Personality Cafe banner

1 - 20 of 29 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
223 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
As of recently I have made a personal discovery about the origins of how and why I have a certain fear. And it also ties in with the Enneagram 4 labeled fear "that they have no identity or personal significance". Generally, with "friends" (both close and acquaintance) I tend to hide away or become afraid of sharing my true thoughts and being completely honest with them if there's a problem (unless they manage to hurt me to the extent that i just cut them off). I become fearful of their reaction before it even happens, so i withhold my thoughts and continue acting as if everything is okay. It's not only the fear that they will be upset at my honesty, but the fear that I would also begin to hate myself afterwards as well. I didn't realize there was a term for this as well (even though i knew it as a common term i never understood its meaning). And that term is "Shame". And while shame is the major factor of why i feel guilt for wanting to speak out, as well as feeling it for not wanting to speak out, I had also come to realize this was also connected to my upbringing. I learned in the article mentioned below, that most scapegoats have high empathy and sensitivity at an early age, which causes them to absorb all of the projections of their parents, thus causing the birth of self hatred/possibly depression. It also informed me that as they continue to go into social relationships, that they will also absorb the projections of what other people think of them as well. For me this explains a helluva lot, of why i fear getting close to certain people and their impact on me if i either

A. Do something wrong.
Or
B. Be honest with them.

I'm personally terrified of being completely honest with someone i'm not sure of, as any kind of minor negative backlash towards me can cause me to go in a state of guilt for a long time. So instead I internalize everything that bothers me about them, and I simply play my part in this "friendship" until i have a reason to avoid them or doorslam. And this is different from constructive criticism, i'm talking about the consequences that may occur if they end up being hurt by my honesty. While their take of it may not be my problem afterward I still hold the shame of what I have done to another human being, even if it was the "right" thing to do rather than continue being dishonest with them and put on the fake persona. I fear hurting them..but I also fear hurting myself. It's a double edged sword and the ending remains the same regardless of which way i act. I'm fearful of absorbing any new projections one might have of me (specifically negative) which has caused a spiral of paranoia in 2/3 of my friendships, even if they may not take it personal. And before I end this, I am not intentionally hurtful when i'm honest, as I still try to be polite and respectful of the person that i'm talking to. I am also aware that they can be positive in their response, but i'm practically crippled by my fear, especially because of social experiences that didn't go well.
I was curious if there's anyone with similar issues that came to this realization?

Oh and here's the article links that I read, very fascinating reads.

Why family scapegoats become lifelong victims. | Lucky Otter's Haven

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/traversing-the-inner-terrain/201101/the-scapegoat-identity

http://psychcentral.com/lib/shame-the-core-of-addiction-and-codependency/

P.S. If anyone is curious of my tritype it's 4w5 5w4 1w9
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
I understand how you feel I think - I haven't read the links yet, but I will when I have some time to do it. I am sorry that you feel that way about being totally open with your friends. I can relate, though. Whenever I am with people, I have a mental dialogue going on of every negative thought I imagine they could be thinking in response to what I say and do. It's constant. I argue with myself mentally about everything I say from the perspective of them - does that make any sense? I'm also an INFJ type 4 enneagram - and I also absorb guilt very easily and can experience extreme anxiety and guilt in response to criticism or conflict. I really hope things will get better and you will find someone you can share with!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,245 Posts
I don't really think this is enneagram based (I am a 6w5 with some of those challenges initially ), have you considered that you may be a HSP @Kyuubixcel (Are You Highly Sensitive?) or what your emotional attachment style is (What is Your Attachment Style?).

I don't wish to discourage conversations but context and knowledge are everything - they help us define our communication and be clearer about our questions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
493 Posts
Assertiveness has a personality dimension to it, but it is also something we all as people have some element of. Early experiences of being assertive and not having that respected can create work for us to do later on in life.

What I have experienced around this issue is that in adulthood, if you are working on becoming more assertive, then people who see that as a threat to your current dynamic with them may not be too happy with you. People who are healthy themselves, and assert themselves in order to promote co-operation and sincerity in their relationships will be relieved that you are speaking up with integrity; others may want you to keep quiet and go along with them.

I believe it is really important for INFJs and HSPs to develop healthy boundaries with people which requires assertiveness. It gets easier and easier the more that you do it. Do you have people in your life that encourage you to share your thoughts? If so, build on that. If not, don't worry. Some of us did this work alone for a long time and it is possible to do it without any support from people at times.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,120 Posts
....

And before I end this, I am not intentionally hurtful when i'm honest, as I still try to be polite and respectful of the person that i'm talking to. I am also aware that they can be positive in their response, but i'm practically crippled by my fear, especially because of social experiences that didn't go well.

I was curious if there's anyone with similar issues that came to this realization?

....
Situation could at least partly be due to nutrition. One thing is getting more protein, like from eggs, meats, fish. Also, no low-fat stuff. Your body needs fats, especially your brain. (Definitely, no diet sodas; no artificial sweeteners; and, no soy.)

Suggest supplements: Vitamin D3 (2000-unit tabs) take 3 at once per day. Lithium orotate (5mg Lithium per tab; one per day). May find at a health shop or need to order from some online place, like Swanson.

Good luck in getting better, Kyuubixcel!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
806 Posts
The trick is to getting yourself to believe that you can be understood, honest, etc.. That is what this vulnerability video talks about. This video seems to be what you're talking about, so check it out and see what you think.

This one for shame also came up, I haven't listened to the whole thing, but it may help you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,208 Posts
I guess that I can relate in some way and I'm also 4w, thought slightly different?

In my case, I've noticed that I've been quite careful with the impression I give ever since I was a kid, as if I don't want to feel ashamed or judged. When I was older, I began to tailor a perfect mask in front of others too, not showing weaknesses and showing the parts of myself that others might admire or like, or find intelligent. With closer friends I feel safer to be more myself, but I seemed to want to be admired and appreciated.

But that kind of thing leads to false sense of friendship and bond. When I began to show some flaws not everyone appreciated nor knew how to deal with it. The attractive factor would have been lessened.

So the friendship based on my tailored mask is false, it's just illusional.

I try to be more confident and honest, but I can't say that I'm fully good at it yet. Although with my husband I am honest and avoid the mask pitfall. He accepted many of my flaws which made me feel more confident by time.

Thought gaining confidence still doesn't mean blind vulnerability, and I still don't trust anyone. I have to feel that the other person genuinely cares and is able to handle some things that i'd fully show it, thought I'm also not avoidant of conflicts as while it stresses me, I rather talk about it and see what happens.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
223 Posts
Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
I don't really think this is enneagram based (I am a 6w5 with some of those challenges initially ), have you considered that you may be a HSP @Kyuubixcel (Are You Highly Sensitive?) or what your emotional attachment style is (What is Your Attachment Style?).

I don't wish to discourage conversations but context and knowledge are everything - they help us define our communication and be clearer about our questions.
Yeah it's not enneagram based but I think our response to certain things as we grow up are kind of what determine our enneagram in a way (not saying it's a definite but it certainly holds some truth). I feel like I didn't word that right but whatever lol. EDIT: It also connects to the fear because my personal significance is practically based on the projections that I receive, which means that my self-perceived identity in a sense relies on the very projections that i'm afraid of.

I'm definitely an HSP, i'm not sure to what extent though. My early attachment style would definitely be most identified as avoidant, but I seem to have snippets of all of them that I can relate to. For the adult attachment patterns I have dismissive (but not emotionally removed from myself and others), preoccupied definitely except i'm not clingy or overdependent, and somewhat fearful-avoidant in the sense of childhood memories being triggered.

Yeah, I see what you mean. I'm not always clear in my vocabulary unfortunately.
 
  • Like
Reactions: StElmosDream

·
Registered
Joined
·
223 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
I understand how you feel I think - I haven't read the links yet, but I will when I have some time to do it. I am sorry that you feel that way about being totally open with your friends. I can relate, though. Whenever I am with people, I have a mental dialogue going on of every negative thought I imagine they could be thinking in response to what I say and do. It's constant. I argue with myself mentally about everything I say from the perspective of them - does that make any sense? I'm also an INFJ type 4 enneagram - and I also absorb guilt very easily and can experience extreme anxiety and guilt in response to criticism or conflict. I really hope things will get better and you will find someone you can share with!
Take as long as you need :). Yup, that's exactly how my brain functions when i'm around people. Luckily I don't get anxiety unless I feel forced to respond to something rude or disrespectful towards me. I have had that on a few occasions with each ending up with me walking away before i had emotional diarrhea (building anger or tears) and contemplating what was said for days on top of self hatred and carrying projections of what was said about me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
223 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Assertiveness has a personality dimension to it, but it is also something we all as people have some element of. Early experiences of being assertive and not having that respected can create work for us to do later on in life.

What I have experienced around this issue is that in adulthood, if you are working on becoming more assertive, then people who see that as a threat to your current dynamic with them may not be too happy with you. People who are healthy themselves, and assert themselves in order to promote co-operation and sincerity in their relationships will be relieved that you are speaking up with integrity; others may want you to keep quiet and go along with them.

I believe it is really important for INFJs and HSPs to develop healthy boundaries with people which requires assertiveness. It gets easier and easier the more that you do it. Do you have people in your life that encourage you to share your thoughts? If so, build on that. If not, don't worry. Some of us did this work alone for a long time and it is possible to do it without any support from people at times.
I feel that I attract people with these kind of power dynamics, in that being assertive can be problematic to their feelings. I also understand this to some extent that if I bother someone unintentionally and they become irritable, I feel hurt that I was an irritation for them and become more self aware/insecure, which eventually leads to withdrawing for feeling like a detriment to others. But my parents are very similar in that they do not like when i become assertive and try to defend myself. But at the same time they dislike when I self deprecate by apathetically accepting what I've done with no attempts at trying to defend myself and move on. My family has odd power dynamics as well but I know that they're connected to how I function too.

I only have one person in my life that I can be completely honest with, who happens to be a type 4 ENFP, but it took over a year of arguments and being completely blunt (in anger) to actually begin to find acceptance with one another. He's probably my closest friend and I don't see him/speak with him that much because of college now. I may see him on breaks but that's about it. But the thing is that neither of us are assertive unless we're angry, so in a sense he's not a good example to use because he's like me.

I have tried being assertive before but it just comes off as me disliking the other person or being angry at them..and I don't like that, because I know how they feel afterwards. And being politely assertive doesn't work because they don't take me seriously.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
223 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Situation could at least partly be due to nutrition. One thing is getting more protein, like from eggs, meats, fish. Also, no low-fat stuff. Your body needs fats, especially your brain. (Definitely, no diet sodas; no artificial sweeteners; and, no soy.)

Suggest supplements: Vitamin D3 (2000-unit tabs) take 3 at once per day. Lithium orotate (5mg Lithium per tab; one per day). May find at a health shop or need to order from some online place, like Swanson.

Good luck in getting better, Kyuubixcel!
Thank you :). I actually have been wanting to look into nutrition for a while, so it's possible that it's connected. Though i'm not unhealthy or malnourished as I eat pretty balanced with everything and my family is fairly good with their knowledge in these things (Majority of my family works in medical fields).
 
  • Like
Reactions: SiFan

·
Registered
Joined
·
223 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
The trick is to getting yourself to believe that you can be understood, honest, etc.. That is what this vulnerability video talks about. This video seems to be what you're talking about, so check it out and see what you think.

This one for shame also came up, I haven't listened to the whole thing, but it may help you.
I actually figured out the shame concept from her, I noticed that the way she described it was very reminiscent to how I was as well as how I was raised. Though for me I am always vulnerable, whether i'm faking my expressions or not, one can break me very easily. And that's kind of why I am afraid of humans and their reactions towards me. Their projections of me are also gripping on my heart at all times, and they don't realize how much power they have over me. Or they do (unconsciously) and don't realize it until I point it out to them.
 
  • Like
Reactions: hopebeat

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,785 Posts
It seems odd that you feel you can't be completely open with close friends. Of all people, they're the ones I'm least worried about saying offensive or hurtful things to. Probably the only people I hold back my opinions from might be people who sign my paychecks. Some things aren't worth the fight.

Also, if you don't know a person, holding back your opinions can be a good strategy, especially if they reveal aspects of you that you feel are weaknesses. It's generally not a good idea to let people know those things about you. In some sense, I view people as competitors and am careful about what I reveal of myself to them, especially weaknesses.

In any case, don't hate yourself over things you say. If you actually do hurt someone's feelings, and you feel bad about it, that pretty much proves you're not the monster you might think you are. Life is too short to feel shame over everything you do. I can guarantee those people who try to shame you have plenty of shameful things in their own closets that would knock them a few rungs down the ladder.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
223 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
I guess that I can relate in some way and I'm also 4w, thought slightly different?

In my case, I've noticed that I've been quite careful with the impression I give ever since I was a kid, as if I don't want to feel ashamed or judged. When I was older, I began to tailor a perfect mask in front of others too, not showing weaknesses and showing the parts of myself that others might admire or like, or find intelligent. With closer friends I feel safer to be more myself, but I seemed to want to be admired and appreciated.

But that kind of thing leads to false sense of friendship and bond. When I began to show some flaws not everyone appreciated nor knew how to deal with it. The attractive factor would have been lessened.

So the friendship based on my tailored mask is false, it's just illusional.

I try to be more confident and honest, but I can't say that I'm fully good at it yet. Although with my husband I am honest and avoid the mask pitfall. He accepted many of my flaws which made me feel more confident by time.

Thought gaining confidence still doesn't mean blind vulnerability, and I still don't trust anyone. I have to feel that the other person genuinely cares and is able to handle some things that i'd fully show it, thought I'm also not avoidant of conflicts as while it stresses me, I rather talk about it and see what happens.
Yes I definitely relate. Even though i'm slightly more genuine to my personality I still can't throw out the mask because it is an expectation that people want to see out of me, as they are convinced that this is who I am (because I portrayed it so). I also definitely overwhelm them when I begin to show some of my truer colors..and this makes me go longer showing them the mask until I know that they'd be ready to handle it. And any "friendship" that I feel I need the mask for I don't consider a true friendship.

I feel the same about trust. I am very gullible and tend to assume what people tell me firsthand is the truth, but in recent years i've begun to see the other sides of people, and this reflects into my personality making me more cynical and skeptical of what I am shown by others. For me, it depends on the conflict that I become avoidant. If I mess up I tend to own up to my mistake, but I have a ghastly fear of apologizing (connected to shame and guilt). I also become avoidant if there's something out of my control like a fight or trying to maintain my emotions when they reach an extreme (like anger, depending on how much stress I am carrying).
 
  • Like
Reactions: AriesLilith

·
Registered
Joined
·
223 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
It seems odd that you feel you can't be completely open with close friends. Of all people, they're the ones I'm least worried about saying offensive or hurtful things to. Probably the only people I hold back my opinions from might be people who sign my paychecks. Some things aren't worth the fight.

Also, if you don't know a person, holding back your opinions can be a good strategy, especially if they reveal aspects of you that you feel are weaknesses. It's generally not a good idea to let people know those things about you. In some sense, I view people as competitors and am careful about what I reveal of myself to them, especially weaknesses.

In any case, don't hate yourself over things you say. If you actually do hurt someone's feelings, and you feel bad about it, that pretty much proves you're not the monster you might think you are. Life is too short to feel shame over everything you do. I can guarantee those people who try to shame you have plenty of shameful things in their own closets that would knock them a few rungs down the ladder.
It's mainly because of my fear of hurting them. You know how some criticisms might be more hurtful than others? It's mainly because I have experienced criticism and outright disrespect on almost every level so it's a challenge to find a line where you know what you say isn't going to damage their ego to where they internalize the projections as a form of self deprecation like me. And the thing is that i'm very vulnerable, even when I don't act the part. Even strangers have the capacity to do damage to the little self esteem that I have. It's when I have to openly speak to someone about themselves, I begin to show fear. And my perfectionist tendencies are also a problem in that I will most likely notice many flaws that I may be afraid to share.

Generally yeah, withholding opinions can be a good survival tactic, but it's different if it's someone close to you. My relationship with my parents are generally the original example I have with this fear. My father happens to have narcissistic traits where nobody in the family including me can give him any kind of criticism without a denial/rage filled backlash that is now directed towards you, even if it means changing the entire subject.

It's more fear in the sense of discovering that someone is closed minded about themselves. And in this case it's more the fault of how our culture works, we encourage and perpetuate it, while trying to convince people that everything that they're told is unfalsifiable. Our parents learn it from their parents and their parents learn it from theirs, etc. etc. and as a result they are rewarded for accepting it and conforming. It's a generational conditioning that we become oblivious to and it's sad because some people never wake up. Those that don't conform or are born with a higher possibility of nonconformity are scapegoated and if they give in they can potentially become the golden child, which leads to narcissism in training.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
806 Posts
Our parents learn it from their parents and their parents learn it from theirs, etc. etc. and as a result they are rewarded for accepting it and conforming. It's a generational conditioning that we become oblivious to and it's sad because some people never wake up. Those that don't conform or are born with a higher possibility of nonconformity are scapegoated and if they give in they can potentially become the golden child, which leads to narcissism in training.
That's certainly true. I've learned that if you don't consciously think all the time about how you parent and how you want to parent, you will automatically parent the exact same way your parents parented you.

-----

I just need a little clarification to help me understand what's going on.
You feel like you are wrong if you don't live up to people's expectations or their projections of you. You also believe your identity is from the projections that other people place on you. Right?

Even strangers have the capacity to do damage to the little self esteem that I have.
It seems like you believe that other people have the power to control your happiness or self esteem, right?

-----

I also understand this to some extent that if I bother someone unintentionally and they become irritable, I feel hurt that I was an irritation for them and become more self aware/insecure, which eventually leads to withdrawing for feeling like a detriment to others.
If you believe you made someone irritable, do you dwell on this?
If so, does the dwelling on it part make you feel like a "detriment" to others?

Do you know for a true fact you irritated them? What if you aren't the one that made them irritable? What if they were irritable before you started talking to them? I don't know if there is a sure way to know this unless they explicitly say, "you are irritating me." Are you just making lots of assumptions?
(A common belief about INFJs is that they always know what's going on all the time in people's heads. That's not always true. We INFJs often make assumptions, like lots of people do. We don't always know the whole story, we can be wrong too.)

Some good self talk for a situation like this is to say "I am not in control of other's feelings. They chose to respond irritably to me. It's not my fault for how they chose to react. There is no need to feel guilty." This way of thinking should help you to not withdraw as much.

-----

What do you mean by assertive? There are ways to get your point across while still being nice about it. You don't have to be seen as mean. Maybe you just aren't being nice in the right way when you try to be assertive. There's a certain way to handle this. I don't know what you're doing wrong, or if you're doing anything wrong.

Have they directly said to you, "I expect you to be ________."?
In other words, are these "projections" imagined, or do you know for a fact that they expect you to be a certain way?

By the way, no one can ever live up to anyone's expectations. It's not possible to live up to a vision that someone else has dreamed up. If someone ever expects you to be their version of perfect, just know that this way of thinking is flawed. Instead of thinking/saying "they should______," you should think/say, " I wish they would_____." I don't know if that's your line of thinking, just throwing this part out there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
223 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
That's certainly true. I've learned that if you don't consciously think all the time about how you parent and how you want to parent, you will automatically parent the exact same way your parents parented you.
Yup. I didn't truly notice that problem until I learned of the scapegoat stuff. It's quite amazing how we don't see the influence until it's too late. I always hear from people that they never want to be like their parents but end up exhibit a lot of their traits and wonder how it developed that way in the first place. It's a wall that we all need to cross in our own way.

I just need a little clarification to help me understand what's going on.
You feel like you are wrong if you don't live up to people's expectations or their projections of you. You also believe your identity is from the projections that other people place on you. Right?
In a sense, yes, but I don't exactly feel wrong about it. I definitely feel loathsome by my lack of acceptance, but I can conclusively reason that it's not my fault. However, the guilt of another person being dissatisfied with me tends to linger on, since my prior experiences left me feeling the same. The perfectionism on top of that doesn't help because I constantly want to improve myself, and it ties in with past experiences of failure, which have always had negative consequences for me (parental upbringing) so I always associate failure with defection. So I can rationalize fine with the idea that i'm not in the wrong, but my emotions and my brain always seem to be at opposite ends. But yes, I feel my identity is literally a conglomerate of all the projections towards me that i've grown up with, from strangers, family, and friends.

It seems like you believe that other people have the power to control your happiness or self esteem, right?
Yes, unless I happen to be alone and isolated to my own thoughts and research where I rely on my brain rather than my emotions. However, my emotions are always on even if I don't focus on it, so the thoughts will always be there even if i push it to the side for a higher priority. Sooo..even then I guess it does affect me even when i'm away from it all.

If you believe you made someone irritable, do you dwell on this?
If so, does the dwelling on it part make you feel like a "detriment" to others?
Yes, I become very self conscious about it, and dwelling causes more self loathing so I may have to sleep some of the stress off and see how I feel later on.

Do you know for a true fact you irritated them? What if you aren't the one that made them irritable? What if they were irritable before you started talking to them? I don't know if there is a sure way to know this unless they explicitly say, "you are irritating me." Are you just making lots of assumptions?
(A common belief about INFJs is that they always know what's going on all the time in people's heads. That's not always true. We INFJs often make assumptions, like lots of people do. We don't always know the whole story, we can be wrong too.)
Most of the time, yes, as most of the time they will claim that i'm annoying them (sometimes by the fact that I might laugh a lot or that I generally show exuberance). Usually I can tell when someone is already irritable so I would know not to bother them, however, sometimes just me being around them can set them off (which I can only assume is because of my positive attitude, because I usually keep physical distance from people and don't touch them at all to respect their space, and I don't talk to someone that is upset with the fear that I may become the ragdoll for their rage). So generally no they're not irritable before I talk to them, and if I become aware of someone that lets me know that they're not in the mood, then I steer clear. So majority of the time i'm the annoyance to them. So I may try to mentally take steps to prevent annoying another person the same way (if I am convinced that it was me directly), and eventually it still becomes a problem.

Some good self talk for a situation like this is to say "I am not in control of other's feelings. They chose to respond irritably to me. It's not my fault for how they chose to react. There is no need to feel guilty." This way of thinking should help you to not withdraw as much.
I tend to have these thoughts when reflecting but the feeling I have towards myself will still be there, like an antagonist in disguise. And even though I don't get reminded of the past too much it tends to reoccur when a feeling triggers a memory (usually at the dwelling part). It may not be my fault or my responsibility but the things that are said or the facial reaction that people may have will stick in my mind for days, weeks even.

What do you mean by assertive? There are ways to get your point across while still being nice about it. You don't have to be seen as mean. Maybe you just aren't being nice in the right way when you try to be assertive. There's a certain way to handle this. I don't know what you're doing wrong, or if you're doing anything wrong.
By assertive I mean trying to speak for myself and defend my place if I feel that i'm being unfairly accused or disrespected. I try to be polite and defending my points while still taking their views into perspective, but if i'm not being serious enough to get my point across to their heads they will try to invalidate me. And if I try to be more serious but let them know that I respect their point, they may still get hurt or upset, leaving me feeling guilty for sharing my thoughts.

Have they directly said to you, "I expect you to be ________."?
In other words, are these "projections" imagined, or do you know for a fact that they expect you to be a certain way?
Aside from my parents, nope. But you can tell by how they react to certain things, maybe one day I want to be my genuine self, and they will think that something is wrong. Or that i'm not being "myself". While this may be my fault for portraying something different than what I was, it was not entirely a false self as my demeanor is similar when i'm genuinely happy, but I portray this to others when I don't know them well, so they are not overwhelmed by my inner emotions and thoughts when I present them. But even when friends get closer, the idea that i'm always happy or always energetic and positive stays in their minds (which is generally the opposite of how i'm always feeling), which leads me to feel that I misled them. Even when i'm not in a good mood i'm always nudged and spoken to like I NEED to say a joke or give them the signal that i'm okay, which is usually the case because if I say i'm not really in the mood I tend to ruin the whole atmosphere and mess up the night for everybody.

In a sense my behavior determines how they will feel while hanging out and this brings me more guilt so I just portray the false positivism continuously. And take note that they know I suffer from depression and perpetual negative thoughts but they still are convinced it's not my personality, even when i've blatantly told them that this is how I've always been and that the mask is fake.

By the way, no one can ever live up to anyone's expectations. It's not possible to live up to a vision that someone else has dreamed up. If someone ever expects you to be their version of perfect, just know that this way of thinking is flawed. Instead of thinking/saying "they should______," you should think/say, " I wish they would_____." I don't know if that's your line of thinking, just throwing this part out there.
I know this, and that's why it's such a problem for me as well. In a sense my perfectionism and desire to satisfy others' needs leaves me in a state of constant guilt and shame because it will never be enough to make these people truly happy. This also stems from parental/family expectations that I could never achieve and thus felt like I failed/disappointed/disgraced them and do not even deserve to breathe the same air as them. I can never be the person that they wanted because of my defection; that is what my emotions tell me, but my mind says that it's their fault for expecting too much of me and wanting me to be something that I could never be. Even with that, somewhere in some shallow space of my mind, I want to make them happy and accept me by reaching that expectation, even if it's just a fantasy because i wouldn't be me. So in a general sense it hurts that they can't acknowledge me unless I go by their standards, this goes for friends and family alike. However, it also hurts that i'm so incompatible with their standards that I can't be the person to reach it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: hopebeat

·
Registered
Joined
·
806 Posts
In a sense, yes, but I don't exactly feel wrong about it. I definitely feel loathsome by my lack of acceptance, but I can conclusively reason that it's not my fault. However, the guilt of another person being dissatisfied with me tends to linger on, since my prior experiences left me feeling the same.
Ok, the definition of guilt I was going by was feeling that you did something morally wrong. I can see what you mean now.

The perfectionism on top of that doesn't help because I constantly want to improve myself, and it ties in with past experiences of failure, which have always had negative consequences for me (parental upbringing) so I always associate failure with defection. So I can rationalize fine with the idea that i'm not in the wrong, but my emotions and my brain always seem to be at opposite ends. But yes, I feel my identity is literally a conglomerate of all the projections towards me that i've grown up with, from strangers, family, and friends.
Ok I think you need to get rid of all of these projections and just be yourself. This seems a little bit off to me. Find yourself if you don't know who you are, because you can't really be what other people think you're supposed to be.
I discover new things about people all the time. They don't always live up to stereotypes and stuff.

Yes, unless I happen to be alone and isolated to my own thoughts and research where I rely on my brain rather than my emotions. However, my emotions are always on even if I don't focus on it, so the thoughts will always be there even if i push it to the side for a higher priority. Sooo..even then I guess it does affect me even when i'm away from it all.
Alrighty, keep in mind that no one has the power to control your happiness. You can choose to be happy. Really happy. Find gratitude if anything else. I've had a bit of the depression thing like you, and it took me a really long time to find happiness in myself and in the small things. You really have to change your mindset, and it takes a while. Especially because of the extroverted feeling. But I've learned to direct the extroverted feeling into helping other people to help themselves to be happy instead of changing myself for them so they can be happy. Remember, they're in charge of their own happiness too.

Yes, I become very self conscious about it, and dwelling causes more self loathing so I may have to sleep some of the stress off and see how I feel later on.
Another trick is to not dwell on it. It's so hard to do, but what helps is to do something extroverted. If the extroverted feeling is causing you grief, try doing some extroverted sensing stuff. Distract yourself, don't dwell on it. If you need to get your emotions out, write them down. Then go do something else. Emotions usually do have a peak, so it's good to not completely evaluate them and share them with the world until time passes, like after you've slept. After some time you can evaluate them better.
I'm seeing lots of fear of what other people think.

Most of the time, yes, as most of the time they will claim that i'm annoying them (sometimes by the fact that I might laugh a lot or that I generally show exuberance). Usually I can tell when someone is already irritable so I would know not to bother them, however, sometimes just me being around them can set them off (which I can only assume is because of my positive attitude, because I usually keep physical distance from people and don't touch them at all to respect their space, and I don't talk to someone that is upset with the fear that I may become the ragdoll for their rage).
With this behavior I'm seeing lots of avoidance. I'm seeing lots of avoidance with negative feelings in other people. Also, you somehow have it in your head that it's not good for people to see these negative feelings within you also.

So generally no they're not irritable before I talk to them, and if I become aware of someone that lets me know that they're not in the mood, then I steer clear. So majority of the time i'm the annoyance to them. So I may try to mentally take steps to prevent annoying another person the same way (if I am convinced that it was me directly), and eventually it still becomes a problem.
So I see more avoidance in this part. Why is this still a problem? Is it just feeling like you can't act a certain way because of past reactions?
I'm assuming this is with peers and not with parents.

I tend to have these thoughts when reflecting but the feeling I have towards myself will still be there, like an antagonist in disguise. And even though I don't get reminded of the past too much it tends to reoccur when a feeling triggers a memory (usually at the dwelling part). It may not be my fault or my responsibility but the things that are said or the facial reaction that people may have will stick in my mind for days, weeks even.
Same here. Just keep thinking positively, and it will get better with time. Thoughts become more than just thoughts with time. Don't dwell too much on the past. Again if it still bothers you, if a certain situation keeps bothering you, then write it out. Writing feelings and thoughts really helps our extroverted feeling express itself.

By assertive I mean trying to speak for myself and defend my place if I feel that i'm being unfairly accused or disrespected. I try to be polite and defending my points while still taking their views into perspective, but if i'm not being serious enough to get my point across to their heads they will try to invalidate me. And if I try to be more serious but let them know that I respect their point, they may still get hurt or upset, leaving me feeling guilty for sharing my thoughts.
If they're ending up hurt, make sure that you aren't attacking them. Don't feel guilty for sharing your thoughts, just take those experiences and learn from them to share your thoughts differently for the future. If it's feeling based, then something good to say is: "I am_____ when you did this." (ex. I am sad whenever you guys go out to eat without me.) Again just throwing that out there, I'm not sure if you need that fill in the blank right now. I'm not very assertive myself, so I may not be the best person to ask about that. Just remember to not attack, and keep validating their point of view when needed.

Aside from my parents, nope. But you can tell by how they react to certain things, maybe one day I want to be my genuine self, and they will think that something is wrong.
It should be fine if it's your parents, just as long as they aren't too extreme. I know parents have certain expectations for their kids, and some are a little more overwhelming than others. Just keep doing the best you can.
Umm, if you're genuine self is depressed, then they will naturally think something is wrong when that behavior is showing up. If your genuine self is more quirky, then they might take that as a surprise. I'm not sure what your genuine self is, so I'm just making guesses based on the reaction you provided me.
This part kind of confuses me.

Or that i'm not being "myself". While this may be my fault for portraying something different than what I was, it was not entirely a false self as my demeanor is similar when i'm genuinely happy, but I portray this to others when I don't know them well, so they are not overwhelmed by my inner emotions and thoughts when I present them.
ok I think you've gotta stop portraying a false self. I was raised to be completely and totally honest in everything I did, so I've pretty much learned to be honest in all my feelings and such. If someone's not ready for the full me yet, I hold it back, but I don't lie about it. I don't portray myself as anything different than what I am and I don't have your problem, so you might want to try being yourself.
Just know that you can't be completely vulnerable with everyone. Strangers and acquaintances, no. Don't worry about sharing too much of yourself with them. Friends, you can share a little more. Really good and best friends, you can share even more.

I have a hard time sharing all my thoughts with even my closest friends. I find with some I can share some things, with others I can share other things. It's not everything at once with one person very often. I imagine you can share most everything with a significant other, though. Remember to only share what people are ready for. If they aren't self disclosing much with you, don't self disclose much with them.

But even when friends get closer, the idea that i'm always happy or always energetic and positive stays in their minds (which is generally the opposite of how i'm always feeling), which leads me to feel that I misled them.
I don't think this is a realistic way to live. Back to the fear of negativity that I mentioned above. You're not a robot, you can't be expected to be 100% happy all the time. Maybe in some groups this is the way of thinking though, if all people are expected to be happy all the time. It should be your friend's job to give you a boost when you're feeling sad. If you complain that you're sad all the time, then I can see when you'd need to hide it a little then.

Even when i'm not in a good mood i'm always nudged and spoken to like I NEED to say a joke or give them the signal that i'm okay, which is usually the case because if I say i'm not really in the mood I tend to ruin the whole atmosphere and mess up the night for everybody.
Remember that they chose to be disappointed in your behavior,and they need to understand when you're not in the mood and need to be aware of your feelings. I feel like I ruin the atmosphere too sometimes, and those are times when I've been extroverting a lot and I just need to be alone. Ideally I'd communicate this, they'd understand, and I'd either become more quiet, or leave.

In a sense my behavior determines how they will feel while hanging out and this brings me more guilt so I just portray the false positivism continuously. And take note that they know I suffer from depression and perpetual negative thoughts but they still are convinced it's not my personality, even when i've blatantly told them that this is how I've always been and that the mask is fake.
Misunderstandings are hard. Lots of INFJs on here will say that they aren't completely understood by everyone they know either.

I know this, and that's why it's such a problem for me as well. In a sense my perfectionism and desire to satisfy others' needs leaves me in a state of constant guilt and shame because it will never be enough to make these people truly happy.
So back to the thing I said up there, try to not change yourself to meet other's needs. Just try to help them meet their own needs. (I'm assuming this is with peers, not parents.)

This also stems from parental/family expectations that I could never achieve and thus felt like I failed/disappointed/disgraced them and do not even deserve to breathe the same air as them. I can never be the person that they wanted because of my defection; that is what my emotions tell me, but my mind says that it's their fault for expecting too much of me and wanting me to be something that I could never be.
I don't know what your family life is like, or what they say to you, just remember that you aren't defected because you have failed. You are perfect the way you are, just keep being yourself and keep doing your best.

Even with that, somewhere in some shallow space of my mind, I want to make them happy and accept me by reaching that expectation, even if it's just a fantasy because i wouldn't be me. So in a general sense it hurts that they can't acknowledge me unless I go by their standards, this goes for friends and family alike. However, it also hurts that i'm so incompatible with their standards that I can't be the person to reach it.
Don't change yourself for others. I've learned that the hard way. Sometimes you have to choose who you want to please, even if that person is yourself.
I don't know what those standards are that you and your parents hold yourself to, but if it seems like too much, then talk to them about it if you haven't already. If you feel like you need to and it's stressing you out, talk to them. See if something can be helped.

With peers, friendships should be easy. It shouldn't be this big thing to try to please people all the time.

I think I've understood you right, let me know if anything seems off.
If you want to add any more info to this, go for it.
 
1 - 20 of 29 Posts
Top