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I’m an INxP, and my mom is an ISFJ. She’s sick, and has a lot of health problems (CFS, Fibro, struggled with skin cancer etc,) She does a lot for our family, and despite in a lot of pain she does a lot of work around the house. Though it seems my dad (ESFP) and I make her mad a lot. I never know how to calm her down, and everything I say she sees as cold and inauthentic. I really don’t know what to do...
 

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What are you doing that's making her mad? If it's something you say, take notes about what topics you're bringing up that are 'triggering' her and try to avoid those. If it's not something you say, is it something you are doing (or not doing)? And if so, what are those things, and why is it making her angry (maybe doing something in a way she doesn't like, or she feels like you should be doing something that you aren't, such as certain household chores)?

If you don't think either of those things are it, I would just try asking her what you can do to make her happier/make her life easier (but not in a confrontational way of course. I would do so as casually as possible so it doesn't make her too uncomfortable to answer).

Do you know her enneagram type?
 

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I just snort groaned in commismeration when I saw this topic.
I LOVE my ISFJ mom, she's wonderful most of the time... but when she's mad, there's nothing to be done about it.
Everyone has to shrink up as small as possible so they aren't in her way and not make much noise, because as I heard so often "When the mama's not happy, NOBODY's happy!".

Mine's also a 2, and that quote couldn't be more true. I've tried every which way from Sunday to help her cool down since I was a child, and nothing works except avoiding further triggers and letting her sleep it off. Usually by the next day she's 'reset' and is back to being wonderful again.
 

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I just snort groaned in commismeration when I saw this topic.
I LOVE my ISFJ mom, she's wonderful most of the time... but when she's mad, there's nothing to be done about it.
Everyone has to shrink up as small as possible so they aren't in her way and not make much noise, because as I heard so often "When the mama's not happy, NOBODY's happy!".

Mine's also a 2, and that quote couldn't be more true. I've tried every which way from Sunday to help her cool down since I was a child, and nothing works except avoiding further triggers and letting her sleep it off. Usually by the next day she's 'reset' and is back to being wonderful again.
Yeah, this is pretty true. If it isn’t me making her mad, it’s my dad. She says things “build” over time, so you could be doing something that you have zero idea is bugging her, but then all of a sudden you’ll do something seemingly minuscule, then *boom*.
 

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Make her homemade cinnamon rolls. Nobody can be angry while eating cream cheese frosting.

Although I don't know if she's avoiding sugar if she has fibro and other health stuff going on... Maybe a healthy meal would be better?
I think ISFJs often really appreciate acts of service too, anything to lighten her load...
 

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Oh man, my dad is an SFJ, my BF growing up is an ISFJ, and a another very close family member I've had a lot of interaction with this last decade or so is an ISFJ. First thing I can say is, enneagram makes a big difference. The approach with the 6's (validating perception, calming insecurities/listening and not judging 'doomsday' mindset, and demonstrating a more secure attachment to them with confidence, no matter the push-pull volatility they throw up, as well as just getting them to breathe and laugh a bit, in the face of life's absuridities) just doesn't fly as well with the e2 (who wants to be loved, be appreciated, be recognized for their sacrifices and support, and who wants some evidence that you 'need' them on some level). So, really take enneagram into consideration here, because it's very much a thang.

Ime, tbh.. ya kinda have to fuck with them at considerable length, really pound on their triggers, to get them to a point of extreme frustration or anger. Like every time I've gotten any of these guys so riled to the point they see nothing but red capes, I have admitted to myself that it's very deserved. I'd been taking them for granted, and considerably... but it's strange because they just set themselves up for this shit in so many ways.. it takes some real self-awareness and active attention to their deeper (unexpressed) needs to not do so, unfortunately. That's just my exp. though, not everyone is the same, of course.

Intp's just aren't the best for emotional support. I love INTP's (have yet to meet even one, in my long string of jobs and educational pursuits or friend-circles) who I didn't instantly feel drawn to, fascinated by, greatly admiring their endless well of knowledge, problem-solving, analsysis and peculiar ideas - social-awkwardness be damned. But ya'll suck with emotional support. That emotional vulnerability, connection.. being able to 'get on a level' with someone who isn't throwing up a billion ideas or 'rational solutions' to the world, but to just BE with someone, and connect to that instinctive feeling state, it's just not something you guys do easily. My closest sibling is an INTP. He flies out 3-4 times a year to see me. It's fun, I take him to a bajillion different places wanting to share with him whatever new 'experience' I'm seeking at the time, we have countless awesome discussions, he makes me listen to various podcasts, conspiracy theories, etc. But it always ends with a bottle of Jack and him and I sitting out in nature, drunk AF, rehashing all the shit of our family dynamics, patterns, deepest fears, vulnerabilities, etc. Crying, hugging each other, and vowing that no matter what goes down, we will always have each other. I've got to get him drunk you see, activate the inferior..to 'bring him here' because, he can't do it any other way. I'm not saying its healthy, it's not. We just don't care. You work with what you have, with where your conscious level of development is. My siblings and I have been through the absolute wringer, in terms of 'generational shame/abuse' etc.. and we make the very fucking best of it it, in all it's ugly and broken beauty.

Anyawaay.

Relationships are give-give. It doesn't matter if you 'see it' as they do. It doesn't matter than 90% of the shit the ISFJ does for you isn't expected, asked for, needed or even wanted. They do it, and it probably makes your life easier in ways you cant even comprehend, until it's gone.

So give back. Figure out what they need, and give it back the best you can. Little deeds, little moments of thinking of them when you don't have to, small things they want and greatly care about, but will never ask you for.

Hope it helps!
 

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See what she complains about but still does like chores, cooking or maybe some other mundane actions, and take mental notes of what time she usually has to do these tasks. Maybe take it upon yourself to help do some of these tasks before she gets a chance to. She’ll be glad that she got help but didn’t have to ask for it. Moms will enjoy a break now and then and I think yours will feel more appreciated that you considered the things she needs help with and did it from the heart and not because she asked you to do them.
 

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Oh man, my dad is an SFJ, my BF growing up is an ISFJ, and a another very close family member I've had a lot of interaction with this last decade or so is an ISFJ. First thing I can say is, enneagram makes a big difference. The approach with the 6's (validating perception, calming insecurities/listening and not judging 'doomsday' mindset, and demonstrating a more secure attachment to them with confidence, no matter the push-pull volatility they throw up, as well as just getting them to breathe and laugh a bit, in the face of life's absuridities) just doesn't fly as well with the e2 (who wants to be loved, be appreciated, be recognized for their sacrifices and support, and who wants some evidence that you 'need' them on some level). So, really take enneagram into consideration here, because it's very much a thang.
Okay.... so how should an ISFJ e4 be handled?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Make her homemade cinnamon rolls. Nobody can be angry while eating cream cheese frosting.

Although I don't know if she's avoiding sugar if she has fibro and other health stuff going on... Maybe a healthy meal would be better?
I think ISFJs often really appreciate acts of service too, anything to lighten her load...
She has major TMJ, a lot of the gum? I believe? Has dissolved in her jaw, she has to blend/juice a lot of stuff, and yes she’s avoiding sugar for the most part. Her diet is very limited. I could try to make her a healthy ginger juice or something in that nature.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Oh man, my dad is an SFJ, my BF growing up is an ISFJ, and a another very close family member I've had a lot of interaction with this last decade or so is an ISFJ. First thing I can say is, enneagram makes a big difference. The approach with the 6's (validating perception, calming insecurities/listening and not judging 'doomsday' mindset, and demonstrating a more secure attachment to them with confidence, no matter the push-pull volatility they throw up, as well as just getting them to breathe and laugh a bit, in the face of life's absuridities) just doesn't fly as well with the e2 (who wants to be loved, be appreciated, be recognized for their sacrifices and support, and who wants some evidence that you 'need' them on some level). So, really take enneagram into consideration here, because it's very much a thang.

Ime, tbh.. ya kinda have to fuck with them at considerable length, really pound on their triggers, to get them to a point of extreme frustration or anger. Like every time I've gotten any of these guys so riled to the point they see nothing but red capes, I have admitted to myself that it's very deserved. I'd been taking them for granted, and considerably... but it's strange because they just set themselves up for this shit in so many ways.. it takes some real self-awareness and active attention to their deeper (unexpressed) needs to not do so, unfortunately. That's just my exp. though, not everyone is the same, of course.

Intp's just aren't the best for emotional support. I love INTP's (have yet to meet even one, in my long string of jobs and educational pursuits or friend-circles) who I didn't instantly feel drawn to, fascinated by, greatly admiring their endless well of knowledge, problem-solving, analsysis and peculiar ideas - social-awkwardness be damned. But ya'll suck with emotional support. That emotional vulnerability, connection.. being able to 'get on a level' with someone who isn't throwing up a billion ideas or 'rational solutions' to the world, but to just BE with someone, and connect to that instinctive feeling state, it's just not something you guys do easily. My closest sibling is an INTP. He flies out 3-4 times a year to see me. It's fun, I take him to a bajillion different places wanting to share with him whatever new 'experience' I'm seeking at the time, we have countless awesome discussions, he makes me listen to various podcasts, conspiracy theories, etc. But it always ends with a bottle of Jack and him and I sitting out in nature, drunk AF, rehashing all the shit of our family dynamics, patterns, deepest fears, vulnerabilities, etc. Crying, hugging each other, and vowing that no matter what goes down, we will always have each other. I've got to get him drunk you see, activate the inferior..to 'bring him here' because, he can't do it any other way. I'm not saying its healthy, it's not. We just don't care. You work with what you have, with where your conscious level of development is. My siblings and I have been through the absolute wringer, in terms of 'generational shame/abuse' etc.. and we make the very fucking best of it it, in all it's ugly and broken beauty.

Anyawaay.

Relationships are give-give. It doesn't matter if you 'see it' as they do. It doesn't matter than 90% of the shit the ISFJ does for you isn't expected, asked for, needed or even wanted. They do it, and it probably makes your life easier in ways you cant even comprehend, until it's gone.

So give back. Figure out what they need, and give it back the best you can. Little deeds, little moments of thinking of them when you don't have to, small things they want and greatly care about, but will never ask you for.

Hope it helps!
That does help, a big thing for her is health. Currently her recent blowup has been about my dad and i’s eating habits. I’ve concluded that she’s upset because she feels at a loss like she can’t help us be healthier. She feels defeated, and useless, unappreciated, etc. I’m a big fan of Japanese food, despite being the absolute farthest from Asian. I admire a lot of the older style foods, and the health benefits they have. My dad and I went to the store today, I read all the labels, plan on making everything from scratch (got dashi kombu, dried shiitake, sweet potato vermicelli, rice sticks, buckwheat soba, miso, etc.) I plan on sending her some articles of all the health benefits of those things, and show her I’m really trying. I also plan on cleaning my room, lighting a candle, and doing that as well. Hopefully, just hopefully it helps. I can’t do emotional support, so maybe actions will show better.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Update: Lit a match to light my candle, smells like match smoke now. Which is kind of the opposite I was trying to do. (Whoops)
 

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She has major TMJ, a lot of the gum? I believe? Has dissolved in her jaw, she has to blend/juice a lot of stuff, and yes she’s avoiding sugar for the most part. Her diet is very limited. I could try to make her a healthy ginger juice or something in that nature.
That sounds like a great idea, just be careful with raw ginger juice (too much can cause stomach pain/ulceration). Usually not more than a teaspoon or two at a time does the trick, dilute with water or tea, and it's good to blend a little honey/lemon/turmeric to mellow it out.

My dad and I went to the store today, I read all the labels, plan on making everything from scratch (got dashi kombu, dried shiitake, sweet potato vermicelli, rice sticks, buckwheat soba, miso, etc.) I plan on sending her some articles of all the health benefits of those things, and show her I’m really trying.
Delicious!!! Sounds on point. Hope she gets back to feeling better soon and the wrath ends :)
 

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That sounds like a great idea, just be careful with raw ginger juice (too much can cause stomach pain/ulceration). Usually not more than a teaspoon or two at a time does the trick, dilute with water or tea, and it's good to blend a little honey/lemon/turmeric to mellow it out.



Delicious!!! Sounds on point. Hope she gets back to feeling better soon and the wrath ends :)
If I do make it, I plan on mixing it with celery juice, maybe some carrots, or something like that. I hope it works too lol.
 

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All I can usually do for my ISFJ e9 is give him space and try to do something thoughtful for him later. But yeah like others have said it takes him a lot to get angry. The little symbolic actions seem to go over well.
 

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@Chyceria Disarming an angry ISFJ is best done by vanishing off the face of the earth for a little while. If you have to interact with them and they're voicing their grievances, utilize the fine art of nonviolent communication, for which I'll provide the standard sequence:

1.) Listen to them rant and rave; moreover, look as though you're engaged with them, nodding your head and occasional short statements of understanding or agreement. "Yes," "I see," or "Mhm," work well. Be certain that your body language portrays that you are open and attentive.

2.) When they let up for a moment, issue a statement of empathy of sympathy. Otherwise, summarize what they said concisely and accurately, acknowledging your perceived shortcomings and their specific arguments.

3.) Once they are wound down and are convinced that you understand (and this in truth could a while) they will be very open to suggestion. Don't do anything to instigate them again though. If you wish to present your own arguments, frame or alter them to make it (as though) you're helping them too, along with yourself.

If all else fails, just bribe them with stuff that they like, though this likely will make them take you and your gifts for granted over time. This phenomenon of desensitization happens to everyone.
 

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@Chyceria Disarming an angry ISFJ is best done by vanishing off the face of the earth for a little while. If you have to interact with them and they're voicing their grievances, utilize the fine art of nonviolent communication, for which I'll provide the standard sequence:

1.) Listen to them rant and rave; moreover, look as though you're engaged with them, nodding your head and occasional short statements of understanding or agreement. "Yes," "I see," or "Mhm," work well. Be certain that your body language portrays that you are open and attentive.

2.) When they let up for a moment, issue a statement of empathy of sympathy. Otherwise, summarize what they said concisely and accurately, acknowledging your perceived shortcomings and their specific arguments.

3.) Once they are wound down and are convinced that you understand (and this in truth could a while) they will be very open to suggestion. Don't do anything to instigate them again though. If you wish to present your own arguments, frame or alter them to make it (as though) you're helping them too, along with yourself.

If all else fails, just bribe them with stuff that they like, though this likely will make them take you and your gifts for granted over time. This phenomenon of desensitization happens to everyone.
Not too bad. I'd add in the following:

1.2) Offer a hug. Let them hug you as long as they want and/or appropriate for the type of relationship.

2.1) Offer them a favorite beverage at this point.

3.1) Another hug.
 

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Other than that, I know C.S. Joseph has a video series on social engineering all of the types. It might serve you well to see the one on ISFJs.
 

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@Chyceria Disarming an angry ISFJ is best done by vanishing off the face of the earth for a little while. If you have to interact with them and they're voicing their grievances, utilize the fine art of nonviolent communication, for which I'll provide the standard sequence:

1.) Listen to them rant and rave; moreover, look as though you're engaged with them, nodding your head and occasional short statements of understanding or agreement. "Yes," "I see," or "Mhm," work well. Be certain that your body language portrays that you are open and attentive.

2.) When they let up for a moment, issue a statement of empathy of sympathy. Otherwise, summarize what they said concisely and accurately, acknowledging your perceived shortcomings and their specific arguments.

3.) Once they are wound down and are convinced that you understand (and this in truth could a while) they will be very open to suggestion. Don't do anything to instigate them again though. If you wish to present your own arguments, frame or alter them to make it (as though) you're helping them too, along with yourself.

If all else fails, just bribe them with stuff that they like, though this likely will make them take you and your gifts for granted over time. This phenomenon of desensitization happens to everyone.
Listening to the ranting has worked in the past, though she says my listening face looks stupid and non attentive. (Normally it's because I'm trying to stay pretty neutral in by behaviour. Then sometimes I'll start crying if I feel hurt (Which puts me in an internal panic because I hate crying in front of people.) Then sometimes she'll ask while I'm crying and I'll feel pressured because I don't know what to say or how.)
I suck at showing sympathy and empathy. It just seems like a process to me, so I try to identify the situation, place myself in said situation, realize that it makes no sense, but still try to word it from their point of view even though I have 0 Idea what's going on. Just straight agreeing with her works, but that feels like a defeat if I absolutely don't agree.
She doesn't do bribing, I've tried. Though one time like 5 years ago she took one of my devices, and she said I could have it back if I gave her one of my pancakes, so that worked.
 

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First, don't tell her to calm down.

Second, ask her what you can do to help. If she saying nothing ... then let her pout, it's not your problem.
 
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