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ISFP who've been in abusive relationships/have been friends with one that was in one. I need advice/critique.

Warning: This is a long back story

But I (INFP) have this ISFP best friend in an emotionally abusive (coercive) "relationship". Now I say relationship because she tells me that they're not a couple, they are just living together. Now from my understanding she was in a bad relationship before and actually got out by just leaving the house she stayed in with him. Now this one lasted a few years, as I believe she left her city to move with him on a whim.

Now cut to around a year and a half ago. She found a place to work (in the new city that she moved to), at a job that not what she imaging she would be doing. At this time she is still with her ex. She eventually meets her boss after she is assigned to him. I know him. And he is and emotional abuser at best and is a sexual/physical abuser/predator at worst. At first she told me he came on to her and that while she had a boyfriend she didn't welcome his advances (one of which involved him exposing himself to her..foreshadowing).

Around the beginning of this year is when she decided to leave her then current boyfriend-however, there was one huge dilemma-she had no place to go. At this point emotionally out of sorts from the sudden breakup, she is of course vulnerable. And as soon as it's sensed, her boss comes swooping in. She confided in him, trusted him as a friend. And in her own words wanting nothing more. Her boss helps her find an apartment on only a few days notice. He also helped her leave and move all her stuff out.

For a few days she was in limbo with nowhere to live. Her boss offers her to stay at his friends house. On the first night-as she is going to bed-apparently he comes in to the room and just drops his pants and apparently they have sex (I'm going to use this term loosely). Being someone to never to have never have been with someone outside of an actual relationship, she would later confide in me that she felt obligated to try to make it work after they had been together. Which is perfectly understandable, considering her state of mind at the time (she's in a new city alone, with nowhere to live and she also was desperate for any type of help).

Now cut to around April. After starting to know each other at work (we work in the same building) we begin to form a friendship. We became really good friends, and did(still do) things that good friends do together. By July we considered each other good friends, by this October she considered me a great friend. And I would eventually-as I didn't come around as fast-consider her a close friend too. What sealed it for me was-to her probably-a very small gesture, but to me, milestone in our friendship (one day I said I was weird and she said I wasn't).

She literally might be the best friend I've ever had. She doesn't judge me at all. Which is incredible considering how quiet and stand-offish I am. And how quickly it happened. We hung out a few times between March of this year and June. And I even, at one point, stopped talking to her just because of a mutual friend that she would hang out with that I couldn't be around (for good reason that I'm going to get into). And at that point I thought that we would just talk a work and that's it. That was until she started to reach out to me first because we weren't talking outside of work anymore (another friendship milestone for me..). Now we're pretty much in contact every single day.

So now you have an idea on how we became close friends.

Now back to September. The month where we became real close. This around the time that she tells me that she and her boss are together. Now at this point everyone at the office are at least somewhat aware ( I thought something was something going on back in April). At this point in September he has bogarted his way into her apartment somehow. Now all his stuff is there. She even has to hide it when company (like her family) comes over because she is embarrassed of him. He also has to leave when family comes over.

This would be good starting point if you don't want to read anything before this


This guy has no transportation so he uses her car with no respect to her. Has already stolen a lot of money from her. She says he got her high and apparently they had "sex" without her really remembering.

He has to know her every move. Also, he has to know names and genders of people she hangs out with if he's not with her (they're together most of time). Even semi-stalked her at work a few times. He has already fought a guy because he talked to her. He's just not a good person. She's intimidated by him for obvious reasons. He was her superior.

She even isn't even attracted to him. She's called him disgusting, she doesn't like any of his family (he just takes her to meet them), she talks about how he's controlling and how he guilt trips her into oblivion. And has told her that he is trying to trap her by having her baby and makes future plans without discussing it with her. She is aware of what he is. She even on one time told me "I'm living with my rapist." In her core, she understands that this is not healthy and it's not what she wants(wanted). But she blames herself for staying in between those days that she had no place to go.

I keep telling her that it's not her fault, and that his behaviors are not normal. That she has gotten out before and she can do it again. And that she has options. She has gotten to the point that she has started to stand up for herself. She told him that they'll never work. He doesn't care, he wont leave. She threw his clothes and stuff out, he came back. Now at least she stood up about him taking her car and him not respecting her space. It's just heartbreaking for me.

She doesn't even use pet names for him, or even call him her bf despite the fact that he calls her his gf and uses pet names in public. She says it's getting worse and has used the word psycho to describe him. It's just the most creepy thing I've ever heard.

She's been through similar before with her ex (but this time she says it's worse and she jokingly will say she would rather have her ex back). I mean, she understands on a fundamental level that this is not good, but I think rationalizing this because she want's thing to go well because she doesn't want to feel the shame of being with someone without being in an actual relationship with him. I understand that and get it completely.

But at this point it's hard. I'm reading things on what to say to her and on how to just be there for her without judgement. I tell her that I want her to feel as if she has some control on her life, and we're taking baby steps. She's setting SOME boundaries at least and I'm so happy for her. But sometimes she minimizes what she's going through (which I expect). Understandable. But sometimes I just get down on myself. For instance I'll reference back to one our past convo's think "did I say something wrong? Was my tone too harsh"? I'm doing all the by-the-book things that I should do and I'm grateful that it has helped quite a bit.

But it's like his sheer presence is wearing her down. Some days she's just too overwhelmed..and I feel for her when that happens. Almost like I'm feeling it with her.Now I understand that improvement is most always not a linear progression. However the Fi in me just want's her to be free and happy so bad.

I love my friend so much. He's escalating and I'm afraid for her.

I know all I can do is just keep supporting her and be there for her. I'll be there for her as long as she'll allow. It's just so tough to watch this. It's a coercive relationship. It's turned into a trauma bond for her. She's ashamed of her situation. She really thinks it's her fault..

Any ISFPs who've been in similar situations-if you're willing-can you please tell me ways in which the abuse made you feel. Or give some insight on your psyche at the time? Can you give me some insight on how I could possibly help her, with consideration to her personality type? (i.e. things I can say that might be better suited for an ISFP?)
 
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