I am an only child and being an INFP with two ISFJ parents can be difficult at times.
Let me first break down who ISFJ’s are as parents and then relating it back to how that affected me.
They want to have a safe, stable environment filled with love, care, and support. Meaning they won’t just jump into parenting until they can provide this. My mother and father waited five years after marriage to have me and my mother has always worked for her stability in her job her entire life.
Being traditional with clearly defined roles as parent and children. This came into a play quite a bit with my father. As he would always remind me that he was the father, relating it back to the traditional role of a father. They see their job as to impart wisdom and values on their children. Once again, I would get many talks about how to act in public and what they did as a kid/young adult.
As I am noting from 16personalities.com they so clearly lay out, “What many ISFJ parents may not realize is that more independent children often reject the seemingly overbearing love and support that make ISFJ personalities such wonderful parental figures.”
This could not be more true. I always felt that my parents cared too much. Always wanting to know what was going on in my life to an overwhelming extent. As a very private person I hated being asked this all of the time. I felt very controlled and sealed off as a kid, as if I had really strict over-protective parents.
“All the while, ISFJ parents must ensure that more dependent children, who are willing to lean on all of this care and support rather than rebel against it, do not take these admirable qualities for granted, neglecting their own independence entirely.”
However being an INFP I fall into both of these quotes. I am independent on some matters but also very dependent on other matters. I am extremely lazy and hate logistical things, meaning that my parents would often do way more than they should. Helping me with my homework, getting me things all the time, taking care of all the important things.
As the article explains children can sometimes exploit their parents, playing mind games and throwing tantrums. As it is hard for ISFJ’s to put clear boundaries sometimes. Meaning I was never grounded, the worst I got was a sending to the corner or bedroom. But most of the time is was just a threat that I would eventually get my act together or go around as well.
This is not meant to bash the ISFJ’s as you can see I am opening myself to a bunch of faults as well. Mostly as a child I never felt as though my parents understood me. Explaining how I felt wasn’t easy as I never felt like my parents were truly understanding me even if they wanted to. They would give advice on times I just wanted them to listen and this became very tiring as a child and adolescent.
Since they are S and not N I feel is the major separating term. My mother and I would get in huge fights last year, not even getting each other when fighting. It became so exhausting trying to explain why I was hurting. Because I usually let so many little things slide until it just becomes too much and I explode.
Now that I am in college and live on campus things have gotten much better. With my dad is was a fight over something “silly” every once in a while. However, although they are both ISFJ’s my mother would always get over me talking back to her quicker than my dad would. He would go be stubborn by himself for a day while my mom would get over it in an hour.
Overall, they are good parents but when it comes to INFPs they can be extremely enabling to our laziness and over bearing with our need for space.