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View Full Version : Do ISTJ's hang on to all old relationships (stay 'friends' with old gf's and friends)



OregonENFP
03-20-2009, 07:14 AM
I am in a relationship with an ISTJ. I'm an ENFP. We've been friends for 8 years but recently have gotten serious in a romantic relationship.

Something that is bothering me is that he hangs on to all old girlfriends (and friends that are girls) and that is very annoying to me. He has never actually lost touch with any ex girlfriends (or girls that are friends) it seems. I feel so jealous knowing that he insists on keeping friends with all of them. Is this normal for ISTJ's? Do they have a hard time letting go of old relationships?

He's not 'hiding' anything with me. He is open and up front and says I can be 'friends' with his 'friends', too. He even gave me his password to his facebook! (he offered) which to be honest I'm too nervous to look at incase I get freaked out.

A bit about me, I've always known I've been more sensitive than many/most(?) other people. I am incredibly emotionally sensitive and I think I have chosen the least sensitive man I've ever known in some ways, he's soooo rough around the edges, not romantic, realistic to a fault, a bit pessimistic, guarded, sometimes hurtful, a bit controlling and frankly blunt as hell! However, I find myself so drawn to him and in some ways I feel he knows me better than any other man. He is kind of like my Rock. Our relationship sort of reminds me of "I Love Lucy" -- I'm Lucy, he's Ricky. It's so confusing!!

Thanks for all the thoughts.

Signed,

--A bit too sensitive for her own good

Habba
03-20-2009, 07:29 AM
Loyalty is the number one characteristic in ISTJ personality. However, under great stress and pressure, ISTJs may become unable to hold their loyalties anymore. But ISTJs are stubborn as hell to keep up their loyalties. Even when it's harmful.

I wanted to stay friends with my ex, because I felt she knew me well enough I could trust her. Well, she found a new boyfriend and that was like a 2-ton ballbreaker straight to my face. Maybe I had always hoped we'd get back together (yeah, right... not happening!).

I have hard time stepping back in relationships... actually, any setback will greatly stress me. ISTJs hate losing things in their life (not as in winning, but as in gaining), and they may have need to hold on to the past.

Oh, I gotta go soon, but in short:

ISTJs are very loyal, and he might not even understand why you feel bad about him hanging out with girls. ISTJs are not really great on empathy, so he might not realize how you feel about this.

Eagle
03-20-2009, 01:44 PM
That about sums it up.

d@v3
03-20-2009, 03:00 PM
Indeed, Habba said it! :yes: But he ought to know better than to just hang out with other girls? :doh: Have you told him (in simplest terms possible) how it makes you feel when he does this? For instance, don't just say "I don't want you talking to them" you should say "this makes me feel bad when you talk to them" or something along those lines.

THEN he will get the picture and hopefully stop or come to a compromise. It's a good thing though that he offered you his facebook password, that means he is not hiding anything! Besides, ISTJ's are fiercely loyal, I really don't think you have a problem.

Just tell him eaxctly how you feel. We aren't that good at interpreting feelings without words attached! :)

Cimarron
03-20-2009, 07:08 PM
I can see it happening, but it depends a lot on what kind of break-up he had with those ex-girlfriends.

d@v3
03-20-2009, 07:23 PM
I can see it happening, but it depends a lot on what kind of break-up he had with those ex-girlfriends.

Well she said they were friends so I'm assuming that the break ups weren't your average 9-iron attack. :huh:

Shadow
03-20-2009, 08:20 PM
I am in a relationship with an ISTJ. I'm an ENFP. We've been friends for 8 years but recently have gotten serious in a romantic relationship.

Something that is bothering me is that he hangs on to all old girlfriends (and friends that are girls) and that is very annoying to me. He has never actually lost touch with any ex girlfriends (or girls that are friends) it seems. I feel so jealous knowing that he insists on keeping friends with all of them. Is this normal for ISTJ's? Do they have a hard time letting go of old relationships?

He's not 'hiding' anything with me. He is open and up front and says I can be 'friends' with his 'friends', too. He even gave me his password to his facebook! (he offered) which to be honest I'm too nervous to look at incase I get freaked out.

A bit about me, I've always known I've been more sensitive than many/most(?) other people. I am incredibly emotionally sensitive and I think I have chosen the least sensitive man I've ever known in some ways, he's soooo rough around the edges, not romantic, realistic to a fault, a bit pessimistic, guarded, sometimes hurtful, a bit controlling and frankly blunt as hell! However, I find myself so drawn to him and in some ways I feel he knows me better than any other man. He is kind of like my Rock. Our relationship sort of reminds me of "I Love Lucy" -- I'm Lucy, he's Ricky. It's so confusing!!

Thanks for all the thoughts.

Signed,

--A bit too sensitive for her own good

Maybe it's a male ISTJ thing, because I totally know how you feel and one of my relationships was pretty much ruined by my jealousy. I don't regret it though. There's a right way and a wrong way to stay friends with exes. The wrong way is to prioritise them over you and if their deep communications seem to be directed at their other female friends rather than you. The right way, as my ISFJ boyfriend succeeds in doing (maybe it's a male SJ thing??), is to be friends with them, but to make it clear in his actions that you're far more important.
Leaving aside types for a moment, I really believe that good relationships are when the two halves of the couple are complicit i.e. best friends (if they have a best female friend who seems more important than you I'd stay well clear) and where your priorities and interests are the same i.e. each other. I wouldn't get jealous if his exes are clearly just friends and he hangs out with them from time to time, preferably in the company of their mutual friends, but if it's starting to feel like three's a crowd... I'd get out of there.

Just for information, as a female ISTJ I have completely cut ties with all my exes. Combination of reasons: painful to see them again, the following boyfriend not wanting me to stay friends with them, or we just fell out so badly I never wanted anything to do with them again.

Oh, and giving you the password to his facebook is a very good sign that he trusts you and is probably his way of letting you know that you can trust him reciprocally. Plus, the fact you haven't used it proves to him that his trust is well placed.

Rachelinpa
03-20-2009, 08:45 PM
Yeah, my ISTJ roommate is still friends with his (one and only) ex from high school. I guess they were together like six years or something and they still talk, but it's really not anything for a GF to worry about. He's just so devoted in nature that I am confident whoever he ends up with will completely have his attention. Plus, it's not like he's got a million relationships going at once -- it would take a lot of effort for him to keep in touch with her in any meaningful or significant way. It's a very practical sort of thing and not really emotional, which makes it safer in my brain... not at all like the ESFPs I've dated that have kept in touch with their exes.

Randomnity
03-20-2009, 08:52 PM
Even going beyond type, it's normal for many people to be friends with exes. As long as there's clearly no suspicious behaviour going on, and he's not doing things that make you uncomfortable, it's a little unreasonable to make a big deal about it.

I have many male friends, several of them exes. We get along great and absolutely platonically. I'd be pretty irritated if my bf made a fuss about it.

Maybe if you got to know them it would help...you could suggest going out for lunch/etc and try to make friends with them as well. Try to see them as people instead of competition. :)

Shadow
03-20-2009, 09:05 PM
I also think it would be too much effort for an ISTJ to have more than one romantic relationship on the go because we are so dedicated and loyal.

ThatsWhatHeSaid
03-20-2009, 09:20 PM
Dude. This isn't type-related. I do the same thing and I'm not ISTJ.

BlackCat
03-20-2009, 09:44 PM
Dude. This isn't type-related. I do the same thing and I'm not ISTJ.

Everything is type related here Edahn! Don't you know? I still talk to my old SOs, I don't see why I wouldn't.

OregonENFP
03-21-2009, 01:13 AM
Indeed, Habba said it! :yes: But he ought to know better than to just hang out with other girls? :doh: Have you told him (in simplest terms possible) how it makes you feel when he does this? For instance, don't just say "I don't want you talking to them" you should say "this makes me feel bad when you talk to them" or something along those lines.

THEN he will get the picture and hopefully stop or come to a compromise. It's a good thing though that he offered you his facebook password, that means he is not hiding anything! Besides, ISTJ's are fiercely loyal, I really don't think you have a problem.

Just tell him eaxctly how you feel. We aren't that good at interpreting feelings without words attached! :)

Hey there, thanks for taking time to reply.
He doesn't 'hang out' with other girls, just talks to them every now and then online I guess or in emails. His one ex I guess calls him for holidays.

I have told him how I 'feel' and this is a no-compromise situation for him. It's bascially I accept it or I don't know what else... the highway I guess.

Anyway, I do feel better after reading how loyal ISTJ's are. I know he's fiercely loyal to his family....

OregonENFP
03-21-2009, 01:15 AM
I also think it would be too much effort for an ISTJ to have more than one romantic relationship on the go because we are so dedicated and loyal.

Very good to hear! Thank you. :):cheese:

Giggly
03-21-2009, 01:33 AM
Maybe it's a male ISTJ thing, because I totally know how you feel and one of my relationships was pretty much ruined by my jealousy. I don't regret it though. There's a right way and a wrong way to stay friends with exes. The wrong way is to prioritise them over you and if their deep communications seem to be directed at their other female friends rather than you. The right way, as my ISFJ boyfriend succeeds in doing (maybe it's a male SJ thing??), is to be friends with them, but to make it clear in his actions that you're far more important.
Leaving aside types for a moment, I really believe that good relationships are when the two halves of the couple are complicit i.e. best friends (if they have a best female friend who seems more important than you I'd stay well clear) and where your priorities and interests are the same i.e. each other. I wouldn't get jealous if his exes are clearly just friends and he hangs out with them from time to time, preferably in the company of their mutual friends, but if it's starting to feel like three's a crowd... I'd get out of there.

Just for information, as a female ISTJ I have completely cut ties with all my exes. Combination of reasons: painful to see them again, the following boyfriend not wanting me to stay friends with them, or we just fell out so badly I never wanted anything to do with them again.

Oh, and giving you the password to his facebook is a very good sign that he trusts you and is probably his way of letting you know that you can trust him reciprocally. Plus, the fact you haven't used it proves to him that his trust is well placed.

+1

I couldn't have said it better. I feel the exact same way.

batumi
03-27-2009, 05:37 PM
What are you feeling that you are missing in this relationship?
I think all jealousies come from this kind of "missing out" feeling.
And I do think, at least in my experience, that it is somewhat normal for
ISTJ men to sort of want to keep in touch with people from the past.
My tendency is to think it is part of that historical thing they do, you know?
They are SJ and live in the past, we are NF and live in the future.

It's tough though. I have said to my ISTJ, wow, how can I possibly
matter in only 5 or ten years, when some people in your life go back
20 years?

Try spending more time on your own past and remembering what you
are about, what you are good at, what you love.

swordpath
03-27-2009, 05:44 PM
All my friends date back from early life. I put effort into making sure the things I have that mean something to me don't go.

uberrogo
03-27-2009, 07:59 PM
I do talk to one every once in a while, most I do not talk to. I havent had many g/f's though. I do still talk to a lot of girls who've turned me down though. =P

d@v3
03-27-2009, 10:25 PM
It's bascially I accept it or I don't know what else... the highway I guess.

Anyway, I do feel better after reading how loyal ISTJ's are. I know he's fiercely loyal to his family....

If you can't live with his communication with ex's take the highway. :yes:
And yes, the ISTJ is typically fiercely loyal. :D

JoyOfTraveling
07-17-2010, 11:03 AM
I am an ENFP female and I am in touch with ALL my ex-es too and I refuse to give them up. Infact the only reason I almost always seem to go for IxTJs is because they seem to understand my need to hold onto that!

jazzyidahovandal
07-21-2010, 03:44 AM
Meh, I am not in contact with old boyfriends. It brings back too many bad memories. I do keep in touch with college friends and high school friends, mostly via facebook

Lily flower
10-24-2011, 09:17 AM
I've heard that ISTJ's are loyal, but the one I know will blow you off if you even do anything that is not in her sphere of perfect and correct. Then if you do something she likes, you are back in the friend zone. Exhausting and shallow! I only put up with her because she is married to a friend of mine.

Sam Spade
11-15-2011, 09:35 AM
I don't remain friends with my latest ex. I completely cut all ties and can't be bothered with her anymore.

swordpath
11-15-2011, 09:44 AM
I'm kind of guilty of this.

mrcockburn
11-16-2011, 10:04 AM
My ISTJ guy is still friends with some of his exes. I'm friends with my non-psycho exes, too. It's quite natural if you liked someone enough to date, you'd like them enough to stay friends with.

Unless either are immature and can't get romantic fantasies out their head after the decision to split was made.