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Discussion Starter #1
Don't know if this has been asked before, so forgive me if it's a re-hash.

I was having a conversation with an ENFJ friend of mine today, who is absolutely mired in pain over the end of a faux relationship she had with a fuckbuddy who never really cared for her the way she thought he did. It's a long story (and a somewhat good one) but I'll spare you the details.

She told me she wished she was more like me, able to separate the present from the past and just move on - no blame, no guilt, what happened happened and it's all good. The conversation then moved to sentimentality. She is constantly astonished at the lack of sentimental associations in my life.

She got divorced seven years ago, from a man who she really didn't love all that much in the first place. To this day she can't drive by the church where they got married - or, really, even be in the neighborhood of that church - without bursting into tears. She associates EVERYTHING with her feelings - a restaurant, a book, a type of car, a variety of rose. Anything that "meant" something in past relationships, still means something today, no matter how much time has passed, and will evoke an emotional response. GOD HOW AWFUL.

I reminded her that when she visited me in my town, I took her to the same restaurant where my ex husband and I not only got engaged, but where we had our engagement pictures, our ceremony, AND our reception. I take people to that restaurant all the time, and not once have I associated it with the marriage. Because, you know, it's a restaurant. And, quite frankly, I don't actually recall the feelings I experienced when I got engaged, when I got married. I'm sure I was happy on those days, and I'm sure I felt a lot of love and joy... but that's gone. The restaurant remains, and they make good food.

So, fellow ISTPs... do you attach any symbolism to inanimate objects, memories of past relationships, etc?

The only thing I am sentimental about is my daughter - when I find old clothes or dolls of hers, I store them away, and sometimes I even get a little misty remembering how cute she was, or how obsessed she was with a certain shirt or toy. But that's about the limit of my sentimentality.

The last ex boyfriend aside, of course. I can't accidentally see his name on facebook without feeling the sting. But that's pretty current. The past is gone.

You?
 

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I get nostalgic at best, however there's never any other emotional attachment to anything but that at best. I also have a hard time dealing with people that have such attachment(s), as it wears down my patience rather effectively :tongue:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
^You and me both, Erbse. I have to constantly remind myself that my friend is just wired that way, and she's not TRYING to be annoying.
 

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Speaking for my ISTP husband, I can say sentimentality exists for him but only for current/relevant matters. For example, he values things that make him think of our wedding or a trip we took together, but day to day stuff doesn't matter to him or even stuff when we were dating that I like to remember. He barely remembers them! :dry:

Personally, I tend to be more sentimental about things than he is, but more so about memories of conversations or romantic events rather than material possessions...as for past relationships or memories that turned sour, I tend to throw away everything once they end to force myself into forgetting. It's not easy for me but I refuse to cling on to those things if I can help it. My husband can do it with (seemingly) no effort at all.
 

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Well, I could never throw out the stuff I had as a kid, like books and toys, so they're in storage at my parents' place.

I do tend to hang on to the past, because I had a grandma who burned dozens of old family photo albums for no other reason than she simply wanted to destroy her past. To me, when someone does that, it's as if they want to forget where they're from, so to speak.
 
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I have a few things that have sentimental value and I do have my moments of nostalgia, but no, for the most part, I'm not sentimental. I couldn't imagine living like your ENFJ friend.

Well, I could never throw out the stuff I had as a kid, like books and toys, so they're in storage at my parents' place.

I do tend to hang on to the past, because I had a grandma who burned dozens of old family photo albums for no other reason than she simply wanted to destroy her past. To me, when someone does that, it's as if they want to forget where they're from, so to speak.
I'm the same way. I have most of the books that I shared with my siblings, and some favorite toys and drawings I did. Family history is very important to me too. Where we come from is part of who we are.
 
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Discussion Starter #7
Oh, I have some things I've held on to for nostalgic reasons... not a whole lot of things, I could lose just about all of my possessions and it wouldn't bother me TOO much, really.

Hmmm. Now that I try to take a mental inventory of my stuff... the only things I've kept for nostalgia's sake have to do with my daughter. Well, her stuff and pictures/negatives. Nothing else is irreplaceable.

But I had a REALLY dysfunctional childhood, and we moved around a ton (because my mom was a flake)... so I have nothing from pre-1995. Most of my life, my mom was leaving our stuff behind at the old house because we were evicted and had to move quickly, and we didn't have time to pack, or she didn't feel like it, or whatever. I spent most of my childhood, literally, with the clothes on my back and a small bag of possessions.

:dry: maybe that has more to do with my detachment issues than being ISTP... yeah?

But you would think I'd be the opposite now, an absolute hoarder! Right? Or do I just not know dick about psychology?

Never mind me... I'm bored and thinking out loud. :blushed:
 

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But I had a REALLY dysfunctional childhood...

:dry: maybe that has more to do with my detachment issues than being ISTP... yeah?
It may be...I am a very aloof person, but I had a relatively stable childhood, loving parents, all that jazz. I did have to contend with divorce, but I was quiet and reserved before the divorce. But, I didn't have my own detachment issues until after...isolating myself from the world is a defense mechanism for me. Maybe it is for you too. I think personality is a fine balance between nature and nurture, and one can never really tell where one ends and the other begins.
 
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Am I sentimental? I had to look up sentiment and sentimentality in order to try and determine if I am or am not. Sometimes I am, like when I'm feeling a bit melancholy. Reminiscing about someone I knew in the past, someone I may of had strong feelings for. But for the most part I'm not overly sentimental.
 

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Oh, I have some things I've held on to for nostalgic reasons... not a whole lot of things, I could lose just about all of my possessions and it wouldn't bother me TOO much, really.

Hmmm. Now that I try to take a mental inventory of my stuff... the only things I've kept for nostalgia's sake have to do with my daughter. Well, her stuff and pictures/negatives. Nothing else is irreplaceable.

But I had a REALLY dysfunctional childhood, and we moved around a ton (because my mom was a flake)... so I have nothing from pre-1995. Most of my life, my mom was leaving our stuff behind at the old house because we were evicted and had to move quickly, and we didn't have time to pack, or she didn't feel like it, or whatever. I spent most of my childhood, literally, with the clothes on my back and a small bag of possessions.

:dry: maybe that has more to do with my detachment issues than being ISTP... yeah?

But you would think I'd be the opposite now, an absolute hoarder! Right? Or do I just not know dick about psychology?

Never mind me... I'm bored and thinking out loud. :blushed:
I'm not going to go into detail in any depth, but I had plenty of problems (not my fault) while growing up too. My mother died when I was young. My father got remarried and I ended up with a stepmother that I didn't like, we moved several times, they eventually got divorced, etc.
 

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I don't really attach symbolism to things unless other people do it for me. I have a few things that close friends have given me as a token of our friendship that I keep around, but I do that more out of respect for them than anything else. I don't really connect to places or objects and I'm rarely nostalgic. I do get more attached to people, and have had a little trouble letting go of soured friendships, but those feelings are usually fleeting at best.
 
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I think maybe the nostalgia for me is some kind of substitute of lack of "sentimentality". Somehow the items keep the connection with the people in the past, a connection that otherwise would be forgotten. Or, maybe "forgotten" is wrong word, but I cannot come up with anything better. I mean, I do remember what happened, but I tend to forget the feelings I had when it happened.

I have been moving around a lot, too; the longest period I've ever continually lived in one place is 6 years.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I mean, I do remember what happened, but I tend to forget the feelings I had when it happened.
Seralya, I'm glad it's not just me. I can't access emotional memories, and I can't decide if that's a deficiency or if it's something I should be glad about. I'm not even sure if I know what my feelings are WHEN I'm experiencing emotional moments. I'm usually processing so much about a moment that I can't just let go and feel. And I'm not trying to be all pathetic dumped girl here, but seriously the first time I was able to do that was with my ex-boyfriend, who somehow brought that out in me... I can definitely remembering FEELING when I was with him. But I've been in situations where I've actually thought, "I should be happier" or "I should be feeling something"... and then worrying that my lack of emotion was obvious to the other person/people, and chastising myself for being so weird.
 

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Seralya, I'm glad it's not just me. I can't access emotional memories, and I can't decide if that's a deficiency or if it's something I should be glad about. I'm not even sure if I know what my feelings are WHEN I'm experiencing emotional moments. I'm usually processing so much about a moment that I can't just let go and feel. And I'm not trying to be all pathetic dumped girl here, but seriously the first time I was able to do that was with my ex-boyfriend, who somehow brought that out in me... I can definitely remembering FEELING when I was with him. But I've been in situations where I've actually thought, "I should be happier" or "I should be feeling something"... and then worrying that my lack of emotion was obvious to the other person/people, and chastising myself for being so weird.
All that is exactly true for me, too. I hadn't really thought about that "processing so much so there's no time to feel", but it sounds logical. I can't let go. No way. There's a part of me who always wants to be in control, and, well, feelings would deprive that control somehow, I think. I can't use booze to let go: the more I get drunk the more my brains will fight for the control. Even when I'm angry as hell or wallowing in self-pity this other part of me watches it all detached and objectively and tells me how the situation really is and how unnecessary my current behavior is. It's kind of irritating, but it makes reconciling with the ones I may have hurt a lot easier.
 
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Sentimental not much, but I am very nostalgic. For example, in the last month I found on Youtube uploaded songs I used to have on an audio casette when I was 5, it was so beautiful I was energetic for the whole week. I get much more emotionally attached to objects than relationships.
 

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i still remember a lot of things from the past, but not everything is of sentimental value to me. Probably I only choose a few particular items that I keep that are important to me. Other things may have had sentimental value to me before, but not anymore.
 

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I'm sentimental in the present. Like, "Aww, this is the first time blah blah blah," then a few days later I'll usually forget it. It might, just might, pop up now and then. Randomly, usually because I'm going through my thoughts then encounter it; its not placed towards an object or anything. Usually just events.
 

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Nostalgic more so than sentimental...I find myself falling in love with music from the 80s that I truly used to despise as a kid.

I do get more sentimental, for the wierdest thing however. Anything that has to do with being a child$ Be it watching episodes of Sesame Street, seeing stuff animals, baby clothes, toys aimed at kids...I don't know what or what it happens, but it even causes me to lose my train of thought for several minutes on occasion.

Part of me thinks it stems from me longing for my childhood when things were simpler. I find it harder to maintain control and to a lesser extent my sanity as I get older and learn more about the world.
 

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Part of me thinks it stems from me longing for my childhood when things were simpler.
I'm often nostalgic of the simplicity of childhood as well.

I still have all my stuffed animals. >_>
 
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