My father's an INFJ?? | INFJ Forum

My father's an INFJ??

Discussion in 'The INFJ Typology' started by whytiger, Sep 20, 2010.

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  1. whytiger

    whytiger Community Member

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    I gave my Dad the Keirsey Sorter and he scored INFJ. This came as a shock to me. My mother's very obviously an INFP but my Dad has always been unemotional my entire life. At first I thought he might be an INTP and then an ISTP.

    INFJ traits:

    - He's generous to a fault and an easy target for con artists. He would give money to people who called for charity until my mother made him stop.
    - He's always been interested in creating products to help children---he's a computer scientist so mainly software.
    - Whenever he's around children, he starts "mentoring" them. I witnessed this on a visit where we went to a science museum. There was a bed of nails that people could lie down on, and he just stood by it and talked to the kids who came by, encouraging them to try it and put their hands on it. He spoke in this very "encouraging" voice. This is completely different from how he interacted with me, which was more...manly.
    - He reads fiction obsessively.

    ISTP traits:

    - He was very interested in sports and good at them too. He played one sport varsity in college.
    - He didn't really apply himself in his youth to academics, being more interested in sports and wanting to work in the dairy industry, but he ended up with an engineering degree.
    - He likes to explore whenever he goes someplace new.
    - He seems to be unaware of his social responsibilities. I'll bring my kids over to their house and he'll just want to sit and read instead of playing with his grandkids.
    - He is a big do-it-yourselfer. He did some amazing things to our house when I was growing up and managed to double its value (with a little help from the real estate market).

    When he goes golfing, he will often just ask whoever is at the course to play. This seems weird to me but perhaps is normal for golfers.

    My wife is a true ISTP and he and she are not exactly alike. She seems to have more street smarts. He seems like a definite Fe user so I ruled out INTJ. He's not big on theorizing and he's seems to have that "chart-the-course" attitude so I ruled out INTP too.

    I suppose, if you take the time to read this post, I'm asking, is it possible that my father is an INFJ who is somehow "screwed up" into not being all that emotional? His father was a very overbearing ENTJ and his mother an ISTP and he is also Scandinavian so that adds extra lack of emotion to the picture.
     
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  2. Bird

    Bird Happy Go Lucky

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    Perhaps your father has just hidden certain of his personality traits from you since you are his child. That whole sheltering thing. Your father wants to seem strong to his children. He wants to be their support structure. I don't think fathers generally feel comfortable showing their emotions to their children. You don't want them to know the bad things. In trying to suppress the bad things you sometimes suppress other things as well.
     
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  3. OP
    whytiger

    whytiger Community Member

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    I was thinking along these lines too! In fact, if he were to "open up" to me I'm afraid I would feel an almost irresistable urge to shut him down. Perhaps I already have. I tend to talk about feelings indirectly. My ISFJ brother has suggested that my father has openned up to him in recent years, so perhaps it is me.
     
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  4. Bird

    Bird Happy Go Lucky

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    Are you jealous of your father opening up to your brother?
     
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  5. Billy

    Billy Contents Under Pressure
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    Chances are, if he is an INFJ he doesnt want to impede your growth, he will try to relate to you, the way you seem to exist, many INFJs seek the level of those they communicate with in mannerisms etc and mirror them naturally so we come off more approachable, when we do want to talk.

    Although, I have no children, I would imagine that if I did, I would try to instill portions of my personality into them if I could, I suppose have yet to see if personalities are inborn traits or environmental. My father tests as an ENTJ, but I long suspected that he was just a severely damaged ENFJ, but he has gotten much cooler in recent years, when I was a kid he was all moral and trying to instill all this morality into me but at the same time very loving and free with the hugs and such, he changed or I did when I became a teen and he wanted to toughen me up. Now its more like a friendship then anything, and he is very much against pushing beliefs onto other people all of a sudden. Like when I try to correct my 9 year old cousin, she is being raised by extended family myself included, but mostly my parents, when she does something wrong I try to tell her that its wrong, not because I want to hurt her, but I want her to learn from her mistakes, but theres pop right there to tell me and everyone to SHUT UP, LEAVE HER ALONE.
     
    #5 Billy, Sep 20, 2010
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2010
  6. OP
    whytiger

    whytiger Community Member

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    Actually, no, I prefer it that way. It may seem cruel not to want to hear his feelings, but I would prefer to hear about them in some detached way. Even thinking about it makes me uncomfortable. I suppose my father knows this so perhaps he just tries to relate to me in a detached way. Is this common with INFJ-ENTP relations?
     
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  7. Bird

    Bird Happy Go Lucky

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    I think so, actually.


    I'm glad you're not jealous. I'm glad that you realize why your father does this and that he does love you.


    Gosh. I'm getting mushy.
     
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  8. IndigoSensor

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    The "signs" you gave for INFJ are stronger then they are for ISTP. It honestly sounds like you just listed the ISTP traits as things that simply don't fit the classical INFJ model in a sense. You know him better then any of us will so you will have the best internal understanding of it. It's a misconception that all INFJ's will be super deep or super intelligent and that can cause mistyping in that case. The same thing can happen with INTP's as well as they have a rep for being very brainy.
     
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  9. Billy

    Billy Contents Under Pressure
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    Besides, INFJs arent bad at sports. And they dont always apply themselves to what they SHOULD be doing, but to what they WANT to do, and INFJs love to explore too, dont forget they also use Se.
     
  10. magister343

    magister343 Permanent Fixture

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    Well, inferior Se tends to give INFJs poorer than average coordination and thus naturally below average athletic skills, but can also create a greater desire to improve in that area and lead them to try harder than most at becoming better athletes (or dancers, or martial artists, etc). The desire to improve can be strong enough to drive them to overcome their natural handicaps.
     
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  11. Melkor

    Melkor Madman with a cause

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    I am sorry for your loss.
     
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  12. Billy

    Billy Contents Under Pressure
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    yeah, I dont think we have natural handicaps when it comes to Se, more then a few people dont have much Se at all, far less then an INFJ might even. and if the thread VH posted one time was any indication INFJs tend to do well in sports if they are interested in them. Because they use Se, whereas others dont.
     
  13. OP
    whytiger

    whytiger Community Member

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    Yes, Se is my worst function. Sports are my enemy. On the other hand, I'm quite good at memorizing factual data and can even enjoy doing my taxes, having Si as my 4th function.
     
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  14. Billy

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    And I have crap Si, so I cant do anything like that, I am terrible at math and remembering numbers, dreadful at knowing what stuff is SUPPOSED to be like physically, I lose everything... my Se is semi well developed though from sports, but even in stuff like say Call of Duty, I can zone out and go into Se-reflex mode and be an utter powerhouse just reacting to my environment.
     
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  15. Raccoon Love

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    This could explain more why I fit the INFP mold much more than the INFJ one. I can remember certain factual data, mostly general ideas but occasionally random facts. In contrast, I am terrible with physical activity, which would explain Se as being my ultimate last function, even after the shadow ones.
     
  16. IndigoSensor

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    If you are INFP, the theory states your last 8th function would be Ti, not Se.
     
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  17. Raccoon Love

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    True :), thanks lol

    That would make even more sense..I am terrible at picking small details, gets me very annoyed.
     
  18. rawr

    rawr ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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    though people's functions rarely fall in the exact order of the theory...
     
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  19. Raccoon Love

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    I'm starting to see theories on how there MUST be a specific order, since our brain is programmed to function a certain way and finding other patters make it rather illogical. Of course, still a theory but I guess it has also to do a lot with personal bias and what we assume we have rather than what we actually do.
     
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  20. IndigoSensor

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    There is a difference between true order, strength, and prefrence. In order for MBTI to work, the theory must be upheld and there is a locked in order for functions. For INFJ's this is Ni>Fe>Ti>Se>Ne>Fi>Te>Si. All INFJ's retain that order. However individuals might have a non linear strength order to that list of functions. As an example in myself. I have rather strong Te and Si for an INFJ. The reason for this I am not 100% sure of, however just because I have strong use of those functions, does not mean I will default to them and rely on them heavily. Cognitive function tests, test for function strength, and this does not always (it rarely does) overlap exactly with true function order.

    The theory states that the last four functions are subconscious and therefore are not consciousally called upon. I can't willingly use Si in effect, or I have to put a lot of energy together to make it work at least somewhat well. It only really comes into play when my typical methods end up failing. When that occurs, I will rely on it and it can work to a decent level because I have a strength in it. With Fi I have a pretty weak strenght in it so when I have to use that I end up messing up Fi and using it "wrong" pretty easily.

    It's very easy for one to think they have a bizzare function order when their strength of these functions is out of alignment from the norm. Also that with many functional analysis tests, they are looking for external manifestations of these functions. While reliable in some they are not reflective of internal processes. This is one example of why my Te and Si test so high, when they are not as strong as they test. This is because my Ni and Fe can manifest atypical external signs that are similar to Te and Si.

    MBTI is tricky to sort out by diving head first into the details, and honestly largely it can not be done. If you look at it from a simple perspective or functional order for each type, and keeping it locked into that, it makes more sense in the end.
     
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