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Family situation

Discussion in 'Psychology and MBTI' started by philostam, Dec 2, 2019.

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  1. Ren

    Ren Pin's android

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    Hey phil, sorry to hear about your worries regarding your sisters. I think it's good that you decided to open up about it here.

    Like the others already said, I don't think you should underestimate the resilience of children/young adults. It can be pretty strong. They're also very lucky to know they have a loving brother they can go to. Apart from your ISFJ grandmother, who do they have in the family apart from your mom and stepdad?

    You say you're afraid of instability, including financial instability. Would you not think that in that regard, the ESTJ stepdad would be a good counteracting force to your mum's not so great habits? I mean, if there's anything to reasonably expect from a ESTJ, it's reliability :) And you seem to have a quite good opinion of him. I'm sure that he cares about your sisters greatly and will make sure they have what they need. xSTJs are often described as real "family people".

    There is undeniably a certain amount of projecting going on, I think, but that's completely understandable as well. Your relationship with your mother seems to be a complicated one, and I've no doubt she's complicated. At the same time, if you've really made your peace with her, maybe try to let go of your doubts a little, even if that's difficult. Realistically, it is true that all you can do is be loving with your sisters (don't hesitate to outwardly show it as much as possible!) and to make sure they know you are here for them. That's already huge, you know.
     
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  2. slant

    slant Fairly Tragic

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    Your feelings about how you were treated and what happened are valid. Doesn't matter what other people think. Your mom has the right to her feelings, too, and they both can coexist peacefully. We have the right to our feelings. We don't always have the right to act on our feelings but we have the right to experience them.

    A lot of people who grow up in emotionally unhealthy households with lots of generational trauma don't have good emotional regulation skills. This is taught usually by caretakers but if they never learned it themselves they will struggle to teach it.

    I'm recently learning to look inwards, to ask myself for advice, to figure out why things effect me emotionally the way they do. We usually have a very superficial understanding of the reasoning behind our feelings until we deeply examine them.

    I find that other people are mirrors; in them I see either what I want to be, or what I don't want to be. I would ask yourself: what is it about this situation ONLY in how it relates to you that bothers you so much?

    Caring for your siblings is understandable,

    But you may be having these feelings and projecting them onto your siblings when the feelings that are surfacing are related strictly to yourself. You're seeing yourself in them- you're seeing your situation in them- and maybe a part of you is trying to save yourself. That's admirable, but they aren't you, and you can't save them. You may be projecting your feelings that you haven't resolved onto them as a way to try to work through your own issues... And that won't work.

    What I've been doing is trying to utilize self compassion to save myself mentally. I wonder if bad memories of your childhood come up when you think about them... Or maybe it's just a feeling in our body. Complex post traumatic stress disorder manifests as physical sensations in the body that we can't always explain and don't always recognize. Try to pay attention to how your body feels.

    When you do recall situations in which you were traumatized, try rewriting them. A lot of the problem with childhood trauma and why an event that isn't on the head at traumatic effects us so much is that as children we don't have the ability to critically think about things as we do as an adult. It can be difficult to understand what's happening or why it happened, so naturally children blame themselves and internalize things that as an adult we wouldn't think twice about.

    Here's a good example from my life.

    When I was a kid I slept with my mom in her bed. She would overreact if I moved too much and yell at me. Over time I learned that her needs were more important than my own, and that when I sleep with others I need to be as still as a statue. Even breathing too loud scared me. As an adult I've started sleeping with romantic partners and I realized this tension and fear was in my body that I would be thirsty in the middle of the night but I was so afraid to wake my partner I would just lay there. I didn't even realize at the time my behavior was abnormal. So I took some time later when I was alone and imagined that I was an adult sleeping with a small child. I realized I would never yell at a child the way I was yelled at and I felt great sadness for myself. Then I imagined seeing a mother yell at her child for moving during sleep and imagined intervening and telling the mother:

    "You do not have the right to speak to another human being that way."

    I was able to fully feel the pain of the experience, acknowledge it was wrong, and soothe myself.

    It was extremely important that I do it this way, because in my upbringing I wasn't allowed to be critical of my mother's behavior and I developed a weird Stockholm thing where in my head I would defend her actions. I know on an objective level she was just playing out her own generational trauma, but I would justify it and not allow myself to feel sad that I was abused, or angry at my treatment. It is essential to forgive others for what they've done to you and know that people are just people, no one is perfect, but at the same time, a big part of building self worth is knowing that there are acceptable and unacceptable ways for you to be treated and if you are treated in an unacceptable way, because you love yourself, it's going to upset you, even anger you that you were mistreated especially as a vulnerable child. So I would try to really get into your own emotions if possible.
     
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    #22 slant, Dec 3, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019
  3. OP
    philostam

    philostam Community Member

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    Yes, ESTJ is definitely helpful in this way, although he simply cannot control all of her expenditures and browsing of the internet. For example, last year she was scammed online and lost around 7000 euro.

    But yes, I do not have any problems sharing this stuff. In fact, it's one of the reason that my current girlfriend liked me so much when we first meet - because I talk very openly about my family life, which allowed her to assume the kind of a "mentor" role that INFJs enjoy so much. And I really enjoyed listening to her, because I considered her wiser on this things than I am.
     
  4. OP
    philostam

    philostam Community Member

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    Thank you, @slant!

    Some good advice and thoughts to ponder on. :grinning:
     
  5. Bas

    Banned

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    If you've read anything in past items I've posted which mentioned in-passing, my life, then you can easily understand that I understand what you're going through. Feel free to email me if you'd like, I'd be happy to help you figure things-out, step-by-step.

    I may be reached c/o: sovereign.bas@gmail.com
     
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  6. Asa

    Asa Resident palindrome

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    Hi @philostam

    There is no guarantee that people who seemingly have the same set of circumstances will grow up to be the same. We all have different tolerances, sensitivities, struggles, and parents treat their own kids differently and have different expectations for different children. If you think your sisters need extra support go with your gut. Like @Daustus, I would suggest a weekly, or bi-weekly visit with them. Even a monthly visit if that is all you can do. Stay involved with them if you can with sharing texts if they have phones, or emails, or a weekly call. Find out what their interests are and encourage them. You don't have to spend a lot of money on them to be a bigger positive influence in their lives.

    Poor grades can indicate emotional problems, either at home or school, or poor "school habits".
     
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  7. In the Wings

    In the Wings Community Member

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    "Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll be fed for life."

    I think you need to get the girls into hobbies or peer activities that supply the missing piece. Do they have friends they can talk to for this sort of thing? Hobbies?

    As far as the money goes, depending on how long those "sometimes" spells last, you could maybe chip in there in cases.
     
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