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  1. #1
    Member BMEF's Avatar
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    Default A Rant About "Staying in Touch"

    Dear readers,

    Recently, I've been under a lot of stress because many of my "friends"/"old teachers" that I haven't seen in a long time do not respond back to the messages that I send them via Facebook, email, etc. What bothers me the most is that I'm aware of the fact that some of them are "active" members on these social networking sites. Whenever I console one of my parents about this issue, they tell me that I'm being too emotionally sensitive and that my friends are probably busy these days (because of the summer holiday) and will catch up/respond back to me later. I'm in a predicament right now. I don't know if what my parents are telling me is true. At the same time, I can't "move on" because the agony and thought of losing them is killing me from the inside.

    Fellow readers, please give me some advice. Also, please share your own personal experiences and how you feel when someone "ignores" your phone calls, messages, etc..

    Thank you all in advance!

    P.S. I'm an INFJ.

  2. #2
    Senior Member angelhair45's Avatar
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    I wish I could give you some advice, but I'm still learning how to deal with it myself. I'm just going to ramble instead.

    When I was younger it never occurred to me that relationships were not as important to other people as they were to me. People/relationships are something I value greatly, but not everyone does. Many people value their jobs, interests, ideal more than they value people and relationships. Therefore I cannot expect them to feel about me the way I may feel about them. Yes it sucks, but once I realized this it helped me not to take it personally. "It's not me, it's them" kind of thing.

    I still get like this though. I had a very intense reconnection with an old friend on facebook a couple weeks ago. (He's and INFJ by the way) and he expressed himself in a way that led me to believe we were now going to continue on this same path in our relationship. Then he just dropped off the face of the earth with some lackluster excuse. I'm almost 31, married, and a mother; my life shouldn't stop for things like that, but in essence it kind of did. It was always in the back of mind. I moved on physically, but it still haunted me mentally. It is agonizing to just wait and wait.

    So I guess, I have the same rant as you. Not really much help, but you aren't alone.
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  3. #3
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    I think your parents are right about the summer holiday and these people will get back to you later on.

    I can definitely understand where you're coming from, though. It does hurt and makes you wonder, I tend to take it very personally and it shakes my confidence quite a bit, it's difficult not to see it as a personal rejection. Unfortunately I haven't quite learned to let go of that just yet myself, so I struggle with it occasionally and I usually avoid initiating contact.

    But you also have to accept that people lead their own lives and if they don't respond to you quickly it might not have anything to do with you personally. Sometimes people just need more time or they simply forget without having anything against you.

    This might not be that easy to do at first but try to let go of the expectations when you do send people messages. You've done all that you could have done, you've contacted them and showed them that you care for them, which was probably your intention in the first place. This is your way or showing that people matter to you. If it comes back to you, then that's great, but if it doesn't come back in the same form, that's alright as well. Taking it personally is only going to hurt you, so letting go of that is just something you have to learn to do.

  4. #4
    likes this gromit's Avatar
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    I know I often want to write a thoughtful/good response to the person, particularly if I haven't seen them in awhile, so then I put it off until I have 'more time' which sometimes never happens, so then I end up forgetting about it.

    I've gotten a lot better, but my point is that could be what's happening in this situation. Good intentions, not really delivering on the good intentions, though.
    Your kisses, sweeter than honey. But guess what, so is my money.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Sparrow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gromit View Post
    I know I often want to write a thoughtful/good response to the person, particularly if I haven't seen them in awhile, so then I put it off until I have 'more time' which sometimes never happens, so then I end up forgetting about it.

    I've gotten a lot better, but my point is that could be what's happening in this situation. Good intentions, not really delivering on the good intentions, though.
    I agree ^. Maybe you should call them instead? I havnt seen some of my best friends in months, we all get busy and are doing different things- doesn't mean we aren't friends anymore . I'm sure your friends and old teachers don't hate you!
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  6. #6
    Senor Membrane
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    I do stop answering mails and texts with some people. Usually some acquaintances who start to get too annoying for me to handle. This is not anything "personal" that means they are bad people or nothing like that, it is just that the people who are my closest friends don't exhaust me. I don't know what it is exactly, maybe they just read some clues about me and know when to stop, or maybe they just aren't that extroverted.

    Last week my roommate brought some guy here and the first sentence that came out of his mouth made me think that this is an energy drainer type of a guy. He was so extro, I think the ADHD stereotype fits him well, bouncing all over the place, talking about himself all the time. I think I didn't say much more than a "hello" and went away. I can't handle some people.

    So, if the people who went MIA are just acquaintances, it might just be that they dropped you for some similar reasons. If they are friends, then you should maybe think about it some more.

    I'm quite sure it is nothing, though. Personally I go MIA just to return after a couple of months. And this is a lot more common than stopping contact for good.

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    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    I dont know, there's only really one person who pulled this sort of stunt on me and I've just had to come to terms with it. I mean you dont have any control over other people you can only control yourself and your thinking and feeling.

    I tried about a dozen different tacts and approaches to get them to re-engage in contact with me but it didnt work, then, I can only presume because of something going on in their own life which prompted it, one day they where back in contact with me again. We went on a trip together and a lot of things she said during that time I only slowly realised corresponded to stuff I'd sent in e-mails, texts messages and what not over a long stretch of time. Its a bit baffling and made me wonder had they had an upset or got stressed out and simply "found" a phone or a sim they'd not been using with it on it.

    Ultimately it wouldnt/doesnt matter what the explanation for running hot and cold was, its just how they are, either you decide that's grand and you'll put up with that or you decide that there's no bond or relationship there. I'm probably as neglectful of some of my other friends as that but they arent trying to reach me and have families and wives and stuff. So you cant just go blundering in.

    Try and not get too distressed by it, there's an irony in that nothing will be more injurious to a relationship than actually trying to hard to make it work or improve on it, the same goes for popularity, OK you can make or get yourself popular with work but if its obvious it wont work, people will say you're trying too hard. I tend to think that things like Face Book can totally stoke insecurities and anxieties.

  8. #8
    Senor Membrane
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    I tend to think that things like Face Book can totally stoke insecurities and anxieties.
    One of the reasons I don't have a Facebook account is that I am feeling a little anxious even thinking about all the people I would have to stay in contact with. I bet that I would find a lot of people who I have lost during the years, but I don't know if that is what I want anyways. Though I don't always think of myself as an introvert, this is where it really shows. It is mostly small talk and niceties, and I don't do either of them well if I am not genuinely interested in the person.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by BMEF View Post
    Recently, I've been under a lot of stress because many of my "friends"/"old teachers" that I haven't seen in a long time do not respond back to the messages that I send them via Facebook, email, etc. What bothers me the most is that I'm aware of the fact that some of them are "active" members on these social networking sites. Whenever I console one of my parents about this issue, they tell me that I'm being too emotionally sensitive and that my friends are probably busy these days (because of the summer holiday) and will catch up/respond back to me later. I'm in a predicament right now. I don't know if what my parents are telling me is true. At the same time, I can't "move on" because the agony and thought of losing them is killing me from the inside.
    I would guess you are probably reading too much personal rejection into it, if you have to state it in such a way. Most of the time when people don't respond to our interactions, I have found it is because they are busy with life, or going through their own "junk," or have a lot of other relationships to maintain and the one with me is lesser priority (which can actually be "valid" and not a personal diss of me), or they aren't even realizing that even a small cue back would be a BIG deal to me and that I might take it as a personal rejection, etc.

    But let me also say that I know it is difficult to deal with. I had a really hard time with such things too -- because I felt like they were breaking the rules of engagement that I tried so hard to follow (and thus their refusal to respond meant they didn't want to talk to me), and because I just had a weak self-image where I thought it would be common for people to want to reject me. It was pretty devastasting sometimes.

    Life sort of happened, I had a number of experiences where I was on the OTHER end (i.e., someone expected me to respond but I just couldn't keep up with them for valid reasons and they took it personally despite my having a positive view of them);

    and I also grew to have more confidence in who I was so I did not necessarily need their affirmation and could ride anxiety like this out;

    and, finally, I just realized that relationships grow, hold steady, then ebb, and sometimes I will just grow away from someone or them from me and it's nothing personal at all, it is just the way life is. So I shouldn't take it as a personal slam or that something is wrong with me. In fact, sometimes people will even make mistakes and not get back to me when they should; but then, again, I can accept they're not perfect, and if I want them to respond maybe I need to tell them, and otherwise I can forgive them and move on.

    It certainly is not easy. Don't beat yourself up over it. It will take some time for you to adjust how you perceive things.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolla View Post
    I do stop answering mails and texts with some people. Usually some acquaintances who start to get too annoying for me to handle. This is not anything "personal" that means they are bad people or nothing like that, it is just that the people who are my closest friends don't exhaust me. I don't know what it is exactly, maybe they just read some clues about me and know when to stop, or maybe they just aren't that extroverted.
    Same. I go through periods where I really don't care about staying in touch with acquaintances and instead just focus on the people who really are mutually understanding and nurturing.

    When it comes to keeping in contact with people I really have to work toward (personality clashes, etc.) it's just too exhausting to keep up with them.. for so little mutual gain.


    On the other side of the coin, we really can't force people to do what we want them to do--such as talk to us when they're extremely busy and have only a tenuous connection to us anyway. And, when we try to do so, it becomes much more about 'me' than it is about them and/or our relationship. I give maybe two or three 'shots', spread out over time, then move on.

    I'm quite sure it is nothing, though. Personally I go MIA just to return after a couple of months. And this is a lot more common than stopping contact for good.
    Lots of people do this, too, and many don't think anything of it. Especially as time passes, people just have their own lives and get busy.

    Quote Originally Posted by nolla View Post
    One of the reasons I don't have a Facebook account is that I am feeling a little anxious even thinking about all the people I would have to stay in contact with. I bet that I would find a lot of people who I have lost during the years, but I don't know if that is what I want anyways. Though I don't always think of myself as an introvert, this is where it really shows. It is mostly small talk and niceties, and I don't do either of them well if I am not genuinely interested in the person.
    For reasons listed above, I've hidden probably half of the people on my Facebook list and only respond to private messages on the site when it's on my terms. It's exhausting and admittedly boring to keep up with absolutely everyone I've ever known in such detail.

    It's nice to keep some connection with people you've met and come across, but, with most people, getting way too deep into their personal lives is absolutely draining.

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