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  1. #1
    Senior Member chatoyer's Avatar
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    Question NFs, do you get tired of giving people "the benefit of the doubt"?

    This is a real source of conflict for me. And I don't mean with extreme or abusive situations, but just with everyday irritations, I pride myself on letting them go, & trying to give other people the benefit of the doubt when I get slighted. I try to focus on other possibilities why they blew me off, or why they went flaky on me, or if it was a miscommunication or whatever.

    But for some reason, I get really internally angry/disappointed/frustrated when these happen occasionally, it just builds up, I don't know if it's a cumulative effect with one person, or with my variable moods, but I don't know what to do with it, because I don't feel it's justified to communicate about it with the person because it's core to my identity to be laid-back & easy to be around. Sometimes I don't know when I'm justified to be angry.

    Can anyone relate?

  2. #2
    Branded with Satan murkrow's Avatar
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    If you aren't going to give them the benefit of the doubt internally then there's no reason to give it externally.

    If these people really care about you then they'd rather you be open and deal with the negative feelings building inside you than present a happy face to them at all times.

    You're justified in being angry whenever you feel angry, the best way to diffuse your anger is to remove the source of it, and that means communicating with the person who's angered you.

    I wonder why your ideal self differs so much from your natural self.
    wails from the crypt.

  3. #3
    Striving for balance Little Linguist's Avatar
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    I can relate. I think the problem comes from my not being able to really "handle" my strong emotions, which means I am afraid of "exploding" or "acting badly." I usually suppress them as a result to prevent "negative" situations.

    However, we all have to realize that life is not all peaches and cream, no matter how badly we might want it. Sometimes conflict happens. Full stop. No way of changing it.

    Once you realize that conflict is a FACT OF LIFE and not a personal problem, you begin to realize that it is okay to express anger.

    The big problem is - repressed anger blows up. I have a real problem with that, even now. I suppose maturity brings a willingness to engage conflict head-on and rationally rather than hiding from it. Just a guess, though.

    However, in really abusive situations, you cannot change people. You have to react or go under. Remember that.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member Leysing's Avatar
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    I used to have this problem.

    Then I got mobbed at school.

    Then I decided not to let that happen again and to learn to use my Te harnessed by my Fi belief of everyone's own personal value = to learn to defend myself and others.

    Since then I have roared and clawed at anyone that has done anything mean or bad or generally despicable to anyone. (Including me.) :steam:

    But, after all... I've had to learn to do that.

    EDIT// I don't, however, burst at the face of anyone who dares to be irritating, as I'm generally very calm. I do this only to the ones that behave in a really, really stupid way towards others or are deliberately annoying for a long time (for example my friend who was poking me with her pencil the whole mathematics class... and I itch easily. ).

  5. #5
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Giving people the "benefit of the doubt" tends to be the more efficient approach. When you jump to a negative conclusion, it typically inspires a negative response which can spiral into antagonism. Who has the energy to fight all the time? Attempting to make accurate assumptions that err on the side of being a little generously positive can at times disarm the other person resulting in them being put at ease. It can also be a peaceful habit to just overlook negative nonsense that has no bearing on life except where we allow it to be an annoyance. A "benefit of the doubt" world is the easier one to live in.
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
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    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
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  6. #6
    Plumage and Moult proteanmix's Avatar
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    I think your present way of dealing with it is the way most people deal with minor annoyances in a reasonable manner. Give a penny, take a penny. But are these "small" things really all that small? It's hard to differentiate between what you have a genuine right to be upset about and what most people would blow off. I can't fly into a rage because someone stepped on my foot in a crowded subway (which I've seen!) but then again I can't let someone repeatedly stomp on my foot either and not say anything.

    I'm an EFJ so I tend to ask people that I trust to give an honest assessment of situations if the things that annoy me would have bothered them so I can figure out if what I'm upset about falls in a normal range of what's tolerable. I have a woman at my job who every freaking week asks for change to get something from the vending machine. I've tried to jokingly tell her that I should just give her my change when I come in the morning and other quips to get her to stop asking. I've recently concluded that after months of this I'm just going to have to tell her I'm not giving her anymore change. Some people have told me they wouldn't sweat it. I feel like I might as well buy her a cappuccino from Starbucks every other week because that's what the amount of money I give her totals up to. This is a thing I've decided to draw the line with.

    If you notice that there's a pattern when you deal with the same person(s) over and over again and they tend to take advantage of your goodwill I'm about to say some conflicting stuff. It's different when you confront someone on doing something flagrant that you obviously can pin them with. When it's just small stuff that's done daily you run the risk of looking whiny and sensitive. For some thing's, I've honestly just swallowed it and resigned myself to dealing with it. So what ways do you deal when you can't confront the source directly? I just usually yap about it with my friends so I can air my frustrations and I feel better. (I also vent on the forum: see above ). For stuff I know I just can't allow and is becoming intolerable, I've confronted the source of the frustration. Sometimes it helps and sometimes it doesn't but I mostly do it for my own good. Sometimes it just makes it worse because people don't like to get called on the carpet and they'll continue out of spite. I'd say most of the time it's not that way, but people can return to their old habits after awhile and may need another nudge. If you feel like the possibility of fallout from confrontation is preferable to the slow boil you find yourself in then it's best to talk. All that anger inside you isn't doing you any good. Being easy-going doesn't equate to pushover.

  7. #7
    heart on fire
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    I try to listen to my Te and to not let people go too far and to also be honest with them when they are pushing too far. People aren't mind readers and some people are clueless about boundaries and limits, so people deserve a chance to know they are crossing the line. I try to work hard on not reaction with oversensitivity when people do these things and not to take it as personally as I have in the past. People are people and it often isn't really about me, it is about their own issues. I have distanced myself from many in-laws in the past eight years because they won't listen and they continued to step on my boundaries and push the limits.

  8. #8
    mrs disregard's Avatar
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    I don't trust most people, and am thus indifferent to their choices regarding their relationship with myself, so my benefit of the doubt isn't so much extended out of selflessness, but out of a curiosity for that which may transpire.

    Pretty awful, eh?

  9. #9
    lurking.... Wyst's Avatar
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    If I'm involved in the situation, whatever it is, I'll give people a couple chances. Burn me a 2 or 3 times, though, and it will be hard to regain my trust.

    On the other hand, sometimes my mom will be looking for a third-person's opinion and ask, "So why do you think so-and-so would do that?", I'll shrug with an ambiguous "Well maybe they just (blah blah blah)...", and try to diffuse the situation, which is also my way of trying to end a conversation I really don't give a shite about.

  10. #10
    `~~Philosoflying~~` SillySapienne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chatoyer View Post
    This is a real source of conflict for me. And I don't mean with extreme or abusive situations, but just with everyday irritations, I pride myself on letting them go, & trying to give other people the benefit of the doubt when I get slighted. I try to focus on other possibilities why they blew me off, or why they went flaky on me, or if it was a miscommunication or whatever.

    But for some reason, I get really internally angry/disappointed/frustrated when these happen occasionally, it just builds up, I don't know if it's a cumulative effect with one person, or with my variable moods, but I don't know what to do with it, because I don't feel it's justified to communicate about it with the person because it's core to my identity to be laid-back & easy to be around. Sometimes I don't know when I'm justified to be angry.

    Can anyone relate?
    Hmm, whenever a person; acquaintance, or friend, does something that hurts my feelings, I confront them.

    I don't attack or lash out at them but rather speak out quite clearly saying something like, "hey, that kinda was weird", or "hey, that kinda hurt", or, "hey, why did you do that" or "hey, hold on, what's going on here, I'm confused".

    If and when I don't confront someone about something that bothered, or bothers me, resentments start to take place in my gut, and I *hate* feeling resentful.

    But, hmm, what exactly do you mean when you say "giving people the benefit of the doubt"?

    I am incredibly forgiving, actually to a flaw, so perhaps that is what you mean.

    I remember growing up, I constantly felt like I always took the high-ground and that I always played the role of that of being the "bigger person".

    I know it is hard for many of us NFs to ditch our empathy-laden nice guy routines. But sometimes we have to toughen up, grow some balls, speak our minds and assert ourselves and our positions when we are being shat on.
    `
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