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Thread: INFJ depression

  1. #1
    Member tine5's Avatar
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    Unhappy INFJ depression

    Hi all!
    I was wondering what INFJs are like when depressed and also a good way to help them out of it. My sister's one and she's depressed (I think) so I'd like to help!
    Thanks!

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    I've battled with depression most of my life. It tends to show up as extreme withdraw, meaning that I avoid contact with people at all costs. It's incredibly difficult for me to be vulnerable with folks on a day-to-day basis, so it's even more difficult when I'm at my weakest.

    Lifestyle choices have helped me manage depression over the past 5-10 years. In particular, exercising and eating a decent diet has helped me feel better on average. I've also learned to take "risks" and speak with friends and family when I'm upset... it's taken years, but I've slowly learned that talking about stress or depression can often reduce the symptoms dramatically.

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    Lay the coin on my tongue SilkRoad's Avatar
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    In response to the OP: I think I've had a few low-level episodes of depression, though I haven't been diagnosed. Things which have helped me are trying to look after my health generally (eating and sleeping decently...not things I'm very good at), working on counteracting negative patterns of thinking (something like cognitive behavioural therapy may help, though I've only had that for a phobia, not for depression), talking with and spending time with trusted friends, etc.

    Severe depression is more likely to need therapy and/or medication, but things like exercise, eating well, and friends are only going to be a good thing.

    INFJs can definitely get trapped in dark thought patterns. I've needed to look for ways to break those cycles. But sometimes you just have to suffer through whatever it is, and try not to prolong it, and remember that though you can't yet see the light at the end of the tunnel, it is there.
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    Diving into Ni-space Crescent Fresh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilkRoad View Post
    INFJs can definitely get trapped in dark thought patterns. I've needed to look for ways to break those cycles. But sometimes you just have to suffer through whatever it is, and try not to prolong it, and remember that though you can't yet see the light at the end of the tunnel, it is there.
    I agree with this. Sometimes it can be a lone, long journey for them to get snap out of it. It is painful and heart-wrenching at times but once they're able to get through it, they can be on full force on working on their next goal.

    I'm saying this because it took me a long eight months to recover, and this only happen recently.

  5. #5
    Junior Member Saga's Avatar
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    I've had a rough life and have been depressed a few times. The last time around a therapist helped me. It takes work on two levels to get better for me:
    1. Identify what made me depressed. Find the big and small things that put me in that spiralling state of mind and either change them or change the way I think about them.
    2. Become aware of the thought patterns that make me depressed. For this I wholeheartedly recommend cognitive behavioural therapy. Now that I have those tools I can hopefully catch myself before I fall or at least get myself out of the funk next time.

    There's an awesome cbt book on depression that my therapist recommended me. There is even a chapter for friends and family that want to help constructively. Get it, read that chapter and ask her to read for her relevant chapters. It's called Beating the Blues by Jillian Ball and Susan Tanner.

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    Member nomoreshallwepart's Avatar
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    I suffer from depression myself, when I'm in that state of mind I tend to find myself without motivation to anything remotely interesting. I also find that I don't want to be in contact with people. I usually just want to sleep and sleep.

    Relating that to being an INFJ, I'd probably say;
    - Being introverted will makes you less likely to want to share your feelings.
    - Being intuitive makes it harder to see the reality of your situation.
    - The feeling element makes you less rational about things.
    - Being a judging type probably means you'll worry more about upcoming obligations (I do any way).

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    Iron Maiden fidelia's Avatar
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    I've never been depressed, but I know that in times of stress I procrastinate, buy frivolous makeup items and magazines, overindulge with junk food, want to sleep a lot or else stay up far too late for no real reason, and follow celebrity gossip in a strange way that I wouldn't care about normally! I also don't spend as much time with people and feel physically achy and weary.

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    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Internalizing too much can effect depression for me. When someone presents conflict, I don't reciprocate partly because it usually doesn't make sense to me in the moment. It takes me a long time to process conflict and negativity and then I analyze it from such a distance that it is difficult to process the emotion the way a person "typically" would. I'm doing well now, but I have been clinically depressed in the past. Besides sad feelings, I take it most seriously if it affects my ability to think. When I was depressed I felt really disconnected, lost in my head, but also ended up getting lost a lot when trying to drive or arrive anywhere - it was like an all encompassing state of flux and confusion. It made me tired all the time and with chronic pain. I also had to work extra hard to not get into irrational negative thought patterns about myself, but I was able to get past it and am pretty happy now.

    Edit: I think what can help is to keep things really simple, not judge or analyze the person too much, and let them feel like they can take control of their own life and that their choices belong to them and should be respected. Silliness can help too - just to get them to laugh.
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    Senior Member Kyrielle's Avatar
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    When I'm depressed, my thoughts pretty much circle the drain over and over. I feel worthless and alone. Like I do not deserve anything good because I'm a worthless piece of shit; therefore, I deserve to be alone. This causes me to isolate myself from everyone. I have trouble concentrating and I generally feel tired or with low energy. I might binge on various vices of mine (which is why I stay away from alcohol as much as possible...I don't want that to become a vice).

    When it was REALLY bad, I would stare emptily at the wall and periodically cry. My brain felt like it was in a fog. I had to force myself to eat, because food tasted terrible. I stopped remembering how I got somewhere, only that suddenly I was there. My feelings of worthlessness extended to the point where I felt I was a tumor festering within the relationships I had left. And tumors are best removed.

    What helps me get out of a depressive state is to go out physically, but go in mentally. I find that exercising helps me tremendously in managing and stabilizing my moods.

    So, maybe you should suggest that your sister get out more. Not to parties, but literally out of the house. Maybe go on walks with her without any expectation for conversation. Or simple encouragement in going on walks.

    The key component here will be making sure you place no social expectations upon her. It's wonderful to feel that there's someone there who gets that you just don't feel like socializing and doesn't hold it against you or make you feel like you rejected them like some jerk.
    "I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference."

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    Temporal Mechanic. Lexicon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyrielle View Post
    The key component here will be making sure you place no social expectations upon her. It's wonderful to feel that there's someone there who gets that you just don't feel like socializing and doesn't hold it against you or make you feel like you rejected them like some jerk.
    ^This, times a million. It may not feel like ''doing much,'' but you'd be surprised. Personally, if I'm in that sort of hopeless, tunnel-vision mindset, my physical, cognitive/empathetic energy/focus are extremely drained. I quarantine myself- to try to recharge, and also out of concern for potentially ''contaminating'' the lives of people I care about by overtly expressing these negative, self defeating, self perpetuating thoughts. I justify that in my mind in the sense, that, I typically can identify when or why I feel that way, and on some level remind myself that it's just some bad wiring, short circuiting, system's fatigued. It's temporary. I try to remind myself I'm in no condition to think about certain things until I've covered basic needs like eating, sleeping, just taking some time to be completely free of expectations or potential expectations of others.

    It's difficult to try to articulate to friends, and I'd often worry about making them feel as they exhausted me in general, which would be inaccurate. I tend to be avoidant of interaction, but if someone is generally easygoing, and casual about hanging out, no matter what the setting, it tends to help, a lot. I thank my INTP friend for this, constantly. For being someone who just gives me space to breathe, and also helps me think things through on my own, without trying to overtly direct me toward a solution that may not be applicable, or any number of other things that may feel suffocating during those brief times that I become overwhelmed by the weight my own silly humanity. For just being okay with, & accepting of me dealing with my own baggage however I need to, even if it's all just going on in my head.

    ..kinda rambled..
    03/23 06:06:58 EcK: lex
    03/23 06:06:59 EcK: lex
    03/23 06:21:34 Nancynobullets: LEXXX *sacrifices a first born*
    03/23 06:21:53 Nancynobullets: We summon yooouuu
    03/23 06:29:07 Lexicon: I was sleeping!



    04/25 04:20:35 Patches: Don't listen to lex. She wants to birth a litter of kittens. She doesnt get to decide whats creepy

    02/16 23:49:38 ygolo: Lex is afk
    02/16 23:49:45 Cimarron: she's doing drugs with Jack

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