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  1. #1
    Junior Member alovestorm's Avatar
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    Default ESxJ & Need for Repetition

    I am an INTP/INTJ woman who needs constructive advice regarding an important ESFJ/ESTJ in my life. I find him to be very caring and supportive which I am starting to warm up to, but generally the thing that drives me up the wall is when he asks me stuff repetitively like: "are you ok? what wrong? everything ok? somethings wrong, tell me, please tell me, ur upset, did i do something?, lets talk about it, you can talk to me, tell me, tell me".

    The first few times I respond politely and thank him for asking. But he doesn't stop, so it starts to bug me and I tend to become really firm and say "please stop asking, I am fine, I already told you so and so times". I end up really irritated and stop responding altogether. I know he is a sensitive person and that my final unhappy response ends up upsetting him. But how else can I get him to understand that I can't stand the incessant questioning or general repetitive conversation. I really care about him and want us to have lesser disappointing experiences, but I don't know what to do. Please advice considering our types. Thank you
    Last edited by alovestorm; 10-26-2010 at 03:29 PM. Reason: reordering sentences for reading flow

  2. #2
    Senior Member Saslou's Avatar
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    Is he into all this? If not then ask him to read the INTx profile .. Simple.

    He is possibly asking because he is trying to understand you and doesn't yet realise that I's like quiet time, reflective time he's maybe worried that you have an/any issue with him, when heaven forbid you may have an issue with the other 6,000,000 possibilities/factors out there in the big wide world, lol.

    Be honest, upfront and say it how it is .. That's the way i like it anyway.
    “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

  3. #3
    Junior Member alovestorm's Avatar
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    I have already tried that method of getting him involved in MBTI. I let him read my Kiersey Please Understand Me book & he knows about the specific need for wanting to think think think quietly and often.

    For instance this scenario happens often:
    I like staring out the window when we're driving in the car because its nice, sometimes there is music playing which sets a soothing ambiance for me to drift off in the world of my mind. But to him its like UH OH shes quiet, something is wrong, maybe its something I did wrong.

    At this point, I snap out of it - I'll put his concern to rest and even try to start up conversation so that he can relax. But in that situation he says that I am faking the conversation and that he wants to know what's deep in my head.

    I have tried to actually let him in but he rarely enjoys or gives insight on my thoughts, the conversation flattens to the most general level and the intricate thought process I was weaving is dampened. Very disappointing to me. It completely kills my excitement, so I try to just keep my thoughts to myself now - which bothers him more. What am I to do?

  4. #4
    Junior Member alovestorm's Avatar
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    I have already tried that method of getting him involved in MBTI. I let him read my Kiersey Please Understand Me book & he knows about the specific need for wanting to think think think quietly and often.

    For instance this scenario happens often:
    I like staring out the window when we're driving in the car because its nice, sometimes there is music playing which sets a soothing ambiance for me to drift off in the world of my mind. But to him its like UH OH shes quiet, something is wrong, maybe its something I did wrong.

    At this point, I snap out of it - I'll put his concern to rest and even try to start up conversation so that he can relax. But in that situation he says that I am faking the conversation and that he wants to know what's deep in my head.

    I have tried to actually let him in but he rarely enjoys or gives insight on my thoughts, the conversation flattens to the most general level and the intricate thought process I was weaving is dampened. Very disappointing to me. It completely kills my excitement, so I try to just keep my thoughts to myself now - which bothers him more. What am I to do?

  5. #5
    Senior Member Trentham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alovestorm View Post
    I have tried to actually let him in but he rarely enjoys or gives insight on my thoughts, the conversation flattens to the most general level and the intricate thought process I was weaving is dampened. Very disappointing to me. It completely kills my excitement, so I try to just keep my thoughts to myself now - which bothers him more. What am I to do?
    This is a typical difficulty in NT/SJ relationships: a conversational topic one finds fascinating bores the daylights out of the other, and vice versa. The best advice I can give you is to focus on your common ground - the things that brought the two of you together in the first place. Try to keep your conversations as light and fun as possible, and in doing so introduce new ideas to him in a practical format that he can relate to on some tangible basis.
    83% I 70% N 64% T 73% P | 5w4 sp/so/sx | Chaotic Good

  6. #6
    Honor Thy Inferior Such Irony's Avatar
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    OMG, my mom is so much this way it isn't even funny. I tell her over and over again that I appreciate her concern but I'm fine, thank you and you don't have to constantly ask me. It just never sinks in with her. Sorry, I don't have much useful advice here.
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  7. #7
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    You can remove the "x"...he's ESFJ. No ESTJ on earth - especially a young one - is going to be THAT sensitive and keep asking you if you're okay.

    Tell him you're an INTx and he's gonna have to get used to your quietness and lack of facial expression as being a normal healthy state for you. I think if he gets used to the idea that that's "just how you are" he'll stop pestering you.

  8. #8
    i love skylights's Avatar
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    assuming he is an ESFJ (i'm definitely inclined to agree with that) - i think this sounds much less like an ESxJ need for repetition and more like a basically F need to make sure that you aren't the one making the other person upset, and to make sure that you're not neglecting them if there's anything you can do to help.

    sometimes Ts, IxTPs in particular, can act in a way that is very unsettling to an F. i see this all the time with my parents - my dad is INTP. dad can be gruff and critical when he's had a long day at work, and sometimes he doesn't understand why mom and i get upset when he acts that way in interaction with us. he says that since he's not upset with us, it shouldn't bother us. but the way we see it, he shouldn't use a harsh tone when speaking with us even if he's frustrated with something entirely different, because those are the usual social signals to someone that you don't like them. if you're not feeling that way about someone else, you shouldn't act like that when interacting with them, because it's confusing - how are you supposed to know they're not upset with you? (also it's just kind of unpleasant to interact with someone who's acting like that).

    my INTP brother also likes staring at the window being lost in his thoughts and i think it's kind of a similar situation, though with less intensity. when my brother does that, sometimes he sends the signals most people use to show that they aren't on good terms with someone - being quiet, evasive, curt. it's weird to mom and i that after a whole long day of school, he wouldn't want to talk about it - unless, of course, he was upset with us - and then he's not looking at me, not really responding to me, giving short answers, etc. he's not upset at all, but it's unsettling to mom and i, because to us, those actions connote the social message of "i don't like you." that's probably the reason for the repeated questioning - that it seems like your words and your actions don't match up. your words say "i'm fine", but your actions in an ExFx world, say, "i don't trust you."

    what i think might help is just giving a quick mention of whatever you're thinking about and reassuring him that you're not upset with him, and just need to think about this thing by yourself. and i think just do try to appreciate how much he cares about you, which it sounds like you already do. ESFJs themselves should probably tell you this part though, instead of an ENFP just guessing

    also -

    I have tried to actually let him in but he rarely enjoys or gives insight on my thoughts, the conversation flattens to the most general level and the intricate thought process I was weaving is dampened.
    what do you mean by this? do you mind sharing an example? maybe the insight he gives happens to be in different places than the insight you're looking for...

  9. #9
    Carerra Lu IZthe411's Avatar
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    Dude's an ESFJ. I know one and he does the same to me. If you aren't smiling and happy in his presence, then something's wrong. His Ne's saying 'It could be him'.
    In the case of the ESFJ here at work, usually it is him.

  10. #10
    Junior Member alovestorm's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for your responses. After posting here, I decided to just communicate my frustration directly to the ESFJ. He took in everything I said and actually apologized for causing me that frustration and told me that he appreciates me just getting things off my chest and out in the open and that really puts him at ease. So i guess its just open communication on my part and respecting limits on his part that was vital here.

    So, in the rest of my post, I thought I'd clarify the odd behavior of INTs which seems 'wierd' but really isn't if it is understood. So, here are some basic level explanations/solutions for extroverts - to aid in understanding & reading an INT's signs when a limit is being reached:

    1) Short, abrupted responses that communicate unwanted exchange of words is a short but important plea to be left alone. Clue in on this and drop the matter. INT's probably want to quickly return to their thoughts and you talking to us is an interruption. Its kind of like that feeling when your trying to catch a train, but someone is constantly tugging at your leg not allowing you to run and catch it.

    2) Extroverts must understand that Introverts lose energy from conversing for long periods of time about the obvious or unnecessary, so having to do this while we are obviously unhappy is actually extremely draining to us; therefore the crabbyness ensues. You will notice this sign in our physical shutting down process - hands & body closing inwards, eyes lowered or deferred in another direction. Try maybe offering some soothing tea/beverage if you really want to make us feel better. Keep sentences to the minimum and dont ask things more than once. Remember, we need to conserve the energy we have.

    3) Does not justify the right for INTP's to be mean however. Any good hearted intp will spare you of this, unless you keep getting in their way to feeling better - which they do need to accomplish on their own to feel re-energized.

    4) It's not all gloom and doom having an INTP crave space, because chances are, after being left alone for even 10 -15 mins, we will feel calm and come out swingin' (almost, lol). In my personal experience, after I've had the opportunity to have enough alone time, I naturally feel good about being cheerful, appreciating others around me and talking about small things that would - otherwise under irritated circumstances - be taxing on my energy reserve.

    Quote Originally Posted by skylights View Post
    Sometimes Ts, IxTPs in particular, can act in a way that is very unsettling to an F. i see this all the time with my parents - my dad is INTP. ...it seems like your words and your actions don't match up. your words say "i'm fine", but your actions in an ExFx world, say, "i don't trust you...."
    5) On words and actions not matching up...
    The "I'm fine" is our way of avoiding the unwanted interrogation of our feelings. We probably think we can work through whatever is annoying us ourselves, so maybe Introverts can say "I'm working through it, ill be fine". Extroverts, take a hands-off approach during these moments and let the INT do their thing.

    6) The blank face barrier that the INTP does is most likely because we are resolving our issues through deep introspection as we believe its possible to resolve problems in the playground of our mind and are therefore not showing/reacting to anything on the outside because in reality we are not paying attention to it and its actually not stimulating us. Although, you will surely notice our irritation however if you try to distract us during this needed reflective time.

    I hope this was a bit insightful if not entirely helpful in dealing with us.

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