empathy fatigue

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empathy fatigue (uncountable)

  1. Emotional detachment brought about by prolonged exposure to emotional situations.
    • Stebnicki (2008). "Empathy fatigue results from a state of psychological, emotional, mental, physical, spiritual, and occupational exhaustion that occurs as counselors' own wounds are continually revisited by their client's life stories of chronic illness, disability, trauma, grief, and loss" (p. 16) of Empathy Fatigue: Healing the Mind, Body, and Spirit of Professional Counselors (Springer Publishing, 2008).
    • Empathy Fatigue first discussed by Stebnicki (July, 1998) Stebnicki, M.A., Holmes, D., & Bankston Bailey, G. (July, 1998). Children’s reactions to trauma and crisis response team/intervention. Panel presentation made at the National Organization for Victim Assistance (NOVA) National Training Conference. Minneapolis, MN.
    • 1998 — Mary Luckhurst New Theatre Quarterly 54 (Cambridge University Press)
      The difficulty of describing processes of transformation and potential healing is constantly referred to, and by the end of the book it is possible to suffer from empathy fatigue.
    • Stebnicki (2001), The psychosocial impact on survivors of extraordinary, stressful, and traumatic events (in Power & Orto (2004), Families Living with Chronic Illness and Disability, pp. 472-494, Springer Publishing Company)
      When providing support, health care providers must be aware of their own empathy fatigue.