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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello 3s,

Being a 1, I am not very familiar with Type 3 motivations. But, I've been wondering about something: parents who live through their kids. In other words, parents who:

-Get pushy about academic grades- to the extreme
-Give you loads of unwanted (and useless) career advice- basically trying to steer you towards/away from a certain path
-Compare you to your siblings, if you have any
-Try to "suggest" fun activities for you to do. If you find something you like, and your siblings get compared to you, then the sibling may be forced down a similar path by the parent
-Lecture endlessly about the importance of money and status

These behaviours are espoused by my dad. He was born in a poor country, came to Canada over forty years ago, and thought a better standard of living would just magically come his way. He hates poor people, and makes fun of them- even though he was poor himself. Career-wise, he entered a limited field. When he was laid off, he became even more abusive. My childhood and teenage years involved a lot of forced achievement (like in the form of grades, and extracurricular activities- in my case, music). My father is *beyond obsessed* with money, aesthetics, work-related achievements, etc. The thing is, he is a *crappy* achiever. When he wants something, he'll step all over you to get it- even though that strategy is unlikely to get you what you want. He lived through me, and tried to dictate the course of my life because he himself could not achieve the things he wanted. And for someone who is not primarily motivated by achievement (I'm a 1, so that is not my primary motivator), then living with someone who is extremist in their wish for achievement is very stressful.

So, what do you guys think? Do you think that parents who try to live through their kids are 3s who have no idea how to meet their own goals? Or do you think something else could be at play? I'm starting to think that based on my dad's lifelong history and statements about what he values, that he is a 3 who doesn't know the first thing about how to achieve your goals (in other words, he's not a very smart 3, if he is indeed a 3).

Curious to hear what others here think on the issue. I can't believe the lows that some "parents" will stoop to in order to get an ego fix. At least I might be starting to figure out why all these insane events happened in my life, though.
 

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I doubt it, a type 3 lives for themsevles and through themselves, to live through somebody else isn't truly living. They can still impress people through their children but to do that would also take the focus off of themselves slightly. There may be type 3's that indulge in this type of behaviour but I doubt that they are prone to it. A type 3 would much rather live through themselves I believe.
 

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Both my parents are 3's and I experienced it to some degree, but not a heck of a lot ---- not to the point of ever feeling like they wanted to live through me.

This is because they were both highly successful in their own careers and lives therefore I'm guessing the need to taste success through their children wasn't required. All they ever say is .. "Go out there and do the best you can. We just want you to be respected and happy."

When I consider myself as a parent .. I would make sure that I give my children the ideal environment to succeed and to be functional and successful humans, but I just cannot see myself as pushing them beyond their limits. Of course, I will be forceful when it comes to getting good grades etc etc and pushing them hard so that they don't regret not being pushed as they grow up.

But living through them doesn't compute. I myself want to be the best parent my kids will have - and that includes being aware of all of the things that could potentially make me a failure as a parent including things like pushing them too hard, or forcing them to do things against their will ... etc etc.

Edit: I also think someone who seems like a 3 who has no idea how to fulfil their own goals isn't a 3 to begin with -- but this is just an opinion and probably a quick judgement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Edit: I also think someone who seems like a 3 who has no idea how to fulfil their own goals isn't a 3 to begin with -- but this is just an opinion and probably a quick judgement.
I wonder about that, but am not sure. The guy is so obsessed with everyone else's material wealth, and has actually made career moves that have gone against him. He has bragged about being a jerk to fellow co-workers- because they were nasty first. No wonder he can't succeed, if this is the way he behaves (he's psycho). But if his kids didn't achieve what he wanted? Watch out.

My dad often mentioned that kids should have a higher standard of living than their parents because, "That's just the way it's supposed to be." I ended up with a far lower standard of living than him (through outside circumstances, which will take a long time to fix). His reaction was to put me down for it, call me lazy, etc. Yeah, calling your sick daughter "lazy" and "insane." Real class act, he is.

I wonder what's driving his obsession with money and status, though. It's over-the-top insane. Yeah, *if* he's a three, he's the stupidest three around. Self-sabotaging achievement....hmmm...wonder where that might be coming from.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I doubt it, a type 3 lives for themsevles and through themselves, to live through somebody else isn't truly living. They can still impress people through their children but to do that would also take the focus off of themselves slightly. There may be type 3's that indulge in this type of behaviour but I doubt that they are prone to it. A type 3 would much rather live through themselves I believe.
I actually think that parents who live through their kids are doing it for themselves, not their children. They're doing it to compensate for their own unresolved insecurities and unrequited dreams.
 

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So, what do you guys think? Do you think that parents who try to live through their kids are 3s who have no idea how to meet their own goals? Or do you think something else could be at play? I'm starting to think that based on my dad's lifelong history and statements about what he values, that he is a 3 who doesn't know the first thing about how to achieve your goals (in other words, he's not a very smart 3, if he is indeed a 3).
I doubt there are 3s who think they have no idea of how to meet their own goals, however I do think there are 3s who are delusional about their abilities. When aptitude does not meet expectation, then every person has to make a choice: (1) blame the external world for their failures and persist in their current behavioral patterns perhaps even justifying dishonorable acts in the process, (2) introspect until they find a way they could change themselves so that they improve their chances of meeting expectation(s) without resorting to judging the external environment, or (3) drop the idea of meeting expectation(s) (either your own or that of others for you).

I think it's unlikely Type 3s would choose the third option (at least not in the beginning of their lives). It is unlikely that a Type 3 would choose the first option immediately, but after multiple "failures" where again aptitude does not meet expectations, it may become possible. I think that your father may be a "fallen" 3, where he once had idealistic expectations of himself (& the world), faced continuous failure in the face of possibly tough opposition, then relented to having a poor worldview and started looking externally for negative validation of his worldview. If you cannot meet expectations, perhaps your worldview can be validated by focusing externally whether on your own children or on others fortunes/misfortunes.

In any case, I can see a path for a Type 3 to reach that state, although that path is not exclusive to Type 3s.
 

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The OP description is soo NOT a 3 in my opinion.
 

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My mother is a 2 with a very strong 3 wing and she does that a lot. If it was for her I'd be all work and no play. She never had the money to get higher education when she was young and now she lives through me, reacting to my achievements and my failures even in a stronger way than I react. =/ It's a very frustrating thing, I have often told her to get a life of her own. And it's probably her "fault" that I also have a strong 3 wing... it makes me think that I'll also pass it to my own children like she did with me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I doubt there are 3s who think they have no idea of how to meet their own goals, however I do think there are 3s who are delusional about their abilities. When aptitude does not meet expectation, then every person has to make a choice: (1) blame the external world for their failures and persist in their current behavioral patterns perhaps even justifying dishonorable acts in the process, (2) introspect until they find a way they could change themselves so that they improve their chances of meeting expectation(s) without resorting to judging the external environment, or (3) drop the idea of meeting expectation(s) (either your own or that of others for you).

I think it's unlikely Type 3s would choose the third option (at least not in the beginning of their lives). It is unlikely that a Type 3 would choose the first option immediately, but after multiple "failures" where again aptitude does not meet expectations, it may become possible. I think that your father may be a "fallen" 3, where he once had idealistic expectations of himself (& the world), faced continuous failure in the face of possibly tough opposition, then relented to having a poor worldview and started looking externally for negative validation of his worldview. If you cannot meet expectations, perhaps your worldview can be validated by focusing externally whether on your own children or on others fortunes/misfortunes.

In any case, I can see a path for a Type 3 to reach that state, although that path is not exclusive to Type 3s.
Daddy chooses option 1 (blaming the external world for his failure). Like you said, he could be a "fallen three." I've never known anyone *so obsessed* with money and status as him. Not kidding. He is *obsessed* with image. He actually has a superiority complex- thinks he is better than others, and that others are jealous of him. He's pretty delusional, which is obvious.

Yeah, like I said, if he's a 3, then he's the dumbest 3 around. Although many of the 3s here don't believe a 3 could behave like him.

The other option for him is 6, but he seems too decisive for that type, imo. His behaviours match that type a fair bit, but I don't feel that his primary motivation is that of a 6 (to seek safety and security). He has burned many bridges with people. I have, too, though for different reasons than him.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
My mother is a 2 with a very strong 3 wing and she does that a lot. If it was for her I'd be all work and no play. She never had the money to get higher education when she was young and now she lives through me, reacting to my achievements and my failures even in a stronger way than I react. =/ It's a very frustrating thing, I have often told her to get a life of her own. And it's probably her "fault" that I also have a strong 3 wing... it makes me think that I'll also pass it to my own children like she did with me.
That's interesting. I can see how a low-functioning two might behave the way your mother does. My father is not a 2- he *hates* charity- unless it helps his church (and he only donates to the church because he thinks he'll get extra points with God when he dies- his view, not mine). I believe his tritype is a combo of 3, 6, and 8. He would say that he lives to do the right thing, but his actions are 99% wrong, if one were to look at him honestly.
 

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I actually think that parents who live through their kids are doing it for themselves, not their children. They're doing it to compensate for their own unresolved insecurities and unrequited dreams.
This is what I think so too, but that isn't a three. A three would not live through somebody else because that takes the focus off of their own success' ever so slightly. A person could just say "what a great kid I raised" but even still, I would think a 3 would then start to see the child as a rival rather than an instrument in that case, if they were this unhealthy to begin with I should add.
 

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My mother did this and she's a clear cut 8w7 (her heart fix is probably 3 though).

BUT, I think this habit of hers has greatly influenced my becoming a 3. It's through successes that I feel I'll be valued, and this is the type of conditioning she put me through.
 

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(As a 3) I can't imagine how it would be pleasant to live through my children's accomplishments. Even if I try not to, people will compare.

If a 3 is pushing a child into things/ success/ musts, I can understand if they do it to compete with other parents (ie. society 'standards' in general), but not for living through their children.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
My mother did this and she's a clear cut 8w7 (her heart fix is probably 3 though).

BUT, I think this habit of hers has greatly influenced my becoming a 3. It's through successes that I feel I'll be valued, and this is the type of conditioning she put me through.
That's interesting. I've sometimes considered 8 as my father's type. How else did your 8w7 mother behave?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Oh, here's another habit that my father used to have: he would brag about my and my sister's accomplishments to his co-workers, in order to show off. He'd mention my GPA, my involvement in musical activities, what I was studying in university, etc. Same thing with my sister. He did it to compare his kids to other people's kids, sort of like an ego boost for himself. It's like he was saying, "My kids are better than your kids", even though, in private, he treated his entire family like shit.
 

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Oh, here's another habit that my father used to have: he would brag about my and my sister's accomplishments to his co-workers, in order to show off. He'd mention my GPA, my involvement in musical activities, what I was studying in university, etc. Same thing with my sister. He did it to compare his kids to other people's kids, sort of like an ego boost for himself. It's like he was saying, "My kids are better than your kids", even though, in private, he treated his entire family like shit.
I can see this behavior as being indicative of a 3. It depends on the 3, obviously, but they can indeed be motivated to be the "best" at everything, including having the "best" family. Children and spouses can become extension of oneself, and that being the case, will have to be up to snuff. Better than anyone else's. They won't outstrip the 3 him/herself because the 3 operates from the assumption s/he is already number one.

The main problem is his self-destructive behavior. He's not good at achieving his goals, you say...how does he handle this?

Also, can you see a wing for him?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I can see this behavior as being indicative of a 3. It depends on the 3, obviously, but they can indeed be motivated to be the "best" at everything, including having the "best" family. Children and spouses can become extension of oneself, and that being the case, will have to be up to snuff. Better than anyone else's. They won't outstrip the 3 him/herself because the 3 operates from the assumption s/he is already number one.
That's an interesting insight, there. I will have to give this some thought.

The main problem is his self-destructive behavior. He's not good at achieving his goals, you say...how does he handle this?
He doesn't handle it well at all. He snaps completely, and takes it out on my mother and sister (if she is still there, and I really hope she isn't, at her age). He's in his late 60s, and I believe he is retired now, but if he would have a bad day at work, then there was a 99% chance of him blowing up in rage when he'd get home. Work was one of the most serious stressors in his life. He hates people who are poor because he thinks they are lazy. That is probably the same reason he is against charity (also racism- he hates the Aboriginal people of Canada, and many of them suffer poverty). When he lost his job 19 years ago after a mass layoff at his workplace (the company went bankrupt), he became even more psycho. At one point during this period of unemployment, he threatened to use a knife to hurt me with for "talking back". He did *not* do well without a job, to put it mildly.

Also, can you see a wing for him?
I'm not sure, but I think it may be a 2 wing. My impression was that 3w2s usually want to achieve in a more "public" way and to impress others, where as 3w4s mostly want to achieve for themselves. I don't much about typing 3s, though, so if this description isn't quite accurate, feel free to let me know.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Oh- here's another thing that stands out with my father: he definitely wears masks in public. He is a pretty antisocial guy who refused to let me have any type of social life before my late teens. I never had a friend over at their house until I was sixteen (there's a long story behind that, too long to tell here). And the few times that my sister or I would invite a friend, especially if it was a new friend, my father would put on a "Nice Guy" act. Now, the people I considered friends at the time knew that I was being abused, and I warned them that he would put on this charming act. And that is exactly what he did every time he met them. One friend told me, "If you hadn't told me your father did this thing, I would have thought he was a genuinely nice guy". He also put on a similar front when he visited long-unseen overseas relatives fifteen years ago- the same "Nice guy" act. Though my relatives were able to see through it- a few cracks appeared while he was visiting them.
 

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He doesn't sound like the healthiest person, regardless of type. Based on what you say, 3 sounds likely, as does 6 (6s can be compliant and submissive at work and then be just the opposite at home--or vice versa). I wouldn't be surprised if there were an 8 in his gut.

Can you tell us some stuff about how he was bad at meeting his goals? That might cast some light on the situation as well.
 
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