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Thread: Do ISTJ's hang on to all old relationships (stay 'friends' with old gf's and friends)

  1. #1

    Arrow Do ISTJ's hang on to all old relationships (stay 'friends' with old gf's and friends)

    I am in a relationship with an ISTJ. I'm an ENFP. We've been friends for 8 years but recently have gotten serious in a romantic relationship.

    Something that is bothering me is that he hangs on to all old girlfriends (and friends that are girls) and that is very annoying to me. He has never actually lost touch with any ex girlfriends (or girls that are friends) it seems. I feel so jealous knowing that he insists on keeping friends with all of them. Is this normal for ISTJ's? Do they have a hard time letting go of old relationships?

    He's not 'hiding' anything with me. He is open and up front and says I can be 'friends' with his 'friends', too. He even gave me his password to his facebook! (he offered) which to be honest I'm too nervous to look at incase I get freaked out.

    A bit about me, I've always known I've been more sensitive than many/most(?) other people. I am incredibly emotionally sensitive and I think I have chosen the least sensitive man I've ever known in some ways, he's soooo rough around the edges, not romantic, realistic to a fault, a bit pessimistic, guarded, sometimes hurtful, a bit controlling and frankly blunt as hell! However, I find myself so drawn to him and in some ways I feel he knows me better than any other man. He is kind of like my Rock. Our relationship sort of reminds me of "I Love Lucy" -- I'm Lucy, he's Ricky. It's so confusing!!

    Thanks for all the thoughts.

    Signed,

    --A bit too sensitive for her own good

  2. #2
    Senior Member Array Habba's Avatar
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    Loyalty is the number one characteristic in ISTJ personality. However, under great stress and pressure, ISTJs may become unable to hold their loyalties anymore. But ISTJs are stubborn as hell to keep up their loyalties. Even when it's harmful.

    I wanted to stay friends with my ex, because I felt she knew me well enough I could trust her. Well, she found a new boyfriend and that was like a 2-ton ballbreaker straight to my face. Maybe I had always hoped we'd get back together (yeah, right... not happening!).

    I have hard time stepping back in relationships... actually, any setback will greatly stress me. ISTJs hate losing things in their life (not as in winning, but as in gaining), and they may have need to hold on to the past.

    Oh, I gotta go soon, but in short:

    ISTJs are very loyal, and he might not even understand why you feel bad about him hanging out with girls. ISTJs are not really great on empathy, so he might not realize how you feel about this.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Array Eagle's Avatar
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    That about sums it up.
    - Caleb

    "I am what I need to be..."

    "Nemo me impune lacessit - No one provokes me with impunity."

  4. #4

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    Indeed, Habba said it! But he ought to know better than to just hang out with other girls? Have you told him (in simplest terms possible) how it makes you feel when he does this? For instance, don't just say "I don't want you talking to them" you should say "this makes me feel bad when you talk to them" or something along those lines.

    THEN he will get the picture and hopefully stop or come to a compromise. It's a good thing though that he offered you his facebook password, that means he is not hiding anything! Besides, ISTJ's are fiercely loyal, I really don't think you have a problem.

    Just tell him eaxctly how you feel. We aren't that good at interpreting feelings without words attached!

  5. #5
    IRL is not real Array Cimarron's Avatar
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    I can see it happening, but it depends a lot on what kind of break-up he had with those ex-girlfriends.
    You can't spell "justice" without ISTJ.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cimarron View Post
    I can see it happening, but it depends a lot on what kind of break-up he had with those ex-girlfriends.
    Well she said they were friends so I'm assuming that the break ups weren't your average 9-iron attack.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by OregonENFP View Post
    I am in a relationship with an ISTJ. I'm an ENFP. We've been friends for 8 years but recently have gotten serious in a romantic relationship.

    Something that is bothering me is that he hangs on to all old girlfriends (and friends that are girls) and that is very annoying to me. He has never actually lost touch with any ex girlfriends (or girls that are friends) it seems. I feel so jealous knowing that he insists on keeping friends with all of them. Is this normal for ISTJ's? Do they have a hard time letting go of old relationships?

    He's not 'hiding' anything with me. He is open and up front and says I can be 'friends' with his 'friends', too. He even gave me his password to his facebook! (he offered) which to be honest I'm too nervous to look at incase I get freaked out.

    A bit about me, I've always known I've been more sensitive than many/most(?) other people. I am incredibly emotionally sensitive and I think I have chosen the least sensitive man I've ever known in some ways, he's soooo rough around the edges, not romantic, realistic to a fault, a bit pessimistic, guarded, sometimes hurtful, a bit controlling and frankly blunt as hell! However, I find myself so drawn to him and in some ways I feel he knows me better than any other man. He is kind of like my Rock. Our relationship sort of reminds me of "I Love Lucy" -- I'm Lucy, he's Ricky. It's so confusing!!

    Thanks for all the thoughts.

    Signed,

    --A bit too sensitive for her own good
    Maybe it's a male ISTJ thing, because I totally know how you feel and one of my relationships was pretty much ruined by my jealousy. I don't regret it though. There's a right way and a wrong way to stay friends with exes. The wrong way is to prioritise them over you and if their deep communications seem to be directed at their other female friends rather than you. The right way, as my ISFJ boyfriend succeeds in doing (maybe it's a male SJ thing??), is to be friends with them, but to make it clear in his actions that you're far more important.
    Leaving aside types for a moment, I really believe that good relationships are when the two halves of the couple are complicit i.e. best friends (if they have a best female friend who seems more important than you I'd stay well clear) and where your priorities and interests are the same i.e. each other. I wouldn't get jealous if his exes are clearly just friends and he hangs out with them from time to time, preferably in the company of their mutual friends, but if it's starting to feel like three's a crowd... I'd get out of there.

    Just for information, as a female ISTJ I have completely cut ties with all my exes. Combination of reasons: painful to see them again, the following boyfriend not wanting me to stay friends with them, or we just fell out so badly I never wanted anything to do with them again.

    Oh, and giving you the password to his facebook is a very good sign that he trusts you and is probably his way of letting you know that you can trust him reciprocally. Plus, the fact you haven't used it proves to him that his trust is well placed.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Array Rachelinpa's Avatar
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    Yeah, my ISTJ roommate is still friends with his (one and only) ex from high school. I guess they were together like six years or something and they still talk, but it's really not anything for a GF to worry about. He's just so devoted in nature that I am confident whoever he ends up with will completely have his attention. Plus, it's not like he's got a million relationships going at once -- it would take a lot of effort for him to keep in touch with her in any meaningful or significant way. It's a very practical sort of thing and not really emotional, which makes it safer in my brain... not at all like the ESFPs I've dated that have kept in touch with their exes.

  9. #9
    insert random title here Array Randomnity's Avatar
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    Even going beyond type, it's normal for many people to be friends with exes. As long as there's clearly no suspicious behaviour going on, and he's not doing things that make you uncomfortable, it's a little unreasonable to make a big deal about it.

    I have many male friends, several of them exes. We get along great and absolutely platonically. I'd be pretty irritated if my bf made a fuss about it.

    Maybe if you got to know them it would help...you could suggest going out for lunch/etc and try to make friends with them as well. Try to see them as people instead of competition.
    -end of thread-

  10. #10

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    I also think it would be too much effort for an ISTJ to have more than one romantic relationship on the go because we are so dedicated and loyal.

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