Same boat syndrome. When you are (often unexpectedly) in the same situation as someone else. A synchronicity of sorts. You are stuck with a stranger in a situation and temporarily bond. And I can tell you, it’s good to have an empath in the boat. And often you are the empath in the boat.
Being “in the same boat” means “sharing a particular experience or circumstance with someone else.” (idioms.thefreedictionary.com) It’s a metaphor for a shared experience. When we are stuck in the same boat, it creates instant connection due to circumstance. We are experiencing the same event and likely the same emotions attached to the event. Our roles at the time may be different, but our understanding of the situation will be similar.
Being in the same boat forces instant connection, and empaths are good at connection. Really good. We can make the necessary instant emotional connection in our boat to help navigate through the unknown waters. We can read a situation quickly and feel the emotional state of our new companion(s). When we can emotionally connect with the other(s) in the boat, it makes us stronger. And the only way out of the situation is through it. So we listen, we talk, we support, we plan, and most importantly, we HOPE – together.
In the same boat connections are often born in hospitals, offices, schools, classes, foreign countries, you add your own. Same boat connections are born when we are in an unfamiliar situation and so is someone else. It’s when we meet someone in a hospital, and we share the same worry. It’s when we get lost in a foreign country, and we meet another traveler. It’s when we go to a new class, and we meet another newbie to share our perceptions. It’s when our family is falling apart, and we talk with someone who is also experiencing the same personal tragedy. The connections are real, often urgent, and necessary for coping. It’s a time when we cut through the crap, and go straight to the heart of the matter because there isn’t time not to.
In the same boat connections let us bond quickly and strongly with another. And though the situation is temporary, the experience and shared words will help to sustain us long after we’re out of the boat.