[INFP] Problems with a self-identified INFP

Problems with a self-identified INFP

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This is a discussion on Problems with a self-identified INFP within the INFP Forum - The Idealists forums, part of the NF's Temperament Forum- The Dreamers category; ...

  1. #1
    INTP - The Thinkers

    Problems with a self-identified INFP

    Hello everyone here.

    I came on here mainly because I'd very much like to try and find out just where things went rather spectacularly wrong, right from the start, between me and a friend/contact/pseudoacquaintance, who, after much fussing and doubting, seems to have identified as an INFP.

    - For one thing I have no idea if her habits and mannerisms even match this type, for various reasons (such as incredibly pervasive black-and-white thinking).

    - And then on the other hand, I'd like to ask if perhaps I could use this place to bounce a few ideas in and get some feedback on why in the world we get along like oil and water.


    I'm not going to explain things in detail just yet, because it'll be hard to not sound like I'm completely hating on her. I do not mean her any harm, never have, but many times she's brought out the absolute worst in me, and every now and then I have been disgusted by her more than by anyone I've ever dealt with, short from that one teacher in elementary school who was out to prove to me children have no business being critical.

    I know I am biased against her, I can't see things straight anymore, and while I try to ask my own peers if I'm that out of line with my reactions to her, most seem to agree I could be 'nicer' but I'm hardly being unreasonable.
    This is where the T-F comes in, that I have never experienced to be this fascinatingly POLAR OPPOSITES ever before. |: And it's not fun in any way.


    We'd known each other for little over a year, during which she's spent 60% of the time crying over things I said (apparently). It's come from arguments to blocking to more arguing to attempts to fix things, to agreeing to call time-outs more often and just leave each other be when pointless disagreements arise etc.
    That last one worked out for a bit, right until she started using me as an emotional-issues dump for the umptenth time, and after warning her I'd start meddling with the situation because I didn't agree for a shred with the way she was handling it, I did. I meddled.

    The situation we eventually broke under:

    An older fellow was interested in her and was regularly flirting with her, asking her out, she felt awkward about that and noticed she had no feelings back.
    I tell her that by all means, if she liked this fella she could go ahead and talk to him about this, you know, ASK him just how serious this was for him, work it out, but now, she felt that'd be out of line, ill-mannered, rude, no, she'd rather give him vague cold-shoulder hints for as long as it took for him to notice. Because she was afraid to break his heart incase he was really head over heels for her.
    Now, I personally find you just do not treat people who are trying to get to know you in a friendly manner that way. She hides her true face from everyone because she's convinced people will hate her if they find out 'what she is really like' and I've been telling her over and over that this is completely unwarranted, and that if on top of that she complains and despairs over never ever finding 'true love', she should look at what she's doing and perhaps notice that playing the façade-game without ever yielding and being honest IS a surefire way to only attract people who are into the pretending, unless someone comes along who'll magically read her mind.

    Either way, past is past, my advice was to just talk it out. I warned her that I was getting fed up with her simpering and that, just to satisfy my own curiosity and make sure she wasn't indeed treating a serious situation like an ice queen, I'd ask this fella on facebook just what was going on.

    So I did. I PM'd him in a manner of 'Feel free to ignore this, I know she wouldn't like me to, but between you and me I'd like to ask just how serious this is for you because from her I hear you've been playing rather close to her skin and all and my impression is this, you may know her well enough by now' blah blah blah.

    His response was a pretty sensible 'Oh, np, I have noticed I seem to have been making her uncomfortable but when I asked she wouldn't answer.'


    Feeling I couldn't just pretend I had never had contact with him (maybe this'd all be so much better if I wasn't an INTP who can't hold secrets, instead hold my trap shut and play pretend), I told her of this exchange, and directly showed her what I'd posted to him, and what his reply was.

    SHE BLEW UP IN MY FACE claiming I totally exaggerated (she couldn't point out what exactly, save for 'Everything!') and I was putting words in her mouth (I only stated what *I* thought) and I'd ruined everything and now she could never ever talk to this guy normally again (EXCUSE ME?!)

    This rant went on for an hour or so with me trying to give her my stance on this, namely that what I did was perhaps not entirely considerate, but
    - not a sin worthy of being condemened to the inner circles of hell, not even by normal social conventions, only perhaps by HER standards
    - not aimed to only do her harm (who the hell does she even think she is, or who I am)
    - backed up by several of my mostly neutral friends who don't know her telling me it was meddling but not too out of line


    Her response was basically 'you're a horrible horrible person I hate you, and everyone who ever agrees with your take on things are at the very least sociopathic sadists who'd [sic] smear shit in random strangers' faces for no reason at all.'

    That last type of argument had me give up on her entirely and I removed her from all my lists, unfriended her. That she routinedly calls me a complete asshole whose only joy in life is to cause her anguish I can live with. But you do NOT. diss my friends like that.




    For someone so intent on blaming me for every move I make, she sure is good at not making any sense and pretty much condemning people she doesn't even know just because they're my friends.
    Somewhere in the back of my head my small bit of F wants her to just go on and be an unhappy person forever, I don't care anymore.


    Thoughts?
    FaveteLinguis and Fairy Dust thanked this post.



  2. #2
    INFP - The Idealists

    Eh I wouldn't call this black and white thinking per se (though sometimes it is, if dealing with values). Sounds like she dumped a lot of thoughts and feelings on to you, probably not what you wanted, but if she's INFP that usually implies a great deal of trust. Then you went on to message the guy, in her eyes that could be a serious breach of that that trust, hence the hysterical remarks about you and your friends.

    Not trying to accuse you of anything here, but I do think this is probably the perspective you missed out on. She sounds pretty young/not quite that mature just yet. So that probably added to the reaction you got.

    In the end it makes some sense from my point of view and I hope you got something out of this.

  3. #3
    INTP - The Thinkers

    @aces88

    She did tell me it was the trust-breaching mainly. I just have NO IDEA why the hell she keeps revealing things to me in the first place when I've proven more than once I don't play that sort of game, this isn't the first time I've set her into hysteria for 'trust-breaching'. (By her standards it's already a grave mistake to copy-paste chatlogs to your friends as quotes to ask'em for their opinion, or y'know, have a giggle over something reasonably idiotic she said... I can't help but find it perfect examples of humour when someone first corrects me when I say 'I have a cold', not believing I actually have one, to then turn out to not even know there's a difference between 'the common cold' and the flu. I call it Schadenfreude but it's not like I go 'look how stupid she is', more like 'look what a derp thing she did now'...)

    She's 17 and for as far as I can tell hell-bent to ignore any well-meant advice I have for her. She's unhappy for a multitude of reasons that I personally find can be remedied.

    - She's envious of people who are having good moments because OF COURSE everyone has a better life than her, she self-reportedly suffers more than the average person. While I loathe this short-sighted attitude I've tried to remind her to please learn to relativate a little more, allow herself to be at peace with what she can't have and relish the things she does have, and be more self-critical when she blurts things like this.
    Example in case:
    Me: 'When I was younger mom'n dad used to take me and my friends to the wellness pool a few times'
    Her: 'We never had money for that when I was that age D< '
    later: ' me and dad used to go to the pool every weekend for quality-time.'

    - Initial reaction to trouble is always to freak out, come blurting to me, and then she's offended when I say calm-yo-tits, the world isn't out to get you, really.

    - She's a very high-strung person with a multitude of physical discomforts going from a sore back to allergies and 'a bad memory'. On top of that she's so nervous constantly she starts making mistakes under pressure and gets shaky and anxious etc. Still she refuses to admit that perhaps she could benefit from teaching herself some basic stress-management techniques, mindfulness, nlp, meditation etc. because she adamantly swears she does NOT suffer from stress and all of her symptoms have NOTHING to do with stress.

    She rejects every single positive advice I try to give on accounts of 'you and I function in different ways, what works for you doesn't have to work for me.'
    Yes, because she's so super special that relaxation techniques and relativation and self-development works for everybody on the planet but her. |:


    I don't understand why she's so stubborn about this at all.
    - If she doesn't trust me, then why does she bother using me as a confidante for all of her 'dark side' squirming? masochism? secretly seeing sense but refusing to face it?
    - Are my suggestions that ridiculous that it's sensible to dismiss them all?
    - She can be sensible, but only three hours after going from upset to hysterical to 'I'll go and cry now', and then she tells me I don't understand her because I seem to think of her as an irrational overly emotional incompetent fool who can't solve problems on her own. ARGH, I don't, but when she acts like one I'll darn well call her out on it and give her some perspective to try and reassure her it's not the end of the world. I seem to only make things worse.


    I do think she just needs to mature but she's not fourteen anymore, and SHE is the one who complains endlessly and flips her lid at least once every two days at me. I thought it was also a J thing to be completely and utterly convinced that the way you see things are utterly correct, always.

    YES, I'm a snarky crude impatient INTP. If you ask me 'say, I notice I've been judging my own high-quality art very harshly, but then I tell Josh he's doing really super great when his stuff is very noobish, why do I get this feeling I have a double standard?' then why would anyone be surprised if I answer 'well, maybe becuase you DO have one... (as I have been saying for ages now)'.
    But I have dealt with and handled quite a few people, feelers and thinkers alike.
    WHY can't I get along with her and if not, WHY would she keep coming back to me /:&quot;

    I really wonder if perhaps she should see a therapist or something, because even with what I know of INFPs, I have this distinct impression that the way she torments herself is just not healthy for her at all. Or, she's just being dramatic.
    FaveteLinguis and Fairy Dust thanked this post.

  4. #4
    INTP - The Thinkers

    ((edit isn't working I notice))

    My current own theory is that she's not INFP but rather more ISFJ, even if she claims not to recognize herself in it. Are INFP's known for being really excessively simpery about the way they dress and present themselves? The way they decorate their houses? 'Cute food'? Hands-on artwork? Preferring 'useful' knowledge and having no admiration at all for scientific knowledge, systems, principles?
    Also that persistent black-and-whiteing and setting your own views above someone else's, and planning a lot and loving a routine? ('one cup of coffee every day, no more no less')
    Fairy Dust thanked this post.

  5. #5
    INFP - The Idealists

    wowies..

    All I can say is that from my own personal INFP perspective, if someone made fun of the things I said with other people and copy pasted my private chat with someone else/other people or went behind my back I'd be kicking their arse from Ireland to Australia and back several times and I sure as heck wouldn't be talking to them again. Where is the respect in doing that to someone? There is a big difference between laughing with someone and laughing AT them. Laughing at them in my opinion is bullying, who likes to be the butt of a joke that makes you feel worse about yourself? But feel free to disagree. I have a great sense of humor; just not at other peoples expense.
    I would still be a bit that way inclined if someone did that to me, but it would now depend on what they'd actually said/copy pasted. I would much prefer someone came to me and discussed it rather than take it to the masses. It would make me think the person who did that was pretty immature, but again I have done this with things I want an opinion on, I just make sure the other person is kept anonymous and only the relevant information is posted and I tend to prefer to write it in my own words rather than copy and paste.

    However, I see you say she's 17. That's pretty young I think and a pretty mixed up time for anyone regardless of type. There are hormones and peer pressures, and all that sort of thing I am glad I don't have to deal with any more!

    It could be that she has no one else she can talk to which means you end up as the `outlet` for everything. I often do this with people but I don't expect them to fix it, or do anything about it, it's just a means to get rid of the overload of information, troubles, and stuff that races around my head and my feelings. It has nothing to do with anything other than getting it out of my system before I move on. I also tend not to splurge everything on one person, I am aware who can deal with this part of it and who can deal with the next so that I don't end up slurrying just one person.

    the problem with advice is that its easy to give, but rarely if ever taken until the person receiving it actually wants it. The general way I was taught with counselling is that they aren't allowed to give advice because then you are the one responsible if someone decides to take it, and what IF the advice is wrong for the person you are giving it to, what's right for you is not necessarily right for the other person. I also believe that we have the answers to our own problems within us, as only we know what the right and proper course of action is. Of course I understand that you are well meaning in wanting to give it and I can clearly see you want to help this girl. My only advice here is to work out how you want to do that, and what would be best for you.

    You have some options.
    You can either walk away, (I suggest if you do this you perhaps tell the poor girl why so that she understands, but be gentle when doing this.)
    Tough love and set some boundaries about what you find acceptable or not.
    Acceptance of her faults, after all no one is perfect and the teenage years are hard.
    Write a letter?
    Or some other way you think you should do it.

    But yes I can empathize with the INFP in your posts about her I just have no idea if she is or not as I am not an expert. This would have sounded more like me in my early teens but my circumstances then were pretty bad and I was completely unbalanced due to emotional and mental abuse. I also wouldn't have talked to anyone either unless it was my psychologist at the time. Chances are back then I'd have actually strung you up and attacked you though lol So while I am not the same person as her I can certainly see myself having been a bit similar.
    FaveteLinguis, teddy564339, Luke and 2 others thanked this post.

  6. #6
    INFP - The Idealists

    @Graficcha

    Oy that was certainly a long vent.

    Anyways, a lot of your suggestions aren't crazy at all. Some of them can probably be helpful for her, but and this is a huge but, usually nothing will work unless the people themselves want to change and take it seriously enough. I can understand your frustration with some of the seemingly absurd reactions, but I think it would be better if you let the blowback fall over.

    As far as to not getting along with her compared to the vast majority of others, well chalk it up to you two just being incompatible with each other. And to why she keeps coming back to you....well you could be one of the few she could actually trust or know will listen to her/give her attention.

    I'm not exactly sure if your looking for advice, but I'll give it anyways. Try not to box people in with this MBTI stuff. It can be an incredible tool to gaining insight in yourself and others, but people have tendency to stay strictly with it while excluding circumstances and individual differences. Leads to all sorts of confusions. Secondly, I wouldn't worry too much about this one instance being reflective with INFPs as a whole.

    As for her possibly being an ISFJ vs. INFP, I don't know and wouldn't be able to type her regardless. It can be incredibly difficult and largely not worth the effort to get that specific, better to just become associated with the differences between NTs, NFs, SPs, and SJs. People can adapt incredibly to fit in their environment

    To others I can probably com across as sociopathic and domineering at times (it's been mentioned a couple of times by others in real life), which might seem antithetical to who I really am. In reality I'm just putting up a front to deal with the situation and keeping a cool head.

    If you're going to deal with this I suggest going with the first option @Fairy Dust presented.
    Fairy Dust, jennandtonic and Graficcha thanked this post.

  7. #7
    INTP - The Thinkers

    @ Fairy Dust
    I do reationally realize she may take offense to the copypasting thing, but it's something I do with everyone and not just her, and for some reason beyond my understanding she's the only person I know who blurts 'antje-isms' with such incredible regularity I can't but make it a freaking running joke. I tell her up front when she's doing it *but it never ends*. And when I call her out on her inconsistencies, fallacies, internal conrtadictions and wrong information, she just gets defensive and refuses to admit she just spouted objective *bullshit*. She could make a ridiculous claim on topic A, insist I know not by far enough about topic A and I should stop acting like I am more right than her, and then go 'I don't need to know this stuff anyway' when I present her with a wikipedia page plus quote to back up my claim.
    I find that very hard to take seriously.

    And as said, that's what I'm like, especially when pressed to 'be nicer already'. I can be stubborn, too, and if she doesn't like it, fact remains, why bother talking to me at all. I never pretended to be different so the choice is hers.



    On topic of my advice, I give her advice from my direct own experience and from widely backed-up sources. I have personally gone through a pretty deep tough spot in my life, and it's taken a long time and it wasn't easy, but I've come out as a stronger person, a happier person.
    It doesn't sit right with me that she can get away with 'it's not that easy'. I know it isn't, nobody said it had to 'be easy'. It'd be very easy to subjectively interpret this response from her as spitting on what I've learned, spitting on the very idea of happiness as if it's dirty or uncool to not angst all day, and spitting on my good intentions.

    She's blocked me on occasion, she's threatened to not ever speak to me again, she's pulled guilt-trip tactics and manipulation.


    By all means, it's her who is not treating me with the respect I feel I deserve, and yet I continued trying to compromise and find a middle ground.



    I hear your suggestions, and they all sound very sensible to me ':/ I see a sort of 'logic' to how she works and how she judges, but I really suck at 'accepting her the way she is' not because she somehow offends me with being who she is, she offends me by actually NOT being okay with herself and the way things are but stubbornly doing things the same 'bad' way over and over and over. It freaking breaks my heart to hear her speak of how she completed her first student job (well done, awesome! see, that wasn't so bad right, you can do it! Now you can relax and see what you've learned and then next time it won't be as hard) and then she starts breaking herself down and I can only gawk and stare how one can so stubbornly insist that the only lesson learned is: 'I suck forever and I do everything wrong and I'm no good at this at all and I'm a waste of space because the boss yelled at me once.'
    It's been *a year* now and nothing I say's ever gotten through to her. It's like watching someone bash their face into a wall, and you're worried and tell them to please not to, there's no need for that, and then they get mad and say they're not good people unless they do that every day |:'
    Oh, and then I'm a freak for not believing the same thing.

    So yes, right now the situation is that after she blocked me again I just kicked her off every account I have, and if that'll break her hard, she DARN well had it coming. I don't live to please people who tell me I disgust them, so for once I hope maybe she'll get my penultimate message that I think she should step her game up.
    I'm no good for her, a caustic presence in her life, the person who's ruining her forever, apparently, and with clear intent, too, she lets me know.
    She is no good for me because she's one shiny red button to push and I utterly disgrace myself in trying to play on her level.

    No more.
    Not unless I can find a way to figure things out.


    Thank you for your honesty, I appreciate that. I know that my foot in mouth ways are a surefire way to get my leg bitten off sometime, but I think I can personally live with that <<' and I have on many occassions risen to the temptation that would have been wiser to forego.
    Fairy Dust thanked this post.

  8. #8
    INTP - The Thinkers

    Quote Originally Posted by aces88 View Post
    @Graficcha

    Oy that was certainly a long vent.

    Anyways, a lot of your suggestions aren't crazy at all. Some of them can probably be helpful for her, but and this is a huge but, usually nothing will work unless the people themselves want to change and take it seriously enough. I can understand your frustration with some of the seemingly absurd reactions, but I think it would be better if you let the blowback fall over.

    As far as to not getting along with her compared to the vast majority of others, well chalk it up to you two just being incompatible with each other. And to why she keeps coming back to you....well you could be one of the few she could actually trust or know will listen to her/give her attention.

    I'm not exactly sure if your looking for advice, but I'll give it anyways. Try not to box people in with this MBTI stuff. It can be an incredible tool to gaining insight in yourself and others, but people have tendency to stay strictly with it while excluding circumstances and individual differences. Leads to all sorts of confusions. Secondly, I wouldn't worry too much about this one instance being reflective with INFPs as a whole.

    As for her possibly being an ISFJ vs. INFP, I don't know and wouldn't be able to type her regardless. It can be incredibly difficult and largely not worth the effort to get that specific, better to just become associated with the differences between NTs, NFs, SPs, and SJs. People can adapt incredibly to fit in their environment

    To others I can probably com across as sociopathic and domineering at times (it's been mentioned a couple of times by others in real life), which might seem antithetical to who I really am. In reality I'm just putting up a front to deal with the situation and keeping a cool head.

    If you're going to deal with this I suggest going with the first option @Fairy Dust presented.

    *nodding*

    It probably is just a thing clashing between me and her personally, I mainly came to this part of the forum because I don't quite feel like a circlejerk of 'well yes I don't get her at all how silly' between INTPs isn't what I'm looking for. I can give myself all the backpats I need. Whatever she 'belongs with' it's definitely not a T-type.

    So yes, for now the best thing I can come up with is just take a looooong break, possibly forgood. I don't need her for anything specifically (which to me isn't an insult, I tend to resent people I can't do my own thing without a little sometimes), and I really do hope she doesn't need me either. Can only hope she'll come out of her shell and open up to people she can trust better sometime before she gets more miserable...


    Thank you guys both, ne.
    FaveteLinguis and Fairy Dust thanked this post.

  9. #9
    INTP - The Thinkers

    I'm an INxP. Just a hair more T than F, so I feel I can answer your question with some credibility. I don't think you two are a good match for a close friendship at this point. This sounds like an ongoing problem between you two. I think this relationship would work better 5-10 years from now once tertiary and inferior functions become better developed.

    If you really care about her, then keep her in your life. But just keep her at a distance. If she asks you why, tell her you're tired of accidentally hurting her.
    Fairy Dust and Graficcha thanked this post.

  10. #10
    INTP - The Thinkers

    Quote Originally Posted by Hindsight View Post
    I'm an INxP. Just a hair more T than F, so I feel I can answer your question with some credibility. I don't think you two are a good match for a close friendship at this point. This sounds like an ongoing problem between you two. I think this relationship would work better 5-10 years from now once tertiary and inferior functions become better developed.

    If you really care about her, then keep her in your life. But just keep her at a distance. If she asks you why, tell her you're tired of accidentally hurting her.
    Neither of us ever seemed to be going towards a 'close friendship' between the two of us, we actually both don't know whatever is was that he did have. We weren't really friends, not buddies, at most 'blood relatives who sort of talk a lot'.

    Her own one very close friend seems to have been suggesting she cut me out of her existence entirely, but if you guys agree I'd do more harm than good by being this definitive I do think I'll try reopening contact. Either way, it'll be up to her what she does with it, because she's not going to turn me into a different person any more than she is going to be able to 'educate' me in the ways of not speaking my mind. The only reason why I wouldn't is because of legal authority or because I consider someone either too fragile, or too unimportant to confront. To me she's neither.

    It'll be hard for me to keep from 'meddling' and trying to educate her in the ways of how to build up some confidence and self-respect without ending up growling over her stubbornness, but I think I can try to really make it a working point to just be her emotional honest venting dump for another while... If that's what she needs, alright then. Neh.

    Thanks for the reply na.


     
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