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Thread: ISTJ being very distant

  1. #1
    Junior Member Array
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    Oct 2014

    Question ISTJ being very distant

    Hi everyone,

    This is my first post on this forum, but I'm really interested in MBTI and find that learning more about it helps me better understand the people in my life. OK, so here we go...

    I was in a relationship with a 27 year old ISTJ male for 1.5 years. We broke up because he was in law school and stressed, plus our communication styles were off (i'm an INFP and we both tend to internalize our feelings). After 1 year apart with very very little communication, he contacted me to tell me he missed me. We started hanging out again, and have been dating for the last 6 months or so. He's in his last year of law school, but has already secured an amazing job for after graduation.

    Last Thursday, he invited me over and we had a casual dinner and night in, after which I spent the night and left early before work. Everything seemed normal. The next day, after texting for most of it, I said something along the lines of "you're very lovable" (this was totally in context to our conversation, not just a random text). We've never said "I love you" before. We continued casual conversation for a few texts until my phone died. The next morning, I told him sorry that I hadn't responded to his last text, and explained my phone dying.

    Since then, it's been 4 days since he's contacted me. I wouldn't normally care with any other guy (i'm incredibly easy going), but we used to text throughout the day, every day. I've tried texting him twice with friendly talk, just little things without bringing up the distance or anything emotional, and he answered but didn't carry on conversation or act particularly interested in what I was sharing.

    This lack of communication has happened twice before:

    1. When we broke up the first time. I ended up asking him to hang out and when we weren't touching I asked what was going on, and he told me he didn't think we should see each other romantically anymore because he's too focused on school and doesn't know where he is going in life.

    2. When we got in a small fight a couple months ago, he did this for a whole week before finally texting me and acting like nothing had happened.

    In your experience, when do ISTJ's tend to distance themselves? Is this because of school?? Is it because I said he was "lovable" and he got scared? I'm wondering if I should be preparing myself for a breakup, or whether this could just be his way of sorting through his emotions/stress and he might come back around.

    I'll let him know how I feel about these silent periods no matter what. I just wonder if I should break it off with him before he string me along for another week of silence just to break it off himself.

    Any insight you guys have or suggestions for what I approach this would be so helpful. I'm an INFP, so the fact that he's not thinking about my feelings here is just blowing my mind. THANK YOU!


  2. #2
    great at parties Array boomslang's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    8w9 sx/sp
    ENTj Ni


    I don't think you really gain much from trying to introduce MBTI into this scenario.

    You broke up because your communication styles didn't match with the law school stress most likely bringing that problem to the forefront. Why would they suddenly match if you got back together?

    know it's kind of cold, but maybe you should move on instead of trying to get blood out of a stone. Even from what you've written, it's obviously a relationship where you weren't able to get your needs met properly.

  3. #3
    ✿ڿڰۣஇღ♥ wut ♥ღஇڿڰۣ✿ Array digesthisickness's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007


    Nah, it's normal to seek answers to questions anywhere we can when we're feeling anxious and confused.

    The problem is that each person is still an individual, and so can be a jerk or nice person whatever the type.

    For what it's worth, I doubt this is an ISTJ thing as there is no part of any description that gives such detail for such a precise situation. Maybe it would be better to wait and see on this one and try very hard not to assume it was some specific thing you did during the last conversation. If he's going to break up with you, it won't be because of two or three words you strung together, and if it is, then you don't want someone who is going to dump you for such a thing without communication.

    He's done this before. Next time will be a pattern. Something you can sink your teeth into and decide for YOURSELF if this is something YOU can live with. I hope it turns out okay. In the meantime, if he's not being talkative, then maybe it's best to let him speak when he wants to and respond when he does. That way you won't be adding feelings of rejection to the doubt you already feel.

    Take care.
    •.¸¸. Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒჱܓ. இڿڰۣ.¸¸.இڿڰۣ´¯`·.─♥

    Cerebral Artery

  4. #4
    an abyss of Nothingness Array Arctic Hysteria's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    4w5 sp/sx
    EII Fi


    INFP - ISTJ.
    Dear lord what can I say, Jemma. Been there done that.
    Regardless of our major differences, oddly there are striking similarities. Maybe it's because of the exact functions but different stacking orders. Strange enough, I've never felt so much affection from anybody else in my life but from this ISTJ (maybe only the INFJs I knew could compare lol) though sometimes he would take it all back and give me nothing but critics and coldness. It's the signature ISTJ withdraw to process thing.

    They keep saying if you can get into an ISTJ's heart, you're there for life. But being an INFP, by the time you are finally there, will you be all black and blue? I'll let you find your own answers.

    Your ISTJ is not my ISTJ. But withdrawing and fearing of commitment is something you can expect. Why? Because love is irrational, unpredictable and too emotional for them. They cannot fathom the patterns (yup, they live to look for patterns, or maybe find patterns to live by) of the love thing. ISTJs tend to build relationship with people they've known for a long long time, people they've understood enough and feel rather secure with. They have priorities and being in love is for sure not on top of the list.

    What ISTJ can't offer INFP is novel acts on a whim of heart. While INFP seems to be so emotionally complex and unpredictable for ISTJ. Both types internalize their feelings and passive aggressiveness towards each other is frequent.

    But if it's meant to be, it might just take an INFP to make a stubborn ISTJ fall in love, though the 3 words will not come out easily for them! One thing for certain: regardless of the types, if a man is in love with you (whether he knows that himself or not), he will not just let you go.
    | | | If it is god who makes man, this is the devil finishing touches | | |

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