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Discussion Starter #1
Usually, my gut instinct is correct. However, I'll let my tendencies to empathize get in the way, and override my gut instinct. For example, sometimes I have gut instincts that someone has harmful intentions, but if I don't distance myself soon enough, i start empathizing with that person and get in this internal push-and-pull of police sirens going off on one side and my understanding of the person on the other.

So the thing is -- I met a person a while back. My gut instinct: he's a nice dude, just in the wrong crowd. a lot of potential, but again... in the wrong crowd. I could tell that he was feeling 'trapped' in his life- this was the people he grew up with, the world he knew, but still i could sense the real him on the inside trying to get our and be himself. This guy was an INFJ, too, by the way. Anyway, most of my friends and people I knew disapproved of him - mainly because of the image he portrayed (living in the fast lane, living on the edge) and just WHO he was i guess, though I'm not exactly sure what they didn't like about him. (most of my friends are on the conservative, home-body, studious side, but i guess he is a little reckless..).

The thing is... my gut instinct tells me this guy is harmless and I really believe in him. He once told me I was the only one that believed in him and understood him. The thing is, everyone around me is telling me this guy is bad news, i'm too good for him, he doesnt treat me right, etc. I understand where my friends are coming from, and no matter how much I tell myself I think it's okay, I can't help but be influenced by my friend's opinions because I know that they are just trying to protect me and just want me happy. When I told them about his good aspects, they let things be- although they dont really like him, if i like him as a friend, they' trust my judgment (even though they still think he's a jerk). The thing is, I am greatly hesitating in contacting this person (we've lost touch for a while) and his birthday is coming up so it's an opportunity to open things up again with a short birthday greeting. Although my gut instinct tells me he is OK, how do I account for everyone in my life that disagrees with my gut instinct? and the fact that his lifestyle is not in tune with his own internal desires? (basically, he is living a lifestyle that he is not happy with. the people he hangs out with, the reckless things he does with them, he says he doesn't want). Should I go with my gut instinct on this? INFJ to INFJ?
 

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Just balance out both your intuition and rational thinking when it comes to making conclusions about someone. You don't have to listen too much to others; be an independent thinker. Good luck!

Sorry if I'm not helpful:unsure:
 

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If you didn't go with your gut and follow your own path, what the hell kind of INFJ would you be?

Well, probably you'd end up like him, surrounded by people you don't really mix with.

People judge each other all the time by the company they keep. Is that right? Well, have you not been judged in that way from time to time? Was it accurate?

Are they right about your friend? It's possible. But keep in mind that INFJ's have their wild side too... They can go into Se mode when under stress. This leads to lots of "risky" behavior, and may not be who he really is.
 

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I generally follow my gut instincts on matters such as this. My initial intuition about someone is usually correct, though there have been a few instances where I was mistaken.

As far as listening to your other friends, I believe that "too good for" is not applicable.You know him better than they do. There intuitions are certainly no more valid than yours. All that matters is how you feel about him. (unless your friends are privy to concrete instances).

I think that much of this depends upon how long you have known him, and the specifics of his behavior during that time. In the time that you have known him, has he ever done anything tangible to put you on guard, or offend your sensibilities (beyond not agreeing with all of his lifestyle choices)? Has he ever been jerk to you, or to anyone in your presence. Being reckless is not necessarily an indicator of bad or devious intentions, and certainly not criminal ones. If you have known him for a considerable amount of time, and he has done nothing to set off your internal alarms, I see nothing to lose from maintaining contact with him. You could exercise a certain degree of wariness I suppose, just as you would in any situation of which you are not 100% certain. If he starts to stray to a place you are not comfortable with, cut off all ties.

My two cents...
 

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Intuition isn't perfect and one should not rely on it solely on life. how long is a while back? also does he still hang out with that bad crowd?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I personally would not do some of the things he does or hang out with some of the people he does, but he has never tried to force anything on me. He has actually been very respectful of my own decisions and seems to admire that I have a strong sense of right/wrong for myself, independent of whatever crowd I am in.

What do you mean by offending my sensibilities? (sorry, first time hearing that phrase). well... he has been a jerk to someone that went behind his friend's back... i dont know about all the details since he usually tries to 'shield' me from that part of his life. there were moments following his parent's divorce (and after we broke up) a few years ago, when he had acted in a way that has put me on guard 24/7 right now. I had confided in him a lot, but during the bad break up, he threw some of those things against me, brought up unpleasant things, etc. Since then, i've been really cautious/wary about confiding in people, but a while ago, he sent me a sincere apology for the things he said. I don't know why, but at that time, even after I accepted his apology, I had a lot of wariness and this unexplainable feeling of guardedness, so I cut off ties for a while. I was going through my own thing at that time as well where I had been hurt by people I thought were friends, so during that time I was generally distrustful.

And yes, he still hangs out with that crowd. The only times when he stopped hanging out with them were when were in a relationship, when he said he finally found someone that undertstood him/that he could relate to, but after we broke up, he drifted back to his old ways. (by the way, i never asked him to not hang out with those people or anything, and it was just his own desire to not be tangled up with them even before he met me). I suppose I could exercise my wariness, but I just want to try and assess the situation beforehand and avoid any potential emotionally up-and-down moments
 

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I don't think there is any harm in keeping a light friendship with him. You can watch and wait to see if he continues to follow the crowd or step out and follow his heart. You should be doing that as well. It seems you two might make a good pair helping each other be independent. Maybe he has some insight you need and that is why you are drawn to him. It is obvious he needs your insight as well.
 

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He once told me I was the only one that believed in him and understood him. The thing is, everyone around me is telling me this guy is bad news, i'm too good for him, he doesnt treat me right, etc.
I've known of a lot of guys who told a young lady that she was the only one who really "believed in him".

I've known a lot of young ladies who saw a reckless guy and thought he was a deep mystery to be solved.

I've never known both of those propositions to be true at the same time for the same people.

In every case I've ever known in 4 decades on this planet - in which both propositions were posited - the results included one or more selections from among the following;

* Abuse
* Unwanted pregnancy - followed by
* More abuse
* Single parenthood responsibility foisted entirely on the young mother
* More and more abuse
* Loss of opportunities in life
* Loss of opportunity of being with a decent man instead of a jerk who "seemed" mysterious

etc.

I've seen it too many times to even give him the benefit of a doubt. This may seem harsh but consider that I'm a dad of three daughters and an INFJ who has seen this very "description" of a situation go horribly wrong so many times in my life.

There are people on here who will disagree with me. Some of them may be the parents of young daughters - but I think that's unlikely. Yes my daughters have some oddball friends - but no real Bad Boys are allowed.

Bad Boys with squishy insides may exist somewhere outside of an After-School Special. I'm willing to accept that as a possibility. But only because the universe is comprised of quanta and must by implication allow it as a MERE possibility. What my gut tells me as a dad is this; He may be that one "real" exception. But I don't care. He ain't gettin within 100 feet of my daughter if I can still draw breath.

My advice? Run.

I say it only with love and concern - and not a small amount of worry. Because I have NEVER in 41 years on this Earth seen a situation such as you have described work out to the benefit of the young lady in question.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Hm... as INFJs, I don't know if we could really keep a "light friendship." It would be emotionally difficult even when time passes and I don't think there will ever be a sense of closure to the relationship. INFJs and Ex's is a whole another story though. This is another main reason I'm hesitating. I miss him, and all our talks and connection, but I don't want to be in too deep and get emotionally caught up in everything.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hi runescribe,

i just posted when i read your reply. About the first 5 points you mentioned, I'm pretty sure that won't be a problem. I wrote above, but he has always been very respectful of my boundaries and though he hangs out with some different types of girls, he's been very protective of my opinions by 1) respecting them and 2) making sure his friends respect them. He's a huge softy as well, probably more emotional/mushy than I am so I doubt he would abuse anyone he is ever with (what I mean by mushy is that his favorite movie is A Walk to Remember. I'm INFJ and I don't even like those mushy love stories lol)

About the last two points.. I would have to agree with those possibilities as those have entered my mind at one point. In response to what you wrote though, I don't get any "bad boy" vibes from him. If it's one thing I can't stand in a guy, it's that kind of person (when I see those people, I just walk the other way 180 degrees without even giving them a second look). I just get the sense that this guy is just stuck somewhere he doesn't want to be (kind of like in a bad current) especially because I've seen how he used to. On the other hand, like you've pointed out runescribe... his actions seem so speak otherwise, so sometimes I am slightly confused.

and to omar: i'd say INFJs would think the same about INFPs. In our own ways, I think we think the other thinks too much
 

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I personally would not do some of the things he does or hang out with some of the people he does, but he has never tried to force anything on me. He has actually been very respectful of my own decisions and seems to admire that I have a strong sense of right/wrong for myself, independent of whatever crowd I am in.

What do you mean by offending my sensibilities? (sorry, first time hearing that phrase). well... he has been a jerk to someone that went behind his friend's back... i dont know about all the details since he usually tries to 'shield' me from that part of his life. there were moments following his parent's divorce (and after we broke up) a few years ago, when he had acted in a way that has put me on guard 24/7 right now. I had confided in him a lot, but during the bad break up, he threw some of those things against me, brought up unpleasant things, etc. Since then, i've been really cautious/wary about confiding in people, but a while ago, he sent me a sincere apology for the things he said. I don't know why, but at that time, even after I accepted his apology, I had a lot of wariness and this unexplainable feeling of guardedness, so I cut off ties for a while. I was going through my own thing at that time as well where I had been hurt by people I thought were friends, so during that time I was generally distrustful.

And yes, he still hangs out with that crowd. The only times when he stopped hanging out with them were when were in a relationship, when he said he finally found someone that undertstood him/that he could relate to, but after we broke up, he drifted back to his old ways. (by the way, i never asked him to not hang out with those people or anything, and it was just his own desire to not be tangled up with them even before he met me). I suppose I could exercise my wariness, but I just want to try and assess the situation beforehand and avoid any potential emotionally up-and-down moments
What I mean by offending your sensibilities is, has he done anything contrary to your principles and ethics.

Judging by what you have said here, I would like to retract some of my previous advice. You would do well to remain guarded and wary here. While it is nice that he apologized, his behavior seems erratic and potentially harmful, and, while it is possible that he is sincere and has changed, it seems somewhat unlikely. I definitely would not rush into anything. You admit yourself that you are wary and on guard due to his previous behavior. This seems like it could be your true instinct, backed up by the facts of his behavior. You are wise to attempt to assess the situation before rushing in.

This throwing things in your face after the breakup is bad behavior, no two ways about it, apology or not. This is not to say that he is definitely a bad guy, only that this sort of behavior makes me rather suspicious.
I am not judging the guy, but as you have said, he has triggered your alarm bells.

I do not think it could hurt to give him the benefit of the doubt and contact him, though if you do, I would keep him at a healthy arms length until I was certain of his behavior. Then again, I think Rune may be on to something. Perhaps the best thing to do is simply to leave it alone and continue without having him be a part of your life.

Whatever your decision, do it with a clear head and with no taint of emotion or nostalgia about the relationship.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Then again, I think Rune may be on to something. Perhaps the best thing to do is simply to leave it alone and continue without having him be a part of your life.

Whatever your decision, do it with a clear head and with no taint of emotion or nostalgia about the relationship.
I've gone for a long time without having him as part of my life. It's just the latter part that's hard -- having "no taint of emotion or nostalgia", because those feelings creep in during the in-between times of my busy periods.

The thing is, when I give someone a doorslam, it's after a long time and when I finally decide it, I cut them out completely with no taint of emotion or nostalgia. With him, it's more like "the door is shut, but I'm leaving it open a little so I can still peek."

Perhaps right now, I am confusing my true instinct with my feelings. The main thing right now is that I don't know if the 'alarm bells' are caused by his behavior or because of ill-intent on his part.
 

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this two things are so conflicting. i would not trust a someone that does this


- he still hangs out with that crowd. The only times when he stopped hanging out with them were when were in a relationship, when he said he finally found someone that undertstood him/that he could relate to, but after we broke up, he drifted back to his old ways.

- i never asked him to not hang out with those people or anything, and it was just his own desire to not be tangled up with them even before he met me

He left them but fell back....i feel either he does want it but has no will to ever make it happen and will result in misery for you or he was just using since you seemed to be an easy target which is what i see as more likely.

I suggest you cut him out of your life but that is my opinion. I just don't like those two things he states desire to leave and does but falls back in. if he wanted to leave it means they made him unhappy and he would fall back in because he was depressed to the people that depressed him in the first place? i don't buy that

also like HorribleAesthete said make sure your mind is clear when you make the final decision
 

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Usually, my gut instinct is correct. However, I'll let my tendencies to empathize get in the way, and override my gut instinct. For example, sometimes I have gut instincts that someone has harmful intentions, but if I don't distance myself soon enough, i start empathizing with that person and get in this internal push-and-pull of police sirens going off on one side and my understanding of the person on the other.

So the thing is -- I met a person a while back. My gut instinct: he's a nice dude, just in the wrong crowd. a lot of potential, but again... in the wrong crowd. I could tell that he was feeling 'trapped' in his life- this was the people he grew up with, the world he knew, but still i could sense the real him on the inside trying to get our and be himself. This guy was an INFJ, too, by the way. Anyway, most of my friends and people I knew disapproved of him - mainly because of the image he portrayed (living in the fast lane, living on the edge) and just WHO he was i guess, though I'm not exactly sure what they didn't like about him. (most of my friends are on the conservative, home-body, studious side, but i guess he is a little reckless..).

The thing is... my gut instinct tells me this guy is harmless and I really believe in him. He once told me I was the only one that believed in him and understood him. The thing is, everyone around me is telling me this guy is bad news, i'm too good for him, he doesnt treat me right, etc. I understand where my friends are coming from, and no matter how much I tell myself I think it's okay, I can't help but be influenced by my friend's opinions because I know that they are just trying to protect me and just want me happy. When I told them about his good aspects, they let things be- although they dont really like him, if i like him as a friend, they' trust my judgment (even though they still think he's a jerk). The thing is, I am greatly hesitating in contacting this person (we've lost touch for a while) and his birthday is coming up so it's an opportunity to open things up again with a short birthday greeting. Although my gut instinct tells me he is OK, how do I account for everyone in my life that disagrees with my gut instinct? and the fact that his lifestyle is not in tune with his own internal desires? (basically, he is living a lifestyle that he is not happy with. the people he hangs out with, the reckless things he does with them, he says he doesn't want). Should I go with my gut instinct on this? INFJ to INFJ?

This may or may not help and I am only going by my own personal experience. From what I am hearing, you are hoping to have some kind of relationship with this person. Friendship, companion etc. The friends that you have, do you value their opinion. Do you honestly in your heart believe that they care and wish the best for you. And most importantly, are they accurate? If you said yes, then follow their advice but do your own homework and see if what they see is true. The best way to find out is to do your own investigation. Do not need to ask questions but instead, do what we do best, observe.
Secondly, your values and your character. Are your qualities similiar to the person you are interested in. What I mean by that, if the both of you wish to make this work, their has to be some kind of mutual understanding of one another and the willingness to be open minded. It takes work and most importantly, mindful consistency. First being aware of what he or she wants from eachother and continuously practicing until it becomes a habit without even thinking.
If you feel this is worth your time and effort, that choice is totally up to you. But also remeber, are you willing to accept the worst? That maybe this is not what you had expected and that this whole thing could be your worst nightmare. Think about it. Do not need to be in any hurry. Take baby steps. Relationship of any kind takes work and most of all, time. I hope this helped.
Please let me know if this helped at all. This means a lot to me and if it did, please do not hesitate if you have any questions. And I am only going by my personal experience. If I have never experienced any thing that you ask, I will give you an honest answer that I do not know instead of telling you what I think when I never done it myself. I get turned off from that type of advice from people who try to help when they never did it themselves?

Thanks. jy
 

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I think you should do a mental exercise and step completely out of your families shoes for a moment and ask yourself some questions.

Why am I opposed to contacting him?

Is it merely because of what my family thinks?
a. Would it just make things really uncomfortable with them?
b. Would they do something really bad like ostracize me or say mean things to him?

Is it fear of commitment?

Is it fear of opening up & loving?

Do I want to contact him because deep down inside I am just wanting a deep connection with someone again and he happens to be the only person recently that I have had that with?

Is it because I know it will be an emotional mess that is not worth my while or healthy? (I don't actually want to be with him)

etc...

Are these the right things to be basing my decision on?

Have I been in a rut lately?
a. Could this be my motivation for contacting him?
b. What is it that I need to change to get out of the rut?
 

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I'll tell you the exact same thing I tell my own daughters. This is precisely what I tell them. It's all I can share because I don't know you. All I can tell you is what I tell them. The rest relies upon your judgment as a human being.

There are only a few things that truly directly belong to you as a matter of volition and right in this physical world. The first three are your mind, your heart and your body. The fourth, your soul, has a matchless value that is inviolable. And while nobody can take away that matchless value of your being you can nonetheless damage your soul if you don't guard it. So it is important to respect yourself, love yourself, be true to your values and be responsible for yourself.

These elements amount to your person-hood. They are you. And you must exercise complete sovereignty over them because each one is a rank of advancement towards accessing YOU as a whole being. Each one is an entryway - a vestibule leading into the temple of the soul.

Whomever you love and choose as your Soul Mate should be someone who respects and loves all of you. The Mind, the Heart, the Body. If they don't love and respect all three then you are giving them an open door to be a corrosive force upon your soul.

The second part of the Great Command after the love of God is to love your neighbor as yourself. And so it follows that you cannot truly love others unless you first love yourself. Love comes from God the Pantocrator of all - the conatus of the mechanisms of the universe itself. Love comes from that singular force which first set a compass upon the face of the deep. You don't give that away to just anybody that comes strolling along. That person must meet the highest standards before you share yourself with them. Do this and you will be a good steward of the life that has been granted to you as a gift of providence.

OK - I'm done preachin' now :happy:
 

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curious0610,
I think the fact that you are out here asking this question means that deep down you know the answer and you just need to work it out in your head/heart.

Given you are an INFJ, I do not question that you are right when you say that deep down this is a good guy. But then again aren't we all good (or at least most of us) deep down? Maybe you just recognize it more in him because you can understand him and relate to how he thinks. But what's important isn't what someone is capable of being or how they act under good circumstances. What's important is what they do and say each and every day. That is what you as their friend has to deal with. If you find yourself feeling uncomfortable (or angry, sad, etc) with them more than once in a very great while, then I would say they are not friend material.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
hey guys, just wanted to say thank you to every single one of your posts. I think it's helped me reach a conclusion on this. someone mentioned that the fact that im here asking questions means that deep down i know the answer and i just need to work it out in my head/heart. I think i realize now that this guy is bad news, but i guess it's hard for me to accept it. maybe i was just too naive at that time and i let myself get attached to someone i shouldn't have.

Also in response to this:
"Do I want to contact him because deep down inside I am just wanting a deep connection with someone again and he happens to be the only person recently that I have had that with?"

I think possibly this. For the longest time ever, I think i've become familiar with the idea that I am my own best friend. I stopped looking predominantly to my friends and stopped searching for close friends or that "best friend" that knows me perfectly… instead for the past few years, i've been a lone ranger haha. I have a group of close friends from h/s, and a lot of friends/acquaintances from college, but for the most part, it's been just ME and i've been fine with this individualism/independence. I think lately though, I've been really stressed and somewhat in a rut, and that loneliness just hit really hard and i wanted that connection with someone again. Overall, I guess as I'm in my early 20s, there's a lot of things that need working out and this is one of them.

It's also hard because a lot of INFJs on here sound EXACTLY like him. a lot of times, when i read a post and see that it's written by a guy INFJ, i have to check their profile to make sure it's not him. Even when the picture says otherwise, i'm thrown into an emotional up-and-down because the post sounded EXACTLY like him.

this is another interesting point I read:
"If you find yourself feeling uncomfortable (or angry, sad, etc) with them more than once in a very great while, then I would say they are not friend material."
^I've been feeling this way overall with many people lately, but I can't tell if it's because I've been under a lot of stress/quarter-life crisis...?

Anyway,t hanks again for everyone's advice! =) I think it would be in my best interest to finally shut that door and be in peace now.
 

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Overall, I guess as I'm in my early 20s, there's a lot of things that need working out and this is one of them.
I'm 41 and I'm having to close out on an issue with a person I've been friends with for 35 years. It's so hard. Impossible to imagine.

Tough choices never end as life goes on. But love remains. You can make a tough choice and still make it with love.
 
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