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I’m feeling very misunderstood. Which I suppose is not all that odd for an INFP. I’m just getting tired of the general attitude that there is something wrong with people, like myself, who keep to themselves and mind their own business.

I had a dispute with my neighbor, a man in his 70s, several months ago. It was quite upsetting at the time, but I would have gotten over it if it hadn’t taken such a strange turn. The neighbor told my husband he was afraid of me, which was really out of left field, because I have always been polite to him in the past, though not overly solicitous.

My husband believes the neighbor really is afraid of me. I’m insulted both by the neighbor’s lie and by the fact that my husband thinks he isn’t lying and defends the neighbor’s point of view. The neighbor continues to go out of his way to avoid me and has told several other people on our street that he’s scared of me. I feel as if he has started a smear campaign, ruining my reputation and causing others to "fear" me as well.

My husband said to me that it’s really not such a stretch for people to think I’m scary and possibly dangerous because I’m quiet and keep to myself. :shocked:It’s like it’s okay to label someone as a potentially dangerous psychopath because they prefer to mind their own business. I’m an average looking middle aged woman. I have nice, well-mannered children and several pets I take very good care of. I don’t yell or drive recklessly. My lack of interest in socializing with this neighbor and his wife apparently offends them and means I’m unbalanced, scary, and liable to snap at any moment.

I’m so fed up with this I could scream. How is wanting to mind my own business the same thing as being scary? What is wrong with people?!

I’m not really writing about the particulars of my situation, I’m just wondering if there are other people who are regarded as hopelessly strange just because they want to live their own quiet lives and mind their own business. Any insight as to why people find this offensive - and frightening? Do they really think they’re so fascinating we should spend every waking hour listening to them blither about themselves? Why are loners scary?
 

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Have you thought about confrontation? I don't know if it's something you are comfortable with, but how about you invite your neighbors over for a nice chat over tea. That might give you a chance to show your neighbors your good side and you can also use that time with the guy to gently ask him what 'scares' him and explain that you're just not a social creature.
Nothing bad could come out of that because either:
1. he'll walk away understanding you (I hope) or
2. nothing will change, and you will understand that despite your efforts, the problems is HIS that he cannot understand. This is your cue to come to the conclusion that he is a self righteous prick.

I think loners are fascinating. Your neighbor sounds like a selfish, egoistic freak looool. still, try and work things out with him!

I think there is probably just a lack of communication going on (requiring you to step up, I'm afraid, since no one else seems to be strong enough to do that in this case) or, if you have found you have tried to fix things but to no avail, your neighbor has a problem of his own.
 

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I’m insulted both by the neighbor’s lie and by the fact that my husband thinks he isn’t lying and defends the neighbor’s point of view.
So basically, you're invalidating someone else's feelings, saying what someone else is feeling is not legitimate.

Didn't most INFPs grow up with parents and peers invalidating our feelings telling us how we feel about something isn't legitimate? Why do we go around doing this to others?

Everyone has a right to how they feel whether we agree with them or not. And it's none of our business how someone feels about us. What if they start telling everyone how they feel. Everyone has a right to an opinion and to express that opinion to other people.

We can't control what other people think or what other people feel. We can only control how we choose to react, our feelings, our thoughts and our actions.
 

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I wish I can hug you, because this is also happening to me as of late. I see that you are an American, and as far as we both know, the US is very ESxx driven, so they are very fearful of INxx types. That's not to say that every ESxx types are like this... some ESxx types I've found on this site are absolute sweethearts. I'm just talking about those who refuse to stop and get to know other types of personalities that is not the same as their own.

Unfortunately, introverts have always been painted with the bad brush. We are seen as psychotic, evil, Gothic, scary, etc. I say, ignore these neighbors. They don't sound like a group of intelligent people, anyway!

You have my emotional support if you need it. :(
 

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While it definitely doesn't make sense to me and I suspect most INFP's on here, it's known that people jump to conclusions. There is a common assumption that you must be plotting or having some kind of dark thought if you're quiet. It's mostly a belief enduced by the media. Think about it. In every thriller/horror movie, it's never the life of the party who ends up being the serial killer, right? Instead, it's most often the withdrawn, quiet person who has a weird vibe. I'm not saying it's fair, it's just how it is. Being quiet automatically means you're hiding something, because you're simply not sharing your thoughts.

That being said, I'm sure your neighbor must be a tad paranoid for him to broadcast that all over the neighborhood.
 

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Well to start off wow I must say I can completly relate to you in this situation... When i was in highschool i was seen as depressed, suicidal, and unfriendly evn though i never so much as said anything negative about anyone. So your not alone in feeling completly misunderstood and hurt by how people label quit, introverted people such as us.

People fear what they do not understand, they fear the unknown, so when they come across a fellow who keeps to themselves they will of course be suspicious as to why that person keeps to themselves. People always assume were hiding something or that we dislike other people. Its sad this is the way most peole will view us but its true. Im very humble, gentle, and caring inside, but most of my life people have viewed me as arrogant, angry, and uncaring. Its just the way the world works, the fact is were introverts in a prominantly extroverted world. Im not sayng all extroverts are like that i've meet plenty that were really good people, but is not hard to understand why they view us as odditys, as something that needs to be fixed. So in short (sorry i was venting) no you are by no means alone in feeling like this but just be strong and be you, people can speculate and say what they want be you know what kind of person you are and nothing they say will change who that person is.
 

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Oh..... lol..... I would be so tempted to *add* to my *Loner* strangeness if this guy were my neighbor. I'd start embellishing my character with antics. Hehe.. How utterly devious of this neighbor to tell your husband, he knew the message would get right back to you.

In defense of "loners" I post this excerpt from the Party of One site:

Welcome to the homepage of Anneli Rufus. This page is about my book Party of One: the Loners' Manifesto.



Here we are, having this rendezvous without having to see each other, without having to be in the same place at the same time, without having to talk or check each other out or wear decent clothes. It's loner time.

My book Party of One is about our subculture - the subculture that will never, by nature, join hands and whose voices will never, by nature, form a chorus. Some loners are neuroscientists and some are office cleaners. Some are sculptors and some are Survivor fans. Some are law students and some are surfers. No two loners are alike, but all of us have one thing in common: we like to be alone. We like it. Everyone else - nonloners, that is — can't stand to be alone. They squirm. They feel ashamed. They yearn for company when they're alone. They're bored and don't know what to do. They're lonely.

We're not.

Maybe we're not holed up in caves all day, or in submarines like Captain Nemo in his Nautilus. But alone we feel most normal. Most ourselves. Most alive.


Mainstream culture loves nonloners. Joiners, schmoozers, teamworkers, congregants and all those who play well with others scoop up the rewards.

Meanwhile, loners get dissed. All the time. At school, at work, at church or temple, in movies, loners are misunderstood, misjudged, loathed, pitied and feared. Reporters and profilers calmly and constantly call us perverts, losers, stalkers and serial killers.

If every headline that includes the word "loner" had "Canadian" or "certified public accountant" instead, imagine the outcry.

Nonloners call loners crazy. Cold. Stuck-up. Standoffish. Selfish. Sad. Bad. Secretive. But we know being a loner isn't about hating people. It's about essence, about necessity. We need what others dread. We dread what others need.

Do birds hate lips? Do Fijians detest snowplows?

A journalist and the author of several critically acclaimed books, and a lifelong loner, I wrote Party of One as a way to expose mainstream culture’s antiloner prejudice. But I also wrote it to show the ways in which loners have not just survived but actually changed the world, not just saved civilization but had a lot to do with creating it.

Famous loners span every era, every realm. Albert Einstein, Anne Rice, Michelangelo, Barry Bonds, Isaac Newton, Franz Kafka, Stanley Kubrick, Janet Reno, John Lennon, James Michener, Emily Dickinson, Alexander Pope, Hermann Hesse, Paul Westerberg, Georgia O’Keeffe, Kurt Cobain, Haruki Murakami, Gustav Klimt, Charles Schulz, Dan Clowes, Piet Mondrian, Saint Anthony, H.P. Lovecraft, Beatrix Potter and Joe DiMaggio....

Not to mention Superman, Batman and Shiva.

So — as the pickpockets sang in the musical Oliver! — consider yourself one of us.
 

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I know how it feels to be misunderstood. You feel like you didn't do anything to deserve these assumptions about you, and you feel powerless. I've been called "stuck-up" enough times by people who don't know me at all to make me wonder what the heck I am doing to come across that way. I figure it's because I am bad at small talk, despite my effort at changing this. It actually makes me feel paranoid and pressured when I'm around strangers because I am so worried about seeming stuck up. It feels weird to try to conform to people's expectations just so that you don't get called a name.

People are scared of what they don't understand. Your neighbor probably doesn't understand you and therefore, you are scary to him. You don't fit in to what he thinks a woman should be like. You stand out. I would be offended at first by his fear, but since you don't think you have done anything to warrant this, maybe the best plan is to just laugh at it. He's an old man, maybe he has his ways. You also have your ways. So you appear scary to him... oh well. As long as he doesn't call the police for no reason or try to kill you, I'd just try to laugh at it.

Makes me wonder if this is how some minorities feel when they are just out minding their own business. Because they aren't of the dominant race, people think they are scary. They haven't done anything to warrant this, they just look different. It's an ignorant way to look at people, but it happens. How do they deal with it? I would imagine the best course of action is to ignore it and go about your business. Prove to people that you aren't doing anything to threaten them and that you are actually a cool person.
 

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It sucks to feel misunderstood, but you gotta look at this.

Implied assertions:
1) I don't want to socialize or go out of my way to build a certain image with my neighbors or anyone not my family.
2) I care what they think about me.

It may be hard to have both at the same time. I'm not saying your neighbors view is accurate, but peope are often not accurate, so who cares? You know it doesn't accurately reflect you.

But at the same time, if you want people to see the good things you see in yourself, that generally requires a little exposure on your part-- you have to show those parts to people. Or else how do they know they exist? you've chosen to be a loner and "isolate" yourself from others, which is fine, but that also means you have little control over the opinions of you in the social arena.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Actually, I'm quite sure I don't fit his idea of what a woman should be. His wife is a non-stop talker. And I mean NON-STOP. I used to make more of an effort, years ago, to be more "neighborly" towards them. I would sometimes stop by their house because that seemed to be the accepted protocol on my street. But I'd intend to stop by to say hi and stay for 10 minutes, and this idiot woman would talk for two hours without ever coming up for a breath or letting me say a word. If I tried to add to the conversation she would talk over me and never acknowledge I had tried to say anything. I had kids, a job, things to do - I didn't have two hours to spend being the faceless entity she needed to direct her monolouges at. The man rarely spoke (probably never got a chance), and I actually sort of liked him. He seemed even-tempered and easy-going.

So I gradually distanced myself because I just really couldn't deal with that non-stop chatter. I was still friendly when I saw them, I just made excuses about what I had to do and went on my way. Life's busy. I didn't think much about it. I really think this man thinks that women who chatter endlessly are normal, and anything else is suspect. I personally think his wife is the weird one.

My mother is also an INFP and my husband told me that he has only just come to the conclusion that there's nothing wrong with her for not being a social butterfly. He also apparently thought/thinks that women who keep to themselves are flawed. His mother is always up in everybody's business, talking, talking, talking - so that's what he thinks is normal, too. I guess I'm beginning to understand why he believes the neighbor is scared of me - he must be creeped out by quiet women, too.
 

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I'm not so sure if you're up to this but I'll give it a shot.

A few years back, there were a lot of rumors going around about me. It included me being an alcoholic, a drug user, a drug dealer and a college drop out. They were so bizarre that I laughed out loud.

I decided to have fun with it. Instead of defending myself, I actually made detailed stories on how I became an alcoholic, drug using, drug dealing college drop out. For example, I said that the reason why I was always absent Mondays back in high school was that I purchased my drugs during the weekends. The best supply came from a city 7 hours away from my home, so when Monday came, I was exhausted.

It was fun doing it. Especially when one of my close friends commented, "What the?? I'm half shocked." It was funny. My brother asked me why I didn't defend myself. I told him that it wasn't necessary. It was up to them whether they believed it or not. As long as I was at peace with myself, what they thought didn't really matter.

Now, you have three options:
1. You can have a kick out of it like I have.
2. You can ignore them.
3. You can confront them.

Ask yourself which of the three choices will restore your peace of mind. The easiest choice doesn't necessarily mean that it'll grant you peace of mind. Any strong emotion has to be tempered throughout a period of time. Emotions cannot be bottled up. They can but it'll result to outburst.

You said that this started several months ago. What's done is done. Now, focus on present and slowly regulate those emotions. Confront your husband first. Do it with compassion and composure. When you are peace with what your husband thinks of you, move on to your neighbor. Do it step by step.
 

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I don't see myself as invalidating this man's feelings. I see him as lying about what he feels, to garner sympathy. It's working great for him.
Saying that someone is lying about his feeling is invalidating what he's feelings.

Oh no, you're not feeling what you say your feeling, your lying about it to garner sympathy. That bully at school wasn't really bullying you were imagining it to get sympathy. Your teacher isn't mean, you're just saying that to get sympathy. Your brother or sister isn't picking on you; you shouldn't feel so sensitive and toughen up.

What do you think invalidating someone's feeling is?

That's the thing about life. We have no clue how other people really feel. We only know what they tell us. At that point, we can either choose to take them at their word or we don't and then decide what we want to do about that decision.

My typical response is, does this person's negative feeling towards me affect my chances of getting all my dreams accomplished? If the answer is no, then it's not my responsibility to manage someone else's feelings or behavior. I have my life to live and no time to live someone else's.
 

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It's always the quiet ones! Herp derp! I remember this from when you last posted about it and I'm sorry it hasn't resolved.

I can just about guarantee that any new social or work situation will bring with at least one, and probably more, people that don't dig my shit in a very outspoken way. @thepurpletheory I loved your post :D ; drug addict seems to be a popular verdict that gets laid on me and I can also be a bit mischievous. Sounds like something I might do.

Anyway, if nothing else you have my sympathy and empathy both.
 

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Actually, I'm quite sure I don't fit his idea of what a woman should be. His wife is a non-stop talker. And I mean NON-STOP. I used to make more of an effort, years ago, to be more "neighborly" towards them. I would sometimes stop by their house because that seemed to be the accepted protocol on my street. But I'd intend to stop by to say hi and stay for 10 minutes, and this idiot woman would talk for two hours without ever coming up for a breath or letting me say a word. If I tried to add to the conversation she would talk over me and never acknowledge I had tried to say anything. I had kids, a job, things to do - I didn't have two hours to spend being the faceless entity she needed to direct her monolouges at. The man rarely spoke (probably never got a chance), and I actually sort of liked him. He seemed even-tempered and easy-going.

So I gradually distanced myself because I just really couldn't deal with that non-stop chatter. I was still friendly when I saw them, I just made excuses about what I had to do and went on my way. Life's busy. I didn't think much about it. I really think this man thinks that women who chatter endlessly are normal, and anything else is suspect. I personally think his wife is the weird one.

My mother is also an INFP and my husband told me that he has only just come to the conclusion that there's nothing wrong with her for not being a social butterfly. He also apparently thought/thinks that women who keep to themselves are flawed. His mother is always up in everybody's business, talking, talking, talking - so that's what he thinks is normal, too. I guess I'm beginning to understand why he believes the neighbor is scared of me - he must be creeped out by quiet women, too.
I don't understand, if your husband thinks such things, why did he choose to marry you, a quiet woman?
 
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I’m feeling very misunderstood. Which I suppose is not all that odd for an INFP. I’m just getting tired of the general attitude that there is something wrong with people, like myself, who keep to themselves and mind their own business.

I had a dispute with my neighbor, a man in his 70s, several months ago. It was quite upsetting at the time, but I would have gotten over it if it hadn’t taken such a strange turn. The neighbor told my husband he was afraid of me, which was really out of left field, because I have always been polite to him in the past, though not overly solicitous.

My husband believes the neighbor really is afraid of me. I’m insulted both by the neighbor’s lie and by the fact that my husband thinks he isn’t lying and defends the neighbor’s point of view. The neighbor continues to go out of his way to avoid me and has told several other people on our street that he’s scared of me. I feel as if he has started a smear campaign, ruining my reputation and causing others to "fear" me as well.

Keeping to yourself is not a reason for someone to make a defamatory comment about you. I can totally understand how you feel about this and if you need someone to talk to send me a message.
 

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As an introvert, I would find a bit strange a behavior when someone is very loud during his date and talking non-stop in a coffee shop/book shop setting where people are reading and studying. It is mind-tiring just to listen to such excited, enthusiastic chatter about not so exciting things and high tone of voice - like somebody is in his manic mood. I notice other people are not bothered as much. Then, I say to myself: “it is ok, I can tolerate this behavior because person being himself extroverting, and is trying to impress his date.” Consequently, I will not judge him anymore, and I will accept his behavior although it somewhat disturbs my reading.

In my life I was told by people that I am on a trip, stuck-up, weird, arrogant, and plotting against people ("the quiet ones are most dangerous and sneaky who knows what they are plotting in their mind" - type of rhetoric - and this I was told by my manager, and she was looking me straight in the face while she was telling this to other employees in a lunchroom full of people. Later, she would acknowledge that I do a very good job and used me for heavier work/higher decision making work and more complicated tasks). Apparently, when my manager needed me because others would not put so much energy in their work, I was ok person then. People are very superficial in how fast they can form their opinions without further examination and without willingness to give you a chance.

I think that people who are different - whether they look differently, talk with accent, or differently socially interact than the majority (e.g. quiet, calm, reserved, shy - as the impression I give) are seen as strange and weird and dangerous. I call that a jumping to conclusions type of behavior and that is somewhat primitive to my mindset when you do not take time to observe or take a cause and effect into consideration nor you try to understand that not all people must look or behave or talk like you. People would give me a mean look or a surprised scared look (like I am some kind of a terorist) when they heard me talking in my native language to my granny who does not speak English, and she is unable to learn it due her dementia. So yeah, people either act paranoid, or mean, or embellish things, or become ignorant when a person does not fit their norm of “normal,” or they do not identify with a person who is also a human being but different. It does hurt when such non-tolerant behavior is repeated consistently because no matter how INFPish someone is, one still wants to belong in a sense that you are not ostracized or at least you are left alone because of something that you can hardly change or have to give a great effort to change, and in the process of changing your previous preferences (becoming much more social) you would feel very fake, tense, and tired despite the fact that you are neutral toward those people or even like those people.
As for your neighbour, I believe that he has more than one reason than that he just finds you danagerous (not only because he just sees you as different); I think he just likes to embelish, gossip, and is a very petty as well as a revengeful person.
 

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Saying that someone is lying about his feeling is invalidating what he's feelings.
In this case, it's calling him out on his stupidity and closed mindedness. People like this make life less worth living.

TV Tropes has a whole entry on this paradigm, called "Loners Are Freaks".

Anyway, to the original poster of this thread, I have had this problem MY ENTIRE LIFE.The most common adjective that anyone has ever predicated to describe has been "creepy". And I hate it. I hate everything about it. "Creepy" is my least favorite word in the English language. In fact, here's an excerpt from my memoir about it:

I loved individuals, but I hated groups of people. Attending any social gathering for purposes of meeting someone new was an empty and depressing experience. If I spent too much time with any group of people, even people I liked, I began to suffocate. The real me hated bars and parties. God knew I had no talent for small talk. Talk to me for any length of time, and I’d shamelessly cut open my own sternum with a scalpel, spread apart the rib cage, sever the largest arteries between my lungs, grasp my heart, and extend it outward to whomever would listen with as much sincerity as if I were offering the Body of Christ.


Ah, but what did the people say? Wendy didn’t bother inviting me to her wedding, though she invited nearly everyone else from the anime club. I was told it because she thought I was creepy. Marina didn’t really care for me, either, saying I was creepy, and that I was always staring at her breasts. The latter was news to me. Colleen absolutely detested my presence in the lounge on campus, not that she owned it, because I was creepy. Rick said I was the perfect tenant, because I never made any noise or messes. I also rarely spoke to him about anything. I saw it as respecting his privacies. Rick just thought it was creepy. Aaron’s mother said I struck her as a rather creepy fellow, I think, when Aaron tried to tell her about a movie I recommended. Mary told the rest of the Produce department that I was creepy, and that I looked like the sort of person who’d show up to work with a shotgun, whatever those people look like. My cousin Veronica said I was creepy, too. Something about the way I hugged her, I was told. Candy, a friend of my ex, said I was creepy. And what did those two disgusting harpies, Crystal and Candy, have to say about my memoir Half-Born? Only one word: Creepy.

Creepy? Well fuck the world, then!


I’d been misunderstood for most of my life. I’d been savaged by the outside world since I was very young, and all throughout middle and high school. I cried whenever I was teased. I learned to live inside my head and create worlds of my own. I grew up slowly, never dated, and had almost no social life. I remember looking on with vague envy at the boys who had girlfriends in high school, but that was a world I had no hope of understanding. Through most of college, I still waited quietly for my life to begin. No one ever told me the most important moment of your life is now, at least not in a way I would have understood. Give me enough time, I thought, and I will eventually step out as a late bloomer, and try to find some niche that has use for me, if such a place exists, and do what I can to help make the world a better place with the rest of you. Just don’t call me creepy.
The rest can be read at Samizdat Literary Journal (google search for it--this stupid forum won't let me post links until I have 15 or more posts).

Anyway, there are other stories like this. When I was in high school, I sometimes made a tongue-in-cheek reference to my "list of people to kill" whenever someone annoyed me, but when than Columbine shooting happened (I was a junior at the time), some concerned parent wrote an anonymous letter to the school, claiming that I said the Columbine killers were justified if they'd been teased, and that no one would survive graduation. Of course, I'd never said anything resembling this, but thankfully the principal was a reasonable authority figure (again--look this up at tv tropes), listened to me, and concluded that the letter was nonsense.

Similarly, after I experienced a painful breakup in 2007, I still had the awkward experience of being on the same campus as my ex, who seemed to think I was a psycho stalker. Of course, I did end up doing some stupid, stalker-ish things before, so it didn't help that I sometimes needed to be in the computer lab at the same time as her. But another close friend of mine on campus received an email from someone with whom I had no interaction whatsoever, who told her that he was concerned for her safety, because I was a stalker and a pervert. My friend, who knew me well enough to know this claim was utter nonsense, told him to fuck off.

To all those people who found me creepy, I'm sorry I creeped you out, but I never asked to be this way. You had to deal with a moment's annoyance or discomfort, but I'll be dealing with painful isolation for the rest of my life. I wish I were one of you guys. I truly to.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
So if this guy tells the whole street several outrageous lies about me that he has no way to back up - which he has basically done - and it makes my whole neighborhood think I'm crazy and about to snap and commit murder - and if I say, hey, wait a second, none of that is true..... I'm invalidating his feelings? I really didn't think truth worked that way. I mean, if he's keeping a record, what did I do to cause his fear - um... I drove down the road to and from my house. I sat on my porch. I walked my dog. Yes, you're right, he should feel perfectly validated for being afraid of me and for spreading the word about my mental instability.:confused:
 

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I'm going to take a walk down possibility lane here. Care to take a walk with me?

1. This gentleman is in his 70's. I grew up with my grandmother and thought all old people were sweet and wise like her. I've since come to a new understanding. Old people have just as much potential to be nuts as young people. On top of that, old people have the potential to have all sorts of things break...like, their minds. Alzheimer, dementia, chemical imbalances, medications they are on, all of this stuff can set in and make someone who was fine before go completely off their rocker and behave in very strange and paranoid ways. Maybe down the line we learn he's got early onset dementia. Maybe it isn't you at all, you just happen to be the target.

2. People do funny things sometimes to get attention. As you've been sharing more information, it started dawning on me, "Hey, what if the old guy actually misses your company?" I mean, his wife talks nonstop, right? And he doesn't get a word in edgewise. And you said that at one point, you and he even got along because he seemed like the more stable of the two. Yeah, maybe you and he didn't talk alot because the wife just eats up all the ear time, but maybe that's why he liked your visits. You gave him a little reprieve time while at the same time, he got to experience a more quieter version of the female type. Maybe he misses that. Now all of us INFP's, we tooootally get why you can't take the 2 hour monologues from the wife, and why you'd avoid their company because of it. But maybe he doesn't. Or maybe he is hurt because he doesn't understand why you seem so cool toward them now. Maybe this is his way of getting your attention and having the visits start up again. Sure, warped maybe, but hey, even adults have childlike, round-about ways of trying to get what they want.

3. INFP's? We stand out. It's a given. No matter what we do, how we do it, we're always grabbing attention, without even trying. And yes, we're often misunderstood, because almost no one has a clue what's really going on in our heads. We're mystifying like that. Because we don't think or behave the way most people do, that always becomes a little scary for them. Think about it: they have no idea what to expect. Crickey, we might pop out with some giant dragon we've been growing in our cellar that will breathe fire and burn the entire neighborhood down and gobble up all the half price cookies at the local grocery store that everyone loves so much. Hey, it could happen. We're just wild enough to make it happen, and everyone senses that about us. But there are two options people have already offered up here: you can directly confront it, or you can subtly affect it. Maybe if you see him in the yard one day, wander over and say, "I heard you find me rather scary. Is it my horrible hair days? I could work on that if it would help..." Humor works wonders at breaking the ice and disarming people and allows them to open up. After all, aren't we all curious at this point what he's even afraid of? Might end up being something rather funny in the end and easily remedied, like the pink flamingos you have out on the lawn and how they all seem to be pointing toward his kitchen window during breakfast. Who knows! Finding out might be worth the effort. That's the direct approach, but for subtle, how about just send them a card and some cookies, saying you remember how much they like this and thought you'd send them some. It makes nice contact (who doesn't love getting food in the mail) without having to have the direct verbal triathalon. And as for the neighbors? Just be yourself. Remain who you've been and how you've been. Being called "scary" does not change the decent citizen you are in your neighborhood.

4. And as for the husband, get a nerf bat and swat him a few times. Then he has a reason to think you're scary ;)

Face it my fellow INFP, you're a trail blazer. You may be one of the few INFP's these people have ever encountered. They need the exposure. And honestly, their lives would not be as colorful without you, even with the limited exposure. Remember that.
 
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