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  1. #1
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    Default Need help reviving my parents' marriage (ENFP=ISTP)

    Well, my mother is an ENFP and my father is an ISTP. There's four kids, Me-INFP, 24; Bro-INTP,21; Sis-ISTJ, 19; Sis-INFP, 13.

    My parents were married for 25 years and were considered as having a great marriage. The problems have really begun the last 7 or 8 years, although the roots of the problems probably go back to the beginning.

    Basically, my father is a live-in-the-moment, take big-risks, never-have-a-serious-conversation type of a guy. He's physically strong and has a temper, but he's a got a real sweet, kind heart. He never means harm and is quite naive, but he somehow gets into trouble with his attitude of never preparing for anything (like what he's going to say, do, or buy)

    My mother is the stereotypical ENFP. She's fun, and exciting- the whole city loves her or is jealous of her. But underneath all her spunk is a really deep, sensitive, and complex personality. She uses me as her "healer" to sort out the myriads of feelings that go on throughout her day.

    My mother never was able to turn to my father for anything serious. She couldn't complain. She couldn't say if she had any negative emotions during that day (and she has plenty). My father had no clue how to handle his own explosive emotions, and didn't want to hear anyone else's either.

    My mother has always been the "romantic", but my father hates anything to do with romance. His idea of a mate is to have fun with them 24/7. But my mother is desparate for something deeper.

    What should she do? Should she just accept that he'll always be Mr. Shallow and Simple (which my father pays for with an unwilling partner in the bedroom), or should she try and get him to be deeper and more "real". Should she give up on ever having a romantic relationship? How do an ENFP and ISTP bridge the gap?

  2. #2
    Nerd King Usurper Edgar's Avatar
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    There is an ENFP member here who had an ISTP husband.

    I believe now she is happily divorced.

    (hope that helps)
    Listen to me, baby, you got to understand, you're old enough to learn the makings of a man.

  3. #3
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    I asked for a way to REVIVE their marriage, not to pull the plug.

  4. #4
    Nerd King Usurper Edgar's Avatar
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    In that case, have your father act like an INTJ, or have your mother act like an ESFJ, whichever one is easier.
    Listen to me, baby, you got to understand, you're old enough to learn the makings of a man.

  5. #5
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    Don't mind Edgar's "humour"; it's an INTJ thing (you'll grow accustomed to it over time, kind of like toe fungus.)

    Where to start? First off, you are not responsible to try to salvage your parent's marriage. They are two adults, who if they wish to stay together, must work together to find the means to communicate successfully.

    As an INFP you feel a desire to help and fix this situation, but only your parents can do that, and only if they both truly want to.

    How do you know their MBTI types? Is this your guess or have they both tested in the past?

    I will post more on this upon your reply and a reflection of the dynamics ...

  6. #6
    mod love baby... Lady_X's Avatar
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    hmm...i can feel your mothers pain. was an issue for me as well. to live without it feels like a waste of who you are and you can't nor would i want to force someone into being something they are not...but since you're actually looking for ways to solve it or help with it and i couldn't find any of my own...not so sure how helpful i can be..

    but...if your father could at least care enough about her to listen to her when she's being emotional, dreamy or deep even if he doesn't have much to add but can make her feel heard...it should help some and occasionally try to be sweet and romantic...then the bedroom problems would work itself out because she just needs to feel cared enough for first.
    There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.
    -Jim Morrison

  7. #7
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    I know their types because I have lived with them my entire life and it's crystal clear. I have no doubt about their types.

    It's not my duty or obligation to save their marriage, but they are my parents and they both look to me for advice in this area, particularly. I want to help them.

  8. #8
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    thanks lady x.

    that's a good point. being "heard" is most definitely one of the most crucial factors of a relationship.

  9. #9
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NashK View Post
    I know their types because I have lived with them my entire life and it's crystal clear. I have no doubt about their types.
    Just a question - no need to get annoyed.

    Quote Originally Posted by NashK View Post
    It's not my duty or obligation to save their marriage, but they are my parents and they both look to me for advice in this area, particularly. I want to help them.
    Hmm, I am not usually as direct as this but I feel I have to be:

    Frankly, you're 24 and they are likely in their late 40's. They need couples counselling. If you want to help, this would be the best suggestion.

    When I was 24, I thought I could help everyone and fix everything too. And you CAN be a great source of support, of course. But your parents must deal with this together and not use you as some sort of emotional conduit.

    Again, I am not trying to be harsh here, but I am going with my gut, and as someone who IS in my forties, I feel your parents should not be expecting you to try to help them in this arena.

    Sit your parents down and tell them that their issues are beyond your experience and understanding. Tell them you love them and want them to work on this together ... in couples counselling. Look up a couple of places ahead of time that they could go to and hand them the paper. They are all grown up and must work on this themselves.

    I am sending you lots of - good luck!

  10. #10
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    Actually, my mother has been seeing someone, but my dad won't agree to come along. He feels everything is great. And my mother isn't strong enough to convince him.

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