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Discussion Starter #1
I learned I was an ISFJ when I was a freshman in high school, but I didn't realize that there was so much more to learn about MBTI types until a couple of years ago (to my delight). When I did discover these online forums, for ISFJ boards as well as other MBTI types, I thoroughly enjoyed visiting and reading through posts for hours.

However, I've noticed that for the past 6 months or so, I find myself taking long hiatuses from doing voluntary MBTI research due to this:

Most other types hate or, at the very least, don't seem to care much for ISFJs. "They're the most boring type." "They're so manipulative." "They don't use logic at all." "ISFJs are not introspective at all." Etcetera!

Sure, write me off as being stereotypically offended--"my feelings are hurt of course due to me being an ISFJ"--and maybe that's how I was initially but at this point I'm just pure frustrated.

I'm also an avid Youtuber and Black and I bring that up because most everyone knows that people behind computer screens can be awful "brave and open" about their racism online, especially on Youtube. I mention this to say that I think people in general, in their necessity to know what to expect from a certain group of people, create boxes (aka stereotypes) and leave it at that and call it at day, thinking that they've done efficient deductive reasoning. It frustrates the hell out of me for some people to have interacted with or dated one or even ten Black people/ISFJs and then think that it's fair to say that ALL Black people are loud or that ALL ISFJs are simple and boring. I'm sorry if you've had one or several unpleasant experiences with a person of a certain race, socioeconomic status, MBTI type, enneagram number, but give people of all types and ethnicities more credit than that! No human being HAS to act any kind of way, MBTI is simply a tool concerning a person's natural preferences.

In this case, many Black people and many ISFJs err towards certain behaviors, but it's rarely because they are Black or because they are ISFJ! Structural inequality and levels of maturity usually have way more to do with it. And why so much hate on ISFJs, as if all the other types are pure gold.

All I'm saying is that ALL types and temperaments are equal from the get-go, ALL types have strengths and weaknesses, and I find it quite sad that many non-ISFJ MBTI folk, the "enlightened" community of people who were so-called introspective enough to learn more about [their] personality, have resorted to subscribing to an unofficial hierarchy to make themselves feel the littlest bit superior. ISFJs aren't the only "insecure" ones out there it looks like. Not saying you have to love ISFJs (though due to my bias, I think we're pretty awesome :wink:), but stop writing us off just because we don't see or interact with the world the same way you do! Have some respect for and do your best to UNDERSTAND differences, that's why Personality Cafe (and the World Wide Web for crying out loud) has the resources it does.

P.S. Notice how I worded my complaint: "Most other types hate or, at the very least, don't seem to care much for ISFJs." Take note and have a good day.
 

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Hi, thanks for making this thread. :)

Yeah, I've noticed most of the bias against ISFJs. Besides "boring", "simple" and "not introspective", we also get labels like "bossy", and "authoritative". For me, I recognise why I might come off as boring and not introspective IRL. I do have views and opinions on things, but most of the time, I don't air them. I guess I'm not very comfortable with telling people what I think, unless I'm close to them. I don't want to seem confrontational and impolite (which is down to Fe, I think)

For bossy and authoritative, it's because ISFJs (or SJs, for that matter) tend to be authority figures, like bosses, teachers, parents and grandparents. Obviously, it's the nature of the internet that there are more complaints than compliments. The people with the most issues with their parents/teachers tend to be the ones speaking up the most, while others who have little to no issue usually stay silent. Maybe we can take things into perspective, and try to imagine that with every one complaint against an SJ/ISFJ, there are four other people who are content with them. :)

But I agree with you about the stereotype thing. Sometimes, it gets too far. With regards to "blacks being loud" stereotype, I'm just astonished at it. After watching the Hunger Games, I was very impressed with the little girl who played Rue. I went on YouTube, and guess what? Surprise, surprise, there were many negative comments about how Rue can't possibly be black, because she's so gentle and sweet. I'm not even African American (not even American) and I felt offended. I can't imagine what an actual African American might feel. Seriously. Just because blacks are portrayed as mostly ghetto and loud in the media, doesn't mean every single black person is ghetto. After reading the comments on Rue's clips, I didn't even want to attempt reading comments on Cinna's. He's my other favourite character and I just *know* people are going to argue about whether or not he's a homosexual. Does it really matter? He's a loyal friend and a father figure to Katniss. That's enough for me and it should be enough for everyone else. I just think people need education on these things.
 

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Agreed! Like MCRTS said, thanks for starting this thread. :) I was noticing that too, that whenever I went around the Internet, I mostly saw complaints about how ISFJs are boring and bland and personality-less.

The truth is that we have such a rich inner world in our heads, but we just don't share it with others. We also don't want to say anything that could come off the wrong way because we're afraid of seeming impolite. I feel like if people got to know us better and we opened up to them, they'd be surprised by how opposite we are from the "dull, boring" stereotype that ISFJs keep getting boxed into.
 

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I think I might be biased a bit because I think males have a harder time because it apparently show feminism.... I wish I could meet someone who understands whats going on with me rather than them thinking i'm weird or boring before really getting to know me. Talk about something i'm interested in and I can talk for 10 hours straight. I get really annoyed when the few friends I have at college tell me to " go out and make friends" even though I try people just prejudge me so hard by the way I talk and initiate a conversation because there isn't really small talk. I just wish someone could see how loyal, generous, kind we can be like we are with our close friends.
 

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I've noticed a bit of ISFJ hate as well, and it's frankly quite ridiculous. The ISFJs I've talked to on this forum aren't at all annoying or boring or whatever, but I have noticed a trend (especially on the INTP forums) of labeling nearly anyone they dislike or disagree with an "ISFJ". You know like, "My mom is impossible to get along with! I hate ISFJs!"
 

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I've noticed a bit of ISFJ hate as well, and it's frankly quite ridiculous. The ISFJs I've talked to on this forum aren't at all annoying or boring or whatever, but I have noticed a trend (especially on the INTP forums) of labeling nearly anyone they dislike or disagree with an "ISFJ".
I think it's just a lot of teens venting about their mother.

I personally think ISFJs are the most incredible people. There's not enough great things I can say about my mother.

I haven't seen much hate for ISFJs; ESFJs, on the other hand, get the brunt of criticism.
 

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I think it's just a lot of teens venting about their mother.

I personally think ISFJs are the most incredible people. There's not enough great things I can say about my mother.

I haven't seen much hate for ISFJs; ESFJs, on the other hand, get the brunt of criticism.
I've actually seen a bunch of people hating on ISFJs in the INTP forum, especially the poll about mothers/parents.
 

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SJs in general get way too much criticism. They're way too misunderstood. I honestly think you guys are amazing, my mum is a (possible) ISFJ and she's one of the most caring people I've ever met. You see people on this forum complain about bias to their type, and then they spew out a ton of bias against other types (usually SJs).

Though I think that being typist on a typology forum is much more dangerous than being an SJ, so no worries. Anyone who stereotypes all ISFJs and deems them as all the same is a close-minded person that needs to learn to accept people's differences.
 

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I learned I was an ISFJ when I was a freshman in high school, but I didn't realize that there was so much more to learn about MBTI types until a couple of years ago (to my delight). When I did discover these online forums, for ISFJ boards as well as other MBTI types, I thoroughly enjoyed visiting and reading through posts for hours.

However, I've noticed that for the past 6 months or so, I find myself taking long hiatuses from doing voluntary MBTI research due to this:

Most other types hate or, at the very least, don't seem to care much for ISFJs. "They're the most boring type." "They're so manipulative." "They don't use logic at all." "ISFJs are not introspective at all." Etcetera!


I don't know how it goes on another personality type forums, but here's the vibe I get from PerC: I don't think ISFJs get the most hate. As others have said, ESFJs (and to a degree, ESTJs) get more hate, and SJs and Ss in general probably experience more stereotyping than other types.

I mention some of the reasons for this in this thread:

http://personalitycafe.com/estj-forum-guardians/28708-estjs-do-people-around-you-hates-you-2.html

teddy564339 said:
Here's where I think this is particularly strong with SJ's, especially ESTJ's. I've mentioned this theory in other threads...and that is the theory that because S's outnumber N's so much, it's very likely that an N with will have an S for a parent (or both) or at least a teacher or boss. Since SP's are more easygoing and go-with-the-flow, they're not as likely to stifle the N...but SJ's probably do, with their large focus on structure, organization and rules. Yes, those things are important, but they're more important to an SJ than the N types.

This is especially true for an STJ parent to an NF, I would imagine. If the parent doesn't nurture the child in the right way, then I'm sure there will be a deep resentment.


And to be honest, I think a lot of this is an N thing. I can't help but think that PerC is an escape for a lot of N's. Because they're so outnumbered in society, and because S's have so much trouble understanding them, I think they congregate here to be with their kind, to escape all of their frustrations. I think when that happens, it's natural for them to bond by saying how much trouble they have with S's, and like I said, SJ's in particular.

So I think I've gotten better at not taking things said on here too personally. I think S's, and particularly SJ',s tend to take things literally, and SFJ's probably take them personally. If nothing else N types may just be blowing off steam. I can definitely relate to having a need for that.


Of course, that doesn't mean that they can't be convinced that S's, or SJ's, or ESTJ's or anyone else, don't have to be bad or don't have to conflict with them. To me that's part of the beauty of this site, being able to actually learn about other types. But, as I've also learned, sometimes you just have to live with friction.

So I think a lot of it is general N frustration.



However, in all fairness, I think all 16 types experience stereotyping. I think it happens to Ns a lot IRL, and to Ss more online. And this is just down to being in the minority...IRL, Ns are the minority, on sites like PerC, Ss are in the minority.


But I think all types experience stereotyping. This doesn't take away from the frustration that you feel, but I do think it's fair to understand that this isn't unique to ISFJs. If you comb through some of the other subforums, there are some posts talking about some of this in other subforums as well.









The Martyr Expert said:
Sure, write me off as being stereotypically offended--"my feelings are hurt of course due to me being an ISFJ"--and maybe that's how I was initially but at this point I'm just pure frustrated.

In this case, many Black people and many ISFJs err towards certain behaviors, but it's rarely because they are Black or because they are ISFJ! Structural inequality and levels of maturity usually have way more to do with it. And why so much hate on ISFJs, as if all the other types are pure gold.

All I'm saying is that ALL types and temperaments are equal from the get-go, ALL types have strengths and weaknesses, and I find it quite sad that many non-ISFJ MBTI folk, the "enlightened" community of people who were so-called introspective enough to learn more about [their] personality, have resorted to subscribing to an unofficial hierarchy to make themselves feel the littlest bit superior. ISFJs aren't the only "insecure" ones out there it looks like. Not saying you have to love ISFJs (though due to my bias, I think we're pretty awesome :wink:), but stop writing us off just because we don't see or interact with the world the same way you do! Have some respect for and do your best to UNDERSTAND differences, that's why Personality Cafe (and the World Wide Web for crying out loud) has the resources it does.

P.S. Notice how I worded my complaint: "Most other types hate or, at the very least, don't seem to care much for ISFJs." Take note and have a good day.

Well, like I said, this does happen to other types as well. I think the way we ISFJs interpret it is a little different though.


First off, due to our Si, I think we do have a tendency to....look at things from our perspective more often. I don't mean to say that ISFJs are self-centered (or "self-focused" is probably a better way to say it), but sometimes I think we have trouble seeing the whole picture due to our Si. I think this is where our self-consciousness comes from. In social situations, I oftentimes worry about little things I do, most of which no one else even notices. I'm so focused on things that I'm doing, and other people aren't even aware of these things. They're just looking at the whole situation.


So I think this is why we ISFJs can be pretty sensitive and self-conscious. It makes this kind of stereotyping hit us harder than it does some types. So I do think there is a reason for the sensitivity that you describe here.


And there's nothing wrong with that, but I do think that it kind of...exaggerates what we feel in these situations compared to what other types really intend.



For example, like @downsowf said, a lot of times NTPs talk about their frustrations with ISFJ parents. When I read their posts, I have to remind myself that they're really only venting their frustrations with their parents, and are often looking for support from other NTPs. When they ask ISFJs for advice, they don't always know how to get help without saying things that might offend us. They just aren't as adept at being really sensitive to small things like we are.


I also think Ns tend to generalize more than Ss do. They like jumping right to the point to save time and energy, so they often gloss over the whole "I'm not saying all ISFJs are like this..." I think we ISFJs have a very strong natural tendency to always point this out, like you did in the OP. I know I repeat it over and over and over again, often to the annoyance of some Ns, who feel it's obvious. So I think we take notice of these small details and can't feel at peace until they're specifically clarified. But many Ns just don't communicate in this way.

I'm not saying all of this to downplay your feelings. I'm saying it to hopefully offer you ways of feeling better about the situation and not be as hurt by it in the cases where others don't mean to cause that hurt.



So again, I understand where you're coming from, and I can relate to your feelings of hurt and frustration. However, I think we have to understand that the more we understand where others are coming from (as well as why we feel the way we do), the more likely we can clear up miscommunications and feel better about the situation.
 

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So I think a lot of it is general N frustration.

However, in all fairness, I think all 16 types experience stereotyping. I think it happens to Ns a lot IRL, and to Ss more online. And this is just down to being in the minority...IRL, Ns are the minority, on sites like PerC, Ss are in the minority.
Bingo. Somehow, my type ended up with a favorable label ("the thinker") and Albert Einstein as its mascot. ISFJs ended up with the "nurturer" label with Mother Theresa at its mascot. However, no INTP is close to being Einstein and I doubt anyone here comes close to being Mother Theresa. @teddy564339probably has more knowledge and smarts than most people on this forum. And guess what?--he's not an NT. @Mendi the ISFJ also has insightful things to say and is a very deep person as well. What happens on these boards is people adopt this sort of "go-team" mentality to boost their ego and make them feel better. Because INTJs have the "mastermind" label, sometimes those threads can turn into a big circle-jerk(excuse my language) of how much smarter they are than everyone else. Most INTJs don't do this, but some go on there and try to measure up to the stereotype. However, we are all individuals first and I have probably more in common with people of other temperaments than I would my own.

Another point: The advantage of being on a forum where people can hide under the cover of anonymity lets people say things they would never dream of saying in real life. That's why you have to take the things what people say here with a grain of salt. I think many ISFJs are probably apprehensive about interacting with the other types. There might be a tendency you guys feel of fearing to say the wrong thing and get pounced upon. I'm not entirely sure this is the case. It's just a guess. But don't worry about that- you know who you are and no one here can tell you otherwise because they don't know the real you.
 

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Another point: The advantage of being on a forum where people can hide under the cover of anonymity lets people say things they would never dream of saying in real life. That's why you have to take the things what people say here with a grain of salt. I think many ISFJs are probably apprehensive about interacting with the other types. There might be a tendency you guys feel of fearing to say the wrong thing and get pounced upon. I'm not entirely sure this is the case. It's just a guess. But don't worry about that- you know who you are and no one here can tell you otherwise because they don't know the real you.
@The Martyr Expert


I think this is a fantastic point for ISFJs to keep in mind, particularly with NTs, and most particularly with NTPs.


There was a person who lived on my hall in college, who now I believe is an ENTP. Most of the guys on my hall were thinkers, I believe. I did not get along with this ENTP person, because I felt like he was always making fun of people, making insensitive jokes, being rude, and just not being considerate of other people. While some of these feelings were shared by guys on my hall, they all got along with this ENTP guy just fine, and I didn't understand why I felt so incredibly uncomfortable around him all of the time and no one else did.

But after studying the MBTI, I honestly believe that the issue was that I took everything he did so seriously. I hate saying that ISFJs are automatically sensitive, but I really do think we notice and retain so many different little things that most other people just don't. They just don't. They don't care about all of the stupid little things that we notice and remember. So I think we have a way of taking everything, especially socially, just so seriously.

I don't mean to make this sound disrespectful to ENTPs, but I think ENTPs just...fire off whatever comes into their minds. They just throw out whatever they're thinking about, and this usually ends up leading to them making a lot of jokes and expressing a lot of thoughts. They don't want to hurt anybody...they're just enjoying themselves and looking to have a good time. This is just how they naturally operate. Just like how ISFJs naturally operate by noticing every little thing.


So what I found out what was....once I stopped taking what everyone said so seriously (unless it was truly necessary), once I stopped worrying constantly about every single little thing, I felt much happier as a person. Remember, the average person doesn't remember and retain all of these stupid little social things that we ISFJs do. They just go with the flow, enjoy themselves, forget about it, and keep going. Even ISTJs and ESTJs, who share our Si, don't focus on remembering all of these little social things...they use it towards taking care of goals and procedures and jobs and things. That's why they're not as sensitive as we are.


So like @downsowf said...it's the internet. Sometimes we just need to take a step back, relax, and realize that people are just firing off what's on their mind. Yes, it's nice for them to think more carefully about what they're saying and make an effort to word things so it's less hurtful to sensitive people, but this is just as difficult for them to do as it is for us to stop being sensitive and to relax. So the more we can lighten up and loosen up, the easier it will be for them to find ways to be more sensitive, and the more all of us will get along.


I know this is hard to do. I've poured my heart and soul into PerC, expressing personal thoughts and feelings that I haven't told anyone in my life. I treat people on PerC like they're real people, not just internet strangers. I honestly try to help people with their situations that arise because of type. I feel pain and sympathy for others...reading about it make it real for me. And it feels really good when I can offer insight that actually helps people out in a relationship. This is what Si and Fe does for me...it makes it all so real.


But that's just one part of life. The other part is relaxing, having fun, having a good time, going with the flow, and understanding that life doesn't have to be so serious all of the time. People aren't out to get you. They don't hate you. They're just trying to make their own way in the world. If you get caught up in every single little thing they say, and over-worry about everything everyone says, all it does is give you extra stress.


Basically, it makes your life better if you can lighten up, even though I know how incredibly hard that can be for us.
 

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You know whats funny, i hadnt noticed any ISFJ-specific hatred on here. Some people have mentioned N vs S mocking, but nothing about ISFJs in particular. I travel around to the various sub-forums randomly and i ask alot of questions, maybe people dont target me for their anger because i try to be polite? Hard to say.
 
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I'd like to have an ISFJ friend. I can probably share so much with them if the friendship clicks. Who said ISFJs can't be fun? =P

I talked to an ISFJ online before. But since he's way too many years older, and this is online and I've never seen the guy, I stopped talking to him. Part of me regret that decision and wished I held back that decision until I finally meet him in person. I can easily protect myself if he turn out to be a fraud.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I'm glad I made this thread! Reading back over it, I kinda cringe at how pissed off I sounded in the OP, but eh, that's okay, I got my point across. But also in posting my ill-informed frustration, I got the pleasure of not exactly being corrected but rather enlightened!

So: teens complaining about their ISFJ moms. Understandable.

A lot of other types do like ISFJs. Thank you :)

ISFJs are not the most "hated"--that's a good thing to keep in mind when I get offended by ISFJ-disdain.

Sensors outnumber Intuitives IRL and on the internet N's get a chance to bond partially through their justifiable complaints about being outnumbered and misunderstood (many times, maybe most of the time, by Sensors). That makes so much sense!

"This is the internet. Loosen up." -- No offense taken at all, it's great advice.

ISFJs care about (and consequently often get hurt by) a lot of little things that...we shouldn't, but do because it's in our nature. Just as it is in other's nature to be blunt, over-general, etcetera.

Thank you everyone who has helped me see the bigger picture, and I apologize for my harsh OP. <3
 

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ISFJ are fine, actually get along with they pretty well , in the other case ESFJ are the real ........., just look around their subforum you will notice any "N" cant tolerate them, even i cant stand them:angry:

PD: inalambric-tecnologycal hugs for all.
 

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So: teens complaining about their ISFJ moms. Understandable.
It isn't so much just that, but I have seen ... I guess, confirmation bias from a few people in some of the INTP threads where it basically sounds like: "I'm an INTP. I don't get along with my mother. Therefore, she must be an ISFJ since I've read that INTPs and ISFJs don't get along or shouldn't get along." It also isn't JUST teenagers, but there is a fair bit of teenaged crying.
 

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It isn't so much just that, but I have seen ... I guess, confirmation bias from a few people in some of the INTP threads where it basically sounds like: "I'm an INTP. I don't get along with my mother. Therefore, she must be an ISFJ since I've read that INTPs and ISFJs don't get along or shouldn't get along." It also isn't JUST teenagers, but there is a fair bit of teenaged crying.
i have seen the "My Mom is ISFJ" rant occasionally now that i think about it, but Moms are Moms... they worry, and ISFJs worry more than most types (id bet) so it makes sense that that could lead to overbearing Moms on occasion. I dont take those personally as even my own INFJ Mom can be annoyingly worrysome sometimes, even worse when i was young enough to have to live with my parents and fighting for my freedom.
 

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i have seen the "My Mom is ISFJ" rant occasionally now that i think about it, but Moms are Moms... they worry, and ISFJs worry more than most types (id bet) so it makes sense that that could lead to overbearing Moms on occasion. I dont take those personally as even my own INFJ Mom can be annoyingly worrysome sometimes, even worse when i was young enough to have to live with my parents and fighting for my freedom.
Here's where the diversity of human relationships really shines. I'm an INFJ with an ISFJ mother. Your post made me try to imagine what it'd be like if my mom and I switched roles. A strange experience that was, as I didn't succeed in my attempt.

Somehow I view ISFJs as the quintessential paradigm of motherhood. That's how much I respect my mom, I suppose. She's just the kindest and most selfless person. But she has reminded me that it's because I'm her daughter that I think she's so wonderful. She admits that she is restricted to her family, that she often finds herself being negligent of the world at large. That's where our relationship meets a lot of frustration. It is indeed difficult for her to accept things that are out of the norm of her every day life, and our value systems diverge at that point. So because my mother embodies conservative wisdom, I can't help but find her overly complacent and stubbornly traditional at times.

But I did say it's wisdom. I really believe that ISFJs have natural wisdom, which is born out of their natural empathy and selfless service towards others. SJs have such propensity for organization and such clear perceptions of reality. They really help ground me when my thoughts fly too far away and leave me in a disenchanted state. So I sincerely apologize for all the negativity ISFJs may experience online (the internet can be a cesspool of the refuse of unbridled venting). I extend my respect and love for my ISFJ mother to you.
 
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