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Thread: How to deal with ESFJs

  1. #1
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    Default How to deal with ESFJs

    Hello Everyone,

    I'm new here and am glad I found this site, because I need some advice.

    There are several important women in my life who are SFJs. It turns out that the ISFJs and I get along just fine. Maybe they're more over on the N side...I don't know.

    What I do know is that as gregarious and compassionate and fun as the ESFJs are, we inevitably run into communication problems and then they want to "fix our relationship" by having "talks"! Agh!! I'm pretty much sick and tired of the talks because, at this point, I've had several of them and we always seem to be talking past each other. They want to "relate" on some deep level, and yet when I share things they look completely confused. And they don't understand why I just don't see the world the way they do.

    Anyway, the wife of my husband's best friend sensed that I was offended by something she said and wants to talk about it over coffee. This is quite a socially important relationship (i.e., we're in the same circle of friends) but I highly doubt we're ever reaching Anne/ Diana levels of bosom friendship.

    How should I handle this? Should I smile and nod? Share some touchy-feely stuff so she feels like it was a good conversation? Is there any possible way we could actually make progress with this talk? That would, obviously, be the ideal!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Array visaisahero's Avatar
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    Hi Eliza! I'm new here too, and I created this account because I felt like responding to your post!

    I can relate to your situation. One of my best mates (who is also the drummer in my band) is an ESFJ. While we share common interests and have had great experiences together, we both have rather different world-views. You know very well how it is. Sometimes it can be incredibly frustrating, but other times it can be rewarding as well.

    You left out one of the most important things here- were you actually offended by what the woman said? Did you have reason to be? You should not lie to or mislead an ESFJ because these people take it the hardest.

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    Hi, thanks so much for responding! I realized perhaps I should have posted this in the SFJ section, but then I probably wouldn't have gotten a response in my same "language".

    The answer is, yes, I was actually offended. People don't usually misinterpret my feelings...I'm a horrible faker! So come to think of it, the "Share some touchy-feely stuff so she feels like it was a good conversation" solution would most likely be a total disaster.

    The situation itself was pretty personal. We were talking about faith in a group of like-minded friends and she has a very strong/ rigid sense of Christian doctrine. She has no questions about the absoluteness of the rightness of what she believes. I, on the other hand, sense that there is no way I'm ever going to "know" for sure what's right, and so am doubting my ability to have complete faith in anything. When it comes to religion, what is an NT to do? But that's a separate question entirely .

    I was offended (am, actually, on a pretty regular basis) at the way she takes my intellectual questions about faith and seems to make them a therapy issue that I need to sort out about my mother (!). Granted, my mother and I have serious problems (most manipulative ESFJ I know :P). But it's insulting to dismiss my valid points as me needing to "forgive" or whatever.

    And she just doesn't like to hear ideas that differ from hers. But whatever. I'd rather just chalk it up to her-being-her. But I'm also fine with talking to her about it. I'm just worried our conversation is going to make things worse, because it always seems to with me and ESFJs.

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    ESFJ's tend to tell white lies to keep group harmony, or feign niceties. I'm not saying your friend is, but because as NTs, we think that shit's usually stupid and fake, we don't buy into it. This leads the ESFJ to think something's wrong (moreso than a disagreement in world views) and try to "fix" things by having a unanimous viewpoint between parties.

    It's a recipe for disaster--especially if the NT thinks they're right.
    Ti = 19 [][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][]
    Te = 16[][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][]
    Ne = 16[][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][]
    Fi = 15 [][][][][][][][][][][][][][][]
    Si = 12 [][][][][][][][][][][][]
    Ni = 12 [][][][][][][][][][][][]
    Se = 11[][][][][][][][][][][]
    Fe = 0

    -----------------
    Tiger got to hunt, bird got to fly;
    Man got to sit and wonder why, why, why;
    Tiger got to sleep, bird got to land;
    Man got to tell himself he understand

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    No Cigar Array Litvyak's Avatar
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    It would be so great if more SFJs would join this forum, or become familiar with MBTI, perhaps we could come to a better understanding.

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    Senior Member Array Saslou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elizamay View Post
    Hello Everyone,


    What I do know is that as gregarious and compassionate and fun as the ESFJs are, we inevitably run into communication problems and then they want to "fix our relationship" by having "talks"! Agh!! I'm pretty much sick and tired of the talks because, at this point, I've had several of them and we always seem to be talking past each other. They want to "relate" on some deep level, and yet when I share things they look completely confused. And they don't understand why I just don't see the world the way they do.

    Anyway, the wife of my husband's best friend sensed that I was offended by something she said and wants to talk about it over coffee. This is quite a socially important relationship (i.e., we're in the same circle of friends) but I highly doubt we're ever reaching Anne/ Diana levels of bosom friendship.

    How should I handle this? Should I smile and nod? Share some touchy-feely stuff so she feels like it was a good conversation? Is there any possible way we could actually make progress with this talk? That would, obviously, be the ideal!
    Hello ..

    Yeah the talks can be monotonous, but i think that is because we just want to get back to that fun place .. (i am only talking personally here )

    Just cut to the chase, tell her how you feel, let her know what you don't like and how it's affected you .. Yeah, it will hurt her feelings but she'll live and hopefully learn from it.

    The communication can be worked on as long as 2 people are willing to share the load.

    No pretense .. Just be direct.

    Good luck, lol.
    “I made you take time to look at what I saw and when you took time to really notice my flower, you hung all your associations with flowers on my flower and you write about my flower as if I think and see what you think and see—and I don't.”
    ― Georgia O'Keeffe

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    Bribe them with cuddles.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member Array Saslou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quinlan View Post
    Bribe them with cuddles.
    Lol .. We'll see that coming a mile off

    Like i said .. No pretense.
    “I made you take time to look at what I saw and when you took time to really notice my flower, you hung all your associations with flowers on my flower and you write about my flower as if I think and see what you think and see—and I don't.”
    ― Georgia O'Keeffe

  9. #9
    Member Array Bowie's Avatar
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    ESFJs always appear fake to me. I dated an ESFJ once. (Before I knew about MBTI, I learned he was an ESFJ and I was an ENTP after the fact.) He constantly lied and hid the truth because he never wanted to "hurt anyone's feelings" or "make anyone angry". He was impossibly easy to read though, and I'd call him on his bullshit every time. He was a coward though, so he'd always admit to it and just whine for forgiveness because he couldn't stand having someone dislike him or be angry with him.

    For whatever reason, ISFJs don't irk me as much.
    In my defense, I am a terrible person.

  10. #10
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    Thanks everyone! We're getting together for coffee and dessert tonight. I'll let you know if anything dramatic happens .

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