Ever since I was little, I’ve had this odd physical response to seeing certain… things on other people, usually scars or particularly bad varicose veins or wounds or what have you. (Yeah, real specific, I know!) I vividly remember having it when seeing my grandmother sitting outside and seeing her very prominent veins on her leg. I don’t get it while watching violence or medical TV shows or films, by the way–it’s got to be someone in front of me, live.
The sensation is… gosh, how to describe it… it’s like an ache, that feels as if it starts from the inside of my bones, radiates outward, then goes back inward. It’s not painful, it’s just like sympathetic discomfort.
I know my sister gets it too, because we totally mock each other when we know something is likely to induce it. (E.g., if she has a bruise on her knee and I see it, she’ll grin evilly at me and make this noise that represents the feeling… “waaaaaAAAAAAAaaaaaaaaaaaw.” And I give her a little smack and we laugh. Yes, we’re both middle-aged, shut up, in many ways we never grew up.)
Anyhoo. What the hell is this? I’ve always assumed it’s a vasovagal thing, although it’s not as if I feel faint. Do others get this and feel the same way?