Hey.. it isn't nice and it's really hard to understand. It happens in Western society (this pattern of individuals getting lots of absurd reactions for no reason), but is only understood by the East.
Some Western psychologists acknowledge empaths - you're probably meeting a lot of the criteria for what an empath means. Do you usually feel disorientated when you're around others? Think of others before yourself? The world is more demanding and sociopathic behavior is more adhered to as empathic behavior.
The other theory is the Eastern 'Kundalini sydrome'. Those who meditate or, have ever felt connected to a life force or creative energy, reach a point where they are no longer a grounded individual. They are continually based in the higher conscience instead of in their bodies/ in the physical world. They are said to have unbalanced chakras.
This is called a kundalini awakening, and it can lead to difficulties in the persons' life as they begin to feel a lot more compassion for others, start being more creative, sensitive, stressed. Research Kundalini awakening and kundalini syndrome.
I had and have the same thing going on for a long time... I coincidentally travelled to the East with my boyfriend's job - it got too much, like you I thought I was a good looking sweet person like most empaths. In the West I saw a top psychiatrist who neither denied or approved what I had said. He gave me an analogy about survival of the fittest but looked baffled.
In a society which is getting more fearful, rageful, heartless - it is not a good time to be an empath. It's not good to be ungrounded, period. So look up kundalini syndrome and control/ manage the awakening with grounding techniques. (i.e. anything that brings attention to the physical body). When grounded you should have a feeling of being safe and not so 'connected to everything' and open.
I try to change my personality thus - I never act like the caring person, 'giving' my energy to others who are weaker than me.. I also try to connect with my inner fire and inner strength. Completely stop fantasizing - even though it's easier for us to live in our internal space than the outside world. Try to create an invisible boundary between yourself and others - no one should be able to read your story, your thoughts or follow your actions. To blend , in the east, is to be strong. Keep yourself active with intense exercise and physical activity/ a job that involves doing a lot. Spend time outdoors...
There's a lot about empaths/ kundalini syndrome and grounding techniques online.. you're definitely not alone on this one.
The saddest part I, it's not understood properly by people in the West. and most people who say they get coughed at will either get ignored , or given a label of insanity.. when that's not the case.
Don't tell anyone other than your boyfriend. I told my family and they would continue to do it - the point it got ridiculous and I no longer speak to them anymore.
Keep it to yourself, every day learn about being more grounded and try to learn about chakras and kundalini.. the more you understand about it, the easier it becomes to understand just 'what' exactly is wrong.
Try not to dwell on the one person out of 100 who is coughing towards you.. they're the minority, and are fearful and rageful. Work on your reaction to the reactions themselves. remain calm, non hesitant, if necessary give them a disgusted look, while completely being fearless. Then forget about it and don't dwell. Don't let one person ruin your whole day. If you're with your boyfriend, mutter so the cougher can hear, 'that was rude'
Don't underestimate having a boyfriend who loves you/ understands.View Thread