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Thread: Need help typing this man (ISTP/ISFP?)

  1. #1
    Member Confetti's Avatar
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    Question Need help typing this man (ISTP/ISFP?)

    I recently posted another thread regarding this particular person, but as I've been reading more I'm starting to think he may not even be that type. He is my partner of nearly 4 years and we have a young child together, so its really important for me to learn how to communicate with him or at the very least understand him. He refuses to take a mbti test (with any serious intent anyway), so I self typed him as an ISFP.

    The original description that convinced me he was an ISFP was this one: http://www.personalitypage.com/html/ISFP.html
    I agree strongly with everything there except: "ISFPs are extremely perceptive and aware of others. They constantly gather specific information about people, and seek to discover what it means. They are usually penetratingly accurate in their perceptions of others." and maybe "They need space and time alone to evaluate the circumstances of their life against their value system, and are likely to respect other people's needs for the same." The reason for the latter may just be because he needs less alone time than I do and thus comes off as clingy.

    He is a musician (of nearly every instrument as well as vocals) and extremely naturally talented, but humble about it and never gives himself enough credit for his talents. He's actually a great slight of hand magician as well, but I've watched him completely fall apart once after he messed up a trick and thought I noticed. He can't be in a band or get along with band members for long periods of time because he's such a perfectionist to the extent it wears others out in the group. He won't even go to a jam session unless he's practiced daily for hours on end. I've also watched him walk off stage of a paid performance because he missed one note (no one noticed). He acts like everyone should just understand and be ok with his behaviors because he wasn't "feeling well/had a stomach ache", (which I know wasn't true but he uses that excuse all the time).

    I don't necessarily agree with everything about the ISTP profile on that particular website, HOWEVER, when I was listening to a personality hacker podcast on ISTP's recently I felt convinced maybe he is an ISTP.
    A few ISTP things that describe him perfectly are:
    -ISTPs are loyal to their causes and beliefs, and are firm believers that people should be treated with equity and fairness. Although they do not respect the rules of the "System", they follow their own rules and guidelines for behavior faithfully. They will not take part in something which violates their personal laws. (Wouldn't even talk about or consider a bank loan once because it violated his personal law of "all banks are evil and cause of all problems in the world".)
    -An ISTP who is over-stressed may exhibit rash emotional outbursts of anger, or on the other extreme may be overwhelmed by emotions and feelings which they feel compelled to share with people (often inappropriately). An ISTP who is down on themself will foray into the world of value judgments - a place which is not natural for the ISTP - and judge themself by their inability to perform some task. They will then approach the task in a grim emotional state, expecting the worst. (I've seen this over and over and over again.)
    -Their relationships are often built around shared interests or activities rather than extensive conversation. (We're gamers, even met over WoW. Activities we actively pursue together are reading, gaming, watching documentaries together and listening to podcasts. However, we talk about them very differently. He says that he enjoys fishing, biking, hiking, and yoga - but we've only hiked a few times and the only constant is his yoga.)
    -Tact and committing to social contracts are a huge weakness.
    -Even though they are sharp introverted thinkers they aren’t too big on theories. If a theory has no visible application in real life it won’t hold an ISTPs interest for too long. (He despises when I go into theories of things, says he's not interested and wants concrete proof even after I tell him that I have none it's just a thought I had.)
    -sometimes too independent and disrespectful of rules or even laws
    -not naturally in tune with what others are feeling
    -because they live “one day at a time”, they might have problems with long range planning and commitment. (His friends and family are so used to him blowing off social commitments that they've come to expect he just won't show up. We'll make plans and when the time comes he'll decide against and say he's just not feeling good. Won't even tell people he wont make it because he feels as if they should just "understand".)
    -can sometimes be harsh and mean to others, usually without intent

    I'm sure there are many more things I'm forgetting to add, but feel free to ask any questions necessary to help me figure this out.

    SIDE THOUGHT: I'm an extremely passive, easygoing person. Maybe because of my adverse childhood or maybe its my wiring, but I just don't care about things people do to me as much as I probably should. I get over fights pretty easily, and though I'll analyze them in my head and play out different scenarios over and over looking for solutions, I don't actually feel "hurt" as much as confused and perplexed. I've been told by my close female INTJ friend that his behaviors are emotionally abusive. She hates him and he thinks shes a bitch so at first I didn't give it much credence... Till my long distance INFJ friend also said something a few months later... now I'm seeing a pattern so I start looking things up. I find that a lot of what I'm reading about regarding emotional abuse is also just descriptions or weaknesses for his particular type, or seem to be related to his personality. So now I'm wondering what to think, is it emotional abuse or can I figure out how to understand him and communicate in a way that could preserve our relationship?
    Some examples are:
    -They regularly demean or disregard your opinions, ideas, suggestions, or needs. (He's referred to my mbti talks as "psycho babble", and once even patronized me by saying, "Look, I understand some people need religion to survive and astrology and this is just what this is for you, it's just not my thing.")
    -They belittle and trivialize you, your accomplishments, or your hopes and dreams. (I really want to go to college more than anything, he knows this. He's never said anything but "yeah well if they would just make college free then we can all go back. He makes statements like "Yeah I'd like to go back too but I have to work for slave wages". (Hes dropped out and is 7 yrs older than me) Also recently got a job working on an art mural that I'm really excited about, I'll get paid $700 at the end. All he can do is criticize it and aask about gas expenses (minimal) and basically make me feel like it's not a good idea.)
    -They try to make you feel as though they are always right, and you are wrong. (But he does that with everyone...)
    -They accuse or blame you of things you know aren’t true. (I know this happens or happened a lot in the begin, but can't think of great examples atm.)
    -They have an inability to laugh at themselves and can’t tolerate others laughing at them. YES. Everything is offensive and taken critically.
    -They make excuses for their behavior, try to blame others, and have difficulty apologizing. (It's always someone else, the way society is set up, or just not his fault. He will apologize for things though, but it pisses me off because that just seems like an easy way out.)
    -The repeatedly cross your boundaries and ignore your requests. (Do I do this by trying to talk to him about my psychology interests even though he told me hes not interested? This might be me actually...)
    -They are emotionally distant or emotionally unavailable most of the time. (Well, so am I technically...)
    -They play the victim and try to deflect blame to you rather than taking personal responsibility
    - They resort to pouting or withdrawal to get attention or attain what they want. (I think this is what he's doing when hes playing sick all the time...)
    -They invalidate or deny their emotionally abusive behavior when confronted.

    Ok, so that was a long side note.
    Last edited by Confetti; 07-22-2016 at 12:30 AM. Reason: Needed to add a new part.

  2. #2
    Hasta Siempre Madrigal's Avatar
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    INFJ.
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  3. #3
    Member Confetti's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Madrigal View Post
    INFJ.
    Ok, I'll look at that! Can I ask what makes you think that? He just doesn't seem intuitive the least bit...

  4. #4
    Member Confetti's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Madrigal View Post
    INFJ.
    Oh. I think you may be right, actually. This is too hard.
    I originally thought ISFP because he said hates being boxed in or typed like this...

  5. #5
    Senior Member Senseye's Avatar
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    All that bumpf about him not being tactful, not committing to social contracts, being emotionally distant, not in tune with what others are feeling does NOT sound like any F type I have ever known.

    F's are usually all about other people and feelings and relationships and such. They usually only get real pissy when they decide *you* aren't paying enough attention to their emotional needs and way *they* feel about things. Which as an INTP you probably won't be.

    So based on what you have said, I think ISTP might be right.

  6. #6
    TJ TeresaJ's Avatar
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    I can see both.

    My best friend in high school was an ISTP. She literally did not care at all what other people thought of her or what their concerns were or even if they understood her. We had a lot of shared interests, similar senses of humor, similar lack of caring for the opinions of our fellow students, so we were practically joined at the hip. (I can't watch Ghost World because it hits too close to home.) Then, when our interests divulged, she was 100% done with me.

    My ex-BIL is an ISFP, and he does not sound like your description at all. He's really warm and kind-hearted. Also a huge flake, but he would feel bad about it. Not a perfectionist at all.

    ...On the other hand, my ISFJ complication does exhibit a similar sort of emotional volatility to what you describe. He also can be extremely emotionally abusive at times... With him it's more in the sense of over-reacting to perceived slights, and me having to walk on eggshells. ...There's actually a lot I could say about that. To be continued.

    But for now I will say that pinning your man down to an exact type is less important than coming to a fully rounded concept of his personality. It is useful to try to label him and understand him, but that label can be ISxP (I don't see N at all; sorry @Madrigal). ...Or my sister, for example, I always think of her as INFJ, but she's probably really an xNTP, she just seems very F and very J compared to me.

    Also, have you looked into Enneagram? I have a lot of problem with it as a fully realized system, but I think that it does look at different things from MBTI and it can be useful to put the two together.
    Too bad, Lady Une. You were far too lenient.
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