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  1. #1
    Junior Member Willywallywoo's Avatar
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    Default ISFP: learning to understand father and bestfriend (Long, sorry)

    In my current situation it's incredibly important I learn to understand my father and tie closer bonds with him. We have had some "quiet" unspoken conflicts that I'd want to clear up and move past.

    I am pretty sure my dad is an ISFP though, I am not entirely sure because he can be an extremely private person. In a way I feel that I don't know him really well.
    The signs I have though: 1. He is an artist. 2. He excells in Se. 3. Definatly Fi.

    My problems with him often bottoms down to that I often feel that he doesnt care about me. As in we don't talk about things that interesst me ( N vs S conflict?). However, he is keen on helping me with practical things whenever I need it. He rarely expresses verbally however that he loves me, except that he ocassionally has now started (usually whilst having a few beers) that he is very proud of me.
    He is often talking about his own problems though, but mainly when he is drunk. Thats the only time he seems to almost ever talk honestly. My sister and I confronted him with this and he explained that he needs to be alone to think.
    When he's drunk he either talks alot, but only of his lost loves, or his bitterness/grudges towards those lost loves (as in women he was romantically involved with). But it's very monotone topics, it's the always the same subject: his romantic interessts. OR beautiful women in nearby physical area. He craves attention and admiration from the women around him to a BIG unreasonable and irrational degree, he want them to save him/nuture him/give him unending attention and love/take care of him/Take him instantly witout second doubt.
    He can obsess about certain women. One who he has obsessed over for 20 years, and made a ton of poems about her. He got her at 2 occasions, only to fuck it up both times.

    He can also boast in a joking way that he is the greatest man there is. In addition to this, he loves creating drama and heat in social situations :p Alot of people find it fun, due to his very charismatic persona.
    What annoys me is when he dwells on problems in the past that consequenses me in a much greater deal and cause me probably a lot more pain. I shut up and listen though and try to understand him, but in the end it can be hurtfull that he doesnt take notion of how hard that same experience was for me also.

    My Fe tells me that there are alot of underlying issues that never surface though. Things he feels that he finds too hard to express, even when drunk.Because he got his tough act up and never directly show weakness.
    Being ENFJ I am very good at showing him attention, admiring him and showing it. Whenever he speaks of being a dad, I always tell him he is the greatest dad, even though on the bottom he hurts me at times.
    Now the questions are: Do i try to pierce through his shell and fish up the inner feelings, because I probably can with the right angles. Or do I leave him alone?
    Do I explain to him my needs from him? Or let go and just accept how he is and just tell myself he does care on the bottom he just isnt good to show it. If I do explain what I need from him.. How do I tell this the best way?

    Then it's the bestfriend. I've pierced through his shell a few times. However, he obsesses about me. He showers me with attention. And declares his love constantly verbally, but camoflagues it as a joke/makes it appear he's not entirely serious.. but maybe serious.
    I don't have the N/S dynamic with him either, it's hard for us to talk about anything except me following his need of receiving compliments and positive attention/joke/him showering me with his seemingly joking love declarations. He hardly ever talks about himself, he jokes constantly.. and also loves his "women" to give him attention and nuture him.
    We have a heavy imbalance, were as I feel almost suffocated at times and can't keep up with his intense need of attention. Sometimes I feel he is the most happy when he is the center of my universe.. and would be happy just being us two forever communicating. Makes me feel he is being kind of selfish when he doesnt understand I need to take care of other people too. Whenever I am stressed and annoyed and express this in a more annoying way, he gets his defence up HIGH. And he can act very childish then, defending himself witout wanting to meet halfway, if he doesnt shut in completely for a week. It helps however if I am patient and expresses my concerns in a way that compliments him at the same time.
    I feel he expects us to become a couple at some point, and preferably a solitary couple. And I've told him it will never happen, but its like talking to a wall. He seems convinced.
    We were friends for a long time before he ended up falling in love with me. And I miss my bestfriend I could be silly with and tell everything to, who would always respond with a witty comment. Those times seems to be over, because everything I say now gets turned into something about him/me/him/romantic ideas. And yes he is jealous of every other guy in my life.

    Sooooo.. Yes.. this is a long post.. and sorry for all the typing here.. But it's big problems for me and bothers me constantly.. So any input I could get from fellow ISFP's or anyone else with knowlegde about this type.. would help me a great deal so I can make more healthy/balanced relations with two extremely important people in my life..

    On beforehand thanks a lot And sorry for all the private disclosure here hehe.. But felt I had to be open about the conflicts if I was to get a proper idea of whats going on hehe!

  2. #2
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    Sorry but ISFP's are difficult to understand. I have one in my life who despite telling her sometimes that her problem is; she wants to be close to me but is afraid of letting me in. No matter what an ass I AM WITH HER SOMETIMES, SHE ALWAYS KEEPS COMING BACK OR LETTING ME BACK INTO HER LIFE.

    I am talking about 10 years and still not being sure whether she is in love with me or simply best friends. I know what I want but she is so typically uncertain about things.
    Last edited by Kambro; 12-11-2009 at 02:54 PM. Reason: 3 wants, one should be what

  3. #3
    Senior Member McRumi's Avatar
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    If my child continued to tell me that I was the greatest Dad, not only would I have no reason to change, I would continue to act as I always had.

    Be honest. That's the only avenue to change in relationships.

    In fact, you owe him an apology for being dishonest...since you really have always felt that he wasn't the greatest Dad....and that could be just the opening to a better relationship with him.

  4. #4
    brainheart
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    Hmm, your father sounds nothing like me at all- are you sure he's ISFP? I am extremely affectionate with my kids and excited about everything they are into. I want them to be who they are, not me. Although your dad sounds... unstable, to say the least.

    Same with your friend. I've been there, I've been him, and it was hellish, because it was such the opposite of who I am usually and I hated myself for it but I couldn't stop. You need to give him time to work through it, but he will- we are good at getting over stuff and moving on, but as I said, sometimes it takes time to work through our feelings.

    But please don't just drop him. It can be devastating for us ISFPs, and you will miss out on someone you value. He may also have something else going on, like a mood disorder. I know that was a big part of my problem.
    Last edited by brainheart; 12-12-2009 at 03:42 PM.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Willywallywoo View Post
    ...
    Do I explain to him my needs from him? Or let go and just accept how he is and just tell myself he does care on the bottom he just isnt good to show it. If I do explain what I need from him.. How do I tell this the best way?...
    I am open this with my kids about how I feel but I wouldn't put it past myself to become that self indulgent. Especially in other aspects of life. Also with the friend I can see that aspect to my nature. To become completely absorbed by some other person.

    These are both ISFP I imagine. It is interesting how the attention is focused in one direction. Towards one person. I suppose there is a hopeless romantic aspect to it all...

    I'll take a stab at how he feels...
    Him helping you in practical ways is him showing you that he cares about you. Over the years he has been searching for a connection only to find that people really at the last would rather a comfortable numb existence. So, over the years he has cultivated an aura of detachment to not only protect him but also the others around him. For he is well aware he can be too much. And nobody wants that.

    The drinking helps to keep him numb but also allows some feeling to spill out. The bravado is a cover for a person who really feels weak and needs something that he can't have so create an illusion and jokes in a self depreciating manner about how he is. Amusing himself with self parody....


    I don't have any easy answers. You'll never get answers by directly questioning him. Just talking and spending time might help, who knows what might happen. Not trying to get answers, just spending time.

    It seems really apt that I am listening to You're a big girl now.

    I have rambled here a bit. Ask a question if you want me to explain something more.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Hirsch63's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wolfy View Post
    .... I wouldn't put it past myself to become that self indulgent..... To become completely absorbed by some other person.

    Him helping you in practical ways is him showing you that he cares about you. Over the years he has been searching for a connection only to find that people really at the last would rather a comfortable numb existence. So, over the years he has cultivated an aura of detachment to not only protect him but also the others around him. For he is well aware he can be too much. And nobody wants that.

    The drinking helps to keep him numb but also allows some feeling to spill out.... Amusing himself with self parody....

    I have to agree with you (again) Wolfy...this seems right on. But there is (if I read right) some other underlying mental health issue? Not necessarily severe but chronic? Though I can confirm that I have had challenges in leaving my past behind....especially those parts of it that I felt defined my self.
    Patriotism is the last refuge to which a scoundrel clings...Steal a little and they throw you in jail, steal a lot and they make you a king

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by brainheart View Post
    Hmm, your father sounds nothing like me at all- are you sure he's ISFP? I am extremely affectionate with my kids and excited about everything they are into. I want them to be who they are, not me. Although your dad sounds... unstable, to say the least.
    Agree IRL ISFP loves kids, at least young ones.

    Quote Originally Posted by brainheart View Post
    Same with your friend. I've been there, I've been him, and it was hellish, because it was such the opposite of who I am usually and I hated myself for it but I couldn't stop. You need to give him type to work through it, but he will- we are good at getting over stuff and moving on, but as I said, sometimes it takes time to work through our feelings.
    Oh how I wish mine was like that, instead she is a strange hot cold person

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