How do you 'work' on an ENTP-INFJ relationship?

How do you 'work' on an ENTP-INFJ relationship?

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This is a discussion on How do you 'work' on an ENTP-INFJ relationship? within the Myers Briggs Forum forums, part of the Personality Type Forums category; Background: I am an ENTP, freshly seperated and soon to be divorced from an INFJ after two years of marriage, ...

  1. #1
    ENTP - The Visionaries


    How do you 'work' on an ENTP-INFJ relationship?

    Background: I am an ENTP, freshly seperated and soon to be divorced from an INFJ after two years of marriage, trying to gain clearity about how an amazing relationship that overcame a lot of adversiry, went so badly, and see if the context of our personality types can say something about it.

    I should clearify that I don't think my relationship with her is workable - the bridge is as burned as it can get, she doesn't want to and I would ask for dramatic changes if it was ever an option. But in retrospect I think the core of how things went so bad was in how I tried working on it, and how she reacted to it. And this seems to me to be an area where the personality types clashed dramatically.

    I am 99% sure every relationship encounter those: I don't like something that she does or want her to do something she doesn't, or i think she would be happier if she'd just try dealing with things differently or stop blocking herself or gave something a chance, or something I can use to make her happy with if she'd allow me... Or basically see any way in which things can improve and we could make each other more happy...

    What do i do? See, my solution to this was to come out and say it, seemed very intuitive, very obvious... And she being and INFJ who wants to know she's making me happy even encouraged me and asked me to do so... Except that this solution turned out to be the cancer of our relationship.

    So I tell her, which little do I understand means I just Critiqued one of the most important current aspects of her life - being happy with me and making me happy (Really non distiguishable actions), and instead of joining me in what in my mind can be nothing less then a happy and oppertunistic brainstorming of solutions, her solution is to re-assest our relationship, rearrange her priorities, and tell me that in that case she doesn't want to be with me.

    Initially that was fine, sometimes we where afirming and sometimes we gave each other the benefit of the doubt, there where times where our relationship only remained romantic and sexual in the sense of failing to be just friends, to very quickly come back together. It remained fine as long as things where easy going...

    Right until the point the relationship got serious. Initially it was just her, but with time it was more and more my developing fatherly relationship with her son (who was then 3) from a previous relationship (biological father wasn't in the picture)...
    And from a certain point, whenever her solution was to breakup, I found myself comparing the value of the improvement I am asking for with the value of the relationship and the family we've created, and the answer was nearly always the family.

    A lot of time i was able to think on my feet, looking for the points where our perspectives matched, building a semantical map to transelate between our perspectives, I go over them to see if she's right (and sometimes she was), and sometimes I even find alternative solutions that solved the problems altogether... But not always.

    And when I didn't, it was rarely enough to simply agree to disagree - afterall she doesn't want to breakup because we've had a conflict - she wants to break up because what I said just changed her opinion about the relationship, the new information didn't want to make her change things, it made her unhappy with the relationship. She doesn't want a relationship where things aren't perfect.

    So I made the assestment between the family and the issue, feeling stuck in the corner with only one solution - and I backpadeled, denying the information I just gave her or reframing it, basically sweat-talking my way out of it (something I even had to do when trying to bring these issues up).



    And the results?
    - I am living with more and more behaviors I really don't like, with this women who claims to want our mutual happiness and yet changes nothing towards it, like some ideal that should be achieved by magic, and I resent her more and more for it. I have never known myself to be a very angry man, and I honestly reached a point where I think neither of us recognized myself. I gradually find it takes more and more affort to do something in order to make her happy, not the action but having to actually push myself to do so, when once it was as easy as having what i wanted for breakfest.

    - She feels rightous about what she does, because in the end of every fight I am freaking telling her that she is, and yet in the same time knows I don't like it and feels bad about it, but instead of trying to change anything, I eventually become in her mind the man who makes her feel like shit.

    - There I am a man who freaking immigrated to be with her, living in a country where I didn't no anyone and half the people can barely understand my accent which I was constantly working on, emotionally adopting a child who I have no claim for costudy if anything happens between us, and all the trust that took gets disolved because every other week she has no problems using it as a gun to my head, all the more worst because it wasn't malicious - Shes just thinking whether the relationship is good at that moment, and nothing else matters. no understanding of all perspectives in the situation, no context to her actions, which frankly also caused me to loose a lot of my respect for her.

    - She is gaining power over me, and I am freaking feeding it until it becomes habitual, an expectation, creating a monster in her that never showed it's face when we started, becoming a person I barely recognized, to the point that when she felt she was loosing it she was constantly looking for what to threat me with, even after our relationship ended (the past few weeks)... And all of that in a relationship that started with me being dominant, a trait she admires on many levels, and without it she was loosing respect for me, as well as loosing respect for anything I said (expecting me to reliably take it back).

    This was taking place mostly under the surface, as long as we had planty of good moments it was easy for me to put all the negetive emotions aside, until one day it sunk into her, the framing by which I am the man who makes her feel like shit, and she stopped being comfortable with me. She stopped sharing with me, she said she feels attracted to me when she thinks of me but not when I am there, she loses all interest in my ideas and she stops talking about her own (for me that was as frustrating as the downfall of our sex life), and our good moments moved from common to scarce nearly overnight...

    And without those good moments, it all comes out. For the last 5 months we where living in relationship hell, where I felt like I was only staying so I can keep being her sons stepfather, with some dim hope in couple therapy for which we where on the waiting list (and we where still on it when she dumped me), until it all exploded and I had to leave the country.

    What should I have done? How can an ENTP - who will pretty much always think of ways to improve the relationship no matter how good it is - deliver it without causing this dynamic? how can an ENTP and an INFJ work on the relationship without wanting to kill each other?
    Berdudget and annieinfx thanked this post.



  2. #2
    ENTP - The Visionaries

    Regarding your loss of dominance,

    From what I've heard about the subconscious mind, there's a lot women (and maybe effeminate men) in our society who are always looking to experience (often) the exact same feelings with the exact same intensity as the first time they got rejected (in early dating years). The whole point of this is so that they have another opportunity to clear it from their subconscious. This repeats until it's cleared.

    And, I've also heard that, going deeper, things are actually established in the subconscious in the first 10 years of life.

    You may have heard of psychological studies that say things like:
    "This type of woman always finds someone just like their father"
    "This type of woman always finds an abuser"

    If this is true, no words, rationale, or logic will work. You would have to subconsciously (i.e. live it, be it, embody it) give her the level of rejection that she's looking for, frequently.

    There's also:
    "Nice guys finish last"
    "Women like a man with a bad side"


    Quote Originally Posted by traceur View Post
    Background: I am an ENTP, freshly seperated and soon to be divorced from an INFJ
    .
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    in a relationship that started with me being dominant, a trait she admires on many levels, and without it she was loosing respect for me, as well as loosing respect for anything I said (expecting me to reliably take it back).

    .
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    .
    [/CENTER]

  3. #3
    ENTP - The Visionaries


    i'm not one to easily credit fraudian psychology for any credibility but entrapenurship, but just to entertain the idea: she had plenty of rejections from her stepfathers, sice she had about half a dozen, each one staying for just a few years. her relationship with her biological father was very limited, she tried it when she was 18 or so and it didn't work well since fought a lot with his wife and saw him taking his wife's side as a rejection. i met him once at a family christmas party... they wouldn't talk.

    personally, between her mother and aunt having so many issues with her dating a middle eastern (that's me), i found her father's ambivliance to be refreshing.... but i guess that doesn't say a lot.

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  5. #4
    ENTP - The Visionaries

    Very sad relationship, I don't think there's any more that you could have done. It's these kinds of examples that make me think it's easier just being an individual, and not committing. Where did you emigrate to?
    traceur thanked this post.

  6. #5
    ISFP - The Artists


    Quote Originally Posted by traceur View Post
    i'm not one to easily credit fraudian psychology for any credibility but entrapenurship, but just to entertain the idea: she had plenty of rejections from her stepfathers, sice she had about half a dozen, each one staying for just a few years. her relationship with her biological father was very limited, she tried it when she was 18 or so and it didn't work well since fought a lot with his wife and saw him taking his wife's side as a rejection. i met him once at a family christmas party... they wouldn't talk.
    Oh my god, this is horrible. In the context of this...wow, half a dozen step-fathers? Jesus. I was wondering what her issues were.

    personally, between her mother and aunt having so many issues with her dating a middle eastern (that's me), i found her father's ambivliance to be refreshing.... but i guess that doesn't say a lot.
    I said I didn't have any advice for an ENTP/INFJ relationship...but something I didn't notice before (but that I picked up on in your original post in the other thread) is that she sees you as abusive and out of control, not dominant. I say this because you're talking about your own anger that surprised both of you, and also that she sees you as the man who is being mean to her?

    Dominance is different from being cruel.

    Control is different than abuse.

    You have tried "winning her over"? Have you tried getting her back?
    traceur thanked this post.

  7. #6
    ENTP - The Visionaries


    Quote Originally Posted by fourtines View Post
    Oh my god, this is horrible. In the context of this...wow, half a dozen step-fathers? Jesus. I was wondering what her issues were.
    well half a dozen including her biological... but yes. this was a family pattren. her grandmother on her mother's side had a few husbands, her mother had a few boyfriends (not sure how many of them she married), and then she had the biological father of my stepson and then me...

    Quote Originally Posted by fourtines View Post
    she sees you as the man who is being mean to her?

    Dominance is different from being cruel.

    Control is different than abuse.

    You have tried "winning her over"? Have you tried getting her back?
    at the time she has called me all of those things... so yes. that is how she saw me at the start of our 5 month decline, the point where i became increasingly submissive. but by the end of it she saw me as being submissive & cowerdly, and i saw her as all those things, and i actually found myself bagging...

    Quote Originally Posted by fourtines View Post
    You have tried "winning her over"? Have you tried getting her back?
    yes... a few days ago actually. but it's a long shot.

    for the first few weeks after the break up i was nothing but angry, and i was releasing just releasing all the things i wanted to say and couldn't when i felt i was under her thumb, not to even mention the anger i felt of her cutting me out of my stepson's life. some of that release was in the online community we originally met, which at that point i was still part of but she has lost interest. i had asked her before i left if she plans on coming back there and she said she wasn't, but then she did anyway, and got to read a lot of it. which makes the chancs a lot worst then what they already where.

    only in the last week or so have i reached the point where i was finally able to just be sad about it, to miss her, and then a christmas card my stepson wrote while he was staying at my mother-in-law's after i left drove me over the edge... i thought things through, i thought what she liked originally and what she hated, i thought about the dreams we didn't acomplish, i thought how i can make them all work...

    she never wanted the gun to my head, she never wanted that power, she was just thinking moment to moment on what's good for that moment and got that power because of it. the affect of dominance she desires was the dissolation of responsibility, and in blaming her for not acounting to my perspective when she pulled out the threats rather then allowing myself to deal with the threats, i was shoving responsibility onto her.

    i explained to her that even though she might want certain things now, she will want the emotional and intellectual connection she had with me that she has never found anywhere else and that she is going to miss that, i explained to her that the stresses of being a single mother and wanting the best father her boy has ever had are going to come back, i explained to her how our relationship and how it ended changed me to give her what she desired without being as vulnerable this time around, and that by the time she misses me it might be too late, it might not.
    i instructed her to take her time to do what she needs to, take her space, and then come back to me. i told her how things are going to go, why they are going to work, how they will make her happy, how they will give our son and any future children advantages in life, and how she is going to make me happy, like she always wanted too since the day she met me.

    i used to make big gambles with what would work with her early on, and they always came through... which might make me irationally optimistic about it. but its still a long shot.

    Quote Originally Posted by NikitaOneill View Post
    Where did you emigrate to?
    she's canadian and i'm israeli. initially i came to her place. the immigration process was very long and we where just about to finish the paperwork when she dumped me.

    in retrospect this was a mistake - i can handle the pressures of being a provider without resentment a lot better then she could, but the consequances of loosing my social life where killing me slowly killing me and i didn't find an environment to regain it there, and with a dagree in web design and one year of art she could use that time to work on building a clientel and a name for herself instead of working as a customer support representitve in a job she hated. which is why this time around, if she answers, i hope she'll come to israel. otherwise we can finish the immigration process through the embassy and i could support her there.
    Last edited by traceur; 01-21-2012 at 07:09 AM.
    Berdudget thanked this post.

  8. #7
    ENTP - The Visionaries


    i would like to mantion that at this point i am very much open to advice and idea's regarding anything i might be able to do to get my wife and son back... particularly from INFJ's but at this point i'll take anything...

  9. #8
    ISFP - The Artists


    Why don't you go post a similar thread that specifically says "help me INFJs" in their section...I'm pretty sure they'll oblige.
    Sina, Berdudget and traceur thanked this post.

  10. #9
    INFJ - The Protectors

    It seems like your wife's childhood experience of having many step-fathers convinced her that any relationship problem can be solved by filing for divorce, so if you still want to be with her, convince her that separation is not the solution to conflict, anything can be resolved by working together, and having her consider the well-being of her son's personal development by having a father. Hope that helps. Thank you.
    Berdudget and traceur thanked this post.

  11. #10
    ENTP - The Visionaries


    Quote Originally Posted by Sparky View Post
    convince her that separation is not the solution to conflict
    how would you go about doing that?


     
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