Too much emotion. | INFJ Forum

Too much emotion.


Aug 30, 2008
Ok, so little bit of backstory: Dad died when I was 12, been fighting depression and anxiety for 15 years. Mostly by repression. Drinking, drugs, and the usual bottling it up. Which actually led to the anxiety. Crazy, not cool panic attacks. Which I've dealt with by staying away from things that cause them. Including strong emotions. Blah blah.

I'm in a relationship now. First serious relationship for me in over five years (not counting that quasi-relationship I'd been in for a decade or so (long story)). It's long distance, the kind of relationship I swore I'd never get into again, because it tears me up. But, it happened, and he's great. He makes me laugh, and smile, and he's smart and witty, and crazy and awesome, and I love him. He's an INTP, if that makes any difference.

Problem is, I'm getting torn up. It's going to be months before we can be living in the same city. It's seriously depressing me. Hurts like hell. And it's definitely wearing on the relationship. I'm down, and highly irritable; even the smallest perceived slight I take personally, and it stings. I try not to show it for the most part, but that just leads to me being more inside my head than in the relationship with him. I'm constantly aware of how not happy I am, and feeling wretched about how unhappy I must be making him.

I haven't been good at dealing with my emotions, obviously. Been in and out of therapy for ten years or so. I'm trying, really trying to be emotionally honest and open. But I'm so sick of it. Sick of hurting, and being angry and irritated. Sick of talking about how I'm hurting, angry and irritated. Should I be more open, and possibly push him away with my emo-babble, go with my natural defense of shutting down (which hasn't really worked so well this time around), try to find some middle ground.. I'm at a loss.

I'm to the point where I almost want to break things off. At least until we're in a better place to do something. But I don't want to. As uncomfortable as things are becoming with us, I just want to be with him, around him.


I know some of you are probably going to tell me to get a life. Hehe. A life outside the relationship. I have one, one that I suppose I've been neglecting of late. And I'll be starting a new job soon, so that'll provide some distraction. I don't even know why exactly I'm posting this here. Do I want advice, or just a friendly non-partisan ear? I could really use a hug. And a twelve-pack. >.>

Sorry for the newb ramble. I'm kinda losing it over here. =/
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Ouch! Feel for you hun, long distance can be painful, little misunderstandings are harder to resolve when you can't chat face to face and the lack of physical contact can certainly leave you feeling empty. It takes unbelievably good communication skills, understanding and a focus on the future to make it work until you can be together. I don't know any quick-fix solution.

Wanting to be open is a good but add that with distance and I understand it becomes difficult. Like you mentioned, distractions are probably the best thing you can do on a daily basis to keep your sanity. Are you able to take short trips to visit him? Nothing would help more than that in my opinion.

Cyber hug's the best I can do :hug:
Being more open about everything would definitely help.
INTPs are an understanding sort, he may not understand what your feeling but he'll figure it out and try to do what's best.
cognisant? wha? geez... haha these forums have been merging recently.

well, he's very likely to respect it if you want to keep your feelings to yourself... but at the same time there's a very good chance he'll love you more if you're open with him. If he's trying to get answers out of you, asking you what's wrong or if you're upset about things, then I don't think you have to worry about scaring him off by answering them. In fact it could very, very quickly draw you closer together--that's because INTPs hardly let out feelings to anyone, and (at least with me) when someone else lets them out to us first it seems like a precious gift. If he's not asking you to share them, though, he may be so oblivious that he might not even realize you're putting yourself out there for him--which will probably end up hurting you, because reciprocating feelings or handling them carefully is (I think) the thing we're naturally worst at.

The one thing that I can say for sure is that if you cant hold back your emotions completely and don't tell him they're there, problems are almost definitely gonna come up. Tough to explain... so I'll use an example. A lot of common knowledge things like, say, "don't make jokes about 9/11" are absolutely lost on us. It's not so much insensitivity... although it definitely is... so much as it is we're oblivious to a whole lot of things. If something doesn't bother us it's pretty much instinct to think it doesn't bother anyone at all. Those lessons from society don't sink in like they seem to with other people.

So if you're on the verge of breaking down into sadness, anger, and pain for some reason, it's almost certain that he'll step on your toes sometime. If you get really upset and seem to crack and he doesn't have any idea why, he's gonna think "what's up with her?" If he at least knows something's wrong, he'll probably go "oh ok... that somehow fits into why she said she was upset that once." If he knows exactly what happened and why it's wrong, he'll probably tiptoe around it as much as possible.

If he's a pretty ethically "fair" guy though (and most INTPs are, judging by the forum), the more you tell him, the better it ought to be. Openness is huge--when people hide who they are in a way that seems hypocritical (that is, almost always), and we notice, it instantly kills a lot of respect for the person. It's possible you'll scare him away with "emo-babble"... but way more likely that he'll figure it out eventually and be either angry or hurt that you didn't trust him to begin with... especially if he's asking you and trying to get you to talk about it.

...or at least that's the 2 cents of an INTP also frustrated with bordering sad, angry, and extremely depressed for many years. Value may be subject to mass inflation, since almost being carried away by my own emotions over a couple of things may have split me from the normal breed of INTPs.
Hi Astra! I'm not familiar with you, so I thought I'd give a belated welcome, a hug, and maybe my infamous box of virtual chocolates (hope you like and are not allergic!)

I have to agree with Frozen. Especially since he's kinda in the loop more than we are . . .
TP's are not the emotional type, and considering how well the INFJ is at hiding our emotions? I'm betting he is clueless! Don't be afraid to try it out-there is nothing more fulfilling than a relationship with emotional honesty, and if that is something you want in this relationship (I think I can safely say the INFJ soul has an intense longing for emotional honesty), you might have to be the initiator. But start out small. You're right-dumping on him will make it worse for you both. You could try feeling him out as well by expressing how you feel, and asking if he feels the same way, and how he deals with it (that way it doesn't seem to him like it's all about you).

Hope that helps (gives another virtual hug, hopes it isn't uncomfortable)
Like it has been said before I think INTPs are a good type to be with in that sort of situation because they won't get overwhelmed by your emotions like other types would. My boyfriend is an INTP and he's the one who supported me through 8-9 months of semi depressive state. I was often scared that I was gonna wear him out, but he just listened and even though he couldn't solve my problems he was there, ever supportive. I think he actually enjoyed taking care of me, in a way. He probably knows me better than anyone ever has because of that. Obviously he's really happy now that it's over, and so am I, but I don't know how I would have done without him.

Of course the distance is another obstacle (can you see him from time to time?), and not a small one, but I'm sure you will get through this. :hug: