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  1. #21
    i love skylights's Avatar
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    thanks so much, everyone, for your contributions.

    huge post to follow...

    Quote Originally Posted by mrcockburn View Post
    Wait, wait...hang on a second. The mother is doing the INTP's work FOR him? You've got to be kidding. Who's the school trying to educate? The student or his mom?
    to clear things up, my mom isn't doing it all for him.

    what typically happens is that he'll get way more homework than any 15 year old should have to face (public school here is stupid, 7 hours of school and then "no more than 6 hours of homework"), legitimately whine about it, and then she'll try to help him by saying, well, if you work on this, i can help you by doing (a more mundane thing, like gluing things on a poster, etc.). he'll do his work for a little bit, but then wander off or switch from his Word doc to guitar instruction videos on YouTube. so while she's getting more and more into the subject she's helping him with, he's blowing it off.

    he's quite the manipulator, though, and he pretends it's really hard to account for lack of productivity. he gets pissed off when i'm around to call him out on it. says i have too much morality, lol. though sometimes he does genuinely find it really hard, and benefits a lot from her help in just a little area or two - which i think is totally legitimate. it just starts to sound like he's crying wolf, because it's hard to know. and my mom, being the nurturing and loving mother that she is, would prefer to err on the side of being there for him than not.

    also, he was diagnosed with some minor fine motor issues when he was younger and falls a little to the slower end of the maturity curve - not to say he's not smart or capable, the little fucker is brilliant - but as an educator herself i suspect my mom sees these things and in part i believe it motivates her to help him even more so than if he had not had it in his past.

    Quote Originally Posted by marmalade.sunrise View Post
    Feels bad for him?

    She's doing him a total disservice by keeping him from learning. It's honestly not good parenting. I'm sure your mother is a very nice person, but you should probably confront her about this. Try to explain to her how this is going to hurt him in the long term. Maybe she's not thinking of it that way.
    yeah. i have. haha. i've made the exact same argument. i don't think she's been until very recently aware of how much he really doesn't work at it. she has put her foot down more recently upon this revelation. also, he addresses some good points about why the school system sucks, and why it's hard for him, and in that sneaky NTP way sometimes it's hard to tell if he's being genuine or if he's just manipulating.

    Quote Originally Posted by blankpages View Post
    I went back and did a double-take after reading marmalade's post. She actually does his schoolwork for him? lol. My mom's ISFJ and has been known to do the same. She's got me and my younger ISTP brother. I never needed to work hard in elementary school, and when I got into high school I smartened up on my own eventually. (She did step in and take over on the occasional project that was left to the last minute). He's had more problems though. Big into video games, doesn't care about much else. My mother's practically done writing and drawing assignments for him in the past. It goes beyond school too; he had a paper route and she'd routinely put all the packages together for him and drive him around, delivering half the fliers. She did the whole thing for him a couple times when he decided he'd rather play with a friend.

    Anyway, how old is this kid? If he's in his mid-teens, I agree with letting him experience the natural consequences. That doesn't always work so well with younger kids. If he's younger, it might be better to impose some more immediate consequences. I know I repeatedly left projects to the last minute no matter how much I hated the panic I'd experience the night before the due date.
    yeah, mid-teens. that's really interesting about your mom. it's like helping slips into doing it for them. i know my mom doesn't mean to do it for him. she wants to help him. but it starts to slip over into being too much, in my opinion.

    i'm a last-minute worker myself, for sure... hallmark P of course. but the difference between me and him is that i always balked when mom would help me because i wanted the work to be MINE. i suppose it was a Fi thing, at least in part. no one but me could produce my work. whereas for him, as long as he agrees with it, he doesn't really care if it's not his work. and so when it gets to the 11th hour, i have learned that i HAVE to do my own work. whereas he whines that he wants to go to bed and ignores it and mom tries to help bail him out. and yeah, eventually i got in really deep shit for not doing my work and it set me (slightly more) straight. but part of what helped get me to that point is that i wouldn't let mom do so much of my work. and he's not getting that, so i feel like he's not developing that last-minute "hey, you actually have to do work now" drive that Ps need to develop. i mean seriously, he won't even direct who does what if she's helping him. he just doesn't care at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by marmalade.sunrise View Post
    I don't see how that's so hard for a parent to do...you know, you've got to do your work before you can play. Ironically, I was left much more to my own devices in high school. There was less enforcement on me at that time. You have to teach kids things like that at a young as possible age.
    well, let's not be too hard on my mom please guys. there are a lot of other factors besides she didn't raise him right or whatever. she's quite brilliant herself and with children in general, is a J, and she works a fulltime job as a teacher. so it's not that she doesn't understand how learning works, or that she is unfamiliar with structure. not to mention that, while i do feel bad that my brother is currently hating school, it should not be ignored that he is a masterful little sneak.

    moreover, we've been raised in a safe, attentive, and happy household that has stimulated our curiosities and encouraged us to explore and learn as we pleased. ironically, the fact that our parents raised us in such a nurturing environment might be contributing to this problem. we're used to learning what we want to learn - and given we're both Ne, that's plenty - and not being used to the burden of no intellectual stimulation in our areas of interest and mundane work in others.

    and i can't pretend like i'm perfect, either. i'm an NP too. lazy, messy, procrastinating, negligent, avoidant, etc. sometimes i push deadlines. sometimes i miss deadlines. sometimes i don't give a shit and that gets me in trouble. but i deal with that on my own.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffywolf View Post
    My parents were always good at giving me ultimatums if I wasn't doing what I was supposed to do. I was almost thrown out of the house a few times even! And when my father says something, he is going to follow it through. So I knew those weren't 'just' threats. Great motivation there.
    lol yeah true. my dad (also INTP) has occasionally scared the shit back into him. maybe that needs to happen.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lucas View Post
    PC rights are probably the best way to go in terms of punishment/reward.

    Stuff like grounding or confinement to room will probably not be a particularly effective punishment if he has any books whatsoever. Basically, don't go for restriction of social contact, because it will be ineffective as a motivator.
    haha yeah social restriction as an INTP motivator. no offense but that's about as effective as telling me i'll be forbidden to do the laundry. sure it'll suck after a while, but we'll make do. neither clothes nor social interaction are actually necessary for life. seriously though restricting internet rights is not a bad idea.

    Quote Originally Posted by mrsherlockholmes View Post
    I am speaking as an INTP lazy student. Change the school system. Seriously, the way they make most school classes these days focuses way too much on things like rote learning, strict rules and requirements and a focus on the mundane rather than creative aspects of work. If more freedom were given in subjects (where this is possible, not so much math and stuff) then INTPs would do WAY better.
    i bold this because this is the exact same thing my brother says too. he also does not really like literature at all, and his science classes require much less work and thought, even though they are at higher levels than his english class.

    in this way, i completely understand his problem. school is boring useless shit sometimes. not to mention oriented to meeting test criteria, instead of actual learning. he's beginning to think the solution is to totally drop out though. i suspect if push came to shove, he wouldn't, but he has to hate things pretty bad to raise that as an actual possibility.

    Quote Originally Posted by Craft View Post
    You should also let your brother experience first-hand what it is that he's working for. This may sound extreme, but you could let him experience hunger, homelessness etc.
    haha yeah i think my mom would call DSS on me if i tried to kick him out. but right, i think one big ol' fat 0 would do a lot for him. he claims that he wouldn't care but i kind of feel like somewhere he would.

    I know, right? Personally, I love math, science, philosophy, and everything academia. But I don't like the way their arranging it. This is what I want the most: UNDERSTANDING and STIMULATION. Schools don't provide enough of that but instead they give you labors of do this then do this then do this. In the end, your potential becomes untapped. I want to know "why?" and "how?". I want to talk and explore, not just do these stupid mundane assignments.

    But that's it, most of the people aren't focused on creativity and freedom and schools go with most people.
    yeah, exactly. me too. this is exactly what i was talking about before. my mom herself says that some of my brother's assignments are the most ridiculous repetitive crap.

    Quote Originally Posted by mrsherlockholmes View Post
    I have an ISTJ IT teacher. It's awful. I think because Js so often go into organisation they're more likely to be running schools and education systems, which is bad news for Ps. I had a task to make a film for IT, and 45% of the mark was for the film. The rest was for design brief, layout, research, diagrams, random computer related knowledge reporting we'd already done for other tasks etc.
    yeah, for sure. most school systems certainly are overwhelmingly J, and most teachers seem to be J too. at least, mine were, and most of my brother's sound like they are. it makes sense - the teaching profession itself seems oriented to the J skill set. yet it makes things much more difficult on us Ps... we're seen as lazy, unstructured, etc. while our natural gifts of creativity and improvisation are not as often allowed to flourish. i certainly want J kids to have a good schooling experience too but i feel like P kids have to push against the current more.

    Quote Originally Posted by tkae. View Post
    Idk, I know where he's coming from.

    I was a C student in High School not because I wasn't smart enough for it, but because it was boring. as. hell. My ESFJ mom finally realized that the most she could do is be emotional support for me (an uniquely INFP thing) and just accept that I'd get energy to do the things that I found the excitement to energize myself with, and I'd sleep during the classes of all the stuff that wasn't fun.

    Which is how I pulled As and Bs out of AP classes, but skidded through general education classes like Economics with Ds.

    They key to remember is that you CANNOT force him to do it. It's not that he's lazy, it's that he doesn't get excitement out of the things he's doing in school. The best thing she can do is be supportive of the things he does get energy out of, and maintain just enough pressure to keep him from failing.

    But once he gets into college and has the freedom to jump into the things he loves with both feet, he'll really get up and get himself working hard.

    Anyways... yeah. Punishing him by taking away the things that interest him doesn't work. That'll just make him lazy and bored. It's not punishing him because he's not doing anything "wrong". He's just not doing what you guys think is "right". You can't punish someone for that. It's counterproductive.

    The way to do it is encourage him to work hard in the subjects that interest him, and try to keep the rest of his classes rounded out for his GPA. But with that type of student, you can't force him. It just won't work, and it'll do more harm than good...
    this is good to hear - these are the lines along which mom and i have been thinking lately. let him go all out - AP/IB, etc. - in the courses he likes, and not worry so much about the courses he doesn't like. of course the issue with public school where we live is that there's a huge jump between honors classes, which give about 30 to 45 minutes of homework a night each, and basic classes, which do not give so much homework but are notable for being filled with so many disruptive students that kids in these classes often go to college not understanding grammar or basic writing.

    anyway, he also is very interested in taking classical guitar at a local performing arts high school, which would allow him to take guitar classes in addition to regular classes, which might be a much better fit for him.

  2. #22
    Senior Member Kenneth Almighty's Avatar
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    He's doing IB? *shudders*

    I'm doing terribly in IB right now. I'm lazy too

  3. #23
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    Point out that by not doing anything they are incompetent or soon to be.
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

  4. #24
    i love skylights's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kenneth Almighty View Post
    He's doing IB? *shudders*

    I'm doing terribly in IB right now. I'm lazy too
    oh, no, thank god. i was in IB and i HATED it. he's taking some classes that are AP/IB combinations though. like you take the class and then you can take either the AP test or the IB test or both.

    props for doing it though. if you make it through you can always make people impressed with it. even though i don't think it's really worth the tradeoff, unless you know you'll be getting college credit in areas you can use it. my IB college credit didn't get me much of anywhere.

    Quote Originally Posted by Xander
    Point out that by not doing anything they are incompetent or soon to be.
    that is an excellent way of looking at it. i shall.

    -

    update -

    i've talked to the brother a bit and we're discussing a potential system of rewards and punishments, in which he stands to gain more than usual (ie, building up to musical equipment or something like that) but also stands to lose more than usual (ie, if he doesn't do his work he has to help extra around the house).

    though he would obviously prefer no potential punishments, this to me seems like a much better way to fit the real world by mimicking higher risk and reward/loss.

  5. #25
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    I just had a meeting about this with my eleven year old (probably) INTP's teacher. Some of it, like having to show his work in math, they are willing to flex on, which is good. Some of it is just going to be good ole' carrot and stick therapy.

    I sympathize with your mom. She knows how valuable good grades can be for furthering his education. I'd be tempted to make him get a job at McDonald's so he can see what it's like to be unskilled, uneducated labor. Sadly with the academic workload he's got going it would be counter-productive. I know my HS senior goes to a ghetto school and all, but even with her AP classes, she doesn't have that much homework and her SAT scores were still competitive. I'd say the homework is going to have to be prioritized and some of it is just going to have to be allowed to slide. A couple of hours of reasonable effort a night is plenty of homework unless it's finals or a special project is due, IMO.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  6. #26
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skylights View Post
    dear NTs,

    my INTP brother is a very smart, very lazy student.

    the problem is that my ESFJ mom is killing herself (seriously she is overworked already and now this) trying to do my brother's work that he doesn't do.

    i say natural consequences. let him fail.

    she wants to protect him and feels bad for him and does not see it this way. since i can't seem to change my mom's approach on this subject, any ideas on helping motivate my brother?

    the obvious solution to all this, i realize, is to just stop caring, but i blame NFP. i can't.
    You could just butt out too, since it's not actually your problem...?

    It's impossible to motivate an INTP, and the harder you try, the more YOU WILL FAIL.

    It will be easier to convince your mother to change her enabling habits. But, yeah. Good luck with that...

    If your brother is smart as you say, he probably isn't being challenged. That will change (hopefully) as he progresses through school. Also there will come a point where his mother won't be able to help him any more, even if she wants to. Give it time and it will fix itself.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by skylights View Post
    dear NTs,

    my INTP brother is a very smart, very lazy student.

    the problem is that my ESFJ mom is killing herself (seriously she is overworked already and now this) trying to do my brother's work that he doesn't do.

    i say natural consequences. let him fail.

    she wants to protect him and feels bad for him and does not see it this way. since i can't seem to change my mom's approach on this subject, any ideas on helping motivate my brother?

    the obvious solution to all this, i realize, is to just stop caring, but i blame NFP. i can't.
    The subjects might suck for him. If he goes to college, encourage him to study what interests him and he should do fine.

  8. #28
    i love skylights's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morgan Le Fay View Post
    You could just butt out too, since it's not actually your problem...?
    being that as a part of the family and living in the family household, i am constantly subject to his complaining about his work and whining and drama and threatening to drop out, as well as the impacts of the matter on family dynamics in general, including interfering in my mom's ability to fully attend to her job and her ability to attend to other household matters, which means my household workload is increased, plus the overall tenseness in atmosphere that makes it hard to relax in my own home...

    yeah, it "actually" is my problem.

    funny that this is something he overlooks sometimes too. your actions don't occur in a vacuum.


    Quote Originally Posted by Frank
    The subjects might suck for him. If he goes to college, encourage him to study what interests him and he should do fine.
    yeah, absolutely. i just want to make sure the little bugger makes it to college.

  9. #29
    Consulting Detective Mr. Sherlock Holmes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skylights View Post
    funny that this is something he overlooks sometimes too. your actions don't occur in a vacuum.
    Well for some NT's they can. Particularly INTs. They sometimes just want to be left to their own devices.

  10. #30
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    INTP .... DRAMA????

    KILL THE ABOMINATION LEST HE BREED!!!!
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

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