As a child, I always knew my emotions were strong. I would cry when my mom dropped me off at daycare, I would cry when someone laughed at something I did, and I would cry when someone raised their voice at me, even in the slightest way.

Growing up, I heard the words, "You're sensitive." many times.

At first, I had no idea what those words meant. Was being sensitive a good thing? Should I embrace it? Or was it a bad thing that I should hide away from those that don't know me very well?

Throughout high school, I grew to believe that my sensitivity was an awful thing. I never wanted to show anyone that side of me, so I kept my guard up and acted like I was tougher than I actually was.

I wouldn't cry in front of people, and I became afraid of showing even the smallest amount of emotion to those around me.

When I was watching a sad movie with friends or family, I would hold in the tears so they wouldn't think I was too emotional.

When someone made me upset I would act like they did nothing wrong, and even apologize for my own actions.

Because I was hiding my sensitivity, I became cold-hearted. I became antisocial. I became uninterested in those around me because I was terrified of revealing my true emotions. I had friends, but the relationships weren't that deep.

They knew who I was on the surface, but had no idea where my emotions resided.

When I got a boyfriend, I let my guards down. I was emotional in front of him. I was raw. I was me.

Yet, he still mouthed the words, "You're too sensitive."

So to all the people who have tried to tear me down by saying I'm too sensitive: stop trying.

Because I'm sensitive, I feel deeper.

Because I'm sensitive, I love more.

Because I'm sensitive, I don't take emotions for granted.

Because I'm sensitive, I'm the most empathetic person you will ever meet.

I am sensitive, and that's beautiful.