Empathy and “pain”

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/01/150115122005.htm

“The secret of empathy: Stress from the presence of strangers prevents empathy, in both mice and humans”
2015

“In the new study, Mogil and his team compared the reactions of undergraduate students to painful stimuli in various scenarios: alone; with a friend; with a stranger; between two strangers given a stress-blocking drug; and between two strangers who had spent 15 minutes playing the video game Rock Band® prior to testing.

The student participants were asked to submerge their arm in ice-cold water and rate their pain. These pain scores remained the same whether they experienced the pain alone or sitting across from a stranger. However, the pain actually increased when these students put their arms in ice water across from a friend.

“It would seem like more pain in the presence of a friend would be bad news, but it’s in fact a sign that there is strong empathy between individuals — they are indeed feeling each other’s pain,” said Mogil.”