centered. More often than not the lack of empathy is a relatively permanent personality characteristic. I said "relatively" because a few counselors are trained to work with the deeper issues underlying self-absorption. So, there is some hope.
Dr. Bernard Seif
Clinical Psychology 40 years experience
Yes to empathyanxiey: When we are very focused on our own emotions and bodily sensations it's hard to focus on others and be empathic. Some folks try to mentally switch back and forth from their feelings to the feelings of others as a way to break out of that cycle. The very best to you. Psychologist can help the process.

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