ISTP infidelity on INFJ spouse...HELP! | INFJ Forum

ISTP infidelity on INFJ spouse...HELP!

Discussion in 'Relationships and Sociology' started by vegaSagev, Oct 16, 2009.

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  1. vegaSagev

    vegaSagev Newbie

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    First post, but I have been reading these for a long time. I love this forum, glad I finally found something like this. I am a huge fan of typology and have studied it for years. I am in a crisis right now and need some perspective.

    I am a 34 y.o. INFJ male. I am a therapist doing mentalhealth, marriage and family therapy. She is a 30 yr. old ISTP. We have been married for 10 years (3 kids) and a few weeks ago she told me she loved me but wasn't "in" love with me. The next day, after I pressed her she told me she had an affair with a guy at work. She had already ended the relationship and hadn't spoken with him for 2 weeks at that point. It basically involved making out, oral sex, and kind of a teenage type of "getting it on."
    They never went on dates or went to eachother's homes, but always just at work. They texted a lot, talked on the phone some, and flirty stuff went too far. He was 22.

    So, she and I are trying to work it out. I want to stay with her and she says the same, but out personalities, of course, come into play and I need some help about how to approach this.

    I immediately began drinking, smoking pot, using tobacco again, stormed around in anger sometimes, but we have had some sweet dates and times
    together talking. I have stopped doing those things as I don't normally drink and all of that. I just didn't know what to do with the sick feeling inside.

    As an INFJ, I want to talk endlessly about the feelings involved, she of course doesn't, although she tries. I have become Magnum P.I., looking
    through phone records and analyzing what times of day they texted, and talked, etc. I had her get a polygraph, which she passed. I think she has told me everything and this has never happened before.

    So, I think what happened is she felt like a failure as a mother and wife, I have such high expectations she felt she would never cut it and I think this whole little affair thing was exciting and she enjoyed feeling so desired by this punk ass guy.

    Here are some specific questions for you ISTPs and INFJs (or anyone else who can help)

    1. I have been showing her as much love as I can, like when we were dating, but I'm not sure if that is such a good thing. I have been pretty easy on her for the most part, but wonder if I should (force myself) to be more distant and aloof. Kind of the reverse psychology idea. If I am head over heels, will that make her annoyed and not interested in me?

    2. If she feels still she is not all that "in" love with me, how do I foster that? We've been having sex like crazy and I know she enjoys that, but how can I detach some and/or make her crave being with me like I do her? Or will she just never be like that?

    3. I am still checking her phone and email, which she despises. I know ISTPs need space, but she doesn't understand my need to check on those things. Haven't found anything concerning, so it actually helps me feel more secure knowing who she is talking to. I feel compelled to do that, but know it may not help things because she sees it as controlling her.

    4. She says this guy is gone from her mind (it only lasted a month) and that she only thinks of him when I bring it up. She says she wants us to move forward, and I do too, but daily I have this little storm cloud come over me with fear and darkness. She says I can call her when I am feeling down, but I am afraid to. I am afraid she will just be like, "Get over it already!"

    5. We are trying to do some more fun thing together. She needs quality time and we are being more active and going out more. What ideas do you have about how I can light her fire?

    I know this is long, I just need some perspective from real people. I have been reading these profiles over and over. I am trying to see that she is just different from me and that's okay. I know I need to scale back my F intensity a lot and not expect so much from her. I want to develop my Thinking and Sensing functions more.

    Any insight MUCH appreciated. Thank you for this great forum!!!
     
    #1 vegaSagev, Oct 16, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2009
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  2. Sithious

    Sithious Well-known member

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    Checking her phone and email is a no go, you seem to have trust issues you have work out, which is natural considering the circumstances.

    You have to learn to trust her again, and she needs show she can be trusted
     
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    #2 Sithious, Oct 16, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2009
  3. The Jester

    I wonder why he has trust issues.

    No, seriously, I think you are right to do all those things Vegas, imo I'd never trust her again, but at the same time wouldn't be able to leave her.
    But I don't have any advice, sorry :/
     
  4. OP
    vegaSagev

    vegaSagev Newbie

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    Thanks for the quick replies!! I worry I won't trust her again, she does too. for me, though, starting a new relationship with someone else isn't any better and I would have the same trust issues.

    I had an excel spreadsheet with all of the phone records downloaded and I was sorting by date, number and all of that. It was kind of insane, and I have since deleted them, but it helped me deal with it somehow by knowing exactly what happened. The truth hurt like hell. So now I don't go back to those old records anymore, just the current calls and such.

    Thanks again.
     
  5. christmas

    christmas is such a boss bitch.
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    Don't pretend. If you forgive her and want to work it out don't pretend to be aloof and uncaring. It's probably what got you in trouble in the first place (not that she isn't at fault, she totally is). Enjoy the dating.

    Just because you forgive her doesn't mean you need to forget it all. She has shown that she wants you back (lie detection test), but if you need to check her emails and phone for the next year, that's up to you. She screwed up and she needs to do whatever it takes to make you feel comfortable again. It takes time to build trust.
     
  6. OP
    vegaSagev

    vegaSagev Newbie

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    Good thoughts, christmas. I have felt that same way. The only problem seems to be when she knows I am checking the phone. I login in to the online account and view calls and texts.

    As an INFJ I can't believe I have never done that before this! DAMN! :) I could have caught this early!

    Thanks everyone. Keep em coming.
     
  7. testing

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    I am SO sorry to hear that this happened to you.

    (Disclaimer: I'm a novice at MBTI and no kind of therapist, but I would like to help)

    I know kids and careers can be so hard on relationships, simply spending more time together is a positive first step.

    I do not know how you can rebuild that trust once she's shattered it. I admire you for even trying; obviously she will always be the mother of your children so you should try but it is a hard, hard thing. You've got my sympathy.

    Hearing (reading) you say you need to scale back your intensity and you fear she will be like "Just get over it already!" makes me think she doesn't place much importance on your feelings and comfort. I think she is the one who needs to be kissing your ass 24/7, not the other way around. You say this only happened a few weeks ago? Way too fresh wounds.

    Maybe you should take a few steps back; not to "light her fire" but to gain a little perspective and focus on yourself a bit. Can you take your kids on a vacation or something? Without her? Let her have that space if she wants it. And as far as expecting so much from her, I think you are entitled to expect fidelity. Presumably she promised it.

    I don't know how an ISTP woman would see this or what the official psychologist line would be, this is my real and unprofessional opinion. And again I am so sorry that happened, you sound really nice and you deserver much, much better.

    P.S. I just re-read my post and realized that I told you spending more time together was a good idea and then told you to take your kids on a vacation without her. Ignore me, I know nothing. You have my sympathy man.
     
    #7 testing, Oct 16, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2009
  8. christmas

    christmas is such a boss bitch.
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    Oh. Well, she needs to get over that. Eventually you'll stop needing to check up on her. That's what she wants, right?
     
  9. The Jester

    I think that only you are the right person to make this decision.
    I have a negative perception on relations, so you probably don't want to take my advice.
    If you are able to forgive her, and really, if you are, than I admire you.
    Because to me that'd be hard, but since you've been in a relationship with her for 10 years..
    What do you have to lose if you try to continue your relation?
    If you do this, then at least you tried. But make sure you've talked everything through so you won't hold any grudges.
     
  10. OP
    vegaSagev

    vegaSagev Newbie

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    Thanks for the insights and empathy. I do believe I can forgive her. I know I had a part in this. I was critical and negative, and wanted her to me more of the traditional hosewife, mother, and honestly she kind of sucks at that stuff but tried her best. Our youngest was born a couple of years ago and during that pregnancy was the worst part of our relationship for me. Since then, she has lost 100 pounds and is very attractive. She started getting lots of attention at work because of her new fitness and that was part of how this started. She is beautiful, but I am so nervous for her to go to work looking good.

    But I like to look good even though I am never trying to "find" someone, so I don't want to discourage her from looking pretty because it makes her feel good. She has struggled with low self esteem and I am sure I haven't helped that.
     
  11. Ria

    Ria Snow White over the ocean

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    My bf is ISTP too, I find that when things have happened in the past with us, it has usually been to do with his lack of empathy and sensitivity towards me. Trust has been compromised as well between us, and we were apart for 3 months before he bugged and bugged me to take him back again the beginning of sept.

    I remember thinking and feeling that it was without saying that he should have been the one to kiss ass 24/7, but he veiwed that concept as unnecessary and a definite "no way" issue. I felt my feelings were never validated, considered, respected or even heard. Empathy simply does not come easy to him, and I gather it doesn't come easy to your partner either. She perhaps has guilt which she is struggling with and when you check her emails etc, she feels the pressure of your pain and feels agitated by it being brought up again when she wasn't thinking about it. She was wrong. It was good of her however to tell u that it happened, but even then, it never should have happened.

    Never loose track of what you seek out in a relationship. That being the depth, intimacy, spirituality and the thrill of having a soulmate. I think I can relate to you in the time span of which u speak of... I was in a state of shock in the first month, I felt I would do anything and stay relaxed and loving etc. but as the time went by and it felt like he wasn't giving the same effort to connect as I was, even after the fact of his betrayal was towards me, I began to cool off inside and my feelings began to change toward him. This scared me just as much, yet also provided me with some relief from the grief.

    I hope you find some sort of resolve. I hope she begins to honor your worth by acknowledging your pain and rage and does whatever she can to make it up to you. She should not be lazy in her affection towards you. Defensive manuvers suggests she is putting herself into a victim role and knows that you will be there for her when she cannot be there for herself to manage her own thoughts and emotions. ( I am suggesting this), as my bf is the same way himself.

    It's been about 6 weeks since we have reconnected and I still don't trust him completely. I remember when I finally ended it back the end of may, I felt huge relief that I never had to wonder and not trust again. The relief was so much so, that I knew what had happened to me was so crushing to my sensitivity that I was better off alone. (of which I was used to being anyway). Rejection can come in many forms, but no matter the situation, it's always the same level of pain when someone disappoints you. Trust is never easy for any type, especially if you're INFJ. Trust doesn't come easy for us anyways, I am SOOOO sorry this happened to you. I empathize with you completly and can relate. *hugs*
     
  12. testing

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    Oooooohhhhhh! I see. That makes a little more sense. (I was wondering where all the "critical" came in. You didn't sound all that critical.)

    Well, I still think she was in the wrong.

    But, I'm here to tell you, bro, even for those of us who are domestically inclined, the housewife/mother thing is apallingly difficult sometimes, especially with little bitty children around. I've tried both, and I can honestly tell you, being a working mom is easier than being the perfect housewife/mother. And it is 100% absolutely impossible to explain why to someone who has never experienced it, on the heels of a couple of pregnancies, which are no picnics in and of themselves.

    I bet she loved the attention at work, poor thing, after three pregnancies, weight loss, and all that gravity can do to a woman, she was probably just shocked speechless at first. Maybe that impaired her judgement. (totally guessing here.)

    I don't know... I hope you guys can work it out. Mutual respect is a great place to start.
     
  13. OP
    vegaSagev

    vegaSagev Newbie

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    I am so humbled that you would would even care enough to comment. God bless the internet.

    Yeah I have been kind of kissing HER ass 24/7. Making sure she always "gets hers" (which I didn't do before as much). I have made her CD's with good music. Danced with her in the closet while she is undressing, put big yellow ribbons outside and yellow stuff all over the house (from that song, tie a Yellow Ribbon...). I have bought her some new clothes, flowers, and all of that. Even though I realize I neglected her for so long and FEEL like doing these things, I am worried that is not okay for some reason.

    First of all I think SHE's the one who should be begging me to stay, and yet she invests so little. I know part of it is just the natural ISTP way, but damn. My friend (an ISTP) talked it about like this:

    If you are hunting an animal, you have to sit and wait for it to come to you. If you chase it, it will scare them away. She is the one waiting and I am the dumb animal running right to her when I wish it was the other way around. I WISH I could be more laid back and let her come to me. I can't even sleep at night even with sleeping pills and she falls alseep in 2.3 seconds. My friend suggested I cool my gushiness and just try to be a little more calm. I wrote a whole list of goals for myself which included taking her to exotic places and all of this and then realized that is so INFJ of me and probably a turn off.

    I'm afraid I am doing all the worng things and my INFJ weakness are showing: paranoia, overly flowery language with her, and so on. Any ISTP's out there who can help me?
     
    #13 vegaSagev, Oct 16, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2009
  14. Tamagochi

    Tamagochi Sushi Destroyer
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    Ohkeyy, where do I begin... First of all your writing style, reasoning and your actions taken hunch me that you're INFP :) But that's just for your reference.

    As for the matter at hand the situation seems bad. And I do not think your current actions help to improve it. My outlook on your questions:

    1. What I see is that you intend to trick her into loving you using some psychology. I honestly don't see how can it lead to happiness in the long run. The hard truth is - you cannot force people to honestly love you. Your wife loved you in the past not for some trickery but for who you were. And just look at yourself now - you're scheming against her. I can't believe you do marriage therapy with such an attitude.
    2. same as number 1.
    3. checking her and being obsessive does not help things - you're slowly destroying what's left of your relationship. Trust is important. Even if she betrayed you it's not a reason enough to lower yourself to such methods.
    4. speaking your mind (what's really bothering you) will create trust and that can help to develop real feelings.
    5. as for good time ideas - you'll have to think something on your own ;) Remember the good times, the start of your relationship. Maybe you have stopped doing something that was really romantic for your wife then? Women value little things.
     
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  15. Gaze

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    Quite an experience. My best Ria.
     
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  16. sumone

    sumone down the rabbit hole

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    I'm sorry I haven't read all the replies so hopefully I won't be just repeating what someone else might have said.
    Personally I would suggest an overall chill out. Don't try, just be. Don't be overly anything because it might come across as suffocating.
    It'll be hard but I think the checking up needs to stop.
    I hope everything works out. You sound like a wonderful person.
    Does she still work with this guy?
     
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  17. OP
    vegaSagev

    vegaSagev Newbie

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    Thanks for the honesty Tamagochi...hurts a little but I believe you. Pretty sure I'm INFJ but maybe not. Yeah, I cannot force her to love me. That's my biggest fear is not what she does or doesn't do but that she doesn't love me. Some tell me, duh, dude, how could she love you and do this?

    She says she loves me, but I guess I fear that's all out of a sense of duty or something. She isn't really showing me that. And maybe it's because I am trying so hard to show her I love her, feeling bad for making her so empty, and thus the affair.

    Tonight we are going out to some cool places with roller coasters and such, I know she needs that kind of excitement. But she hasn't planned anything or initiated much, but has always been game for whatever ideas I have. WTF? Is that just how ISTP's do it? Any other ideas on how to rekindle some flames but not reward her for hurting me? How to hold her accountable but not punish her?
     
  18. OP
    vegaSagev

    vegaSagev Newbie

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    No, he got fired. He was a pretty messed up guy, offering her overtime to stay and shit like that.
     
  19. sumone

    sumone down the rabbit hole

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    She may have been going through inner turmoil, which happens in every marriage and this guy might have come along at a time she was vulnerable. I remember when it dawned on me that I wasn't 'in' love with my husband anymore. It hurt me deeply and I was saddened. But over time I had those in love moments back - it's just not a current that runs in the background anymore. When I came to terms with that I found that I still loved him and the love was real. I'm glad I didn't panic when that happened but just worked through it. It's worth it.
     
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  20. Shai Gar

    Shai Gar Guest

    I would have dumped him immediately after he didn't perform those actions.
    The onus is on the one in the wrong to rectify matters.
     
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