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Thread: ISTJ fathers...

  1. #1
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    Default ISTJ fathers...

    I noticed in the family thread that a few people had ISTJ fathers.

    I'm in the process of TRYING to rebuild an estranged relationship with my ISTJ father. Personal issues aside, we simply cannot seem to see eye to eye on things. I find we are concluding to agree to disagree on just about everything. I really want to find a way to relate to him - even on an interest basis, but I continue to hit a wall with his "moral obligation" bent - and not living up to what he sees his daughter should be at this point in my life. As an INFJ, the lack of connection between the two of us is ultimately what made years of not speaking somewhat easy. I am striving for some sort of connection now.

    So, ISTJs... how have you related to others, specifically INFJs? What sort of approach would you most prefer for relating? What sort of hot button issues should I avoid until our relationship is a little more stable? I really want to take this opportunity to get to know my father, but his walls just seem ridiculously high & his strongminded opinions in complete conflict with mine & my life in general. I would hate to have to retreat back into years of not speaking.

  2. #2
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Just a few side ideas.

    Depending on how many years you've been out of the house, your father might not yet be ready to reconnect with you.

    It just looks like a very tense situation: Si vs Ni, Te vs Fe, and so on. You could not really be more different, except you both happen to be introverts.

    But because of that, your functions are all in competition with each other -- not complementary like an extrovert paired with an introvert would be (for example if you were ENFP).

    Some ISTJ fathers are softer; it sounds like your father is very Te and/or very attached to his inner map. (And/or afraid of change, for whatever reason.)

    For him to open up, he'll have to reach a point where it is more important for him to have a relationship with you than to have you agree with everything he believes. This has more chance of occurring, the more time that passes, the longer you are separated, and the longer you have spent building a successful adult life apart from him. Especially after you marry and have children, that might give him more incentive to flex.

    Sometimes these things are only cured by time and realizations in him that he is not happy with the space he has put in your relationship.

    I'd be interested to see what the ISTJs have to say.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  3. #3
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    The one true ISTJ father I am close to just turned 40, with a preschool aged daughter. He is absolutely crazy about her, driving himself forward in his career for her future security, investing etc. He is hands on with her, even sitting on her bed and playing with her dolls with her. She is an only child and he waited a long, long time for her. To him, there is no other.
    Of course, she hasnt had a chance to rebel.

  4. #4
    No me digas, che! Recoleta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quietgirl View Post
    So, ISTJs... how have you related to others, specifically INFJs? What sort of approach would you most prefer for relating? What sort of hot button issues should I avoid until our relationship is a little more stable? I really want to take this opportunity to get to know my father, but his walls just seem ridiculously high & his strongminded opinions in complete conflict with mine & my life in general. I would hate to have to retreat back into years of not speaking.
    Well, I am not male, nor am I a parent, but I'll try to give some suggestions on how to relate to ISTJ's in general. First off, if you haven't already, maybe you should just openly tell your father how you feel. ISTJ's value directness...so if you're open with us, it is much more likely we will be open with you. Tell him that you hate that the two of you can not seem to connect. Tell him you want to approach your differences in a mature nature, and that you'd like to get to know him better and spend time with him. By doing this, you're appealing to his desire to be a good and responsible father.

    Also, find out if your dad has a certain hobby or something he is passionate about. ISTJ's aren't the giddy or excited type when it comes to most things in life, but we always have hobbies that we take a great amount of pleasure in. If it's playing a sport, ask if you can play with him. If it's auto mechanics stuff, ask him to show you how to change the oil in your car or something. Just take an ACTIVE interest in something he likes. When you're hanging out in the beginning, don't delve too deeply into his thoughts. Just keep things light and fun. Enjoy your time together and the activity...ask for his opinion or something. Doing an activity or being able to move really calms me down and allows me to be more comfortable with others. I suspect more self-disclosure will happen over time as trust is built. Tell him you enjoyed spending time with him...be positive and affirming.

    Avoid your problematic issues if possible. Don't allow the conversation to turn into a win-lose situation. ISTJ's strive for peacful living with others, and it probably bothers him a lot already that he knows there is some strife in your relationship.

    Anyway, good luck! Hope it works out for ya.

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    Thanks for your advice!

    Jennifer - He initiated contact, first through calling (I initially didn't return the call) & then through talking to my brother. I know he wants to work on the father-daughter relationship, but he just seems so set in his ways. I feel he expects ME to change to fit his model. My father is also heavily Si - any idea I have, he immediately knocks down for either it's impracticality or because of something that happened in the past (which Si dictates must happen again in the future). He often uses the past as his map for what's to come. I realize we are almost polar opposites, but I keep thinking if there's one thing I can find to relate about then I can make a breakthrough... (that's the INFJ in me, heh)

    Recoleta - I've been direct with him already. I'm sure he appreciates it after he tells me exactly what is wrong with my point of view/argument/feelings/reasoning. However, I have been working at the common interest thing. Actually, that's the only way we've ever bonded. He's an avid hiker and for as long as I can remember, he's taken me under his wing so I can become the next great hiker/mountaineer in our family. We've hiked extensively in a few mountain ranges, bagged a few high peaks, and initally set out to do a thru hike of the Appalachain Trail before we had a falling out. I suppose once the weather breaks, we could try that again. Thanks.

  6. #6
    Senior Member OctaviaCaesar's Avatar
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    Default I Know How You Feel

    I am one of the members with an ISTJ father! It's a challenge, living with someone whose preferences are opposite, sometimes heartbreaking. I was such a Daddy's-Girl when I was little, and as I grew older I tried to "be" exactly what I thought he thought I should be, which for some reason was hard for me, especially as I got older. I am not estranged from my father, and I still live at home, but as I make decisions for myself that do not make "sense" from an STJ point of view, I feel tension from him on our relationship. It seems that rejection of one of his ideas/methods is understood as a rejection (lower-case r) of him. I do not mean this at all, as I suppose by his advice-giving he is not trying to control me, only to help me. It is so easy for me to misunderstand his motives. Most importantly, keep an open mind and trust that you and he can have a healthy relationship. That is what is keeping me trying.

  7. #7
    にゃん runvardh's Avatar
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    ISTJs, I find, also need the difference baked into the cake and work out before they can accept it. I find this with my friend every once in a while; he trusts me enough to try things, but he's really tense about it until it works out with a positive outcome.
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    Senior Member gretch's Avatar
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    You got me quiet girl, I'm still trying to figure out how to connect with my ISTJ Mother (my husband insists she's an F, but I have sources.)

    On the other hand my very very best friend in the entire world is an ISTJ. And I seriously think no type could be cooler. We get along seriosuly like peas and carrots. Like a yin and a yang. I think it's different when they're your parent. My mom practically cringes every time I speak. It's very exhausting for us to be around one another. I think just because for me, I would love a close relationship where we share eveything, and she sees me not put shoes on my kid and freaks.

    It's kinda funny when you step back and look at it.

    Man, sometimes I wish I were an SJ
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  9. #9
    Courage is immortality Valiant's Avatar
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    I know a couple of ISTJ's... Since they are the exact opposite of who I am, i'm having a real hard time figuring out how they work. One of them was always downright mean, the other one is also a bastard, but I still like him because he's funny. Few cases ever gives me the same feeling of helplessness as being around ISTJ's.
    I can't really offer any help, but I know exactly how you feel, quietgirl.

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  10. #10
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    I really can't tell the difference between an ISTJ and a Mechanical Robot.

    You know the movie Terminator 2? THe T-800 (arnold swartzeneggar) is like the ISTJ and the T-1000 is like the ISTP. Even their movie behavior is very relevant to typical behaviors of ISTJ or ISTP. In fact that movie is a great example of the differences between our types for those that assume that one letter doesn't make a whole difference.

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