Fe vs Fi dominance, and weaker functions | INFJ Forum

Fe vs Fi dominance, and weaker functions

Discussion in 'Psychology and MBTI' started by arbygil, Jan 2, 2010.

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  1. arbygil

    arbygil Passing through

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    We have multiple threads about INFJ and INFP, but I specifically want to call out these two cognitive processes for discussion, as well as what some call their weaker processes (or shadow, or reverse, or what have you). For the first time today, after reading this thread and seeing subsequent reactions I realized something: My Fi is definitely one of my shadow process. It really *is* the Critical Parent, and it's not a nice critical parent either. You can look here for the info I'm using to indicate the terms - from Linda V. Berens and others from the "best fit type" school of thought.

    But realizing my Fi is a shadow process (for reals, yo) can help me deal with others now. Now that I've seen it in action, I'll know what to do when that feeling comes up inside of me. I might not be able to stop the Critical Parent, but I'll recognize its voice and I'll try to temper it so I can recognize what another person is going through.

    Have any of you had "aha" moments with your Shadow Processes? If so, what were they, and how has understanding those rarely used functions helped you empathize with others who use your shadow functions as their primary functions?
     
  2. NeverAmI

    NeverAmI Satisclassifaction
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    In terms of the functions that are not part of your dominant 4 then yes, I have seen them in action in myself. One of my poems touched on how a Ti/Fe shadow dominance with a negative emphasis can really be a bad thing with me, and it really can sting. I wrote it before I really understood the cognitive functions, and maybe I am reaching here/forer effect, but the puzzle peices seem to fit to me.

    They say the shadow of an ISFP is ENTJ but I can definitely see heavy Fe/Ti/Ne/Si when I am in a seriously bad mood. I am a pretty observant dude but it's almost like I use Fe in a negative way to connect to others on a bad level and it can cut like a knife.

    I try not to be like this, and I work REALLY hard to limit it, but it happens.

    This is the poem:

    At my side, yet miles apart
    These eyes hold a cold dead heart
    Speak again about your love
    A gentle caress that does not judge

    Prove you love me yet again
    Over and over and over again
    It's never enough, this bottomless pit
    Swallowing you whole for the fun of it

    My amusement is sated and I am full
    Glutton of emotion, I live to cull
    The darkness you feel, it is me
    Pulling the strings, making you sing

    So sing for me, my beautiful princess
    Make me weep, I want forgiveness
    Dance for me, my blushing bride
    And tell me again about suicide
     
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  3. Morgain

    Morgain defective wisdom
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    this is interesting!

    I use Fi as my major function. How is it that you use it and how do you know it is a shadow function? What makes you say it is your critical parent?
     
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  4. Morgain

    Morgain defective wisdom
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    For me Fe would be the opposing function and i can sense that my usage of it is not very healty. Every time I connect with people (deliberately or unconciously) it turnes out bad. I loose my sense of self, I loose myself in the other, sometimes become the other and the only think I can think of than is to sense what the other want and to please him/her

    According to your website, the goal of INFP's is to help people in clarifying issues, values and identity. And that is what I'm good at. To listen to problems and to brake open there view on it (with Ne), give other explanations, opportunities, other points of view. But to be able to do that, I need to stick to myself in Fi and not use Fe. Because with Fe I can see what they need and try to give them. But I'm not good at that, I'm not good at digging into someone to see the problem. I wish I could!
     
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  5. mooseman

    mooseman Local Claviger
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    As a person with strong Fi/Ne (my top four function order is something like Ni > Fi > Ne > Fe) I can easily empathize with both the "weak person" and the ones who think the weak person needs a kick in the butt. At first, when I joined this forum I was surprised to see that not everybody always did this. Later I realized that it actually is a specific Fi/Ne thingy and not general NF goods.

    Whenever I use any of my NF functions in a negative way, I think I do most damage with my Fe. I can think of at least two times when I have seriously disliked a person at work and in very cunning ways made that obvious to the group. I feel very bad thinking about it. That's a bit of a guess though. I can't say I'm certain what my shadow functions would be. I haven't thought much about it before but I will follow this discussion with interest.
     
    #5 mooseman, Jan 2, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2010
  6. gloomy-optimist

    gloomy-optimist Used to live here

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    My Fi often comes out in negative contexts -- it makes me become much more self-centered and feel sorry for myself. I do use it in positive ways, too, though.
     
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  7. OP
    arbygil

    arbygil Passing through

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    Fi is what makes you see yourself, internally. You know what you want, and you know how things affect you (and you know how things should be, based on how those things affect you). That's normal for an Fi-dominant person. For someone like me who is weak in Fi, well, I'm thinking about everyone else around me, except for what I'm really feeling inside. Emotionally I'm thinking about how everyone else is feeling first while an Fi dominate person is thinking about how they're feeling first.

    So when they clash (Fe and Fi), I begin judging the person who is acting our of their own emotional center. I begin to say in my mind, "oh, straighten up, it's not that bad. Are you serious? Why are you acting like that? You're an adult, not a child!" I react as an adult would to a child who isn't behaving the way they'd like that child to behave. The problem is, it's not my place to act critically towards that function. When someone is strongly using their Fi function to express themselves, I may choose to act critically and treat them with less respect.

    On the other hand, an INFP may have Ni as their Critical Parent. So when I start going off in la-la land about how beautiful the world is when a group gets together, or when I start intuiting something that sounds like fortune telling, an INFP will start reacting like, "oh, please. Get your head out of the clouds. Start looking at reality - there's no magic bullet there to save you. Why on earth do you believe in that junk?"

    This is Linda Berens' belief, though. The last four cognitive processes are shadow processes, and those shadow processes differ depending on your cognitive development.

    So for an INFJ, the shadows are theoretically:

    Ne - Opposing
    Fi - Critical Parent
    Te - Deceiving
    Si - Devilish.

    I was able to see Fi as my Critical Parent from that previous discussion. I could finally hear my voice in my head. I have only vague understandings of the other shadows - I've clashed with Ne before, but I don't know why yet. I don't have revelation on it yet, not like Fi.
     
  8. OP
    arbygil

    arbygil Passing through

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    That definitely sounds like you're more of an INFP then, which is a great thing. I can't give people their identities. I can help them discover them, I can give them clues to get there, but I can't give them their identity. For example, if a person said to me, "I'm an introvert and I can't make friends; my life has no meaning." I would try and break down why they have no friends. I wouldn't empathize with them - I'd try to solve the problem.
     
  9. OP
    arbygil

    arbygil Passing through

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    That's *deep*, NAI. And I can see how that could clash with how I'd feel. It's like you'd want me to prove your love to you, but I wouldn't be able to. I'd say you have me - why do I need to prove it? Very, very interesting.
     
  10. midnightmelody

    midnightmelody nagging for truth

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    Hear is my Fi reaction to Fi.
    I strongly dislike it.

    It's very potent, and rooted in what? It seems to be pretty random and spiradic, and always sems to make me feel guilty for everything. Hmph.

    I'm not really sure if my Fi or Fe is stronger. It's hard to tell. I know my Fe is going crazy here in NYC, though. I saw a girl at the ice rink crying because she couldn't get her skates on (she had been struggling for about 20 minutes to no avail, where in the world was her parent?!), so I asked her if she needed help, but I didn't get a chance to because my family ushered me along to the lockers. I felt really bad that I had offered and didn't get a chance to follow through...

    Also I have to push and shove people. No fun.

    I can be pretty selfish sometimes, though. Sometimes I just want to get my way. I get this "entitled" air. I really dislike that about myself. It's hard to tell with myself. I could easily blame all of this on adolecense and say that I'm confused and trying to make sense of everything, but there really aren't good excuses for immaturity.
     
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  11. sassafras

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    Hah. I just had a little mini revelation. If Fi is one of the seats of creativity, it explains why I'm always at my creative peak when I'm stressed or have too many things to do. And it's at those same times, I also tend to do the the most introspecting and questioning whether this is what I really want or how I should improve myself. Indeed, I have to say that as a function, my Fi rarely manifests itself productively; its usually comes in as a distraction or when I'm utilizing avoidance behaviour.

    In my Shadow Mode, I'm mostly freaking out about inefficiencies and how none of the things I wanted to get done are not done yet. It's like my inner perfectionist on steroids; impatient, all-or-nothing, and highly critical of the way that other people go about their business too. All I can look at our ways I wasted time, what other people are doing wrong, and I go crazy with my lists and schedules. And once I reach my frustration limit, that's when I just drop everything all together and retreat to doing the activities I've described above. I write my best when I'm at this stage... unfortunately, that doesn't bode too well for the things I'm supposed to do that day.

    That's my shadow mode in a nutshell.
     
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    #11 sassafras, Jan 3, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010
  12. bamf

    bamf Is Watching You
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    How very similar to how I act. Eerie.
     
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  13. sassafras

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    Funny how that works, homeslice.
     
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