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  1. #1
    Junior Member Moon Wolf's Avatar
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    Exclamation How to avoid being the problem dumping ground?

    Hi all I'm new

    As an INFP I have found myself enter some pretty poisonous relationships in the past where the common features in these "friendships" would include:

    - Complain to me about all lifes i'll's and have no time for my problems
    - I am taken for granted and expendable (being stonewalled at random)
    - Vent their frustrations out on me directly or with little subtle remarks
    - Belittlement

    My desire to explore these people's personalities and quickness to offer them some moral support can get me trapped into a very unhealthy relationship where my only power is to walk away.. at which point my value suddenenly skyrockets and they come crawling back but eventually it slowly turns into the same old crap again.

    I have been getting advice from an ISTJ to just look out for myself and not bother taking up with these "losers". Sometimes I think he is right.

    Any thoughts and any similar experiences?

  2. #2
    is an ambi-turner BRMC117's Avatar
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    you are an INFP, its going to happen. With great power comes great responsibility.
    "I put the fires out."
    "you made them worse."
    "worse...or better?"

  3. #3
    Sugar Hiccup OrangeAppled's Avatar
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    Yep...distance yourself. I have had "friends" like that, and while I did not cut them off, I've put distance between us, so they are less likely to come wailing to me about problems as if I am their free therapist, and then disappear when they are happy once again. I might be okay with it if they heard me out once in awhile and if they were not "foul-weather" friends. Now I just maybe have lunch once a year or make brief comments on facebook, but we are not close anymore.
    Often a star was waiting for you to notice it. A wave rolled toward you out of the distant past, or as you walked under an open window, a violin yielded itself to your hearing. All this was mission. But could you accomplish it? (Rilke)

    INFP | 4w5 sp/sx | RLUEI - Primary Inquisitive | Tritype is tripe

  4. #4
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    i think orangeappled gives very good advice.

    it's rare that i've completely cut these people out of my life, but i have "gone into hiding" a few times to get distance. it may seem harsh, but in my experience, these were mostly "foul-weather" friends (thanks OA, haha) who really did nothing from their end to contribute to the relationship. friendships go both ways. i also discovered how sensitive i was to other people's emotions.. i had been letting these people and their problems stress me out! can't say i miss them.
    "Develop interest in life as you see it...the world is so rich, simply throbbing with rich treasures, beautiful souls and interesting people. Forget yourself." -- H. Miller
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    Johari the good..
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  5. #5
    Artisan Conquerer Halla74's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moon Wolf View Post
    Hi all I'm new

    As an INFP I have found myself enter some pretty poisonous relationships in the past where the common features in these "friendships" would include:

    - Complain to me about all lifes i'll's and have no time for my problems
    - I am taken for granted and expendable (being stonewalled at random)
    - Vent their frustrations out on me directly or with little subtle remarks
    - Belittlement
    EMOTIONAL VAMPIRES.
    Stay away form them, they will drain you of your energy and leave you an exhausted heap of human waste.

    Quote Originally Posted by Moon Wolf View Post
    My desire to explore these people's personalities and quickness to offer them some moral support can get me trapped into a very unhealthy relationship where my only power is to walk away.. at which point my value suddenenly skyrockets and they come crawling back but eventually it slowly turns into the same old crap again.
    Sure, many times unhealthy people's personalities are strange and maybe even intriguing, but don't confuse "dysfunctional and abusive" for "novel and unique."

    Don't try to save people. Help those who help themselves, and only help them if they ask for it. You'll both be better off for it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Moon Wolf View Post
    I have been getting advice from an ISTJ to just look out for myself and not bother taking up with these "losers". Sometimes I think he is right.

    Any thoughts and any similar experiences?
    Your ISTJ friend sounds like a smart fellow. You should hang out with him more, and not these venomous leeches that you keep finding.

    Surround yourself with good people. You are who you assoicate with. The quality of the people in your life is a direct reflection of your own sense of self worth.
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    BIG 5 -> Extroversion 77% ; Accommodation 60% ; Orderliness 62% ; Emotional Stability 64% ; Open Mindedness 74%

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  6. #6
    Junior Member Moon Wolf's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice and I will certainly strive to surround myself with positive, good people

  7. #7
    Artisan Conquerer Halla74's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moon Wolf View Post
    Thanks for the advice...
    You're very welcome, good luck to you!

    Quote Originally Posted by Moon Wolf View Post
    ...and I will certainly strive to surround myself with positive, good people
    Doing so is one of the best things you can do in ensuring your overall quality of life. Good friendships are low maintenance and long lasting.

    Until you have strong bearings on being assertive and are an effective self-advocate following simple rules might be helpful, such as (1) Friendships are a two-way street, and if you feel at some point that there is "unfairness" going on then re-assess the relationship and whether or not to continue it, (2) Find people who respect you as much as you respect yourself, and who you like as much as they like themselves, and (3) Don't be afraid to ask for help when you need it, and don't be afraid to offer help to others that need it, but don't make it your life's purpose to try and help everyone with everything, you will exhaust yourself and end up not doing near as much good as you thought you were because many people will not appreciate whatever it is you are trying to do for them.
    --------------------
    Type Stats:
    MBTI -> (E) 77.14% | (i) 22.86% ; (S) 60% | (n) 40% ; (T) 72.22% | (f) 27.78% ; (P) 51.43% | (j) 48.57%
    BIG 5 -> Extroversion 77% ; Accommodation 60% ; Orderliness 62% ; Emotional Stability 64% ; Open Mindedness 74%

    Quotes:
    "If somebody asks your MBTI type on a first date, run". -Donna Cecilia
    "Enneagram is psychological underpinnings. Cognitive Functions are mental reasoning and perceptional processes. -Sanjuro

  8. #8
    Member Flutterby's Avatar
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    Lately I've had a couple of people belittle me. I think I'm expected to explain myself or something, but I just see that crap as rude. (Well it is rude, but I probably get more offended by it because I have my own conscience to guide me and I put a lot of thought and research into my opinions.)

    In any case, like people have said, the best strategy is to distance yourself from these people and find more positive people to be with. It seems harsh sometimes but one thing I've realised is that a verbal attack can be pretty devastating or just plain draining for me, and I have to protect myself. Also, if a person is rude to me they don't deserve to spend time with me, so if you just think of it like that the choice becomes simple.

  9. #9
    Senior Member mochajava's Avatar
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    I just wanted to add to this that sometimes distancing yourself can seem painful in initially, because these "friends" (and sometimes family members) may have been filling a lot of your social time. I think that the empty space and empty time allows for newer, healthier relationships to come take their place -- so you are doing yourself tons of favors by distancing yourself from these leech types. Oh, and I don' think it's "oversensitive" to distance yourself or even a doorslam -- other types do this constantly; it can be an almost unconscious process for them! Wow...

  10. #10
    Lay the coin on my tongue SilkRoad's Avatar
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    I can't really even add anything much to the excellent comments above. I've been in such situations, one in particular recently and I posted a couple of threads about it.

    Unfortunately it can sometimes take a long time to distance yourself from emotional vampires/leeches...as you say there can be a distance/closeness pattern recurring for a long time and you may only realise gradually how much harm it has been doing to you. Sure, there are real and rewarding friendships where people may sometimes hurt each other, where you may sometimes feel drained by the other person's problems etc. BUT if that's all it's about - them draining you, and never reciprocating by offering support, being a real friend, etc - then yeah, walking away is the right thing to do.

    It may still be painful especially if you are quite emotionally invested in the person, one way or another. You may find yourself wondering if you abandoned them, if they really dislike you now, etc etc etc. But you need to look out for yourself first, in the end. It's not really selfish. If you look after your own health and surround yourself with people who are basically good for you, you will be happier, you will enjoy life more, and you'll have more energy and support to offer to people who are worth it.

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