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  1. #1
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    Default Being an INFJ, I must have the family from hell?

    Hi everyone.
    I just joined this great forum, and this is my first post. And wow it's a long one.
    English is not my first language, but I hope you get what I mean anyway

    I'm 27 years, and with family I mean mom/dad that are 58 years, and a 22 year old brother. I don't live there, but I'm pretty often at their house, so these things still bother me every week.
    Reading about being an INFJ made me think; from an INFJ perspective, do I have the family from hell? (a little sarcasm here).

    My family have always been ok growing up, good food, nice parents that never did anything bad, no alcohol/drugs, nice vaccations. They always helped me, and got me things I'm interested in. And they made me get a good confidence in myself.

    But now to the things that maybe could be called "hell for an INFJ". I guess it has always been like this, but I started noticing it a few years ago, before that I guess it only made me frustrated without me knowing what the reason was.

    ----
    The house is nice, with a very nice big garden the parents made. But all over the house there are "things"/papers, bags, tools, unfinished renovation, everywhere. But things that are important for functionallity can be broken for years, while dad is out in the yard digging a freakin hole for some golfswing practice spot. And mom doesn't mind very much.

    ----
    My dad is very nice and respecful in many ways, but also very "into himself" like a child that HAS to play with his things all the time, build stuff, working with the cars, working on his golfswing, otherwise he gets cranky like a 5 year old.
    If he has to do anything else than "his things", he see it like it takes away important time from his things.
    It's almost impossible to make him stand still and listen for 1 minute if another person want to talk about something. But when it comes to his things; he can talk about it for 15 minutes straight, going deep into details, not thinking about if it's interesting to the other person or not.
    He also is very unaware of the surrounding enviorment, and how the people around him feel and what mood they're in at the moment. It's like "how he feel, is how other people must feel".
    When someone talks about feelings, mood, or something like that, he gets confused, bored, and misunderstand it all right away.
    When we have had a discussion or an argument big or small, I want to talk about it and finish it, clearing things out. But when I try to do that he walks away saying "Cooome on, stooop talking about it, let it go, why do you have to nag about it, oooohhh...".
    He sometimes also thinks very strongly about morals and respect when it comes to how people treat him and his things/what he have done, but when it's the otherway around and I demand the same from him; he have no understading why, and thinks I'm silly. He also often change these moral values depending on his mood, and what he's into at the moment I guess.
    Rest of the family isn't demanding much from him, but just letting him do everything he wants to do all the time. It's good healthy things, like working on the yard and so on, but it's always what he wants.

    ----
    Mom is caring, but not very inteligent, and don't make many things happen, she mostly depends on dad with the other things. She does the laundry, food, garden, very basic, and feels that's enough. When someone comes with some constructive critisism she often takes it the wrong way, and never get excited or thankful for the help. But not getting mad, she just "are there".
    When it comes to discussions and arguing, she rather "sweep things under the rug" instead of talking about it and clearing things out. She mostly says "Well well, lets forget about it, it doesn't get better if we nag about it, I don't know what to say". It doesn't matter if it's about a serious problem affecting life, or if it's about a small thing.

    ----
    22 year old brother is a story of his own. He has been quiet and depressed for about 8 years now, and last 1,5 years he has gone really low and become very weird.
    I was very close to him all my life up until about 2 years ago. I've tried to help him with his depression for many years. But about 18 months ago he started to get pretty angry and agressive towards me, and last summer he pretty much stopped talking to me and the rest of the family. And about 7 months ago he made it very clear to me that he didn't want to speak to me again, without telling me the reason or letting me speak to him one last time clearing things out. I've tried to help him every day for years, then he does this, it feels awful.
    Now he's living at my parents again because he has no money, and don't want to get a job or go to school. But he keep himself alone, dont talk much to the parents, and never talks to me, I haven't seen him in months, even though I've been there almost every day this summer. He has become very "spiritual", and belive in demons, god, and weird stuff.
    The parents haven't treated this thing good from the start; dad is so much up in his own stuff, that he don't allow himself to see the problems, telling himself that it's all good.
    Mom notice something is wrong, but tries to sweep it under the rug, beliving it will get better in the future, even though it's become worse and worse for years.

    ----
    The family has very little set morals or value standards or rules, they just "do what you should".
    They never do anything bad or harmful to people, but they often "don't do anything", wich I think can be just as bad as actually doing something.
    And they also makes a difference about morals and respect towards themself and others. (sorry I guess this part is written in bad english).

    ----
    This must be the family from hell for an INFJ!? I feel I have so many unfinished things, both practical and physical things in the family, that I can't let go before it's done, and nobody else care.
    And I have trouble seeing a future value in the family when nobody appreciates the connection and moral values that're important for us INFJs.
    I understand it can't be exactly like an INFJ wants it. But this is ridiculous.

    Please feel free to commentate my story or ask any questions.
    And how is it for you - being an INFJ, and the realtionship with your family? Anybody feel the same?

  2. #2
    Senior Member BAJ's Avatar
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    Your family doesn't sound too bad. It sort of sounds fine.

    Why is it hell for you?

  3. #3
    Diving into Ni-space Crescent Fresh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BAJ View Post
    Your family doesn't sound too bad. It sort of sounds fine.

    Why is it hell for you?
    I think most INFJs are seeking for someone who they can mentally "connect" with, even if there's one and that would be enough (be it a friend or a family member).

    Perhaps he hasn't found anyone who can share his inner-world with yet. But I agree with Baj, based on your description, your family isn't from hell as there are many people out there who only have one parent in stead of two.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Kyrielle's Avatar
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    I wouldn't say your family is the family from hell. But everyone sounds disconnected from each other, and in a way, that can be a type of hell (a very cold one). Maybe you can't help your brother directly with advice, but you can be there for him. Does anyone go do stuff with him? It sounds like he's been shoved onto the back burner, never to be tended to again. And your mom might not appreciate advice, but she might appreciate help doing the chores so that they get done faster and she has more time for herself. Maybe your brother and you can team up occasionally to help out. Like maybe one night someone else makes dinner.

    Anyway...

    I don't have a family from hell. I have a difficult father who I feel estranged and isolated from, and my brother and mother feel the same way as I do. He's king of the silent treatment and is currently under a number of delusions regarding how people and relationships work. He's unpredictable, dangerous and irrational in arguments and discussions, and probably very, very lonely in his Fortress of Solitude (the sad excuse for his rebuilt shop). I've stopped wasting my energy trying to connect with him and generally am only civil with him. Before I was able to move out, I was constantly dealing with a low-grade depression and a sense of apprehension every time he entered the room.

    My mother and I are extremely close (eNFJ according to the class she attended about working with different people) and usually have dinner together once every two weeks. I talk to her once a week or so, sometimes more frequently. She often steamrollers me in conversation, but I know it's because she's allowed to hold nothing back and talk about everything with me. I suspect that there's a lot that gets bottled up with her inability to discuss certain things with my father or brother. While she's nowhere as intellectually bent or scholarly as I can be, she's still very intelligent and observant and we get along swimmingly (that took until I was a junior in college for that relationship to bloom). She's a whole lot more extroverted and adventurous compared to me, so I like to have her along on anything that could be exciting as she's guaranteed to make me feel more confident. (I so wanted to her to come whitewater rafting with me and my boyfriend last month. She would have had a blast.)

    My younger brother is likely an iNTJ and can be very me, me, me oriented, like my father only he's far more charismatic about it. He's gotten to the point in his college career where he could become a rapidly booming success (in a way he already has). Unfortunately, this has gone to his head and his ego is rather inflated most of the time...I think he thinks he's some kind of celebrity genius. He's a little like Rodney McKay from Stargate Atlantis. Actually, he's a LOT like Rodney McKay when he gets on a topic where he feels knowledgeable and is in one of his ego-maniacal moods. It's kind of annoying. But he has the capacity to be incredibly giving and is frequently more connected to protocols on birthdays and holidays (he's usually the one to remind me!). Since we were children, we've been thick as thieves, though we've separated and become less close over the years. I don't think he realizes it, but he's good about making me still feel connected when he calls and asks for advice on something.
    "I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference."

    Robert Frost

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by BAJ View Post
    Your family doesn't sound too bad. It sort of sounds fine.

    Why is it hell for you?
    Quote Originally Posted by Crescent Fresh View Post
    I think most INFJs are seeking for someone who they can mentally "connect" with, even if there's one and that would be enough (be it a friend or a family member).

    Perhaps he hasn't found anyone who can share his inner-world with yet. But I agree with Baj, based on your description, your family isn't from hell as there are many people out there who only have one parent in stead of two.
    Hi again. Thanks for your replies, and sorry that I haven't responded yet. But I felt a bit on the edge of being depressed by this last days and writing about it would have made it worse.

    I agree my family is for sure not the most worse kind, and I was a little sarcastic when saying they're from hell. But that's also very annoying, because we had the chance and opportunity to be a very happy great family, but these "small things" makes almost nothing work. If my family was really horrible, at least I could let it go.

    Crescent Fresh I think you can be right in many ways. But I don't need to have deep connections with my family, that I want in a partner. But at least I want to have some connection with them as a family. But they're so "stupid" and "shallow" in empathy, emotional values, and that type of connections.
    My father never calls or visit his brother and sister, and is often bothered if they call, even though they live in the same town. They never have people coming over, they're just like egotistic robots, who acts the same no matter if another person bumps his leg, or breaks it. They haven't visited me in 2 years even though I live 30 minutes from there house, and I'm often there. I don't get how you can have so little interest for your own sons, when in facts they're nice good ordinary people!? As I said, in a way I wish it was worse so I could let it go.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for your reply! I answer it bit by bit, though it was a lot of questions and suggestions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kyrielle View Post
    I wouldn't say your family is the family from hell. But everyone sounds disconnected from each other, and in a way, that can be a type of hell (a very cold one).
    Yes that's true. I guess we're very disconnected in a emotional way. We often talk around the house, but it's more like "nagging" and discussions, because there's always bad respect in a shallow way, and they can't think logical in anyway when it comes to emotions and empathy, wich mess up everything they do.
    Even about the smallest thing, "you" have to adjust every detail to their mood and kind of thinking, otherwise there's a problem right away.

    When a family of 4 are in the same room, I think of it as "We", and have a big part of myself reserved for them at that moment. They always think of it as "Me, you, you, and you".

    Maybe you can't help your brother directly with advice, but you can be there for him. Does anyone go do stuff with him? It sounds like he's been shoved onto the back burner, never to be tended to again.
    I understand how you mean, but this is very "serious", and almost impossible to deal with at this point.
    He has really separated himself from us by his own choice, and it's not even possible to talk to him. As I said in the first post, I have been close to him for years, and talked to him/been a support/done things he might like, to help him. But it has come to this, and he won't even say hi to me when I visit my parents house, and he doesn't want anything to do with any of us really.
    He's become very spiritual, and lost from reality, and I'm pretty sure his long time depression has given him a mental problem, and psychosis at times.
    He also went to the "emergency mental center" a while ago by himself and stayed there for 2 days. I think he talks to some kind of psychologist now.

    I think a big part of his early problems is caused by the family being this way; lack of emotional connection and real empathy.

    And your mom might not appreciate advice, but she might appreciate help doing the chores so that they get done faster and she has more time for herself. Maybe your brother and you can team up occasionally to help out. Like maybe one night someone else makes dinner.
    I don't live there anymore, moved 4 years ago, so I'm not really a "part of the household" anymore in that way.
    But me and my brother tried hard to help her like you said (especially my brother before he got depressed and lost hope), and I guess she did appreciate it in a way, but it didn't work out in the long run, since their behavior makes these things impossible to work and makes no value in it. Plus that when we helped her, she found more things to do herself.

    My god, the more I think about this, and remember these things from before when me and my brother had not yet lost hope about the family... I can't understand how parents can so silenty ruin their own family and watch while their sons lose hope trying to make the family better, and they don't understand a thing, and the little part they understand; they make excuses for.

    It's like I have to be the mature parent for my parents in every way, and keep the small connection we have in the family, if I didn't do it, it would be gone.

    Anyway...

    I don't have a family from hell. I have a difficult father who I feel estranged and isolated from, and my brother and mother feel the same way as I do. He's king of the silent treatment and is currently under a number of delusions regarding how people and relationships work. He's unpredictable, dangerous and irrational in arguments and discussions, and probably very, very lonely in his Fortress of Solitude (the sad excuse for his rebuilt shop). I've stopped wasting my energy trying to connect with him and generally am only civil with him. Before I was able to move out, I was constantly dealing with a low-grade depression and a sense of apprehension every time he entered the room.

    My mother and I are extremely close (eNFJ according to the class she attended about working with different people) and usually have dinner together once every two weeks. I talk to her once a week or so, sometimes more frequently. She often steamrollers me in conversation, but I know it's because she's allowed to hold nothing back and talk about everything with me. I suspect that there's a lot that gets bottled up with her inability to discuss certain things with my father or brother. While she's nowhere as intellectually bent or scholarly as I can be, she's still very intelligent and observant and we get along swimmingly (that took until I was a junior in college for that relationship to bloom). She's a whole lot more extroverted and adventurous compared to me, so I like to have her along on anything that could be exciting as she's guaranteed to make me feel more confident. (I so wanted to her to come whitewater rafting with me and my boyfriend last month. She would have had a blast.)

    My younger brother is likely an iNTJ and can be very me, me, me oriented, like my father only he's far more charismatic about it. He's gotten to the point in his college career where he could become a rapidly booming success (in a way he already has). Unfortunately, this has gone to his head and his ego is rather inflated most of the time...I think he thinks he's some kind of celebrity genius. He's a little like Rodney McKay from Stargate Atlantis. Actually, he's a LOT like Rodney McKay when he gets on a topic where he feels knowledgeable and is in one of his ego-maniacal moods. It's kind of annoying. But he has the capacity to be incredibly giving and is frequently more connected to protocols on birthdays and holidays (he's usually the one to remind me!). Since we were children, we've been thick as thieves, though we've separated and become less close over the years. I don't think he realizes it, but he's good about making me still feel connected when he calls and asks for advice on something.
    Thanks for sharing your story, it was interesting to hear about it.
    I guess your situation is a little bit like mine, but at least you're connected to your mom in a real way, and your brother too, like a pretty normal siblings relationship. I wish I could have it like that too.

    In my family we're not connected at all when it really comes to it. My parents destroy the opportunities in their own separate way, and my brother got mentally ruined by their long term behavior.

    The funny thing is; that they do it in such small doses that nobody could notice it, but they do it all the time. And also the biggest problem is not what they do, but what they dont do.

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