[INFP] "dark" versus "positive" INFP

"dark" versus "positive" INFP

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This is a discussion on "dark" versus "positive" INFP within the INFP Forum - The Idealists forums, part of the NF's Temperament Forum- The Dreamers category; It seems that there are broadly two category of INFPs here that I've observed: the "dark" ones and the "positive" ...

  1. #1
    INFP - The Idealists

    "dark" versus "positive" INFP

    It seems that there are broadly two category of INFPs here that I've observed: the "dark" ones and the "positive" INFPs:

    - while the "positive" INFPs seems to be all bright, light, even bubbly and what's often termed as "seeing the world through rose-colored glasses",
    - the "dark" ones are perhaps the opposite: they're usually bitter, jaded, cynical.

    and I've heard the phrase that "cynical people are often the idealists who turned bitter when faced with Reality"...how very true.
    Now as I'm growing up (I just turned 29 last August), I (& also these two INFP friends of mine who are about the same age) have unfortunately somewhat turned from the first category into the latter one when seeing the Reality.. perhaps mostly because of being pressured by all the "pragmatist, normal" people around me, especially perhaps my STJ parents & brother, still live at one home..somehow I feel as if their notions of "Reality" has turned my world into a bland, super-mundane, and boring one (albeit all the "financial security" promises they've often emphasized the importance to me!..all while saying the typical "that's just how the the world is! don't be dreaming too high!" statements)

    I don't know..
    but, do you basically agree though that there are indeed, to the extreme, the "dark" and the "positive" INFPs, let's say, here in this forum?
    and I'd also like to know: what makes you the first one, and also, what makes you the latter one?

    thank you.
    melancolie, ethylester, Riy and 45 others thanked this post.

  2. #2
    Unknown Personality

    Well maybe the ones you call dark are the ones who had to do a lot of things against their nature in order to survive in society, while receiving little support or understanding from others. Still, I think extreme cynicism is usually transitional, and after a while a person develops a more accepting and philosophical, and less angry, view of their situation. I know I'm not nearly as cynical as I was years ago.

    I imagine that INFPs who are steadily positive in their lives have a lot of support from family and friends, and feel accepted for who they are. That's just my guess. I think it makes a big difference how accepted and supported one is by people who are important in one's life.

  3. #3
    INTP - The Thinkers

    Like you said, I believe the dark INFPs have had a hard time compromising their ideals with reality. Not that their ideals are wrong, on the contrary, they are often good. An INFP can run into problems when they place their ideals on such a high stage that no person can fulfill them, including themselves.

    I think the quote in my signature explains this better than I can.

    As for myself, I have struggled between the two on and off, but I am happy in knowing that any cynical outlook that I may feel is due to something within myself rather than within the outside world. Oh matter how valid this may be, it helps me to take charge and change myself for the better.
    niki, ethylester, Eye of the Potato and 19 others thanked this post.

  4. #4
    INFJ - The Protectors

    There is rarely such polarity in a population as large as INFP. I think the contrasting ideologies are dramatized here, where people tend to cultivate a sort of idealized caricature of themselves. IRL I think infps fall evenly on a scale of negative to positive life outlook..

    Looking at things enneagramatically, INFPs are most often fixated at 4 and 9. 9s are the peacekeepers that like to contrive a perpetual positivity. 4s like to create a unique identity, and are often also depressive. I think the 4 infps see all of these positive, saccharin posts and create their forum identity with a contrasting tone.

    Also: seratonin levels.
    niki, ethylester, refugee and 30 others thanked this post.

  5. #5
    INFP - The Idealists

    I can relate to the dark infp. I used to be a cheerful, positive infp, but I've had so many bad experiences in the last year that I've become jaded and cynical. I can't describe it but there's probably a different air about me now. I am more isolated than I used to be. I've built a lot of walls and am more apathetic towards people. Maybe over time I will become a positive infp again, and I am slowly getting to that positive stage. I'm starting to get the hang of school again, gradually meeting new people. But I think it will take a while, as it took me a long time to become this cynical.
    niki, LunaWolf, SuperNova85 and 12 others thanked this post.

  6. #6

    For me, it is by going through the darkness that I am finding light.
    niki, silverlined, melancolie and 39 others thanked this post.

  7. #7

    I lean towards the dark side, simply because I have a more reserved demeanor and when I open it up it is more intense & serious than light & bubbly. I never have been, never will be, and have no desire to be an upbeat, always positive type of person. I feel like that would be a denial of the very real side of life that is not sunshine & roses. I need to acknowledge that side & relate to it in others, because only then can I understand it enough to keep it in check.

    However, I don't feel cynical & jaded either. I don't give into the bitterness. The bouts of cyncism don't last long now because I don't allow them to. Ultimately, I am idealistic, but not to a point of being naively optimistic; I just keep hope & look for inspiration.
    niki, silverlined, Seamaid and 39 others thanked this post.

  8. #8

    imma darky, that's for sure.

    my reasoning being that often times i get sick at how happy people seem to be in waking life, i've observed, when the trends of the times are truly sickly and it only seems to me that they are turning a blind eye and feeding into each others blindness. i still dream however, but it isn't big. in fact my dreams are low as i only want to live in harmony with myself and head to the local library once in a while to pick up a book and actually finish the stupid thing without getting bored midway through... that might be my jaded cynical-ness creeping it's ugly head.

    and yes. infp's i feel are especially prone to the light side dark side feature of man... i mean christ, look at charles manson. crazy bastard.

  9. #9

    I didn't start out being cynical but I guess at a very young age my idealistic ways were shattered. It's only quite recently that I'm moving back to the light side. See my mood? It's sunny. That's because I feel so much happier simply by keeping a positive attitude than I ever did being cynical. In fact its probably being cynical that made me mistype myself as INTP. Now I know better though. ^^
    niki, chameleon333888, firelink and 15 others thanked this post.

  10. #10
    Unknown Personality

    As an INFP who constantly teeters on the dark side (at least I think I'm an INFP for now), I can attribute my bouts of negativity to what I see as the INFP "split personality." Because INFPs are such idealists, we tend to imagine the perfect self -- in the perfect world -- with the perfect people -- the perfect relationships -- the perfect vocation -- the perfect way of life that is truest to our natures....the perfect everything.

    And in order to be happy and fulfilled in these idealistic scenarios, we may create idealized mental personas that present us at our most perfect (influenced by the very standards and values we set for ourselves)...for what good is living in the perfect if I must be imperfect?

    However, as soon as I leave my inner world to face reality, I feel disillusioned and disheartened. The very persona that I created for myself is gone or diminished down to it's flawed and imperfect state. The very world I idealized is just a facade, and all my aspirations seem impractical and/or unreachable. I set the bar too high, and thus, I end up thoroughly disappointed.

    In order to compensate, I become cynical, apathetic, and nihilistic. I end up closing myself off from everyone and everything around me. I put myself in a state of solitary confinement, depression sets in, my nihilism grows stronger, and I become a, cynical, self-critical, miserable recluse who feels completely dead inside.

    This is me at rock bottom. I'm certainly not like this all of the time...but it just happens to be the inevitable result of spending too much time yearning for the ideal and not spending enough time actually implementing my aspirations in the real world through tangible goals-- out of fear, anxiety, insecurity, apathy, indifference, procrastination, lack of motivation, inattention, and of course, having overly-idealistic standards of what I want to achieve.

    In short, nothing is ever good enough, and things could always be better.--- And it is this perfectionist outlook on life which both drives me towards success and propels me into a dark, empty rut of bitterness and longing. The only time I assume the bright and positive side of an INFP is when my Ne is allowed to run a muck with creative potentials and possibilities that distract me from the perfectionistic grip of Fi. Thus, I am happiest when I am engaging in creative and meaningful change in the outside world in some form or another, whether it be through people, objects, etc, and not being so self-absorbed by my own negativity.

    But because I need to be inspired to action for any of this to unfold, and because inspiration is often scarce, I can end up embedding myself for too long in the confines of my mind....and while positive things can emerge from my musings, so can the vicious rut of negativity if I allow myself to become too idealistic and self-critical.

    Granted, I can tolerate the "dark side" better than most people I know, and I often tend to indulge in it for my own amusement and/or enlightenment. I'd much rather be a jaded and cynical INFP who is not afraid of the muck and the mire, than those who wear nothing but rose-colored glasses and end up deluding themselves.
    niki, Seamaid, melancolie and 18 others thanked this post.

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