Talking behind people's backs | INFJ Forum

Talking behind people's backs

Discussion in 'Relationships and Sociology' started by tfg345i4u5lw, Sep 15, 2013.

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  1. tfg345i4u5lw

    On Holiday

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    I used to be the type of person who took pride in the fact that if I didn't have something good to say about someone I wouldn't say anything at all. But lately I've been slipping on that ideal. I find myself more and more often expressing my opinions of others more freely.



    How often do you express negative opinions of people? Do you try to keep it to a minimum? What if you feel you are doing others a favor by letting them know your opinion of another persons motivations or issues? Would you like to start expressing yourself more freely even if it means sometimes saying negative things about others? Or would you rather try and keep others names out of your mouth if it isn't something positive? What is your balance? Do you feel this is something you can improve upon?

    For me, I often try to at least say it to their face once or twice before I go around saying it to others. Sometimes I'll even say something to someone's face just because I feel bad for saying it behind their back.
     
  2. Flavus Aquila

    Flavus Aquila Finding My Place in the Sun
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    People increasingly cannot handle the truth about themselves - so being up-front and direct is increasingly a tricky thing.

    So, if someone is impossible to deal with directly (my preferred approach) some team action on the individual may be necessary.

    In brief, if I talk behind someone's back - it is only to prepare to say it to them directly in a more helpful way.
     
    #2 Flavus Aquila, Sep 15, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2013
  3. sprinkles

    sprinkles Well-known member

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    If I have a problem with somebody I will take it up with them first.

    I feel very uncomfortable when people try to slam others to me, or I see them doing it among others. I find it very dishonorable and have been known to defend people that I don't even necessarily get along with because of it, especially if I see they are exaggerating or the claims are unfounded.
     
  4. Mary Shelley

    Mary Shelley Fearless & Powerful

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    I don't like saying negative things about people regardless of their presence. I try to find the positive part of what is often negative and sometimes I am the one to remind people. When something needs to be addressed, it is better to look at the verbs than the nouns. "What can I do to help?" is almost always better than "What's wrong with you?" even in unspoken words.

    I often feel uncomfortable paying direct compliments even when I have nothing to gain through flattery. So, where I might be uncomfortable speaking negatively behind someone's back, I often take the opportunity to speak positively behind someone's back. The sincerity comes across better, it has more power to influence the perception of others, and should word ever reach back to the person I've spoken of, it can have much deeper impact.

    Even when someone has no issues with depression or insecurity, the negative things people say to us have so much more power than the positive things. Where it is customary to question the sincerity or motivation of positive comments, we often take the negative ones to heart. This is why it is so important to monitor the ratio of positives to negatives you put into the world. One flippant negative comment may take a hundred positive comments to rebalance the person you've hurt.

    I try to practice this at places like restaurants, as well. Exceptionally bad or rude service may rightly prompt you to speak to a manager. Try to temper this. Everyone has bad days and you don't know what someone else is going through. They could be dealing with a death a breakup or some other horrible news or burden to bear. When the service at a restaurant is exceptionally good, we may be tempted to let the tip speak for us. But it doesn't. Tips run a wide range and vary as much by the customer as by the service received. Just as you may be tempted to speak to a manager about the negatives, ask for the manager to report positives. This feedback just may save someone's job the next time they're having a bad day or unreasonable customers.

    We make our world. If you pour negative into it, don't be surprised when it comes floating back to you. Take every opportunity to make it better.
     
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  5. Gaze

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    If I know I can't talk with the person directly, I will vent to someone I know well if something about someone is bothering me but you're right, it's not fair to discuss someone in a negative light behind their backs. I've been on both sides in really bad cases, especially as a victim, and many don't realize how much it really affects someone to hear through the grapevine that people are saying things about you, things which could be appropriately and constructively dealt with if they addressed you directly AND respectfully instead of going above your head and complaining to someone else. It's tough. But you can't control what people do or say behind your back. People will talk. Sometimes, it makes people feel good to address their feelings openly about someone to someone they know who'll sympathize and someone they can trust not to share with anyone else. However, the true issue lies in whether talking about it with someone leads to more resentment and bitterness towards the person or whether you allow it to add to everyone's narrative of let's gang up on someone and talk badly about this person behind their back because they're an easy target. Its tough to be on the receiving end of that. The question to ask is would you want someone to do this to you and whether or not it helps anyone including your relationship with the person to keep on doing it? And that can help you decide whether or not it's something you want to do. I don't need to know everyone's personal feelings about me especially if those feelings are based on personal opinions, not on anything I've done to them or against them. So, before you say something about someone, realize that you could be affecting their reputation. How would you feel if someone did that to you?
     
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    #5 Gaze, Sep 15, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2013
  6. the

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    If I have something bad to say about someone, I'll say it. I'm not trying to fix peoples personal problems and/or bad moral codes. If someone asks then I tell them what I think.

    Why is it bad to talk about someone behind their back - unless they are a public figure and then it's acceptable to say how much of an idiot they are?
     
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  7. YourFavoriteNightmare

    YourFavoriteNightmare Community Member

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    Never behind their back. People don't get on my bad side, mostly because I haven't done the same. If I got a problem with them, I'll leave them be. Take them out of my life. Simple as that. Things get tricky when you need them, more or less, for whatever reason, so...you can't leave them for the UPS guy. And conflicts or disagreements are often emotionally-based, too...But, once I work enough to get past "This won't go away on its on/It doesn't bother me that much." I run and smack right into expressing everything logically. I try to understand their side with question after question. One INFJ said "You make me feel like I'm backed up against a wall." I'm trying to understand, then analyze it with the complete knowledge and create the solution to the dissatisfaction. (Sound like a Ni-Te, don't I?) But by the time they are saying something like that, their defenses are up and you can't get any more information from them.

    Further explanation on "This won't go away on its on/It doesn't bother me that much.":
    This is emotion. I feel unsatisfied in the relationship, in some way, shape or form. I don't want emotions to grab me, throw me into a irrational moment. So I keep them relaxed. "Shh..." You are feeling this way today. You'll get over it. It's being an emotion. They change all the time with the slightest things.
    But, after a certain point, I realize this emotion is here to stay. Therefore, I put forth effort to resolve it.
    This mentality is never because of a dislike/denial of/fear of conflict, in contrast to types with lower Fe in their stack. Higher in their stack (ENFJs, INFJs and corresponding Sensors) don't want to rock the boat. Like to preserve interpersonal harmony. But for the sake of their emotions...it must be done. And they don't care. Lower in the stack (ENTPs, INTPs, and corresponding Sensors) are simply more guarding of their weaker function and serve to protect it from conflict in addition to a general dislike of interpersonal dissonance. I'm fully happy with conflict, a good ole debate is healthy for me. My INTP knows when I'm firming up to argue and, consequently, he backs out right away, to my dismay. That's a personal example.
    It's actually a bad thing if I'm not questioning you, trying to find a solution when you either know or have some strong evidence for me not being satisfied with the relationship.

    The rare event someone upsets my emotional homeostasis, and I'm too emotionally-charged to leave them be...I'll wallow in it. If I don't even acknowledge myself, I'll have problems later. But after 12-48 hours, I'm calmer simply thanks to time and blending some cold logic in there with a shot of understanding the other person's side. Maybe even a poem. But then I'm fine.

    Bottom line: I stay out of the social system. I do like to know what's going on because it adds to more thumbtacks and string paths to my cork board of understanding humans. (thumbs up if you totally got that/visualized it first time reading it). I'll leave people alone, keeping it all to myself. If necessary, I remove the person from consciousness. I have a lot better things to be concerned about than people and their emotions and how they relate to me unless I actually care about them.
     
  8. YourFavoriteNightmare

    YourFavoriteNightmare Community Member

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    Especially the public figures. People need plenty of information to be objective. If you can bring out something, be a voice of reason to the counteract that, and it's true evidence, I'm all for that. You help people's objectivity. If this person is genuinely kind and sincere, but they are a facade, bring it out. By all means! But if that's really who they are, there's no need for it. A big, big mistake in this thing called life is being with the wrong people. "Better alone than in bad company."
     
  9. barbad0s

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    I tend to express my opinion on others when I perceive there is an imbalance in how people perceive them. I am really aware of and dislike the effects of a singular, homogenous opinion among a group of people. That is, if everyone is speaking of a person positively, I will be made more conscious of my negative interactions with them and share them, and if everyone is speaking negatively of a person I will be made more conscious of my positive interactions with them by contrast, and share them. I feel that this is fair and warranted. I tend not to divulge my negative opinions or insider information on people unless I feel like I am closely connected to the people I am telling in some way, via relationship or situation--this includes saying it to the person I'm talking about.
     
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  10. OP
    tfg345i4u5lw

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    Also one more question...

    If you are talking behind someone's back, doesn't that mean in reality you are actually talking in front of them?

    =)
     
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  11. the

    the Si master race.
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    Yes if you draw the line from their front, around the globe the long way, leading up to the talker.
     
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  12. Matt3737

    Matt3737 Similes are like songs in love.

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    I respect the right of other people to form their own opinion, both positive and/or negative, about my person and to freely share their impression with or without my presence.

    My actions speak for themselves and I feel fully capable of justifying them, whether rightly or wrongly, whenever necessary.

    I think the concept as such is not really the issue, but those that do so so pervasively that it reflects poorly upon themselves. We begin to consider it a behavior associated with emotionally instability when that person is not readily able to deal with their social conflict in a productive manner.
     
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  13. JGirl

    JGirl no chocolate flavored gum? wow

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    i wouldn't say something about someone that i wouldn't (or haven't already) said to their face.
     
  14. Colt

    Colt Community Member

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    I find talking behind people's backs to be un-constructive in any way. I try to avoid it, but can fall prey to it's trap.
     
  15. Elis

    Elis Permanent Fixture

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    I don't like the idea of talking behind someone's back, neither do I like the concept of gossip in general. I try to refrain myself from trash talking others when they are not around, and usually promote others to do the same.I don't mind people addressing issues, but it usually resolves in tasteless trash talk.
     
  16. Elis

    Elis Permanent Fixture

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    I tend to do this as well, even though I think I am more inclined to keep my negative observations to myself. I think you lose alot of perspective, and empathy, in general when you only try to see it from one side.


    edit: double post, my bad.
     
  17. barbad0s

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    they are talking shit about u

    [video=youtube_share;z3U0udLH974]http://youtu.be/z3U0udLH974[/video]
     
  18. SealHammer

    SealHammer Flying Quesadilla

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    I talk shit about forum members all the time.

    "i talk dirt about forum members all the time" - niffer, 2013
     
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    #18 SealHammer, Sep 17, 2013
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  19. Faye

    Faye ^_^
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    I haven't had time to talk smack about people lately. I don't even know anyone to talk about.

    I think this is a symptom of immaturity in school and sometimes college. Some people carry it over into the workplace, but I stay as far away as possible from workplace drama.
     
  20. Quiet

    Quiet i know nothing

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    I do discuss people in general with my close friends and random strangers here on the forum. Sometimes this involves discussing negative things about other people. This is rarely just to have a whinge or to complain. But sometimes it probably is that. More often it is to express what im feeling, thinking, become aware and sort it all out. I am grateful that i can do this.

    On the other hand i think there is a difference between this and gossiping maliciously about others. For example- (and yes i am now talking behind her back!) I have a friend who is just so nice and lovely. She's always helpful and generous. If i asked her for help she would be there asap. She is just one of those people! Our kids get along great. But it is really hard for me to hang out with her because she goes on an on about her husband and how much of a dick she thinks he is. Sometimes she is really mean and cruel about this. In short, i like her husband and i feel extremely uncomfortable listening to this, as well as generally listening to someone whinge about something. At first i listened, and tried to understand. I told her my opinion and told her how uncomfortable it was for me to hear her say terrible things about her husband who is also my friend. Then i brainstormed solutions for her problems and worked out ways for her to implememt them. But she has no wish or intention to change the situation. She just whinges and wants to feel bad. It is so annoying! Ive tried subtly changing the subject, and then even ignoring her when she goes on about him. Ive told her to not talk to me about this several times. I felt really bad last time i saw her. I had my other girlfriend over and we were enjoying relaxing in the sun with some cheese and wine. We planned to do this all afternoon and then have a relaxing evening of deep and meanigfuls. And then she just dropped in to my place randomly. I didnt know what to say when she turned up. i knew she was lonely and wanted to hang out- and probably wanted to bitch about her husband. She started to several times while i tried to divert the conversation back to less awkward issues. Totally wrecking the vibe of my cruisy afternoon! I ended up lying to her to get her to leave quicker- i told her that i had to go out soon. I felt really bad again. I hate lying and im shit at it. I think she knew i was full of shit. It was pretty obvious. I feel like ive tried to communicate with her and she just doesnt get it. I dont dislike her, i just find it hard to spend time with her because she keeps complaining about her husband. The worst part is, i know she really likes me and im very important to her. I havent contacted her for a while and i havent heard from her either. I dont think that ive dealt with this really well and i still feel bad about lying. But really i dont know how i could have dealt with this whole thing better. Ive been honest and clear about my boundaries. She clearly doesnt respect them. I think i may have to stop seeing her altogether because she really doesnt get that i completely dissapprove of her bitching. But i feel bad doing this because she really can be lovely. I dont like giving up on people. But i dont have time to sit around listening to whinging anymore
     
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