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I have an ISTP problem: I cannot handle open displays of emotion directed at me. Especially positive emotions. When I was very young, my mother (INFP) would sometimes get excited at me for something I had done and I couldn't handle it. I'd turn away and try to hide what I did even though it was a good thing. Her big emotions directed at me was like a spotlight on my face and I couldn't deal with it. Now that I'm older, I see myself doing the same thing anytime someone decides they have a reason to celebrate something about me.

I just don't know how to respond. Am I supposed to get as excited as they are? Because their emotions tend to wash out my own and I forget what I might have been feeling before the excited/emotional friend started emoting. It's to the point where I'm happier when something good happens to a friend just because then no one will turn the emotional floodlight on ME.

Have any of you ISTP's had this issue? How have you dealt with it? This is only an issue for me when the person emoting on me is someone I am close to. With other people it just kinda goes over my head and I don't really care.
 

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I have the same thing. A "good job" once in a while is great but grand celebrations just seem unnecessary.

I dont really have a solution to it, Ive just smiled along and rolled with it- eventually they get bored and go do something else
 

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If I see it coming in advance I usually chuck in a "do it and I'll kill you". Failing that I'll usually change the topic as quickly as possible (turns out having nephews can be useful after all!) or just make an excuse (optional) and disappear.
 

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I used to be extremely uncomfortable with any up and coming celebrations e.g. birthdays. If "parties" was a small gathering like at the dinner table with only the nearest and dearest to me that was okay. If it was an all out celebration with bells and whistles it was an absolute horror and I have been known not to turn up at all preferring a small dark corner in a bar where no one knows my name. The last birthday party was with all the bells and whistles and I was not prepared for it - it was a surprise - I just got drunk and spent most of it outside. I zoned out quickly.
 

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I have that problem as well. The over-the-topness from anyone freaks me out. I can't match their level of enthusiasm, so I just throw in a few "thanks" and smiles here and there, and then just wait till it's over. That seems to work out well enough most of the time.
 

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I initially doubt their genuineness, once my doubts are cleared (where it is my final judgment that counts) I've no issues in accepting it. I don't let it sway me away though.
 
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I cringe at big, showy displays of praise and congratulations toward me. I agree. It feels like my awkwardness is even more highlighted and what usually happens to me is that there's a period of confusion followed by embarrassment. I'm ashamed to say that I'm sort of close to tears whenever this happens. (basically i look like a crazy person trying to smile and look everyone in the eye and trying to blink back tears. ha, i'm lame.) You are definitely not alone. :) (is that what you wanted, I mean, empathy? or consolation? I'm sorry if i'm being inappropriate..i'm not really sure what i'm doing right now.)
 

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I just don't know how to respond. Am I supposed to get as excited as they are?
If you're being celebrated, if they're really genuinely excited for you, you don't have to match their enthusiasm. If you catch at least a bit of their emotion, you might start to smile slightly, then everyone will be fine just with that, but if this doesn't happen don't worry. Maybe just a little nod in acknowledgement of their emotion. Maybe if you really don't care and don't see why they should care either, just raise an eyebrow. The main thing is not to be negative about it. If you aren't negative and they think you should be celebrating harder, that's their problem :)

There have been times I've been made to say "wooooooo" by Fe-doms and I didn't feel like it, all that happened was (if I did what they said) a pathetic and cynical form of "wooooo" would come out, and I think it would have been better to do nothing. Similar kind of situation maybe.
 

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I try to just stay calm, be appreciative, and keep being me. I mean, the reason the people like me is because of...well...me, so even if I'm weird and unemotional when they're super emotional, they'll still like me because that's one of the reasons they DO like me.

I just don't analyze it. Just let them be, and be happy for them.
 

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I recently just to deal with a whole day of this last week. My wife made the public announcement on Facebook that she is pregnant, and the majority of her friends are my coworkers. I brought in ear plugs and cussed out the first person that attempted to "congratulate" me while mentioning that I wasn't afraid to use the ear plugs for the entire day. After that, I spent the day hiding in the cab where the Supervisor has the authority to kick anybody out, without question. Luckily, the supervisor let me stay and kicked anybody out that was trying to say something to me.
 

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I don't have a problem with Big Happy Emotions people, but I tend to be -__-" if they go like "aren't you EXCITED?!? Then ACT EXCITED WHOOOOO!!!!"
...just because I don't display large amounts of emotion doesn't mean it doesn't exist T.T
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I recently just to deal with a whole day of this last week. My wife made the public announcement on Facebook that she is pregnant, and the majority of her friends are my coworkers. I brought in ear plugs and cussed out the first person that attempted to "congratulate" me while mentioning that I wasn't afraid to use the ear plugs for the entire day. After that, I spent the day hiding in the cab where the Supervisor has the authority to kick anybody out, without question. Luckily, the supervisor let me stay and kicked anybody out that was trying to say something to me.
As a female, I am dreading the day I have to make an announcement like that.
 

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Have any of you ISTP's had this issue? How have you dealt with it? This is only an issue for me when the person emoting on me is someone I am close to. With other people it just kinda goes over my head and I don't really care.
I'd tolerate congratulations or admiration to a certain degree. After that it just annoys me. I tend to take to compliments better when it comes with criticism as well or emotional distance- when it hits the point of hero worship it just creeps me out until I either acclimatize or they stop inflicting their positivity and encouragement on me.

I dislike unwarranted praise because it undermines my valuation of my own abilities. I hate losing touch with myself- how good or bad I am, and I'm always suspicious of blind praise because I'm so defensive about my own integrity and connection to reality.

Though... people like it when you respond to their praise, and even the littlest "eh...thanks" can go a long way to making you more approachable to other. But how much you're willing to tolerate or even participate in differs from ISTP to ISTP. I have a higher threshold for those that I admire professionally, because I value their words, I think they know what they're talking about- but I tend to react with apathy, "hand-waving" or the barest of thanks if it comes from casual friends, because while I do value their sentiments, I do not think they know the proper value of what I am doing and are likely to overvalue me because they want me to like them more/feel happier in their presence etc.
 

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I love praise as long as it's logical and not emotionally charged. "You're amazing with technology" is always much more comfortable to hear than "you're such a sweet guy."
 

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I completely relate to this. Now that you've mentioned it, I think it's why, even though my mom asks me if I want a birthday party every year, I always say no. Even for the "big" years, I'd rather have a small family dinner. I feel really awkward and embarrassed when there's too much attention on me, even if it's positive, which I think is hard for some people to understand.

I also don't know how to respond when people very enthusiastically congratulate me. So I tend to not tell anyone even if I have a major accomplishment, lol. I still like affirmation as much as the next girl but please don't make it a big deal..
 

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That moment when someone gives me a gift for whatever ISTP helpful thing I did for them and it has no value for me and I reply would preferred something useful.
 

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Smile. That's the practical solution to avoid the annoying "What's wrong with you, you not happy?".
 

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Smile. That's the practical solution to avoid the annoying "What's wrong with you, you not happy?".
I would argue that having to spend at least part of your concentration on having to keep up a fake smile isn't really that practical.
 
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