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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
well the title really says it all. i try so hard to help people as well as i can. but this is what happens to me quite a bit: i reach my hand out to help, and i get bitten. i feel like people try to take advantage of my help and hurt me, especially my best friend! she goes to me for many many things, but says how i dont know anything about her or what she goes thru and other better friends help her. am i just a scapegoat? what can i do!? do people even want my help? what am i doing wrong??! :confused:
 

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I don't know. I think my friends sometimes take me for granted because I make myself so available when I think they really need me. They don't always reciprocate. I am usually the friend people want around when they need to talk about something serious or they need emotional support, and then when they're just goofing off or doing something crazy or spontaneous, I feel that I'm sometimes an afterthought.

If I weren't such an introvert, for one, I guess things might be a bit different. My friends, in particular, are all quite extraverted, so there is a bit of a noticable difference there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
when there is a huge issues.. im the one my friends need. i just need to learn how to tell whether they need me to listen (and i have issues with my lack of social skills, i dont know whether to hold their hand and i feel awkward and all.. might be the introvert part of me) and tell if they want advice, becuase im good at advice, but im very blunt. friends invite me to goof around and party.. but im also kind of an afterthought. but they send me silly pictures and vids of them being crazy together, but we have had some crazy times together... i guess i come out of my shell when i trust people. but i just need to work on those previously mentions lack of skills of mine.
 

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Sounds like me. Actually, I wrote in my journal, yesterday:

'It is said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over hoping for different results each time. I guess I'm only partly insane. I stopped reaching out to people a long time ago because I was tired of having my hand slapped.'

Your words sound so much like what I wrote. Sound so much like what I feel. Sound so much like what I've experienced.

One time, a long time ago, my special one took my hand and led me into an empty classroom, sat down, and started to cry as she told me what was so upsetting to her. In reality, I sat beside her and cautiously, awkwardly rubbed her back just a bit. I pulled away because I didn't want her to think of me as overly affectionate. What I WISH I'd done is stood beside her, pulled her head over my heart, held her as she cried, and kissed the top of her head. When she was done telling me, I would tell her I loved her and wipe her tears. I wanted to do that, but I just didn't have the courage. Now, I'm wondering, maybe that's what she wanted. She used to share with me a lot. Since I didn't give her what she needed, she found a different shoulder to cry on. So sad what a little bit of fear can do.

I'm thinking most INFPs go through what you're describing. *sigh*
 

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what can you do?

stop trying to help so much ...and dont feel guilty when you say no, just understand that you are helping them in the long run by fostering their self-sufficiency skills
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Sounds like me. Actually, I wrote in my journal, yesterday:

'It is said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over hoping for different results each time. I guess I'm only partly insane. I stopped reaching out to people a long time ago because I was tired of having my hand slapped.'

Your words sound so much like what I wrote. Sound so much like what I feel. Sound so much like what I've experienced.

One time, a long time ago, my special one took my hand and led me into an empty classroom, sat down, and started to cry as she told me what was so upsetting to her. In reality, I sat beside her and cautiously, awkwardly rubbed her back just a bit. I pulled away because I didn't want her to think of me as overly affectionate. What I WISH I'd done is stood beside her, pulled her head over my heart, held her as she cried, and kissed the top of her head. When she was done telling me, I would tell her I loved her and wipe her tears. I wanted to do that, but I just didn't have the courage. Now, I'm wondering, maybe that's what she wanted. She used to share with me a lot. Since I didn't give her what she needed, she found a different shoulder to cry on. So sad what a little bit of fear can do.

I'm thinking most INFPs go through what you're describing. *sigh*
i have a story much like that too.. there was this guy that i really liked.. well actually he was my boyfriend and i was in love with him even tho we are no longer together... and well i still am actually in love with him!! it was the one time in my life where i just did what i felt was life.. he looked like he was about to cry once, i took his hand and we went to the place that i go when i need to let go of the world for a while. surrounded by grass and trees he told me some things from his past that were bothering him. at first i just listened. but when he got to the part where it really hurt i just threw myarms around him and kissed him on the cheek. im not really sure why that ONE time in my life i knew what to do, but all the other times i want to be able to do the same things. its a lot harder with my friends. a lot of times they want to just text me... so the only thing i can do is try to tell them thru text.. but thats so hard becuase they take it the wrong way and end up holding things over my head forever.. things that i never did and never said. i wish they would let me help them in the way that i am best at, the way i was able to help this guy. but i cant say it did a whole lot of good becuase he doesnt even talk to me anymore, while i cry over him every night i suppose! well my point is.. i understand how you feel. its a really roundabout way of saying it. but i do.
 

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i know what your talking about, i feel much better having helped others than i do having helped myself, problem for me is all my friends and family either have no problems or refuse to adresss them, really amongst my friends i'm the one with problem. but now on this forum i find tht i'm quite capable of helping and it's quite enriching really!
 

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I think all INFPs are the de facto therapists of their friends and family. Our depth of caring really draws people in.

well the title really says it all. i try so hard to help people as well as i can. but this is what happens to me quite a bit: i reach my hand out to help, and i get bitten. i feel like people try to take advantage of my help and hurt me, especially my best friend! she goes to me for many many things, but says how i dont know anything about her or what she goes thru and other better friends help her. am i just a scapegoat? what can i do!? do people even want my help? what am i doing wrong??! :confused:

Well, if your friend keeps coming to you for help over and over again chances are you ARE helping her, despite what she says, or else why would she bother coming to you at all? It sounds more like she's just frustrated by her situation and she's taking it out on you. You said you can be blunt sometimes so maybe your advice is upsetting to her at the moment (even if it is ultimately helpful).

If things continue to go this way with her you really only have two options: 1) You can understand that your friend is upset, put up with the undeserved hostility from her, and just take the knowledge that you're helping friend as its own reward even without a "thank you"; or 2) You can just stop helping her for a while. Like SPtheGhost said maybe she will become more self-sufficient and you won't be pulled into these situations as much - or maybe once she doesn't get your help anymore she'll realize how helpful you were to her in the past and she'll appreciate you more.

When it comes to HOW to help... you just kinda have to read their cues as best you can. It's different from person to person but the more you know someone the easier it becomes to connect and figure out what they're looking for. If it's the kind of problem where you could offer some practical advice or where a fresh perspective would be helpful, offer advice. But if it's a really big, emotionally involved problem it's probably best just to be there for emotional support.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I think all INFPs are the de facto therapists of their friends and family. Our depth of caring really draws people in.




Well, if your friend keeps coming to you for help over and over again chances are you ARE helping her, despite what she says, or else why would she bother coming to you at all? It sounds more like she's just frustrated by her situation and she's taking it out on you. You said you can be blunt sometimes so maybe your advice is upsetting to her at the moment (even if it is ultimately helpful).

If things continue to go this way with her you really only have two options: 1) You can understand that your friend is upset, put up with the undeserved hostility from her, and just take the knowledge that you're helping friend as its own reward even without a "thank you"; or 2) You can just stop helping her for a while. Like SPtheGhost said maybe she will become more self-sufficient and you won't be pulled into these situations as much - or maybe once she doesn't get your help anymore she'll realize how helpful you were to her in the past and she'll appreciate you more.

When it comes to HOW to help... you just kinda have to read their cues as best you can. It's different from person to person but the more you know someone the easier it becomes to connect and figure out what they're looking for. If it's the kind of problem where you could offer some practical advice or where a fresh perspective would be helpful, offer advice. But if it's a really big, emotionally involved problem it's probably best just to be there for emotional support.
thank you! for me in my own life, ive made the choice to be the best person that i can be.. so i try to help my friends in ways that i help myself... but im always right there with the right advice.. and i feel like its intimidating.. are there ways to tone it down..?
 

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thank you! for me in my own life, ive made the choice to be the best person that i can be.. so i try to help my friends in ways that i help myself... but im always right there with the right advice.. and i feel like its intimidating.. are there ways to tone it down..?
You're welcome! You certainly have the right mindset and you sound like you're a great friend. I'm sure your friends recognize that even if they don't always show it.

If you're afraid of coming on a little too strong with the advice, just be mindful of the fact the definition of "help" may vary according to the person (or the situation). If your friends are talking to you about a difficult choice they have to make or if they ask you explicitly for your opinion give them the best advice you can, but if they're just hitting a rough patch and the conversation seems more like a vent session just let them know you're there if they need to talk. (Also I don't know your style of giving advice - some people like to straight up tell others what they should do and some people like to guide others but ultimately leave them to make the decision on their own. I tend to go for the second one - just kinda help people clarify their own feelings about something and offer my perspective so they can make a better informed decision, but sometimes tough love though intimidating is necessary. The kind of advice you give depends on how sensitive the situation is and how serious the consequences are. Usually just guiding people is a good way to go, but you'll know when something truly serious happens and direct intervention is needed.)
 

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I can relate to this! My best friend right now has broken a part of her leg to which I was ever so willing to dedicate all my time to watch over with my two eyes. I'd become the therapist, the grocery boy, the treatment, my motivations - churning beyond butter. I could have gotten my degree in a matter of exemplary acute time.

However, I was the piece of paper cut out, tossed aside. It reminds me of the movie, The Young Victoria. The person she marries Albert had an idealists wet dream, self-sacrifice. He didn't die but had the perfect moment to express his love. Even though it is superficial to analyze this, the point to me was that taking care of her gets to be put in everyone elses hands. And now it sounds like i'm trying to cheer myself up while she is in misfortune.
Well I remember in high school how I once tried getting connected to others and their families. Like I was trying to plant a seed, that's the symbol I use. This seed that keeps rooting deeper in.

Back to the story, she told me the other day, "I seem to be the only one leading out friendship right now." I'm aware i'm hitting the down fall of an INFP.
While others may send an energy warrant of help, but then statefully fuck you ever so pleasantly; one of the traits an NF may find difficult to learn is the power in making yourself a pillar of energy is the best support. But also add that NF (as I may stereotype) is the triad that gets drugged off helping other people, I instead of calling this 'standing back' apathy, I instead look at it in a more subtle way of sharing energy.
Hopefully that motivates you. What I mean is that the energy you bring as a pillar will be the point of transcendence. Like there is so much bullshit in the risk of admitting one is helpless. The one that gives sympathy, etc... Perhaps its being the one that brings stability.
And P.S. If you don't take care of yourself, expect your energy to stench behind in a negative aura.

You are right that its a misunderstanding of other people though.
Maybe it's a compliment to us, because most people give in expectation for return, give with a tax or loan, or at any cost of your soul.
We have the returned gift of satisfaction for helping.

I can also relate to what tkdprincessxoxo said: It was once my value to not talk to people through text. I told people that i'm not a counselor that sits down with you, and that my environment to speak is personal and in person; then nobody listens any more.
Taylor, you are trying to expand yourself too fast.
/silence
 

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I have had this all my life. People often come to me for support, for advice or for the proverbial shoulder. What I find all too often is that the moment they have their lives back in order I more or less cease to exist for them, until the time they need me again.
And to date, aside from my gf, I have yet to meet the first who truly reciprocated the sentiment. Almost everyone rather talks about themselves instead.

This has taught me an important lesson. What you need to look out for is the energy balance. If you find that your energy is being drained by a person, its a sure sign you are in a toxic relationship and you need to protect yourself.
I call those people emotional leeches as they can suck you dry emotionally and if you are not careful, financially as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
true true true!! well the part about helping yourself, its just like the saying "you have to love yourself if you could ever love me" becuase people treat others the same way that they treat themselves, so if they are mean to you, they are mean to themselves first. if they love you, they live thems4elves first...

also, my way of giving advice is blunt. just come right now and say it. i feel like i KNOW I NEED to guide people better becuase people take advice better if they dont know you are leading them onto the right path and they think they did it themselves.. but they will deny your advice even tho you are right if you just come right out like i do and say "yoou need to do this, this is how you feel, this is whats happening... blah blah blah"
 

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Always Help

In the end it is better to be a drink offering even if you get nothing back in return. Don't go helping thinking you will get anything back. We are all called to plant sees in the fields, some are called to water and other to harvest. You never really know what roll you will play or what roll others will play in your life. In the end you should feel good about helping others, that will help feed you NF personality side for a long time to come. Just remember not all people are as willing as you to help, hang in there and good luck.
 

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well the title really says it all. i try so hard to help people as well as i can. but this is what happens to me quite a bit: i reach my hand out to help, and i get bitten. i feel like people try to take advantage of my help and hurt me, especially my best friend! she goes to me for many many things, but says how i dont know anything about her or what she goes thru and other better friends help her. am i just a scapegoat? what can i do!? do people even want my help? what am i doing wrong??! :confused:
Hmmmm... it depends on how you view the situation. If you feel that you are a scapegoat I'm guessing that you feel quite uncomfortable or annoyed on the situation that you're in (and I could be wrong). There are people who take advantage over others but don't feel discourage, because if you like helping people and it makes you happy, more power to you. I'm not that much of a decision making person myself since I haven't been in this situation before, but its up to you if you feel that you are satisfied helping you're friend or not. You're friend should understand how you are feeling about the situation she puts you in, unless she doesn't care.
 
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