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  1. #1
    Guerilla Urbanist Brendan's Avatar
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    Default Loneliness and the ENFJ

    Something that strikes me in the description of ENFJ is the tendency to feel alone even when surrounded by people as a result of keeping themselves hidden.

    I think it struck me because for me, at least, this is very true. I experience a somewhat crippling loneliness; the kind in which I fall into despair in a way that I feel unable to focus on anything, even the things I greatly enjoy. This is especially true for me now, as I'm at school, away from my friends, and spend long hours in studio working on projects. I do believe that I am generally well-liked and I have a lot of friends here at school, but I have a tendency to keep them at arm's length for the most part. It's not that I don't want them to get close, it's that I believe they won't understand why I think the way I think, or why I feel the way I feel, which will in turn exacerbate feelings of loneliness.

    Can any ENFJ's or people with a similar kind of experience speak to this?
    There is no such thing as separation from God.

  2. #2
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    I am an ENFP and I've felt that before. Loneliness is one of the leading causes of depression. You should make a distinction between 'friends' and 'acquintances'. I have hundreds of 'acquintances' that like me. But they're not friends. I don't particuarly want to go hang out with them.

    It sounds like right now you need a friend.

  3. #3
    Senior Member ExAstrisSpes's Avatar
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    Yes. I feel lonely all the time. When I was younger I would complain about being lonely to my mother, who would chide me by saying, "How can you be lonely? I don't have any time for that." Let's say it didn't help.

    It takes a long time for me to build friendships; I can only really say I have a small handful of friends scattered to the four winds. I think for me it's more of a trust thing than anything else; it's hard to know who you can trust and rely on when you need it.

  4. #4
    Junior Member Catoptric Cistula's Avatar
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    Everything the OP said could well describe INTP (or at least I can certainly relate). It actually seems to be a universal trait and unless the person whom could isolate themselves from society -- without work acquaintances or the internet, without any substitute for regular one-on-one "real life" communication, and without any debilitating defect in the amygdala of the brain to counter-act the desire to communicate and empathize (sympathy is a different thing) -- I cannot expect anyone to forego it. Maybe even Ted Kaczynski desired to socialize, and went off on some destruction of society as a way to deny the frustration at doing so?

    It's even possible that what we think of as personality constructs could change according to how we try to compensate or forge identity through social conditioning. We compensate and adapt as a way to address acceptable social constructs, and if we can't properly utilize that construct we rebel by acting/trying to be someone else?

    Though I've always had fairly consistent personality traits of INTP, I do know I probably would have thought differently had my upbringing been more cultured to INTP traits. I have tested as an extrovert one time however. . . Though that's pretty rare and it was during the time I was starting out using the internet and felt more extroverted then I really was.

  5. #5
    That's my name biotch! JoSunshine's Avatar
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    I used to feel that way when I was younger and really, only going through a horrible time when I was in such despair that I had to lean on others emotionally way more than I had ever been comfortable doing changed it. Necessity (and a lot of self examination), finally chipped away my eNfj shell. I've learned to choose people carefully and trust them fully.
    "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind. " - Dr. Seuss
    I can't spell...get over it

    Slightly ENFJ, totally JoSunshine
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Neutralpov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ExAstrisSpes View Post
    It takes a long time for me to build friendships; I can only really say I have a small handful of friends scattered to the four winds. I think for me it's more of a trust thing than anything else; it's hard to know who you can trust and rely on when you need it.

    I relate to this. I think it is that I got burned when I let people into my inner circle so it is very hard to find someone to let in again that won't be a let down. I honestly think it will be a future husband who I let get this close and maybe a best friend. But yes I have lots of friends and a circle of 5 closer friends but I know that they are not bffs. I think the best friend or husband will only do to satisfy this. Perhaps your brother/sister or significant other can be that role Brendan?
    Extroverted (E) 67.74% Introverted (I) 32.26%
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  7. #7
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    One of my best friends is an ENFJ and she's always helping people and being very empathetic to their hurts. It's funny, how I met her was when I was at the lowest point in my life. I was suffering from post traumatic stress disorder, trying to go to school and act normal, while inside I was in a state of anxiety. ...so there I was sitting on the bench panicking and in flutters this positive, wonderful person and starts making friends with me. I haven't ever asked but I suspect the precise reason she came over was because I was so fragile. She's so sensitive in that way that she could tell what was up and came to help. How altruistic and nice is that? Obviously we had common interests and became friends. She tends to come and go in my life, but suspiciously is always there when I've got some heartache or another. That said I think it is really hard to help her and be there for her. She keeps her sorrows to herself and it's very hard to read her. I kind of guess based on actual events she's discussed and read it in the subtext. It's a little tricky. How do ENFJs like to be helped when they are sad or lonely? I'm sure there's no shortage of people who would love to help and take care of them for a change.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reverie View Post
    How do ENFJs like to be helped when they are sad or lonely? I'm sure there's no shortage of people who would love to help and take care of them for a change.
    I'd love to know the answer to this question. My mom & brother are ENFJs, and I've always struggled to find ways to deepen my relationship with them.

  9. #9
    Senior Member ceecee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reverie View Post
    One of my best friends is an ENFJ and she's always helping people and being very empathetic to their hurts. It's funny, how I met her was when I was at the lowest point in my life. I was suffering from post traumatic stress disorder, trying to go to school and act normal, while inside I was in a state of anxiety. ...so there I was sitting on the bench panicking and in flutters this positive, wonderful person and starts making friends with me. I haven't ever asked but I suspect the precise reason she came over was because I was so fragile. She's so sensitive in that way that she could tell what was up and came to help. How altruistic and nice is that? Obviously we had common interests and became friends. She tends to come and go in my life, but suspiciously is always there when I've got some heartache or another. That said I think it is really hard to help her and be there for her. She keeps her sorrows to herself and it's very hard to read her. I kind of guess based on actual events she's discussed and read it in the subtext. It's a little tricky. How do ENFJs like to be helped when they are sad or lonely? I'm sure there's no shortage of people who would love to help and take care of them for a change.
    Yes, it can be very hard to read them. It's something that's never fully gone away with my ENFJ, not in all the time we have been married or that I have known him. Fortunately, I have become good at picking up his vibe, they can't hide it to people who know them well. First, I ask. If he doesn't want to talk at that time, it's fine. I know he will eventually but it took years for him to understand that it was ok to be vulnerable and even needy sometimes. The best way I help him is to go somewhere quiet (like our bedroom), rub his head or his back and he will talk about it without much prodding from me. I just listen, I don't say much until he finishes. I try to do everything I can to remove the external stresses that make this stuff worse. That doesn't sound like much but having a safe place they can let things out seems to make the difference.
    I like to rock n' roll all night and *part* of every day. I usually have errands... I can only rock from like 1-3.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by ceecee View Post
    having a safe place they can let things out seems to make the difference.
    Simple, but something I often overlook, as I'm guilty of trying to force emotional conversation on my own terms (i.e. when and where it feels right for me).

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