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Thread: Sad ISFJ

  1. #1
    Senior Member Snow Turtle's Avatar
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    May 2007

    Default Sad ISFJ

    I would put this all in a blog but I'm looking to express myself and find some form of solution, especially considering the issues constantly seem to re-surface. So what's bothering Kai? It's friendship, dependancy and general attitude towards life.

    The last few days, I've been been thinking about how much importance I place on friendship and how some of my happiness seems to be dependant on my friends; more specifically how much I hang around people. It feels natural that I'd have this need, and society seems to agree with the notion that friendship plays an important role in the wellbeing of individuals. Yet I can't say I'm 100% content with how things are playing out. The main problem being that, if it were possible, I'd most likely spend even more time with my closest friends than what I currently do. Except chances are that I'm being unreasonable in my demands for extra contact time, besides I'm not sure it's healthy to feed these feelings of dependancy. Overall, it's clear that I'm not very good at finding the balance between wanting to hang out with friends and spending time alone. Instead, I switch between feelings of wanting to be with my friends and withdrawing from my friends; the latter formed from the belief that I should be OK alone. I'm reminded of the philosophy: Your happiness should be derived from within. It's not the responsability of loved ones.

    A secondary issue that I experience is actually expressing these feelings to friends. As mentioned previously, I'm not convinced that it's a good idea to let my friends know, since chances are, that I'm the one that needs to form a more healthy attitude in friendship balance. Although deep down I can't say that I totally agree with my last statement, which is not surprisingly really, I'd be lying if I said that I definitely want to change my attitude rather than changing the level of contact. It's ust another one of those heart vs head issues. Back to the main point of this second paragraph, these are negative feelings that I regularly experience on a monthly basis and while I appreciate that my friends will most likely listen to me. I don't want to constantly burden them with these negative feelings or place increased demands on our friendship.

    Currently I'm operating on the basis, that expectations and demands on friendships can induce disappointment and strain on relationships; so apart from the main values such as understanding and respect, rationally I try not to expect too much. It seems to have a double-negative effect though since I'm not entirely sure what to do with myself. It sort of feels like I'm pretending to be OK when in reality I'm experiencing these emotions, but perhaps there are lots of people who engage in this behaviour. It does sound a little ridiculous though to express negative emotions everytime it's felt, especially considering that some issues naturally resolve themselves given time. I do find that when I'm hanging out with my friends, I'm having fun and not thinking about these problems. but chances are I'm just distracting myself from this problem that lingers in the background, even if it's not intentional.

    So in the end I'm just left in a limbo on how to proceed. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2009


    I guess I feel I can relate to what you wrote. It's probably a little different for me but here's what's been happening to me and some friends. My friends are positive thinkers. Many of them are too positive and think they understand me... but they do not. They do understand much of what many of you ENTP's are trying to say. But not me.

    When I say anything negative, they respond with positive intentions. Too positive. To actually be of any help when I'm feeling sad, they're just not able to really listen to me. Oh well, again.

  3. #3
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    827 sp/so


    *it took me 4 times to get through that much text, but I did it!!!!!! *

    I really don't think your friends would be opposed to hanging out with you more unless it's impeding on thier time to get stuff done, I spent most of my time in college hanging out with my closest friends (meaning if I wasn't in class or asleep or in the restroom I was probably with at least one of my closest friends- usually the same people every day).

    I suppose a good question would be, are your friends more extroverted or introverted? and are you sure your not more extroverted than you think you are?

    If they're friends they shouldn't mind being friends, meaning that they're there for you when you need them. As long as you're a good friend back that's the dynamics of friendship- give and take
    “The phrase 'Someone ought to do something' was not, by itself, a helpful one. People who used it never added the rider 'and that someone is me'.” - Terry Pratchett

  4. #4


    you either have to compromise with their schedule and learn how to not always be with them or tell your friends how you feel and how it's affecting you. In the meantime, you can join extracurricular activities or do something productive because they can't always be around you and be there with you. There are times that they're busy with work or school, it's understandable.

    another alternative to it would be, it's always better if you were to tell them how you feel about this so that they're aware and they would know what's going on. I would love it if one of my close friends are open to me about the problems that's bothering them. Whether it has to do with me or not. I encouraged my friend, who's also an ISFJ, to speak up to me and actually tell me what's going on his mind so that I can understand him clearly. Anything that I need to know or anything that I want to know, let me know. It's not a burden to me but what's important is telling me everything that he wants to tell me. This way, it makes it so much easier for us to communicate and no one's upset. I know it seems like we're running like a couple here but I encouraged this kind of a communication. Same goes with another close friend of mine.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    I just want to say that I love the way you structured that post, it was beautiful.

    I hope you get the advice youre looking for!

  6. #6
    Senior Member Gerbah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009


    Are you married or have a SO?

    I was just wondering because I also used to be very dependent on friends, too much I think, now that I look back. I'm pretty sure a big factor in this was that I didn't have a close relationship with my family growing up.

    I pretty much carried that model in my head into adulthood until I learned that friendship has its limits, and that this is healthy for all involved and good for the friendship relationship, even when very close. Getting married and starting my own family has also filled a lot of my need for closeness and mutual dependency that wouldn't be appropriate for a friendship.

    I guess I'm basically trying to say that I don't think you have to feel guilty about wanting to have dependent relationships or try to change the things you want and that would make you happy. I just don't think friendships fulfil those sorts of needs fully.
    the shoheen ho of the wind of the west and the lulla lo of the soft sea billow - Alfred Graves

  7. #7
    Babylon Candle Venom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    1w9 sp/sx


    ISFJs = proof that social activity/need does not equal extroversion!

  8. #8
    Senior Member sketchymcsketcherson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009


    Honestly, I've learned that you can never, ever, ever rely on people. In the end, the only friend who will be by your side is yourself.

    Don't ditch your friends, that's not where I'm going with this. Friends are one of the many joys of life. For some people (regardless of introvert status) they are even a requirement. Just remember that you can never throw all your eggs in the friendship basket.

    Maybe I've just had some unlucky experiences with friends, but it seems like sometimes when I get close to a person, they disappoint me or wrong me in some way. I enjoy spending time with good friends, but I always remember that at the end of the day, my strength, happiness, and energy come from myself.

    In my opinion, friends are meant to distract me from the troubles on my mind. I hang out with them to have fun, not discuss my emotional state. Sometimes such a discussion comes about, but I usually only bring up stuff like that when I know the other person can mutually relate to it. And that's a minority of my friends.

    In my opinion, you have nothing to worry about so long as you are truly happy. Don't second guess the way you handle friendships or how much importance you place on them, so long as you don't lose sense of yourself. If you gain energy from being around other people, then do it. If you feel like you are perpetually exhausting yourself with your social activities, cut and run for a while.

  9. #9
    No moss growing on me Giggly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    2 sx/so


    Quote Originally Posted by Babylon Candle View Post
    ISFJs = proof that social activity/need does not equal extroversion!

    So true.

    I have the same high dependency on my friends. It bothers me because they don't seem to feel the same level of dependency on me, and of course, this makes me feel needy and insecure. I always feel like I'm bothering them and that's just an icky feeling. It's mostly an emotional need I think, but I'm trying to learn how to not be so needy and to take care of my own needs by myself without being so dependent on others who don't always have time. So far, I haven't really figured out anything that works yet, except keeping busy, but the feeling is still there.

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