Once you see how your partner’s sensitivity is an asset to your life, not a drawback, you’ll start to see the benefits of dating an HSP.
Sometimes, highly sensitive people (HSPs) don’t even realize they’re more sensitive than others. So when it comes to dating, they may react more strongly to things than their non-HSP partner. They can tear up at a movie (that’s not even a tear-jerker to the majority of others) or a beautiful song lyric just as easily as they can getting reprimanded at work. Or they may get triggered more easily, emotionally, than you do during a disagreement.
As a result, they may be misunderstood or referred to as “too sensitive.”
But, the truth is, there are many amazing reasons why you should date a highly sensitive person.
Before we get into them, though, let’s first take a look at what it means to be a sensitive soul.
The Science Behind Highly Sensitive People
Although everyone is sensitive to a certain extent, some people are more sensitive than others. In fact, roughly 30 percent of people are born more sensitive than average, both emotionally and physically. (While about 40 percent of people are average in sensitivity, 20 percent are low in sensitivity.) Researchers call this trait environmental sensitivity, or Sensory Processing Sensitivity. And in case you’re wondering — all three levels of environmental sensitivity are considered perfectly healthy and normal.
Like what you’re reading? Get our newsletter just for HSPs. One email, every Friday. Click here to subscribe!
So highly sensitive people — also known as HSPs — are those who fall near the high end of the sensitivity continuum. Aside from picking up on subtleties others miss, they’re also very in tune with their environments and can pick up on chemical sensitivity, light sensitivity, you name it. Non-HSPs don’t tend to pick up on these factors as much as highly sensitive people do.
HSPs also absorb others’ emotions as though they’re their own. If someone’s having a bad day, they’ll feel bad; if someone’s having a great day, they’ll feel great. HSPs are hardwired this way. They’re also known to be deep thinkers and have an amazing sense of intuition.
So you can start to get a sense of how having an HSP partner can be a great asset. Below, I’ll get into more specifics about some of the benefits of dating a highly sensitive person.
7 Benefits of Dating a Highly Sensitive Person
1. They’ll be very in touch with their own emotions, as well as yours.
Compatibility is a key component of dating, right? And doesn’t everyone want someone who’s “emotionally available”?
Well, because highly sensitive people are very in touch with both their own emotions — as well as others’ — they’ll sense how you’re feeling before you even utter a word. They’ll not only sympathize with you, but empathize with you, which can be a big benefit.
So they’ll be able to comfort you — if you’re in a blah mood, for instance — or share in your joy.
2. They’ll listen to you — really listen — and help you come up with solutions.
You’ve never met as good a listener as the highly sensitive person you’re dating. In part, this is due to the fact that they excel at active listening — not just listening for the sake of listening. They also prefer deep conversations, so if it’s their advice you’re seeking, you’ve come to the right place.
But even if you just need a comforting ear, your HSP can be that, too. (Though their input is usually very thought-out, so you’ll likely want to take it.)
Want to get one-on-one help from a trained therapist? We’ve personally used and recommend BetterHelp for therapy with real benefits for HSPs. It’s private, affordable, and takes place online. BONUS: As a Sensitive Refuge reader, you get 10% off your first month. Click here to learn more.
We receive compensation from BetterHelp when you use our referral link. We only recommend products we believe in.
3. They’re very intuitive and will notice every little detail.
HSPs are incredibly adept at reading body language, including facial expressions and mannerisms. So even if you aren’t saying a word — like in the point I made above — a highly sensitive person will be able to sense what kind of mood you’re in based on what your body is telling them.
Similarly, if you try to hide something from an HSP, good luck! Their strong sense of intuition will feel if something’s off.
4. They’ll take their time getting to know the real you.
While some people may jump right into a relationship, a highly sensitive person will want to take time to get to know the real you. They won’t take any shortcuts.
Let’s say you met on a dating app, for example. Although people’s profiles are full of positive adjectives and accolades, you know there’s more to the person you’re dating than surface-level things. And because you’re a deep thinker, you’ll dig deep into really getting to know them: What makes them light up? What makes them tick? What are their life’s passions?
5. They’re good at talking out conflicts that come up.
Even though highly sensitive people don’t naturally love conflict or criticism — I mean, who does — they’ll do their best to work it out. So while some couples may be passive-aggressive or try to brush issues under the rug, not the HSP you’re dating!
Plus, since they value deep conversations (see #2), they’ll want to make sure that you have a heart-to-heart about whatever’s going on. And since they are so self-aware, they’ll take accountability for whatever role they played in the matter, too.
6. They value consistency over change.
If you’re looking for a loyal, and consistent, partner, a highly sensitive person is it. Although they can roll with the punches if necessary, they generally don’t love change. Due to all the overstimulation that comes at them all day long — all the sights, sounds, smells, and so on, that impact them more than others — they like having stability in other facets of their life.
Like you. (And their HSP sanctuary when they’re not with you.)
7. They’ll give you time alone to be independent and do your own thing.
While some couples are together 24/7, it’s healthy for people to have interests (and a life) outside of the relationship, too. And highly sensitive people know all about the value of alone time.
Even if you are under the same roof together hanging out, for instance, HSPs will encourage you to each spend some time on your own. This can mean reading, napping, going for a walk, you name it.
They need this time to recharge, which will help them be even more present when you’re together again.
HSPs, what would you add to the list? I’d love to hear in the comments below!