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  1. #1
    Senior Member Mal12345's Avatar
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    Default Karen Horney's Three Conflicts - Which Type Are You? Etc.

    You children can stop laughing at the name in the thread title.

    Psychologist Karen Horney wrote a book called "Our Inner Conflicts" in which she outlined and described three basic types of neurotic conflict resulting in personalities that are aggressive, compliant, or withdrawn:

    Compliant: "When moving toward people he accepts his own helplessness, and in spite of his estrangement and fears tries to win the affection of others and to lean on them. Only in this way can he feel safe with them. If there are dissenting parties in the family, he will attach himself to the most powerful person or group. By complying with them, he gains a feeling of belonging and support which makes him feel less weak and less isolated."

    Aggressive: "When he moves against people he accepts and takes for granted the hostility around him, and determines, consciously or unconsciously, to fight. He implicitly distrusts the feelings and intentions of others toward himself. He rebels in whatever ways are open to him. He wants to be the stronger and defeat them, partly for his own protection, partly for revenge."

    Withdrawn: "When he moves away from people he wants neither to belong nor to fight, but keeps apart. He feels he has not much in common with them, they do not understand him anyhow. He builds up a world of his own— with nature, with his dolls, his books, his dreams."

    Sometimes Karen's wording can be a bit strange. "His dolls"? I'm the withdrawn type and I can assure you I don't play with dolls. Never did. As a 549 tritype I'm considered a triple withdrawn type. But my personality make up is more complex than that, as I can also demonstrate compliant and aggressive traits depending on circumstances. She is describing the Sp type 5 which is the stereotypical 5, but I'm the Sx type 5 which as you can imagine has an aggressive streak described by the Sx instinct.

    ---------------------

    I shouldn't have to point out that most people are walking contradictions and bundles of inconsistent traits. Some if not most of us adopted typology as a means of resolving or at least explaining the contradictions and finding order amidst the chaos. Typology gives the illusion of consistency by simply eliminating the inconsistencies in determining type. This is especially true of the MBTI which demands that each person be exactly one type, the traits of which are wholly consistent and coherent. Sometimes people become disappointed in the MBTI because it fails to explain everything. But then, it wasn't invented to explain everything.

    ---------------------

    JCF theory possesses the power to explain away some of the defects in the original MBTI by creating a more complex system of dominants, auxiliaries, tertiaries, and inferiors. But we're still left holding the bag when it comes to the trait of ambiversion. There is also a dissatisfying lack of conformity between dualistic (MBTI/JCF) and trialectic (Hornevian) personality systems. Are we talking about two different species of human?

    It's easy enough to point out that Karen's three classic types conform well with the extrovert, introvert, and ambivert (and I'm sure this has been pointed out by others):

    Aggressive/Extrovert - Compliant/Ambivert - Withdrawn/Introvert.

    It also conforms well with the Enneagram's trialectic system of types. Neither of them however conforms with Jungian typology. From the standpoint of pure systematicity, dualistic JCF just doesn't fit with the human personality's three natural tendencies toward aggression, compliance, and withdrawing, or extroversion, ambiversion, and introversion.

    I knew about this problem 20 years ago and at the time I was unable to resolve this difficult. Nor am I able to now. Nor can I cope with Jung's weirdness. He explains a lot without explaining anything at all, using obscure terminology that is, perhaps, intended to deceive the reader into believing that it's true simply because it's deep.
    "Everyone has a plan till they get punched in the mouth." Mike Tyson
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  2. #2
    Honor Thy Inferior Such Irony's Avatar
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    I suppose my primary type is withdrawn. Secondary is compliant.
    INtp
    5w6 or 9w1 sp/so/sx, I think
    Ravenclaw/Hufflepuff
    Neutral Good
    LII-Ne




  3. #3
    Fabula rasa Kas's Avatar
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    @Mal12345 in what you quoted Horney compares these attitudes to the behaviour of kid- that's why dolls are there

    K.Horney claims that all of these attitudes exist in us, but often one dominates. Us written this one is usually best tolerated by a person, others are more hidden. I think it's interesting to read about all of them and find own defensive mechanisms, because some of them are not that obvious. Like in me dominate attitude away and toward people so I was surprised to find some elements of my behaviour against people.

    Her books are interesting and well written.
    “The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes." A.C. Doyle

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  4. #4
    Let me count the ways Betty Blue's Avatar
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    Probably somewhere between all three?

    Idk... compliant then withdrawn followed by aggressive
    "We knew he was someone who had a tragic flaw, that's where his greatness came from"

  5. #5
    Sweet Summer Child yama's Avatar
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    definitely compliant
    MBTI: ESFJ
    Enneagram: 6w7 9w1 2w3 so/sx
    Temperament: Phlegmatic | Sanguine
    Astrology: Leo Sun | Aries Moon | Leo Rising
    Johari | Nohari

    not a type description

  6. #6
    A Gentle Whisper ~MS*ANGEL~'s Avatar
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    Hmm... given the description of each, I'd say that I'm sort of in between compliant and withdrawn (these days, leaning a little more towards one or the other depending on what situation I'm in).
    Only she who attempts the absurd can achieve the impossible... and then some.

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  7. #7
    eye of the storm magpie's Avatar
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    Aggressive/Withdrawn

  8. #8
    Clean Slate CitizenErased's Avatar
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    Withdrawn > Aggressive >>> Compliant
    MBTI: INTP (though I'm PINT-sized) * Ti = Ne > Fi > Ni > Si > Te = Se >>> Fe
    Enneagram: 5w4 - 4w5 - 1w9 sp/sx * 5 > 4 > 1 > 8 > 3 > 6 > 7 > 9 > 2
    Socionics: LII - Ne
    SLOAN: Rc|U|EI
    Holland Code: AIE
    Temperament: Melancholic/Choleric
    House: Slytherin
    Oldham's: Idiosyncratic/Solitary

    Omnis res est se ipsa singularis et per nihil aliud

  9. #9
    Psykhe ESFJ's Avatar
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    Withdrawn>Aggressive>Compliant.

  10. #10
    untitled Chanaynay's Avatar
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    A mix of aggressive and compliant (moreso aggressive than compliant), withdrawn being the least relatable. Given I identify with the 728 tritype this makes sense.
    7w6 - 2w3 - 8w7 sx/so


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