I’ve probably lived a sheltered life and this group may be the Real World, for all I know, but sometimes reading posts here can feel as if I’ve walked into the wrong sort of party. I know most of us pay lip service to the idea that all types are equally as valuable, and yet, I can’t log in without noticing somebody jokingly belittle everyone of a particular type in general or a pattern of type preferences. It’s possible that I was raised to believe that the best jokes are the self-deprecating kind, and this is the sort I prefer, but it seems to me that whether or not your comments are perceived as funny or annoying depends a lot on the life experiences and beliefs of your audience. It pays to care about the impact you’re having on others.
For example, I’m really tired of hearing people make lame jokes to me via comments or private email to the effect that I’m “all right for a Sensor (or Feeler)”, or that “despite my being a Sensor/Feeler, I (surprisingly) have a point.” I wonder if the people who dish out backhanded compliments or insult in jest like that may not realize that their humor is (a) not original, and (b) about as irritating as nails scratching a chalkboard. The only reaction you’re likely to get from me or others who feel the same way is a long drawn-out sigh.
I don’t usually experience my type preferences as limitations, but on the occasions when I do, then yeah, I find talking about myself in a self-deprecating way funny. And like most people, I find other people’s self-deprecating comments funny, as long as I know they don’t really think that badly of themselves But if people point out to me how I’ve failed to Be Just Like Them, it doesn’t strike me as funny. It actually makes me wonder whether their mind is capable of being flexible, or if they are “married” to their negative beliefs. (My hubby says that “pre-cognitive commitment” is the technical term for that. I love being married to a teacher.)
May I propose something, for those who are inclined to bash other people’s type preferences for fun? Before dashing something off impulsively and hitting the send button (yeah, the irony of an SP asking people to be less impulsive isn’t lost on me), could you ask yourself:
- What sort of impact is my “joke” or “harmless insult” likely to have on the recipient?
- Has the other person heard that “joke” millions of times before?
- Is that person likely to find “jokes” like the one I’m dying to post amusing or annoying?
I wasn't sure if this was the right place for this request. And yes I realize I'm leaving myself wide open for people who think I'm "hypersenstive" to tell me that if I can't play hardball with the tough guys, I should just go away.