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  1. #41
    (blankpages) Xenon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ceecee View Post
    Not to be stepping on toes here but...doesn't this sort of concern you? I mean it must take a tremendous amount of energy alone to "feel" for so much in the world. I know my ENFJ is sympathetic and there are things that really effect him but he is more like the majority of replies in this thread. Of course I am asking because I honestly have no grasp of this. The Amy Winehouse thing got a....wow....I didn't see THAT coming....and then I didn't think about it again.
    Yeah, this was my reaction too. I'm nothing like that, and when I read about it I think, 'Wow, I wonder what that's like. That must be exhausting'. ('I wonder what that's like' is a reaction I have a lot on this board when different types are describing their thinking processes.) It's hard to imagine. For the most part I don't feel anything at all in reaction to news stories or far-away tragedies, other than this vague sense of guilt in the back of my mind because I wonder if I should be feeling more than I do. But I can't make it happen any more than someone who is very sensitive to tragic news can stop it. I feel strong compassion only rarely, mostly only for a certain few people, at times that can be hard to predict or even understand.

    It probably is type-related. Of course, that hardly means it's entirely dependent on type: Marm was talking about unresolved grief or depression, and SilkRoad mentioned a friend who had lost a boyfriend in a crash and then overreacted to MJ's death...I really think that sort of thing - a disproportionate reaction to one thing because it triggers something else inside you - can happen to anyone.

    Quote Originally Posted by SilkRoad View Post
    I don't get disrespect for tragedy either. I know jokes are supposed to be one coping mechanism. But just outright disrespect for its own sake, why? Why not at least respect the fact that some people are legitimately grieving this tragedy? Some people always seem to have to make a point or something. I just loved (er, not...) how some non-Americans were like "I don't know why the Americans made such a big deal of 9/11. What a bunch of patriotic crybabies. When there are millions of people dying of other causes every day." I just think...yeah, wait till your country is hit by a terrorist atrocity or you lose someone by mass murder. Then see how you like it when I call you a whiner and a crybaby.
    While I would not defend this sort of behaviour (and 'people die all the time, therefore you shouldn't care too much about these particular deaths' is an absurd thing to argue), I do think I get the annoyance behind it. I think a lot of it comes from that guilt I was talking about. I can get annoyed with these big, public grief sessions because they just give me this niggling sense that I should be feeling something I don't feel, or that I have some obligation to at least pretend to feel something, and if I don't put up an act then I'm an asshole. And I hate that. So sometimes people can defensively turn that around and pretend there's something wrong with the people who do care instead.

  2. #42
    Aspie Idealist TaylorS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilkRoad View Post
    This isn't necessarily an NF-specific topic, so I'd certainly like to hear any comments. I think it's probably something we're especially prone to though.

    I find myself extremely affected by disasters, terrible acts like the Norwegian massacre this weekend, tragic news stories and so on. I can't stop myself from crying when confronted with people's grief, but more than that, I have a tendency to vividly imagine "what it must have like to be there". I have felt like that while watching the news this weekend and reading or hearing about people watching their friends being shot before their eyes; reading about the recovery of the Air France black box, the last ten minutes of that flight, feeling a tiny echo of the fear those people went through, wondering whether (as some stories suggested) they escaped the knowledge that the plane was plummeting to disaster, or not.

    I visited Auschwitz a few years ago and though I cried while I was there, I think I went into a little bit of shock too. In the days and weeks after I had a hard time stopping thinking about it and kept crying whenever I did. I had a particularly hard time with the memory of the piles of suitcases recovered from victims because they all had names and addresses on them, and each name and address made me imagine that individual life - then multiply its tragic and evil loss by millions. I still well up when I think about or talk about visiting that place.

    I do believe that the media exacerbates this kind of thing by its focus on tragic and shocking details, and I find it hard to look away from tragic news stories. Sometimes I realise that I've taken in too much and it's affecting me too much. My parents (who live far away, but I talk to them about once a week by phone) have realised that this affects me badly and I think they worry about that particularly as I live alone. When I started talking with them yesterday about the tragedy in Norway, they very quickly said "try not to dwell on it too much and try not to take in too much of the news - it's not good for you". Not that they want me to put my head in the sand or stop acknowledging the evil in the world, but they know it has a very unsettling effect on me.

    This may not be so type-related, perhaps I am just highly sensitive in this area. I do find it hard to not leap straight to that vivid imagining of terrible events, almost as though I'm there or was there. It's also worse if I feel some sort of connection, even if it is kind of nebulous. I'm half Scandinavian, though not Norwegian, and have been to Oslo, and it just seems both easier and harder to imagine, if you know what I mean. Or with the plane disaster, I have a fear of flying phobia and even turbulence really does bad things to me.
    I am exactly like this. When my best friend was raped I was half not able to function for a week because I was so upset.
    Autistic INFP


  3. #43
    Senior Member statuesquechica's Avatar
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    I relate to the OP's post as well, and yes, it is very exhausting and you have to detach at times to protect your sanity and find a balance in living.

    I was devastated by the Newtown shooting, couldn't look at the articles which had pictures of the children or teachers without breaking down. I consciously restrained myself from looking at pictures or watching newscasts because it was overwhelming. Then I became involved in gun reform (and I was raised with hunting as a part of life). I waited years before watching Hotel Rwanda because I knew its effect would be profound, but I did watch it eventually, cried my eyes out, and then learned more about the genocide and restorative justice movement in Rwanda. I cried over the Iraq occupation and what the U.S. did to that country and its citizens but I also felt compelled to protest it and be arrested to show my objections to our inhumane actions. Still can't make it through Schindler's List either. I am not saying this to be snobbish, just that I can't deal with such immense tragedy and not take some steps to learn and heal from it, hopefully. I can't, it just isn't possible for me.

    I have found that what works for me and allows me to find some balance is (1) I have to grieve, that is a given, and I don't fight that anymore; and (2) get involved somehow, whether online or irl so I don't wallow in feelings of helplessness. People may view that as radical or weird, but it allows me to feel things deeply, process them, and move forward. Boundaries definitely have to be set by myself.

    Crying is a real catharsis for me and allows me to grieve and move on. I realize I can't do anything but tragedy (and beauty) are everywhere and I don't want to insulate myself from either.

    @SilkRoad : the monument to the tragedy in Norway is really quite extraordinary and beautiful...that had a very profound effect on me as well.

    And I don't feel any sense of superiority in how I handle tragedies, we all deal with such events in our own way; crying over a loss doesn't give me some moral high ground, it just is. I don't express this grief publicly in anyway (detest Facebook) because it might cause concern in others and it is intensely private. And it doesn't incapacitate me, it connects me.
    Last edited by statuesquechica; 04-08-2014 at 12:15 PM.
    I've looked at life from both sides now
    From up and down and still somehow
    It's life's illusions I recall
    I really don't know life at all

    Joni Mitchell

  4. #44
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    this only happens when I'm pmsing. then of course a baby squirrel getting hit by a car would make me feel bad during that time.
    In no likes experiment.

    that is all

    i dunno what else to say so

  5. #45
    Senior Member Forever_Jung's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forever_Jung View Post
    Full disclosure don't judge me

    When something horrible happens and people are devastated I tend to resist feelings of sympathy. I don't do it consciously, but it's like I go dead when something like that happens, and I am sort of irritated at the people who are upset, maybe because they're making me feel like a selfish dick for not crying about it. I have a sympathetic imagination, but towards things that most don't normally feel bad about, or at least don't pay as much attention too. I feel like a hipster of sympathy, when everyone is sympathizing, I tend to go in the opposite direction (Pfft this tsunami has gone totally mainstream), and when people aren't aware of some obscure sorrow, I become EXTREMELY moved by it and try to bring attention to the problem. I don't do it on purpose though, I wish I was a better person, but I can't seem to make myself weep for all the injustices of the world.
    I was about to weigh in, and then I realized I said the exact same thing I was thinking 3 years ago. I don't know if that means I haven't grown as a person, or my values are just consistent.

  6. #46
    Entertaining Cracker five sounds's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forever_Jung View Post
    Full disclosure don't judge me

    When something horrible happens and people are devastated I tend to resist feelings of sympathy. I don't do it consciously, but it's like I go dead when something like that happens, and I am sort of irritated at the people who are upset, maybe because they're making me feel like a selfish dick for not crying about it. I have a sympathetic imagination, but towards things that most don't normally feel bad about, or at least don't pay as much attention too. I feel like a hipster of sympathy, when everyone is sympathizing, I tend to go in the opposite direction (Pfft this tsunami has gone totally mainstream), and when people aren't aware of some obscure sorrow, I become EXTREMELY moved by it and try to bring attention to the problem. I don't do it on purpose though, I wish I was a better person, but I can't seem to make myself weep for all the injustices of the world.
    Lol yeah totally. It's almost like there are enough people caring about it already. I will randomly be struck by feelings of intense sympathy when contemplating this kind if thing, but for the most part, I tend to concentrate my sympathetic feelings on people and situations that are easily overlooked. I guess I just feel like they need it more.

    Also the 'good hearted publicity' that comes with 'supporting the cause' along with a million other people gives me a bad taste in my mouth. I understand the importance of large movements, an wish I didn't have this hangup, but I have a hard time with it. Like after a disaster, seein a million Facebook status updates about how shocked and sad a person is and how they're praying or donating kinda makes me feel turned off about the whole thing.
    You hem me in -- behind and before;
    you have laid your hand upon me.
    Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too lofty for me to attain.

  7. #47
    Senior Member Forever_Jung's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by five sounds View Post
    Lol yeah totally. It's almost like there are enough people caring about it already. I will randomly be struck by feelings of intense sympathy when contemplating this kind if thing, but for the most part, I tend to concentrate my sympathetic feelings on people and situations that are easily overlooked. I guess I just feel like they need it more.

    Also the 'good hearted publicity' that comes with 'supporting the cause' along with a million other people gives me a bad taste in my mouth. I understand the importance of large movements, an wish I didn't have this hangup, but I have a hard time with it. Like after a disaster, seein a million Facebook status updates about how shocked and sad a person is and how they're praying or donating kinda makes me feel turned off about the whole thing.
    Yes! I don't want to attend a grief rock concert, where we have this big communal cry, it almost seems to trivialize it by making it more of a social event than an actual problem. Like sometimes I think my ENFJ mom is glad when crappy things happen to people she knows, so she can be all helpful and come together with people from her community. She just seems to excited about preparing and organizing benefit suppers, taking up collections, doing the Oprah thing of changing their lives. I know that's probably not true, but I do wonder...

    I myself can't get into that mindset, and people tend to see it as me being a cold person. I think, or hope, that it's because I need to give my whole self to things I care about, so I have to pick my battles. I want to save the people and causes that fall between the cracks. That's where I live, emotionally. I must go where I am needed.

  8. #48
    Entertaining Cracker five sounds's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forever_Jung View Post
    I myself can't get into that mindset, and people tend to see it as me being a cold person. I think, or hope, that it's because I need to give my whole self to things I care about, so I have to pick my battles. I want to save the people and causes that fall between the cracks. That's where I live, emotionally. I must go where I am needed.
    exactly this.
    You hem me in -- behind and before;
    you have laid your hand upon me.
    Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too lofty for me to attain.

  9. #49
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    I cut myself away from historic devastation and the news (which I think denies many good news for the bad, making people feel like the world is worse than it is through the most shocking horror stories) and make sure I take measures to support it doesn't happen again.
    I feel I shouldn't join their suffering, it just makes me another victim, I'd rather look away and make sure everyone I can make happy are happy.

    I am that sensitive, thinking about it makes me physically ill and weaker. That might sound somewhat selfish but what good am I to others if I am depressing myself to hospitalisation.
    Those who are stronger I can understand perhaps, still for my case I'd rather be happy and helpful than miserable and unhelping.

    I want to save the world, not mope about it's weaknesses. My empathy goes to everything, though. I just try to cut it out and play activist if I really need to. I also am an activist towards those who don't have a voice, like people who'll be shot just because they have a way of life I see as harmless, animals even, and mass slavery / eviction or damage to the world's ecosystem. I believe the selective homeless and those who live on flood plains just because its sunnier there put themselves to the risk and I should not pay or support them, I have supported gamblers in the past and all they did is let themselves make the same mistakes (don't get me wrong, I do feel for them, I just can't support domestic masochism). I would pay to charity a lot more but I often find the money goes to something contrary to the cause.

    A wise person once told me to not look down or you will more likely follow the same fate, just make sure your goal is making sure it doesn't happen again.
    It is ok in my mind to cry sometimes, though, and I believe we all have our own ways but this is mine.

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