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Discussion Starter #1
I posted this in the INFP forum as well, but am posting here as well. I've never posted on the forum asking for this "personal advice" stuff before, but today I find myself kind of stuck between two options.

I've got a male cousin who is INFP. He's been married now for three years, has a seven month old son and is 30 years old. He has no job except for giving a couple music lessons per week. He lives off his wife's income, who is now mostly still on leave from work due to the baby. He drinks quite a bit, spends a lot of time reading and playing sports. He is one of the most intelligent people I know and is working on finishing his masters degree in theology, which has taken him almost four years to do when it should've taken less than two.

He's my cousin and I love him, but I have progressively seen how his wife has been getting more and more annoyed with his laziness. If he didn't have a son I'd probably just let this situation play out, but no dad should he allowed to be this pathetic. If things keep going like this with him she will eventually leave him and his son will be suffer the damage that divorce does to children. Also, every child deserves to have a father that they respect, and right now that isn't my cousin.

It's not my marriage, so part of me thinks I should just not do anything. But another part of me thinks I need to confront him on it. I really don't care if he gets angry with me and won't to talk to me for a while. He needs to hear this from someone, and quite honestly I can't think of anyone else who is willing to step up to the plate.

What's the most effective way for me to help him would you say?
 

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It's not my marriage, so part of me thinks I should just not do anything. But another part of me thinks I need to confront him on it. I really don't care if he gets angry with me and won't to talk to me for a while. He needs to hear this from someone, and quite honestly I can't think of anyone else who is willing to step up to the plate.
Just curious, how vocal is wifey about the situation? And more importantly, how does she express her concerns? Also, how receptive has he been to her approach?

And what was their original agreement involving finishing school, working, and having children? Likely, you had no part in the decision making when they decided to be grown ups* and get married so I'm hesitant to tell you to interject unless one or both have come to you directly, which would then involve you in this problem. Unless he's a raging alcoholic and an intervention is needed.

*Even grown ups skip the crucial pre-nups which cover this stuff, but let's say they were mature enough to talk about it and at least lay out some ground rules.
 

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How aware is he of his effects on his family? If he was confident in his choice in marrying his wife, then a reminder of the long-term emotional/mental/financial effects of his family (and himself) may help him. If he cannot, as opposed to 'will not', take those into account, then the cause may be deep-rooted and related to his personal growth. It would be difficult for him to think about or be there for others when there are emotional or mental burdens of his own. His lack of motivation may come from not knowing what he wants in his life, or maybe there was something about life itself that he realized in his studies in theology that led him to become more apathetic.

What is his wife even doing in this situation? If they're compatible for each other and cared for each other, she would have stepped up to the plate also. The question might actually be whether he really loves his wife.
 

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His wife should cheat on him. Once he smells the man-juice of a competitor, it will hopefully stoke his man-fire inside. Of course he might just flip out and kill his wife. However, he may also curl up into a ball, drink and write crappy music instead. I suggest that you sleep with his wife. This way, you can give him a kick in the nuts without ever directly confronting his wussy ass. +1 if his wife's hot.

BTW - no man has ever "manned up" just by someone talking to him or telling him what to do. It takes a serious trigger and/or a profound change in basic constitution. If he's been a man-child his whole life, then do you really getting him pissed off will achieve your goal of having him "man up"?
 

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The question is: What do you hope to achieve with the confrontation? If he's as smart as you say he is, I'm sure he has probably already considered the actions he is taking in his life and the possible repercussions. In all honesty, he didn't seem all that motivated before the marriage, and I'd have to imagine the wife had some sort of inclination that the cousin wasn't the most stable and financially dependable person. Perhaps he was; this is my assumption. I think the best thing you can do is ask him questions to get a better understanding of his life philosophy instead of going for head on confrontation.

For instance, one question you could ask: "So, where do you see your life going?" If he answers that he doesn't care about making money or what the future brings, then it will be hard to convince him to change his views on life. On the other hand, if he expresses his desire to support his family, get a decent job, etc., then perhaps you can show him the error of his ways and let him know what it takes to get to that point.

The furthest I would go in confronting him would be to point out the obvious to him: "You have a child, a wife, and no reliable income; it's clear you're going to have a hard time taking care of your child and satisfying your wife in this situation. This is what you need to to do fix it: ......." I personally would refrain from getting all moralistic, but that's just not my style.

Also, you said he's finishing up his masters, so perhaps things will pick up for your cousin after attaining his degree. I think it's important to know what he plans to achieve with his masters because if he tells you that he really doesn't care about doing anything with his degree then I think this guy is hopeless.

Tread lightly.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
She's a TV actress. She's appeared in quite a few shows that you've probably heard of. I think that should say whether or not she's hot.

My cousin doesn't need to "man up". He needs to be more responsible than he is right now and get a job.

I'm not gonna say anything for now. I wanna be sure I'm not perceiving the situation wrongly. If by the end of the summer he's still not doing anything then he's going to get a strong dose of NT opinion. In the meantime however, I'm going to limit my contact with him for a while. If he notoces and asks me about it then I'll tell him that I don't want to get in the way of his responsibilities as a husband and father.
 

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His wife should cheat on him. Once he smells the man-juice of a competitor, it will hopefully stoke his man-fire inside. Of course he might just flip out and kill his wife. However, he may also curl up into a ball, drink and write crappy music instead. I suggest that you sleep with his wife. This way, you can give him a kick in the nuts without ever directly confronting his wussy ass. +1 if his wife's hot.
And ruin the kid's image of both of his parents? I hope you weren't being serious..

Edit: I just noticed that the kid is 7 months old o.o . I'm still heavily opposed to cheating though.
 

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She might be getting more and more annoyed with him, but that's her problem. She married him. People in marriages are generally annoyed with each other all the time. Successfully married people get callouses.

Unless there's physical abuse and/or threats to the kids, I would stay away if I were you.

Sounds like he's basically a standard-issue INFP. Love to have a drink with him. Glad he's not married to anyone I care about.
 
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