Sunday, March 31, 2019

INTJ and INFJ Pros and Cons in Relationships. Processing an INFJ/INTJ Break up ( Friendship.)

NOTE: This post is about more of an intimate INTJ/INFJ relationship- a close one. I know MANY INTJ's in a more acquaintance level way. For some reason we always find each other. INTJ and INFJ are an EXCELLENT match for brief or ebb/ flow engaging conversations. Generally, we easily get along. If  I can't figure out a person I am talking with that I am very interested in - they are usually an INFJ or INTJ. This also happens with INFP's ( automatic connection) but it's easier to type them right away. I can always tell an INFP from their unique expressions and intense feelings. Two  INFJ's do not last as long together for the most part but initially it's fun! I often can not recognize them immediately because I am so interested in the conversation and immediately drawn in. If they know their type and say they are an INTJ automatically my brain confirms, "Of course you are!" My paternal uncle, a couple aunts, some friends, my sister in law, a few of my professor acquaintances, my paternal grandmother (whom has MUCH in common with me and we get along fantastically!), and some second cousins are all INTJ's. We can have the best time when we are together- especially if we get on certain topics. As a general ebb and flow relationship it is one of the top personality matches for an INFJ and INTJ ...or in about 3/4th place. ENFP's are generally the best match for an INFJ marriage but honestly? Any personality type combination can work with a little hard work, constant communication, humour and kindness.

I just came out of a "long term relationship" -15 years- with an INTJ. For context we were deep soul friends on every level except physical who talked every day about everything for 15 years. ( CLICK HERE for the ending of INTJ and INFJ and the difference between my husband and I, and her and I.) As an INFJ myself, I felt this was a perfect opportunity to write out the pros and cons of an INTJ and INFJ relationship before time slips away at my inferior memory. This is from a VERY close relationship perspective (see the link above.) My son is also an INTJ and his nuances are different from my former best friend, so I think I can give a fair picture. Instead of using the MBTI descriptions (extraverted thinking ect) I am going to use Personality Hacker's (click Here) easier descriptions to illustrate the personality types, even though the MBTI has an approach to personality that I also am enriched from.

INTJ / INFJ Relationship Cons:

1.*It's interesting to me that the cons list can also sometimes correlate to the pros. For instance, both the INTJ and INFJ have a 3 year old process of Sensory. Which means exactly what it sounds like. Get either type into an overwhelming sensory situation and we will kind of act like a 3 year old in terms of dealing with it. Even if we are mature, that ability to process it all in an advanced way is not in our toolbox. It also means that when we struggle in life we can go into our Sensory as a way of escaping or coping. Thus, two people can enable each other's bad habits of hiding away, shopping too much, seeking out large amounts of sexual activity, food, drink, or other sensory habits. OR enabling each other in deprivation. Because the sensory drive also works that way, in which, we decide we can't deal with the sensory so we are strict with our diet, overexercise, become stingy, overwork, or deny, deny, deny. Two people with the same habits can allow the comfortability with that or encourage bad habits. So while the Pro list has this as understanding, the con list also has this as enabling.

2. INTJs and INFJ's share Perspectives taking as their main driver or cognitive process. Due to the fact that their co pilot functions are different, sometimes they can feel like they are on the same page but the nuances of their co pilot cause miscommunication. Harmony is an INFJ's co pilot so they will always be looking for meaningful ways to connect their perspectives to other people, to create a better life for all those around them with their information and to help heal the world and their small world as well. Effectiveness is the INTJ's co pilot and it is based on taking the information from Perspectives and trying to close loops, figuring out what works on a practical level to express on an outside level and make the world a better place. Both are similar in some aspects but both are very different in their application. Harmony does not like to always be effective. Effectiveness does not always have room for Harmony.

3. *Both types love to conceptualize but that in itself can become a loop. It's hard to recognize as well because it seems like it can be a good, healthy way of processing life. However, this can sometimes be a cause of pride (For example statements like "No one can do this better than I can" or "They can't see as well as I do how this will be or predict the outcome.") INFJs are lucky in that their co pilot Harmony checks in with other's emotional experience. INTJS are more distanced in their long term analytical ways, thus the relational aspect is a little harder. This is where the relationship also breaks down in communication because the two types can SEEM so similar but their emotional experience is entirely different. So while there is understanding, there is also miscommunication.

4*The ten year old process is vastly different for these types. INTJ is Authenticity or what FEELS right. INFJ's is the opposite of their co pilot as Accuracy or what IS true and right. They sound similar but the process is entirely different. INTJ is focused on conviction and INFJ is focused on distance. Plus, a ten year old is still growing in experience and should not be trusted at home for long periods even if they are mostly responsible and provide respite from life's demands. Thus, a ten year old process is the same for reliability and unfortunately an INTJ and INFJ, when relying on their ten year olds, can focus too much on their inferior processes and this is where most of their disagreements stem from. Both of them focusing too much on a ten year old process that should only be brought out occasionally to balance a bit of life but if over relied on causes massive issues. INTJ's become prickly and INFJ's can become mis communicative in the details that seem right to them but are not always accurate to others.

5* That T and that F. (Also see pros) INFJ's are often able to cross over to the "T" side a bit more. In fact many INFJ's often score close to a Thinker instead of a Feeler. One of my cons over time with my INTJ was that I became more in my head for many years. Which was natural for me, but around the 13th year my feelings, due to life circumstances, wished to be honoured more. She did not like this adjustment and felt that I was pushing suddenly. She felt pushed to express more than she wished to, which was valid for her. From her perspective she was feeling misunderstood and blown away when I didn't respond the way I used to. I felt like I wasn't being validated or valued for whom I was. We tried to adjust but after 13 ish years of being more of a Thinking relationship it was hard to adjust. She tried her best, she did become more emotionally expressive, but at times it felt too unnatural to her or aggravating. It was easier for me to go towards Thinking but parts of me that wished to be more Feeling, felt ignored/ pressured.

Pros Of An INTJ/ INFJ Relationship:

1.*Inferior Sensory as a 3 year old process can mean that both the INTJ and INFJ can understand each other's struggle in this area. (See Con list for the same point.) That understanding is rare in life because most of the world is made up of Sensors. Most of life's experiences are Sensory. Thus, when a type has it as an inferior struggle process, it is a breath of fresh air when another similar type can understand it.

2*Both INTJs and INFJs enjoy cerebral pursuits. Both types have the driver of Perspectives which means that they both prefer to find the deeper insights. Travelling this road together can be satisfying at a level they don't often experience elsewhere. However, their co pilots Harmony for an INFJ and Effectiveness are quite different and give diversity to how each Perspective plays out in real life which still makes the process interesting instead of boring. Which opens up a lot of fun, long conversations on other perspectives in life.

3.*Both types tie as the rarest of all personality types. Thus, finding another rarity is a gift of soul exchange for both parties.

4* IF used in a playful way, INTJ's authenticity function and INFJ's accuracy can enhance the relationship. There is a lot of ways these two types can have fun together but most involve an intellectual way of "having fun" that many other personality types may not love as much. These include sharing research, ideas, possibilities, plans for the future ect. We LOVED planning our budgets and discussing together, planning home decor and sharing pictures of the process, researching medical ideas and testing and aiding each other in our decisions. Pursuing natural health together, coming up with ideas of why other people didn't get along or trying to understand the concept of gossip. Sharing our favourite songs and texting them often. Watching our favourite shows and discussing character motivation and personality types. Talking about the future, our children's growths and struggles with Autism ect. Gaining understanding of the human psyche through psychology, philosophy and sociology research, discussion and application. Laughing at quirky stories and both of our social struggles, conundrums and weird interactions with people. Accepting the odd, the mundane, the physical sensory that most people do not talk about, and the profane. Dissecting religion, christianity, and upbringing. We both fully understood each other's backgrounds because we explained it ALL. We were able to discuss faiths, non faith stances, and any belief system within a neutral, non judgmental, non secretly motivated space provided to each other. Neither of us subscribed to one belief yet both of us had high values and ethics and a belief still in something bigger, thus it was easy for us to discuss the ridiculousness of many interactions, conversations and the way people try to control other people. That baffled both of us and it was always fun to have that understanding.

5* The T and F balanced each other out at times. Her thinking enabled me to explore more of that potentiality in my life. My Feeling helped her acknowledge emotions and be able to have more relationships in her life that were based on feeling due to her new understanding. My understanding of those who use Thinking as a primary go to deepened. It was easier for me to understand that emotional differences did not equal cold unavailability. My son also teaches me this. He FEELS deeply, but how he is able to access that emotional need and process it, is another story. He often needs me to give words to his feelings, and I often need him to validate truths, help me discover my own vulnerabilities, and he often strengthens my resolve. When working together, these two types beautifully balance each other out.

Processing the INFJ/ INTJ Friendship Break up:

We made our "break up" official last Thursday. I wrote a post about that HERE. I process best by writing. Also I have not had the energy to write for a long time, but I realized I was giving a lot of my energy to trying to keep up the relationship that was dying. My husband described it as "the exhausting way of feeding a fire that is ash and wishes to go out. It is possible as long you are constantly there with the kindling." My kindling was becoming both of our burdens. I am naturally exhausted from Anemia anyway, but that added pressure took away what little energy I had left for the rest of life. And I never realized that until it ended. "You can't feed a fire, can't feed a fire without a spark. This gun's for hire even if we're just dancing in the dark."- Ruth Moody or Bruce Springsteen.

I will admit that INFJ's tenaciously hang on to relationships, even toxic ones (which it wasn't but it was becoming that way.) I have learned boundaries in the last few years and more practice with endings has given me the ability to let go easier. I would not have agreed to an ending if I had not had the growth I did in the last decade. I was terrible at endings. It took me 14 years to get over some of my high school friends that I never saw again. It has only been in the last couple years that I am completely fine with those endings. But five years ago I lost another few relationships (family or friends) and those didn't take me long to recover from. And it's not because they were was just because I got better at accepting seasons, learning how to grieve, and becoming stronger during endings and hopeful new starts. I am a bit more stoic now. I tend to be better able to embrace the yin and yang of life. That said, I am still emotional being an INFJ Four Enneagram:) And when closure comes, I am able to have clear, concise boundaries or even end something I know is not healthy. See INFJ Door Slam HERE or If I Cut You Off Chances Are You Handed me The Scissors HERE. I also realized in my own way, due to some disagreements that went down and some issues with her children, that I also started closing the door and a few times I WANTED to door slam, but didn't and I am glad we had a little more time and that in the end, we both mutually decided it was time to be done. Since Christmas the song "Where do Broken Hearts Go" was on repeat in my home, but I didn't know why yet. Subconsciously I knew the beginning of the end was coming swiftly and the song applied. "Where do broken hearts go, can they find their way home? Back to the open arms of the ones who truly care. And If somebody loves you, will they always love you? I look into your eyes and I know that you still care for me..."- Whitney Houston.

It's time for dancing in the dark. It is also a good reminder that we all have our secret battles. Some of which we don't even realize we are fighting until they are done. Thus we can not know what a person is struggling with so to have grace for all seasons in life. Often we can't share until it is resolved. Or sometimes there are no words or the processing is waiting...We have stagnant seasons, seasons to share, flourishing seasons, and times of passing. There are middles, beginnings and ends. She was a large part of the middle of my life. Her ending will enable more beginnings. And vice versa. Maybe we will become close again one day? I know that will not be happening for at least six months if not for a long time because we both need to find life without each other. But maybe? Then again, maybe never. It is what it is.

15 years of an intimate emotional/ intellectual/ spiritual relationship with my friend gave me a platform for the rest of my life. BOTH of us became more accepting. We also accepted each other's quirks easily and that understanding was an invaluable gift. I don't ever want to replace her because it is impossible. She was so much of me, in many ways and no one besides my husband and children has ever, nor will ever, have that much access to everything that I am. But, that can also get exhausting and is hard to sustain long term. I am ready for relationships that give more space for awhile. I am ready to use my extra time for my husband, children and the friends that still love me and WANT me in their lives. Also, I want the relationships that thrive on ebb and flow, so that there are no clear endings or beginnings but there is just an easy going acceptance of closeness and distance.

However, she was the best thing that could have ever happened to me in my tumultuous twenties and the first half of my thirties. I truly believe our relationship helped build my foundation of self esteem. It would have been way tougher to become whom I am now without her unconditional support. Other than my husband ( and now children) I actually never felt loved and acknowledged in spirit the way she loved and acknowledged and accepted me. So many people have misunderstood me, called me "too much" or did not validate my sensory overwhelm or needs prior to her. She helped me understand that and OWN it. She helped me traverse my autism diagnosis, the early years of children with post partum depression, and the LARGE adjustments of becoming. I KNOW without a doubt, that life would have looked a lot differently without her. I would have been LESS. I would maybe have withered away without her there to constantly listen, process, acknowledge, dispute, research and provide a constant sounding board.

I know I was also the same for her as in her last email she sent me the song "Because You Loved Me" By Celine Dion and said that the accuracy of the lyrics was true to her. Which was a rare form of emotional expression. I listened and agreed (and was so honoured by that last expression of vulnerable emotion.) I was also her strength when she was weak, her voice when she couldn't speak, her eyes when she couldn't see and saw the best there was in her. We lifted each other up and gave each other faith in life. We truly became parts of ourselves we never would because we loved each other.

My son and I are both Autistic so we have that similarity and understanding too. (We both think the above pin is hilarious.) With my son, he is my truth seeker and my sounding board. If I need an honest opinion I go to him first. He gets a kick out of me and often laughs with an, "oh mommy, you are so adorable." He likes my vulnerable innocent expression because deep down he also has that mushy centre. We both value honesty. We both like to talk about ideas, research and possibilities. Yet, we probably have argued the most out of all my children in the past ( not so much since he has reached teen hood and is able to access his perspectives clearly.) Because we are both intense. We both feel strongly on matters and tend to not wish to compromise on our ideals. We both need schedules but how we go about them is entirely different. I am more spontaneous within my schedule and need to be the boss of how that goes depending on how I am feeling. He also needs to be the boss and prefers a more routine day to day rigidity. We both get on each other's last nerve that way and have to negotiate.

I find negotiating easier with my son because I am the parent still. He would probably say the opposite, although he is getting better and better at negotiating and leaving us both with excellent options. With my former bestie, I was getting tired of negotiating the last year and I think she was too. We were negotiating a lot instead of inspiring. Where as most of our relationship was based on inspiration beforehand. We both wanted to feel more love again. We both wanted to be able to have the freedom to focus on more without our attention constantly on negotiations. With my son, there is a different component. Also being male lends a difference. Growing up in the same home we also share more commonalities to make it easier. Our values are almost fully aligned. Plus a parent child relationship is different. There is more adaptability and less reliance on a partner sort of love and more focus on a working part of family life.

Would I do it all again? Absolutely. I will admit that I have already walked through a few phases of grief and probably will again. When she sent me that song and I listened to it, it took me 45 minutes on a drive to compose myself. I was A MESS. I had a crying hangover the next day. I've also been angry at some things. I have seen how we enabled each other now where as before I would never admitted to that. I see the blame and the pushing that she did to escape me and I finally realized it was time to be done. I held on longer than she wanted to and that does make me angry. She pushed to an end she wanted and some of how that went down triggers the anger part. But I pushed for her to feel and stay and I'm sure that triggers her anger part too. That said, that was only in the last few years. She wanted her family to be more involved, I wanted less. We wanted different expressions in a new season. I also made her angry by not understanding her motives when I easily did in the past because I have been tapping into my feeling side more fully again.

However, most of it was positive. Some of those habits will be tough to break. I think that will be the toughest part of all. We were a daily part of each other for the better part of 13 years and then for the other 2 years we were a weekly part of the fabric of existence. It reminds me of grief. It reminds me of when the harder parts came LATER. There was initial sadness but it was often coupled with closure, focusing on what was given, celebrating the life, and seeing how life will be different and being open to that change. But as the months go by the loss becomes evident. Even if it is what life gave and was necessary. It's still is loss. I have also felt relief, freedom and overall gratitude.

What will I be without her? That is something exciting to explore. On the flip side, it is also something that I can't imagine being without. Her lack of constant feedback will be a large adjustment. Life is full of choices within set experiences that are not up to us either. It is that ever fine line. We may have chosen a clear ending before it naturally happened but preventing natural decay was important for both of us. There are seasons for everything. "Loving you was worth the fall my friend. Didn't we almost have it all?"- Whitney Houston ( The rest of the song doesn't apply really.) Processing it will take awhile but already I feel set up for the beginning of a new season. The prevailing emotion is gratitude but I am trying to honour all the emotions, thoughts and perspectives.

"Looking back, on the memory of, the dance we shared, 'neath the stars above. For a moment, all the world was right. How could I have known, that you'd ever say goodbye, And now, I'm glad I didn't know, the way it all would end. The way it all would go. Our lives are better left to chance. We could have missed the pain, But I'd have had to miss the dance..."- Garth Brooks.

"It's something unpredictable but in the end is right. I hope you have the time of your life."- Green Day

Side note: My husband is an ENFP which differs drastically and I have written about in the Marriage and Partnership label.

For more thoughts on walking away = bravery check out this post:

For thought ons INFJ feelings (We know how YOU feel but we don't know how WE feel.) Check out this post:

Song choice: The Dance- Garth Brooks ( the video is a different version but still good)

Where do Broken Hearts Go- Whitney Houston

Post Edit: Her song to me was "Because You Loved Me" By Celine Dion and I think that definitely applies to how I did love her and was perfection in it's accuracy:)

I honestly think Green Day's "Time of Your Life" song applied's almost like the end of High School or some other large part of life when you KNOW things are going to be different, that you have to part even if you are good for each other, because life is demanding is kind of like that:


Anonymous said...

Awe it makes me sad 😢- C

Kmarie said...

Yea, me too. Change is sad, loss is sad, moving onward is sad. It's also hopeful too but I would be an idiot if I didn't acknowledge the sadness too :( Thank you for being sad for my loss- tis very sweet.

Ashe Skyler said...

I am very sorry one of your friendships ended. :( But I am glad you two were able to end it on friendly terms rather than becoming enemies. Silver lining to a dark cloud. There's no harm in taking a step back and being able to appreciate each other from a distance and send birthday cards and stuff on occasion. I've had to downgrade with a few people I once held very dear, and it's not that bad being an acquaintance, even if it feels really weird after that long period of intimacy.

Kmarie said...

Ashe; I’m so glad to hear from you! I’ve been thinking of you during this busy tax season but didn’t wish to burden you and thot the best gift I can give u is space but I’ve been sending you warm wishes! How is the family? Did you think - as an INTJ yourself that the pros and cons were a fair assessment? Would you add anything?
Thank you for your thoughts! You are right! It’s nice not to have any expectations and to wish each other well from afar! She’s definitely not my enemy tho I am embracing more anger than I’ve ever had at her but I know it will pass and I need to walk through that emotion to get to the other side. I still wouldn’t change the situation and I wish her so much joy despite!! I can’t wait to be at a more stable place emotionally from it all but the majority of the time I feel pretty grateful over all! It does feel weird. But weirdness can be good ♥️🤔💕thank you for your thoughts.

Kmarie said...

And If I am honest, the very things that made me angry are the things I am also grateful for because I would never have begun to allow distance and probably would have pushed even harder if I wasn't hurt soooo much the last couple years. But as it was, with each battles of the texts, I began to feel worn out, done, and ever closer to life without her...So in a way, her pushing and the way she made me angry...I also appreciate- because it was good every other way and when it was at the 13 year mark already it seemed like such an investment that it should last forever, so we tried to change it up, become less, but it wasn't working for either of us. So I can be grateful for the anger because even that enabled me to move on from a pretty good thing otherwise. I dont think it would have been as easy without her frustrating me the last couple years and without her pushing pushing pushing. So the facts that made me initially angry these last few days, I realized today I can be thankful for because we needed to move on. I already feel better about SO much and have way more time because I always thought of her and how to include her in everything and my processes ( for her it was slightly different) and whenever I go to that habit now I fill it with other things and realize I have more time. More energy. More gratitude. Thus, at this point acquaintance would even be too much- we were too close and needed a firm break. If I bump into her I will wish her well and our daughters have a connection so at least I will know she is alive and vice versa...but otherwise, not for the foreseeable future do I even see us being anything except for former besties and life journeyers whom shaped each others lives forever.

It's like the first relationship in LA LA Land without the intimacy of physical but that eventually they needed different paths in life and needed to leave each other fondly to do that...and saw each other years later with a grateful smile and a shared look of all the past but not much more. Its kind of like that. I used to think that was sad but I also loved who Emma Stones character ended up with. He reminded me of my hubby...and I still have my hubby- she got me through hard years with him but now we are at a better place and its time to give that extra to him that I gave to her...and now I understand his jealousy as I didnt realize how much I gave to her in thought, time and deeds. It was time. We both got each other through a lot but it was time we now give to something else...and our families now demand more too as they age and our marriages...We were TOO close in many ways which was fine for its season. And I am SO lucky I get to look back in my life and know without a doubt for the better part of 15 years I was loved and appreciated and known at a soul level most don't get...that I had an Anne and DIanna kind of kindred- the kind I always wished for. I HAD that. While I am not interested in repeating that kind of friendship for a long time ( maybe when I get into my sixties or something... if that day comes) I am eternally grateful that I got to know what that was like. It gave me so much for my future. Not only her, but the lessons I learned about myself, and who I was in the relationship. I realized looking back my capacity for giving, for accepting, for quirkiness, for patience ( which was a shocker! I didn't think I was patient but now I see I can be!) for determination, speaking love languages, understanding...practice that I got to be better in lesser forms now in life carrying on. I am SO ready for this next phase. At the same time, the range of emotions is felt and I am allowing myself up to a full month to grieve more deeply even if its mostly good.( Tho you can't put a timeline on grief but this grief is different because it came with a necessary ending- kind of like high school or growing up or having a's a grief for the old but excitement for the new!)

S said...

It was one of your most difficult post, topic- wise. When I was reading it, I thought - what a complex subject it is-"friendship ". Thank you for writing this- it helps to process a lot of complex feelings and issues.
I think that relationships and friendships break up because our basic "NEEDS" are always different and when these differences becomes too much, it is natural that we part. What we WANT from life, from friendships, all of our wants and desires just sometimes do not match. For instance, I do not like cold hearted stoic people ( although I am stoic sometimes, but not cold hearted). But for some people, it is ok to be like that. They don't like being branded as such even if we don't like them. What we are at the "core" of our being may not always match even if many of our interests and personality traits match.
My INTJ friend had a negative/traumatic childhood, health issues and also a bad marriage although she came from a very rich and influential family. These childhood traumas, trauma from married life and her failing health was too much for her to bear. Two years before her divorce, she gave birth to her child. Now, she is a single mom. In the midst of all this trauma, a good friendship may have been able to support her but she needed more than that. So finally, my friend went into radical spirituality.
So, although we were very good friends ( we never fought), she walked away from our friendship not because of me but she had much more difficult things going on with her life which she was not able to process. I have similar friends who do not or cannot process their traumas through friendships. Rather, they take up a career/job, travel the world, keep very busy with their kids or back to back activities, socialize on a superficial level by attending random parties or get togethers, without forming any deep relationships, etc.etc. to process/forget the pain within. Maybe, they don't need a relationship/friendship to feel good or deal with their pain.
It is ALWAYS something that we/they LACK and want to fill up- some want to fill up that void with friendships, some with their work , some with hobbies, some with only their own /close family, etc.etc. So, friendship, among other things is just a "coping mechanism" for all of us during times of stress. And stress can go on for years.
When is friendship is not a coping mechanism ? I don't know. I have observed that among men. Men have friends but they are not their coping mechanism.
Break up of friendship is like that of a coping mechanism that is no longer working. At least, this is my belief.

S said...

One of my childhood friends bonded with me through her interest in books. To me, she was a rare person in a small town where girls were more interested in boys and less interested in books. But after she got married, she started talking more and more about her children and hubby and there was no talk of books. I got bored by that friendship. Another friend was very balanced and understanding although we did not bond through books. She did not marry and we remained good friends but as years went by, she lost her ability to connect with me because she would mostly keep quiet and not express warmth. She was very cold and distant in all her communications with me. So, in these relationships, nothing bad happened , no arguments, nothing. But the "NEEDS" were different. Just like parental failure, it was friendship failure. I needed kindness/softness/warmth, also intellectual and creative energy from them. They needed the sensory world more. For them friendship was talking about their children, daily routine, or just listening without asking about me, or whatever is happening in their external world-just like passing time when bored.
So, just like you said - it was kind of negotiating instead of inspiring. They talked their parts and then when they finished, I talked my part. So, for both of us, the coping mechanism called friendship stopped working. It was only random talking without any genuine interest in each other.

Kmarie said...

S: You're welcome. And Yes, I agree that differing needs at different times of life require different aspects and people. Very good points. I honestly think INTJ and INFJ's need more space to process hard life things...and INTJ even more...and a balanced INXJ will know that they need support and that even if its tough emotionally it helps to share- at the same time they will ask and respect space. It is a tricky line. Sometimes I mistake my needs. But I usually do not express or share as much going through it ( except in select places) and do more so AFTER. And yes those are all good ways to deal with pain fairly healthily too ...Coping mechanisms can be a good thing...Hmmmm I dunno hmm that is a very interesting perspective.

I had a childhood friend like that too...they are the best...but yes they change... I can see that happening...and the boredom can also be a problem. Yes, I have had that situation too and you are right, the needs become progressed. augh. sensory. The worst for me...but sometimes in small amounts it is just what I need...but I have to be careful with sensory. Right now I am trying to get a little bit out of my head so I am incorporating a bit more sensory but have to be so wary about how I do that:)

Negotiating instead of inspiring is a crucial part to see. In any relationship. hmmmm yes. Waking up to that can be tough.

As always, thank you for adding so much to the conversation:)