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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Are there any other ISTJ people that have a hard time making and maintaining friends? I'm 30, and over my life time I've had a lot of friends that I was close with, however, I have what I call "broken up" with many of my friends. Now at 30, I realize I don't need a lot of friends, a few good quality friendships is all I need (which is characteristic of an ISTJ). Now at 30, I still find it difficult to maintain friends. If I feel that a person is different than me, whether it be in personality, their interests, or their views on things, I don't want to make any effort to even converse with that person. I know as an introvert we reserve our social energy on people or events that matter to us, however, I'm concerned with the way I think about and judge other people.
For instance, my one close friend views things such as family and career totally different than me, and when she makes decisions that I myself wouldn't do because I view things differently than her, I find it difficult to relate to her, and therefore sometimes don't even want to make the effort to maintain the friendship.
I've had close friendships, however, my entire life I feel like I've never had a friend that is so similar to me, that understands me, and that I can be 100% myself around. The only person I've met that matches this is my spouse.
I'd like to make an effort to start new friendships, however, I feel like I'm always judging other people, where I say, I could never be close with that person because they are different than me. For example, I am passionate about dogs, and that person doesn't take care of their dog so I already don't like you. Or, she posts selfies and way too much shit about her life on facebook, I can't be friends with someone like that because I get annoyed with people who use social media for attention. Or, you are enthusiastic and bubbly, and as an introvert is just too much for me. Or, you are having your 3rd child and I'm not even sure I'm going to have one of my own, and frankly I don't want to make plans with you because I don't want to be around your kids, so maybe I should "break up" with you too....

Is there any other ISTJs that ever feel this way towards their friends or potential friendships?
 

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Not to this extent. It COULD be an age thing (I'm nearly 47) and my best friend and I are different in many ways. I will say this about her though - if I needed her at 4am, she'd drop everything and come help me, and vice-versa. When I was without a vehicle, she made sure I was able to get to the grocery store and other essential things. Her thinking processes (INTP) are wildly different than mine, but when I need advice, hers is usually sound, and she's said the same about when she seeks answer(s) from me about something; that I keep her grounded, etc. As far as the differences... we had wildly divergent political beliefs but we have agreed to disagree for the most part. Our political beliefs are not the whole person and we take that into consideration. Hope this helps.. I've got a raging headache at the moment but I wanted to address at least part of your concerns.
 

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Are there any other ISTJ people that have a hard time making and maintaining friends?
It would be more accurate for me to say that I have a hard time wanting to make and maintain friends. I'm never intentionally rude to anyone and I genuinely care about people, but I rarely strive to know or be known intimately IRL. I do worry that my lack of desire to form close friendships is not healthy and at times it can be very lonely.

I'm 30, and over my life time I've had a lot of friends that I was close with, however, I have what I call "broken up" with many of my friends. Now at 30, I realize I don't need a lot of friends, a few good quality friendships is all I need (which is characteristic of an ISTJ). Now at 30, I still find it difficult to maintain friends. If I feel that a person is different than me, whether it be in personality, their interests, or their views on things, I don't want to make any effort to even converse with that person.
I can relate to this. I never really thought of myself as "breaking up" with friends, but in essence I guess I have by neglecting to maintain contact with them. This is especially true if I feel that our lives have taken very different paths and we no longer have much of anything in common.

I've had close friendships, however, my entire life I feel like I've never had a friend that is so similar to me, that understands me, and that I can be 100% myself around. The only person I've met that matches this is my spouse.
Same for me. My husband's personality is quite different from mine, but I still feel like he gets me most of the time and that I can be myself around him. It is exhausting trying to anticipate and meet the expectations of others. Having people make unflattering inaccurate assumptions about you is discouraging. I guess you could say that for the most part I've quit trying to develop close friendships with all but a select few. Not proud of this, but it's true.

Or, you are enthusiastic and bubbly, and as an introvert is just too much for me.
Definitely relate to this. Being around bubbly over the top people for too long sucks the life out of me. Especially those who are always wanting to hang out and do things all the time.
 

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I feel exactly the same way. I struggle with trying to maintain a friendship with a group of four other guys but at some point one of them will do something to make me want fo distance myself from them. Then I will second guess myself and think I should make an effort to be apart of the group. This is a constant struggle that I am always going back and forth with. Not only with this group but others as well.


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I can relate to what everyone on here is saying. I have more aquaintances than so-call friends. The reason for this stems from trust issues. In the past, I've had terrible experiences with people who approached me under the guise of wanting to be friends only to have them disappoint me, betray my trust, and taking my niceness for weakness.

Case in point, the last person who I was friends with completely understood me, shared a lot of same interests as me, same life experiences, we put our trust in each other, and I was as loyal to this person as they come. We opened up and shared our fears, dreams, and secrets that we promise we would take to our graves. We even considered each other as soul-mates because we felt like we could completely be ourselves around each other. After 7 years of said friendship, this same person ghosted me earlier this year. No explanation given. I made several attempts of reaching out to her before finally giving up.

So yeah, I don't even bother trying to maintain or initiate friendships, anymore. I'll stick with casual aquaintances.
 

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You make a great point that you and your friend have different thinking processes which keep eachother grounded. This is probably very healthy, taking other people's points of view into consideration. It's just so hard for me to really connect with someone when I know they think so differently than me, as if we are on different pages, and it's difficult to really understand eachother and connect. Or, I find it hard to carry on meaningful conversations on topics if you both think differently or don't agree on things. As an introvert, I don't like small talk, and only am interested in talking about things I'm interested in or are meaningful.
It's really hard to explain how I think!
 

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Her thinking processes (INTP) are wildly different than mine, but when I need advice, hers is usually sound, and she's said the same about when she seeks answer(s) from me about something; that I keep her grounded, etc.
You make a great point that you and your friend have different thinking processes which keep eachother grounded. This is probably very healthy, taking other people's points of view into consideration. It's just so hard for me to really connect with someone when I know they think so differently than me, as if we are on different pages, and it's difficult to really understand eachother and connect. Or, I find it hard to carry on meaningful conversations on topics if you both think differently or don't agree on things. As an introvert, I don't like small talk, and only am interested in talking about things I'm interested in or are meaningful.
It's really hard to explain how I think!
 

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It's just so hard for me to really connect with someone when I know they think so differently than me
From the first time that we actually met each other, it took us a YEAR to actually start talking to each other other than for superficial BS and casual conversation. We've been friends for several years now, but it was a VERY slow developing friendship. The plus side of this is that we didn't rush into the friendship so we know each other's weak points, for the most part.

Example: I was REALLY super-sick yesterday and called in sick to work. I texted her early in the morning to let her know, so that she shouldn't expect me to answer nearly immediately, like I usually do, since I was trying to sleep it off. Instead of texting me back, she read it and didn't reply at all. She contacted me today AFTER I should have been at work already to ask if I was feeling better. Her logic was that if I was, I'd be at work (which I am, getting ready to take lunch break) and she didn't text me back at all yesterday figuring that I needed my rest and to be undisturbed. While I would have appreciated an "OK" acknowledgement, her logic also makes sense once I understood her reasoning behind it. I replied back to her and let her know that while I'm not at 100%, I am in fact at work and feel free to text away outside of her own work hours, etc.
 

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I really struggle to make friends but when I do they usually last, when they don't it is because my trust was broken and I cut them off. I'm really introverted but once people are in my circle, it's a whole different thing but perhaps why most of my friendship last is because even though we know each other in person we play together, that could be why too.
 

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It would be more accurate for me to say that I have a hard time wanting to make and maintain friends. I'm never intentionally rude to anyone and I genuinely care about people, but I rarely strive to know or be known intimately IRL. I do worry that my lack of desire to form close friendships is not healthy and at times it can be very lonely.
This is true of me as well. I also have the same issue as OP with being very judgmental of others. I think I just have to find a balance. I do know there is some value in ensuring that the people I associate myself with have similar values, levels of drive and ambition yet I can't be as quick to judge as I sometimes am. I'm definitely very well guarded I don't reveal any intimate details about how I'm feeling or what I'm going through outside of my interactions with my partner. I don't see that changing very soon to be honest, it might with time but you really have to be careful who you open up to alot of people are quick to use your vulnerabilities against you.

I think a big issue for me is that, in general I can be kind, I can be respectful and I can socialize and crack a joke but once I'm locked into a project or goal alot of that effort dies out. If I'm not under any pressure I feel free to joke around and engage in small talk etc. even though I don't really feel I get much from it as an introvert. When there are deadlines on the horizon and I'm in work mode I never feel like the effort it takes to socialize is really worth it. It feels like a distraction and a drag, tldr when there are things to be done, sometimes that is all I care about and that is probably alienating to some people. I think I will get better at being more generous with my attention and energy with time.

I think a big element of my maturity over the past few years has been understanding demands for attention and time that come with friendship and relationships in general. I never could understand why people got offended when I just wanted to stay to myself and didn't want to hangout. I understand it all better now. I understand the validation, attention and connection people want but for most I don't feel it is worth investing the energy but at least I better understand the dynamics. I try my best to give those that I'm close to the attention, validation etc. that is normal for most friendships. Sometimes the amount of emotional labour regular acquaintances expect is quite baffling to me though and sometimes it just isn't worth it when there is a huge gap in values between me and someone else and I can't really appreciate what they have to bring to the table.

With regards to it not being healthy for me to stay on my own as much as I do. I know that it is a fact. I know I have to do a better job of taking care of my emotional needs so that I don't try to dump them all on my future partner because that is unfair. I feel like in some sense I am a bit numb in terms of sensing the effects of socializing. I kind of underestimate how valuable it is to be around friends and family because I guess I process it all from a logical perspective and fail to understand that it is quite necessary.
 
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