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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know there are not many ESTJs on these types of forums, but if I can get as many ESTJ opinions as possible, I would appreciate the advice so much.

Here's the issue:

My mother-in-law is an ESTJ, or so she says.
I'm not so sure, but I think it's possible...she has been under chronic emotional stress for over a year, and I know that, whatever type she is, she is very unhealthy. So keeping that in mind, I'm trying to decide a few things.

1) Is she really an ESTJ (just an unhealthy one?)

2) If she is not an ESTJ, what type is she?

3) How do I relate to her in this state?

Here is an overview description of her personality.

Socially (Why I think she is an E):
-Loves entertaining and having friends over
-Has many acquaintances and few close friends
-Highly values family and spending time together
-Good at "chit-chat" and small talk
-Good sense of humor
-Talkative and very loud
-Not understanding of introversion or high sensitivity in general
-When upset, expects others to spend time with her

Perception (Why I think she is a S):
-Talks a lot about other people, events, or material things
-Not naturally in tune with what others are feeling
-Not interested in theories or ideas that are not factual or proven

Decision making (Why I think she is a T):
-Normally rational, unless under stress
-Very good with money and budgets
-Good saver and smart spender
-Has a "what is right for one is right for all" mentality
-Not typically an emotional decision maker, unless under stress

Planning (Why I think she is a J):
-Organized and scheduled
-Likes to delegate and micromanage
-Usually plans things as far ahead of time as possible
-Comes across as controlling or demanding often

Under intense or chronic stress:
-Extremely stubborn
-Confrontational but very emotional
-Completely irrational and one-sided
-Tends to be extremely self-centered
-Can get very angry and is explosive verbally
-Will throw "tantrums," screaming and crying, or locking herself in a room
-Very sensitive to social etiquette- hurt by people not saying "thank you," "please," "I appreciate it," etc.
-Highly manipulative verbally and emotionally- guilt trips people into pleasing her
-When stressed, will choose her happiness over everything else
-Feels unappreciated or unloved
-Requires others to take care of her emotionally
-Can not deal with the consequences of her own actions, or does not accept them as problems she has brought on herself

As I said, she has been under stress chronically for over a year, and so that last section has been applicable non-stop for about that long. Which is incredibly stressful for me.

If you are an ESTJ, do you relate to any of these attributes?
Can you help me understand her better?

If you are not, can you help me analyze her? :)

2,187 Posts
That seems like a very unhealthy ESTJ. I am not a counselling expert of any kind, or have any qualifications in that area, but here is my advice. Try to ask her in a way to seek counselling for her stress and ask her what is troubling her. If her stressed behavior persists, talk to your wife about her mother's behavior, and try to avoid your Mother-In-Law as much as possible for your own mental health and personal safety. Document any sign of anger, so if there was a strong outburst, mental health professionals can deal with it if you were to experience any abnormal verbal outbursts. Also take in consideration that she may not have the mental stability to properly take care of herself. Do not use anger against her, as she will only become much more unstable. If she normally is unstable, then she is unhealthy, but if she is not normally this way, then still try to get her some help under stress by counselling.

Premium Member
6,856 Posts
If you are not, can you help me analyze her? :)
Although I relate to some of the attributes listed, many of them do not ring a bell with me.

I would need a better description of her as a person in order to further a guess as to what type she may be. Many of the traits you listed are not indicative of a type, but rather habits acquired (which are sometimes, but not always conclusive of a letter type).

For example, someone who is J is not necessarily good with money. J is not synonymous with "organized." J means that a person weighs the value of information they receive. For example, a P might hear a fact and think "oh, that's interesting" and then leave it at that. The J would instead hear the same fact and think "how can I use that? is it applicable in my life?"

Similarly, S does not mean someone is out of touch with others' feelings and materialistic in nature. It is not synonymous with "shallow and self-centered." S means a person focuses on the details of here and now rather than the future. For example, when crossing the street with an N and an S, the N will see the other side of the street and mentally plot out a way to get there. The S, on the other hand, is focused on all the cars approaching as you cross (one is focused on the end, the other on the fine details of the present).

Although ESTJs manifest their problems in different ways, something tells me she's probably not an ESTJ. My advice is to go read more of the meaning behind the letters as well as definitions of each and go from there. Don't discount any type.

EDIT: Maybe try ESFJ.
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