[INFJ] - Is your spouse/significant other the most important relationship in your life? | INFJ Forum

[INFJ] Is your spouse/significant other the most important relationship in your life?

Discussion in 'Relationships and Sociology' started by FGordon, Sep 13, 2013.

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  1. FGordon

    FGordon Newbie

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    To all INFJs that have one, is your relationship with your SO the most important one in your life? This may sound selfish, but this is something I'm curious about. If I'm in a serious committed relationship with someone, I would try to put them first and I would hope they would do the same.

    Are INFJs generally able to prioritize the relationship with their lover over their children, other family, friends, etc. (assuming the circumstances allow it)? Again, sorry if this sounds at all selfish.
     
    #1 FGordon, Sep 13, 2013
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  2. sentientsixpence

    sentientsixpence fail daemon

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    My partner was always the most important person to me. This has yet to be reciprocated.
     
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  3. sprinkles

    sprinkles Well-known member

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    I prioritize based on what somebody needs, not who they are.

    Children for example should often get priority when you're responsible for them, because they need guidance but the SO is expected to be able to handle themselves in a lot of situations. There's a lot of messed up children due to this priority being inverted.

    Edit:
    Or I look at it this way. Imagine you're a doctor, and one person that you care much about has a cold, but another person needs a new liver. Is it fair or appropriate to direct all your attentions to the person with the cold based on your personal love for them? I don't think it is, I think that is disproportionate to the situation.
     
    #3 sprinkles, Sep 13, 2013
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  4. OP
    FGordon

    FGordon Newbie

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    I can tell you from personal experience that the inverse of the situation you just described is just as damaging to the child, if not more so.

    Perhaps I should elaborate. I'm not suggesting or implying that you should neglect your children or friends at all. You have a responsibility as a human being and a parent to fulfill the proper role for these people. And of course there will be times when the emotional needs of your SO need to go on the backburner for a while. But that doesn't necessarily translate into importance or emotional significance.
     
    #4 FGordon, Sep 13, 2013
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  5. this is only temporary

    this is only temporary Community Member

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    Totally agree, and glad you chose to elaborate. Parents, especially, tend to put their children first, but making children completely 100% the center of your life to the detriment of your SO can be damaging. To answer the OP, yes, my SO is, but on the other hand, defining the "most important" relationship in your life is a little bit like Sophie's Choice.
     
  6. sprinkles

    sprinkles Well-known member

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    It doesn't translate into emotional importance or emotional significance. It translates into priorities. These are different things.

    A good example is that you must see to it that your child is educated. This is a priority in that you cannot do something else that you'd rather do instead - you will go to jail if caught.

    If you fail to give a friend or SO the proper attention, they may leave. If you fail to give your children the proper attention though you can be in some deep shit so if there's ever a conflict of interests, the children win. Therefore in the strictest sense, they get priority.
     
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  7. OP
    FGordon

    FGordon Newbie

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    I know they're different. I admit that I was unclear in my OP. I was referring to emotional priority; I should have specified. Oh, and with regards to Seraphim, I don't think there should be any relationship in your life that you would be unable to function without, even if that person is more important to you than anything in the world. If you view someone like this it can go too far, and if said person were to be forced to leave you for whatever reason they would want you to find happiness without them and not dwell on the loss. At least, you would hope they would...
     
  8. sprinkles

    sprinkles Well-known member

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    Ok, that makes sense.

    I don't split emotional priority because it isn't finite for me. Everyone is more or less equal and I have room for more.

    Emotion is kind of an infinite abstraction in that it is felt in the moment, so it's more like a variable constant. To give a trivial example, I enjoy hundreds of songs even though I don't listen to them all at the same time. So what actually limits us is a more practical form of priority - what you can do with finite abilities, only being in one place at one time.
     
  9. Gaze

    Gaze My word . . . hmm
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    Agree, you need a balance. Always putting your child's needs first in a way which signals to your partner that their needs are not a priority or nearly as important is damaging and detrimental to a relationship. Your relationship as a couple is an entity in itself and is separate from your relationship with your children. Partners have their own needs which need to be addressed. Children learn what it means to have healthy relationships by observing their families. So, if partners are neglecting or dismissive or treat their partners as side issues to be addressed after all the "importance" things are handled first, then you will have a poor model for a relationship. Our world has grossly diminished the value and importance of relationships and reduced them to things you acknowledge when someone has some time away from their busy schedule. Part of being in a committed relationship is knowing how to prioritize the people in your life. For me, having a partner means they are a priority in my life, but it does not mean that this will necessarily conflict with taking care of my family or kids if I had children. The problem would come in when the partner believes they are the only priority or importance, so not having someone with a huge ego is the key or at least finding someone who doesn't think their needs are more important than everyone else's. Your life isn't going to be about your partner only for many people. A true partner would understand that you work together to give everything that's important to each of you the priority and time it needs. Of course, this is assuming we live in an ideal world where partners are never selfish and put their partner's needs ahead of their own. :D
     
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    #9 Gaze, Sep 13, 2013
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  10. Bikerdelic

    Bikerdelic Spammer

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    Yes, always, but I try to find a happy balance.
     
  11. bagelriffic

    bagelriffic Community Member

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    My relationship with a SO is one of enjoyment, discovery, play, something I choose, for myself, as a way to have fun. There can be financial benefits and opportunities for self-growth as well, but bottom line its something I choose for my own purposes.

    My relationship with children is much different. It is not about what I want, or what I would prefer to do. For me its about doing my best to objectively decide what is best for them and their development at any given moment. This is not the same as spoiling a child as that would be seen as detrimental to their growth. Its the recognition that, because of their dependent and impressionable nature, their needs absolutely take priority over my desire for pleasure, which is how I view my relationship with a partner. If my SO can't handle or appreciate that that's okay, they're an adult, they have choices, kids don't.
     
  12. Sensiko

    Sensiko Permanent Fixture

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    my relationship with myself is the most important relationship of my life.
     
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  13. charlene

    charlene never mind no matter nevermind

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    I relate completely

    And then my daughter, because she is dependant on me.


    I have had difficulty in relationships before because my partners have wanted more than i was prepared to give and expected me to prioritise them above my own growth, friends, family, interests and community. I did find this selfish and codependant.
     
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  14. OP
    FGordon

    FGordon Newbie

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    I've never been in a relationship with this level of commitment, so I could have no idea what I'm talking about here, but I get the feeling that it's completely possible to prioritize your spouse without being co-dependant on them, provided the maturity levels of both parties are sufficient. I have no idea what you've experienced, charlene, but perhaps your previous partners were immature or not emotionally balanced?
     
  15. rawr

    rawr ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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    haha! jokes on you! i've never had an S.O. haha :)


    haha

    ha

    ha

    :/

    :(
     
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  16. charlene

    charlene never mind no matter nevermind

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    Perhaps it's possible to priotise your partner without becoming codependant. Priority is also a subjective concept.

    I would not want to priotise anyone above myself, especially in a long term relationship. I would want them to put themselves first too.
    I would say my previous partners were great people but immature and not emotionally balanced. They would disagree, as would a lot of other people. A lot of other people thought their behaviour was normal at the time.

    I think I need a lot more space and freedom than most people. Im bad at ultimatums. I am also willful, independent and self absorbed. These things effect all my relationships. Even my relationship with my daughter is not traditional, it's more mum/friend. I value/prioritise autonomy for myself and all others. I imagine it must be horrific to have a relationship with me! My exes are still disturbed

    Everyone's different. We all have different preferences, needs and values
     
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  17. charlene

    charlene never mind no matter nevermind

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    Also I think that people can have different instinctual variations like the ones described in the enneagram system. I'm a social variant.
    The other possible variants people may have are self preservation, and sexual.
     
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  18. OP
    FGordon

    FGordon Newbie

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    Well, that's the thing. Part of prioritizing your partner (at least the way I see it) is to acknowledge that they are a separate entity from you, recognize that as a separate entity that they have goals, desires, relationships, and interests that don't involve you, and understand or even want to see your partner fulfill these parts of life. If your partner isn't able to do that then they are not really putting you first but are actually pouring too much into the relationship for their sake, not yours. This is something that both partners need to be able to do for a relationship to be maintained.
     
  19. charlene

    charlene never mind no matter nevermind

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    I like the way you see prioritisation. I imagine that you would be putting equal effort into yourself and your partner. I am happy you are aware of what you want and that you've found something that works for you.

    That sense of priority I feel about everyone. It's just some selves are closer or further from me depending on distance and interests. All selfs are equally important. And I think everyones 1st responsiblity is to the self. So I may have trouble prioritising a partners goals over my friends, social and community interests or sometimes even strangers. I really really love people. And I love myself. I want everyone to be happy or otherwise fulfilled on this journey. Everyone is the most important person in the world. My sister and I joke around calling people MIPs. My ideas are related to my spiritual perception and experience of the world. I believe we are all One. And I'm here to enjoy this experience, above all else. Friends are people I enjoy the journey with, not people I feel responsible for.
    These are simply my ideals, and perhaps not practical, appealing or even comprehensible to others. I hope everyone gets to live their ideal, well, as long as their ideal doesnt involve harming others lol.
     
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  20. OP
    FGordon

    FGordon Newbie

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    I may be being obtuse here, but if everyone is of equal emotional significance to you, then what is the purpose of pursuing a relationship of this magnitude with a single person? Unless by "important" you mean something other than emotional significance. My ideal is that if you're going to the make such a commitment, you must work with your partner to both grow as an individual person and grow closer to each other than either of you are to anyone else.

    That being said, I agree with you as far as "responsibility" goes. You are responsible to others, but not for others. You are only responsible for yourself. That's what makes intimacy so special. You know that both of you can be completely self-sufficient and are both responsible for your own existences, yet you have allowed another to become such a central part of your life and continue to stand by them because you value them so highly, not because you external factors force you to.

    Oh, and a side note. You said I've "found something that works for me". This is just what I want. I haven't found it yet; I don't even know if it's possible. I am still young (nineteen) and still need to mature as a person before I can even attempt this. For this reason I have decided to forgo pursuing romantic relationships entirely until I'm ready to do such a thing and I find someone whom I am both attracted to (physically and spiritually) and who shares my view on relationships.

    And as I've said, giving your spouse space to grow is just part of what it means to prioritize them.
     
    #20 FGordon, Sep 20, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2013
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