Is it Normal for INFJs to have few "Close" Friends?


#1

ENTPs have NO close friends. Even our “best friends”. We have many people around us and people we “prefer” more than others but closeness is a foreign concept to us. Here’s why I think this is: Our Fi is repressed to the point of being extinguished yet our Fe grants us affable access to many different types but eventually our NT nature kicks in and we’re either running a blade through someone or leaving them to suffer in an unmarked grave we dug for them somewhere. And at that point, we could give a fuck.

But, moving away from that toungue-in-cheek, dark and dramatic sounding metaphorical shit. The INFJs I’ve known (not many) strike me as similar. But with one exception. They’ll have those few people they would jump in front of a bullet for, and, even though they despise them, they want to save people. My INFJ buddy on Trumpism said, “I understand people wanting to disrupt the system and set fire to the establishment. But you don’t demolish the building while you’re still in it”. I thought that was a cool fucking way to look at it. It also revealed that he hates all the bullshit but sees it as necessary because people are wrapped up in it.

Here’s some other things, I hang out with people more than he does and have a vast array of long standing relationships with different people. Some he would automatically punch in the face. But I don’t care about them. At all. I love the shit out of them like I do all life in the world. But I’m not jumping in front of no fucking bullets for anyone. If anything, I’ll design some kind of high powered radioactive vest for people to wear that disintegrates bullets (implausible :roll_eyes:) but I’m not sacrificing myself for their choices. If they don’t wear the vest. That’s on them.

I think people should handle their own shit. That would solve most of the world’s problems. But I also know some people are disadvantaged so I try and create all manner of tools to help them out but in a neutral way that evil fucks can’t abuse. Ha! Leaving my point.

My INFJ homie on the other hand. He’s beat the shit out of people to defend my honor. He forgives me every time I call him stupid and dismiss him and he talks to me for hours. Something he doesn’t do with anyone else. He loves the close members of his family but rarely chooses to see them. Another thing. We have fucked up senses of humor. We pick on each other about deaths in the family and our personal abuse. Somehow, it all brings us together in a loving way. I’m sure we seem psychotic from the outside. But we probably give some of the biggest crippling fucks of anyone you’ll meet. It simultaneously drives our will, passion and desire as much as it depresses and immobilizes us. So, is this just our weird idiosyncrasy or can other INFJs relate?

Edit: Mentioned “drive” twice. Didn’t like that.


#2

This is quite insightful. Ive always found a very strong underlying similarity/synchronicity between the two types. Really great and really awful to be in a relationship with. Most likely due to poor placement of Fi/Si.

It’s seems that ENTPs know well which type of people they want to have relationships with but just can’t do the relationship part well. Whereas INFJs often can’t figure out who to be in close relationships with, but know how to “do” the relationship part well.

ENTPs not having that basic sense of undying loyalty to anyone, not even the pragmatic loyalty of INTJs creates a lack of trust/unwillingness to get too close in other people. Sort of intuitively knowing this guy will throw you under the bus if he thinks that is the best solution to the problem. Si—family ties/long history (like if you become their favorite comfort food) can bond them to you but overall they are primarily just loyal to themselves. I think that is why they first date ISFJs when they are young as Si is the only method of bonding initially available to them. Whereas Fi in INFJs is portrayed so badly to most people that it creates fear and discomfort in other types due to its strong emotional and reactionary placement or them other types just don’t see the loyalty that is underneath and assume they are more like an ENTP.

I’m reading this book about how people have six moral tastes, like taste receptors, that they use to make religious and political choices. I’m pretty sure someone has done something similar with relationships—maybe the different receptors are loyalty/openness, stability/excitement, spending/thriftiness/, community/individualism, sacredness (love, nature, religion fall into this)and so on. I think that the two types end up with tastes that don’t fall within normal ranges.


#3

Haha! I like this analogy, but I don’t think I’d THROW someone under the bus. I might just not pull them out of the way. And I think we do have a strange type of loyalty to the few people we’ve managed to get anything resembling “close” to. But our loyalty is more toward ideas and we choose people based on their ideas. I find myself often dismissing the person rather than their dumb idea or thought (which I’m working on correcting) so this can sometimes include even my poor mother. It’s not fair or correct because we’re all capable of being wrong but ENTPs are highly idealistic. That said, I like being around INFJs because they’re mentally tough enough to understand me and put up with my shit but also emotionally sensitive enough to point out when I’m being an ass in the kind of pragmatic way you mentioned for INTJs. I also have a close INTJ friend and when we’re together we probably scare the shit out of people but he too can distill people’s emotional reactions toward me in an understandable way. I know without strong Fi it may be moot for me to say this but I think the distance from emotions ENTPs have can actually be a good thing. It helps us look at problems as outside of ourselves and keep calm during the storm. Even though sometimes…we can unfortunately be the storm. Thanks for your input! I liked it!


#4

This is gold. I very much liked the rest of your post too. I rarely do this on phone so don’t have the hearts, but you get one.


#5

I agree. I found this part to be very insightful!


#6

This didn’t make any sense to me…haha fuckin’ with you!


#7

Duality. Definitely.

What’s that book you’re reading?


#8

The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion. It’s a great book by Jonathan Haidt. Philosophical psychology but easy to read—can’t recommend it highly enough.


#9

Aha! I have that on Audible! Listened to it a few years ago. Thought the concept looked familiar. He talks much about the “rider” and the “elephant” in that book. I like him and Steven Pinker on how they approach topics from an evolutionary psychology standpoint. They’re a bit Bourgeoisie politically for me but insightful nonetheless (this probably sounds pompous but I can explain, I actually think it is them with the “pomp”). Also, I’ve found that audiobooks don’t work quite as well for me in imbibing the content so maybe I’ll buy the physical copy of the book and give it another read if you recommend it so highly! I think we just became friends! Haha.


#10

I told a friend once that it was more significant if I liked someone than if I loved them, which is the opposite of most people I think.

Yes, I often find myself having compassion, caring, and wanting to help people even if I don’t necessarily personally like them. It’s hard for me not to empathize with people and want them to do better. But the people I actually like unequivocally are very, very few. I’m not even sure if I like half of my friends sometimes, but I certainly care about all of them.


#11

@nirdre

I think you may just be (in some ways) the INFJ to my ENTP. Not in the teasing and romantically ironic way I’ve been playing with throughout our intertwining conversations along the way. But in the ways in which we think, express ourselves and reason about our environments (as far as I can tell).

As anyone who’s been paying attention can notice, I’ve been blatantly using my Fe in obvious and amateurish fashion. This is desperately needed at this point in my personal development as I was starting to become jaded, more cynical than is healthy and downright just plain dark toward the human species. I even started referring to people outside of myself as “humans”. Humorously at first, implying that they were somehow different or “other” than me. Then I noticed I was starting to believe the gag and use the term unconsciously…scary!

So, being the inquisitive fellow I am, I began to look inward, borrowing from philosophical and psychological contexts and methods I have acquired along the way in the form of Myers-Briggs, Jungian typology and concepts of the unconscious, Huxleyan elements of the Perennial Philosophy, Poetry, Novels, Movies and Art (Dostoevsky, Twain, Kafka, Yeats, Eliot, Ginsberg, Gilliam, Scorsese, Burton, Surrealism, Dada, Bach, Glass and others), The Enlightenment, The Renaissance (Rosicrucianism in its mysterious form of covering a few epochs as arising from Paracelsus, projects funded by the Medici family, The Corpus Hermeticum, Oration on the Dignity of Man, Marsilio Ficino and others echoing as far back as human history itself from Sumerian and Egyptian mythology leading to Orphism, Gnosticism, early Coptic Christians and Sufi Muslims, all ostensibly borrowed from Zoroastrian and Kabbalistic beliefs - at least in the Western world - truly saddening however our arrogant and prideful ignorance of the East, where I’m just recently learning about a pre-modern Persian and Arab Enlightenment that took place seven centuries before our own whom we can thank for such terms as algebra, algorithm, cipher, et al), Esotericism (alchemy, magic, incantation), Mysticism (East and West), Religion (Thelema, Theosophical Society, Satanism and more), History and Science (Theory, Logic, Quantum representations of space and time in mathematical abstractions - that I somehow understand in their relative application but can in no way calculate internally or externally in form i.e. calculus, geometry and linear algebra, unless related back to physics and chemistry - and how these quantum realms not only correlate to, but are directly responsible for, all of humanity and its metaphysical speculations on the collective consciousness of the Universe, including the Universe itself, while, also realizing at the same time, we have come no closer to understanding as we still describe the powers operated on by quarks to bond heavier particles and eventually atoms that we can interact with in the physically tangible world that we nascently consider “practical reality” as, “the weak force” and “strong force”; to me, this is tantamount to saying; “an object at rest stays at rest”, “opposites attract”, “objects in motion stay in motion unless acted on by an opposing force” all of which Hermes Trismegistus dictated to the metaphysically inclined prophets and intelligentsia of our ancestors long before Newton began his trite utterances while deliriously tasting Mercury. Newton was heavily into Alchemy and Mysticism as anyone familiar with his works and biography would know. He was a brilliant mathematician. But merely a mimic when it came to Science. Hence my humble irreverence.

Howbeit, of all of these schools of thought, modes of intelligence and stores of knowledge we are concerned with here, alas, it is not the Scientist nor Mystic that I laud in vaunted esteem above all of human creation…

No, no, no. Not at all. Ladies and gentleman! This honorific and supremely necessary privilege belongs to the mantle of the Philosopher. From Titans of thought throughout time such as: Thales, Heraclitus, Socrates, Confucius, Lao Tzu, Averroes, Meister Eckhart, Machiavelli, Francis Bacon, Descartes, Locke, Voltaire, Nietzsche, Lord Russell, Karl Popper and Chomsky, to the much less known perceivers of the unknowable such as you and I. While philosophy is the greatest feat of human awareness in its purity of questioning the obvious and mundane to probe into its finer first principles; it is simultaneously reserved for the scholar, intellectual, poet and plebeian alike. It originated, envelopes and overlaps all of the thinkers and the thinking described above.

This strange cataclysm of thought presented here is not merely to masturbate the mind. It is to present outwardly my desires from within. To be known, understood, appreciated and respected as I reciprocate eternally outside of myself toward everyone else in like-manner as evidenced by my desire and will to explore all of humanity in lovingly analytic isolation and together with the object of my deep and curious obsession as reflected within.

To tie it back to your statement @nirdre. It is better to be liked by me as I find it infinitely better to like other people. My love for humanity and the eternity we inhabit is a base truism. A fundamental fact. A metaphysical reality. It’s a given that cannot be acquired, earned or taken away. To know that I love you puts you in the same company as Gary Busey.

But for me to LIKE you. That’s a challenge! A challenge I never make easy even for myself. There’s too much to explore! And if you’re not interesting I don’t have much to like.

Nonetheless, to counteract this bleak attitude toward people I have begun to meditate, practice the very mysticism I intellectualize so that I can experience the revelations firsthand instead of remaining fascinated by them only secondhand. Also, I’ve decided to seek out implementation strategies for my Ti to better develop my Fe which includes, flirting, joking and sparring with you fine people here and elsewhere. As well as reading, writing, drawing… fuck it. Everything! What better way to explore the Universe than to be it!

And FTR, please do not take any of this pedagogical display as pontification of ultimate knowledge or intellectual theatre in order to demonstrate my mastery. I have none. There’s no possible way given our restricted and contrived concept of time for me to be able to humanly imbibe all of the intelligence I have - and am aware of - at any level as to be considered “expertise”. I’m just getting started, albeit, I am an intellectual pin-ball that bounces around ingesting information and connecting it all together from myriad sources within a universal context that could be considered my intellectual confines. There is a guide and rubric to this sage madness, even if solely governed by intuition as filtered through mental absorbtion.

I first became interested and aware of this site after some introspective and prospective Googling brought me to @Blake’s article ENTP is at Play in the House of Gemini a few years ago.

Well hey now, not only did I feel this article understood me in a way I didn’t even understand myself (I laughed throughout reading it). I’m also a GODDAMNED GEMINI!

It took me revisiting the site several times over the next few years to begin getting involved because of all of the astrology. Which I don’t denigrate. Merely just don’t understand. Also, my atheism has a natural aversion to such concepts as I tend to think these overly complex ways of analyzing the elemental and planetary Universe needlessly violate Occam’s Razor. I’m the same way politically. I’m an anarchist. Simply because there is no man-made system that isn’t anarchic to its core. Who rules the rulers? What regulates the regulations? Needless to say, I’m equally fascinated by these institutions and as with everything, seek to understand them well. It’s this long arc of knowledge I’ve acquired over time which makes stronger the opaqueness of the cosmic thread I see uniting the vast tapestry of our Cosmos itself which we glisten across like the dancing light of a spider’s web. Ni Dieu. Ni Maitre.

You see, my applied Ti is something I developed very early on at the risk of my Fe and at the cost of my Fi. Who could enumerate and explain all the plausible reasons this may be? But over time, it’s hardened me and made me lose that younger part of myself that used to be poor and humble yet wealthy in my compassion and understanding toward the human condition. It didn’t remove it (it can’t be erased any more easily than my birth marks) it just became hidden from me. I’m happy to be finding it again. And, I also see my evolution as a human completely necessary (perhaps inevitable) to begin self-actualization at this infant form of my development. If I claim to have knowledge of anything in this forum, or elsewhere, and it comes across as terse or arrogant, understand, that this is not knowing in its final form, but merely the ledge on which my knowing rests.

This was all to say, I feel inspired and enlightened by the people in this Maze and enjoy every one of you. I think myself no better or worse than anyone, as most of you I am actually learning from (it almost feels like stealing). I want to compete and learn with everyone in an effort to “like” more people :slight_smile:.

@Blake and most (if not all) of you INFJs have that piercingly accurate and sanguine Fe I need to enhance and recalibrate internally (with help) to feel whole. But, in the infinitude of that all too familiar dualistic form, I reverberately (yup, made that word up) have that strong and penetrating Ti you all need to take those metaphysical stirrings and base realities you just, “know in your bones to be poetic veracity!” regarding the reality of the world and make them understandable as to be ultimately useful to existence. I want to help you save everything!

That’s all!


#12

I saw this discussion on my mobile phone while away from home and wanted to share something as well when back. I’m back now but have shitload of work to do so when I started reading these posts a mild psychosis kicked in. Because I shouldn’t be here at all, clock’s ticking and I’m just procrastinating. Yet I need a dose of Fe. It feels good to write something. And this topic is something I though a lot about in the past.

I’ve got a Facebook account for ten years. I nearly deleted it a couple of times. The pros of doing that are obvious to me and I will most likely terminate my account eventually, but then there are some little things that come in handy which keep me from doing so. So every time I have this dilemma, I end up deleting more than half of my “friends”. I’d have at least 700 of them right now, most of them from my youthful years, but I have only 150. “Only”, because that’s not much in FB standards. But I’d say it’s still too much. However, all of these remaining 150 people bear some meaning to me and I don’t want to get rid of them. Meaning, that if I’d leave FB, I’d inform every one of them and suggest to keep the possibility of contact outside FB.

But in truth, I only have three friends. The true ones. The ones I consciously value as such. And FB has no part in that. And three is just enough for me. I’ve put a lot of effort in each three of these friendships over the years. A lot of eye-to-eye. A lot of old-school correspondence parallel to that. A lot of soul exchanging.

I’d say ONE true friend would be enough. But I have EVEN THREE. I often feel blessed for this reason alone. For example, when I’m really down, I just take a small “letter book” I’ve received from my friend and his wife some time ago as a gift. The principle of that book is very simple. Every day, for thirty days, they would write something to me. Anything. One day he, another day she, and so on. It’s beautiful. And magical. How the love of friends can uplift. I’d rather have this, and this only, than not have this, but have many friends who doesn’t really count.

So I’d say, yeah, it is normal for INFJs to have few “Close” Friends.

I’m pretty much self-sufficient and can be alone for enormous amounts of time, but these few special people in my life ARE my life. I wouldn’t be myself if I’d lose them. The pain would be devastating. A part of my soul would die.

One of my friends is INTJ. Another is INFJ. And then there is this INFP friend, whom I value for rather different reasons, whom I chose to value a long time ago. Even though he doesn’t grasp me in toto, he knows a lot about me in a way no INTJ or INFJ would ever know. There’s always some serendipity to be expected when I’m with him.

So these three people I hold my closest friends and love them enormously.

Also, eight years ago, when my life was making a turn, I’ve met my INFJ mentor. A prominent mythologist and a kick-ass dude. He’ll soon be 60, so it’s a different kind of relationship. I’ve never called him my mentor, nor he called me his student, but we both know this is the archetype that was constellated. In a way, we’re best friends as well. Back when we were just beginning to really know each other, he lent me a big sum of money which I desperately needed for my studies. I didn’t ask him for that. One could joke, that he bough my love. Well, I do love him.

Then there is an ENFJ girl I know for ten years, who is like a sister to me. Different kind of depth, but a true friendship nonetheless. There’s little I wouldn’t do for her. There was a time when I could have abandoned our connection, but again, I chose to cherish it. Consciously. And the trust we’ve build is rewarded in all kinds of confessions, which every INFJ so values. I feel like a vampire sometimes, soaking in all those intimate ENFJ-ish stories, but the inner friend is always first in line. I choose to love her too. Not necessarily to always like her, and for sure not to fall in love with her. I just choose to be present when she needs me. It’s something historical as well. We witnessed each other’s ups and downs, the maturing of our selves, and this is a bond worth keeping.

And family of course. I’m very happy when I’m with them. Always. I’m sure it has to do with the fact that I have the luxury of being alone for as long as I want to.

Jesus, this came out as some kind of a confession. It feels good though. :fire:

See, @LifeExamined, you berserker, your question turned me on this time.
But it’s a limited switch, a gnostic spark and time is up for now. :new_moon_with_face:


#13

Why not deactivate it? That’s what I do. It keeps your account but not active. Then, I just sign in maybe once or twice a year and deactivate it again. I’m very much against the over indulgence of social media. Hence this being the only forum I’ve ever joined.

Ahh. Yes! Can’t say this didn’t put a smile on my face. :grin:


#14

Because I’m a junkie.
Until I won’t be.


#15

That’s awesome! I can’t beleive you read the book. There is no question that he is a bit pompous—that’s typical of elite professors. I don’t know if you remember the part about 9/11 and him wanting to put up an American flag but since it isn’t “done” among professors, he put up a United Nations and American flag bumper sticker side by side?

What did you think about his argument against health insurance and the can of peas (other than for major hospitalizations)?

Didn’t you think the comment about the reduction in lead in gasoline being related to the drop in crime in the 90s being a bit too much?

Definitely friends now!


#16

Editing this post after reading the Te ID thread: This word vomit strikes me as Te motivated Ti showing off—that’s why I thought it was funny as I stated below since I’m relatively immune to Te. I think @sups has the definition of Te right in his first comments. It’s no more attractive than Fi ID but easier to disguise with pretty Ti.

There is way too much that is interesting and really funny in this post. I know it isn’t addressed to me, but two things: Did you read Blake’s article about love and understanding? Your whole love versus like could use a finer definition of love that would make it more interesting. I am curious as to how ENTP define their general love toward the world.

Also, I would be interested in book recommendations on early religions.

And finally what do you think about science vs philosophy in terms of the Big Bang theory and Plank time, etc? I think it is pure philosophy and thus more interesting, but also less factual.


#17

Haha. Yeah, this example is one of those things that also reminded me of Pinker. Pinker makes some similar demonstrations in his book The Blank Slate.

Don’t remember this one…

Haha. MAJOR stretch. But I don’t remember the specifics of this argument however I remember hearing similar claims (it’s been years since I listened to the book).

No. Not that I remember.

I promise to explain this to you eventually. ENTPs get all weird with explaining this kind of stuff so I’d rather wait till I’m sitting down somewhere quiet to do it.

I think all Science is metaphysics. Some people are more cunty than others. Your perception of my cuntiness is correct. But it’s all done in good fun (on my end). Glad you’re immune to it!


#18

BTW. Definitely showing off. But I also wanted to see if anyone was down to talk about these kinds of things. Seems you might be, which is cool.


#19

One last thing. Somewhere you stated that ENTPs don’t have empathy but I can’t find it right now, nor do I have the motivation to (was it in your now edited post?). But, I’d like to contest that and correct it in the post I’ve promised you. I think we’re very misunderstood types. And even if it’s not that; I’M misunderstood. Individuals are more than their four letter types and I’m certain I have empathy. Just not the kind most others can necessarily relate to which I think is such a good fucking thing for everyone. Emotions for no reason and the messiness of them all drain the fuck out of me. I think my empathy extends much further than given credit for so people can’t see it with their nearsighted vision.

Know the expression, “Miss the Forest for the Trees”?

I think I miss the Trees for the Forest…


#20

The History of Western Philosophy -Bertrand Russell
Although a primer, and largely about it’s relationship to theology, there are so many good sources referenced on religion that your reading list would be infinite.

The Elementary Forms of the Religious Life -Émile Durkheim
Beautiful book.