So my ENFP friend told me "I don't want to get emotionally involved with someone, mainly because as of late I'm not feeling any kind of emotion...or maybe I've been overwhelmed with them and I'm numb now." She then went on to say "I mean like I don't feel any emotion. I just exist."
This seemed odd to me because she's an ENFP and I know they're supposed to be all about emotions and feelings and all that stuff. So my question is this: How do I cheer her up and what exactly do you think I should interpret that as? She has definitely seemed down lately and I can tell she really isn't very happy. She's stressed out because she works full time and is in school full time (she hates her job).
Disclaimer: No, I'm not trying to get romantically involved. She is just a friend. We have dated in the past for 8 or so months but it's 100% over and we have remained friends.
I've been through that for a least once this year.
I had this friend whom I recently and we became very good friends in school. She would tell me about everything and anything and she would listen to me blabber on just about anything.
So one day, she was telling me about her problems and it just so happens that I had something important to do, I told her I'd call her later and talk to her about it and left promptly.
Later on I called her but it wasn't answered, worried that she's getting more depressed by the moment I sent her a couple of texts and called her a few more times because it was not like her to not talk about something.
Anyways, she ignored me so I kinda left it at that because that whole week I was really busy with something. After my time freed up a little, I always went back to the place where we would meet up and talk about things to look for her. She wasn't there but I still headed there for a week waiting for her to show up.
After a week I felt something was wrong so I asked a friend of hers, apparently she told her friend that I'm really weird and freaking her out because I cared for her, she said that even boyfriends don't do that, she said that she was freaked out by me. And apparently she also hates the fact that sometimes I'm critical to myself and my abilities. So that was why she was avoiding me.
I remember getting so depressed about that , that I literally stopped talking to everyone, instead just going to the park and sit on the bench for hours thinking what had I done wrong. I tried talking to a good friend of mine but he just brushed it off saying these exact words :
Lol, too bad.
Which made me even more sadder than ever, but I don't know what happened but I eventually got over it. I still think about it today and I really don't get why caring for someone is bad and weird and something that a friend shouldn't do.
Anyways that's just me
The only thing that cheers me up right now is exercise and sex. And chocolate. :wink: I'm sure others will give you some better recommendations...
Thank you very much for this insightful, informative and heart-felt post about the inner-workings of the ENFP. It sounds like you have a good understanding of what you're talking about and this helped me to understand a bit more:happy: I will make it a point to let her know that she's not broken/wrong like you say and make sure she knows that I value her.I've been in this place before, too. I started numbing out and shutting down because I kept getting signals from the world and society that I was somehow "broken" or "wrong." There was something fundamentally unwantable about me that kept others from being interested in me, romantically, socially, vocationally.
What brought me out of it was a good therapist, but what this therapist focused on was getting me to lighten up on myself; she gave me permission to be me. One of the reasons she was so successful at this was because she was a neutral party, someone who had no real emotional investment in trying to cheer me up, so I felt I could trust her judgment more than that of my friends (who, in my damaged opinion at the time, were still by my side because they felt sorry and pitied my pathetic ass).
To dissect your friend's problem a bit more, I'd wager that she's numb because she's trained herself to be that way. I'll use myself to demonstrate. In the process of feeling like all of society was telling me I was wrong and broken and unworthy, I had been behaving like a fun, off-kilter ENFP, being funny, clever, etc. And a string of people--co-workers, friends, complete strangers--shut me down. Told me not to act the way I normally do. Seemed to be embarrassed to be with me, or showed disgust at my "juvenile" behavior.
It made me question myself, and my self worth. So I started binding away those things that make me who I am--the funny, the clever, the spontaneously compassionate. Core things for an ENFP, really. But I shut them down because enough people had reacted poorly to them and I took the hint as if I were in the wrong, breaking societal rules. Like the one whose cell phone rings in a theater.
I call it foot-binding of the soul. It's a hellish place to be. I can only speculate, but your friend may be in this process somewhere.
And the best thing to do about this is to find a way to let your friend know that she's NOT broken, that she's NOT wrong, that it's okay for her to be who she is, and that the person she is is someone valued and loved. Just because some people look down their noses at her doesn't mean that she is, fundamentally, unwantable.
I hope this is, in some way, useful. And I wish you and her the best.
This was a funny and helpful post. I have employed your methods of "weird stream of talking". It's fun and gets her more into her normal happy, random, hilarious, crazy self.:happy:When I feel super down which is quite a bit because I get severely depressed about three times a year, I find the thing that helps me is for me to go out with my ENFP friend and just get inspired by her Ne and Se going wild. "OOOH AND I was reading about pandas yesterday and.... oooh look, carrots!....haha, look at that man, he looks like a walrus!.... do you think it's weird to sunbake in public while pregnant?..."
Just a weird stream of talking. It pulls me out of my head and into the world and always re-energizes me =)
This was a funny and helpful post. I have employed your methods of "weird stream of talking". It's fun and gets her more into her normal happy, random, hilarious, crazy self.:happy: