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INTJs as parents? None
Old 07-16-2011, 01:44 AM   #1
Foxglove
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I'm an INTJ, but neither of my parents are. I have read that INTJs can often seem cold to their children and aren't naturally good nurturers. Yet statistically, INTJs have a pretty high marriage rate and probably have a lot of kids.

I wonder about this myself. I enjoy being with children when I develop relationships with them, but I'm not naturally good at reaching out to them, and I'm not always the best empathizer.

So I ask: what are the benefits and challenges of INTJ parenthood?
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Old 07-16-2011, 01:58 AM   #2
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Benefits:
Many INTJs usually understand the real nature of a problem. Therefore, if they've spent the time studying the topic, they usually know what to do (and not to do) and when to do it, in order to make their child happy, strong and self-reliant individuals in their society.

Challenges:
I do not foresee me ever wanting to hug my future children.
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Old 07-16-2011, 05:00 AM   #3
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I have fairly young cousins and I've always been affectionate and caring towards them. I don't think I'd have a problem, it's just whether I could deal with the draining nature of having to look after someone all of the time. I think I could fully emotionally commit to them, but I'd only have one child.
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Old 07-16-2011, 06:15 AM   #4
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Depends on the INTJ. There have been reports that INTJs have been warm towards their kids.
And there have been the other extreme, where INTP kids have been produced by INTJ parents and the like.
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Old 07-16-2011, 06:29 AM   #5
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In a bit aloof towards my kids. I love them dearly and I do everything I could do for them. In any event, my little one is spoiled to death, but I do expect her to excel in school. I'm pretty strict when it comes to education. I have notice that more often than not I get angry with my little one but I think a lot has to do with the fact that I am a single parent and I have a very busy schedule trying to keep it together for us. Also, not having a support group of trusted individuals who could watch her for a few hours or even a weekend so I can have time out to do other things has added pressure.

In any event, I consider myself a good parent, but I find it very hard to deal with sometimes, mainly because I have more to do in a day than I can fully handle and after a long day at work I miss having a bit of peace for at least an hour to sort things out. My baby boo is certainly not INTJ, she is leechy, requires full attention, and seems unable to entertain herself unless I'm with her. that however is going to change soon as I'm introducing new methods of discipline (butt spanking) because lately she is being a bit to disrespectful and I've never spanked her, always tried the passive time out approach, taking things away, but none of those worked, so hopefully this one works.

Thatnsaid, for those looking into parenthood, I would say if you're young, wait first, there are to many items that will flip your life around. Focus on finalizing your studies, getting your career in place, and financiallyn stable to handle the preasure that comes with kids.
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Old 07-16-2011, 05:30 PM   #6
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I have three: a son (the eldest) and two daughters. We are not "touchy feely" at all, but we have very good relationships, and the children enjoy each other. They are all happy and successful.

Our interactions were never built around recreation; we were always doing things that had some longer-term purpose. While they do enjoy "playing", they are all pretty goal-oriented, and expect a return on time invested.
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Old 07-16-2011, 05:35 PM   #7
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I'm not a 'touchy feely' type. Seems to have worked OK for him, he didn't want to be touched from the time he was able to support himself upright. He's a bit more cuddly now (at 5), but still not clingy like a lot of kids, so I guess I lucked out there. I'm pretty aloof. I try to teach him a lot of stuff. He's smart, and catches on to some pretty advanced concepts for his age, and I make sure to praise him a lot for his problem solving and remembering the things we teach him. I'm also very strict about politeness and manners and respect.

I got lucky with having an INFP husband, who is touchy-feely enough for a big, snuggly army.
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Old 07-16-2011, 09:22 PM   #8
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My father is also an INTJ, and he's a great man. Never cold or distant, always there for me. Often, when I think about something my dad has done or some way that he is, I am reminded how much I love him, and that is perhaps the only thing that keeps me unsure about whether or not I want kids of my own. If not for his influence and my great relationship with him, I would be very sure that I don't want kids.
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Old 07-16-2011, 09:31 PM   #9
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I feel that I'll be a good parent, then again who says and actually means they'll be a bad parent. I just want to do better than my parents did, and they weren't bad.
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Old 07-17-2011, 05:06 AM   #10
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  Originally Posted by dennisevans
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I feel that I'll be a good parent, then again who says and actually means they'll be a bad parent. I just want to do better than my parents did, and they weren't bad.

In my case, just being present and I've already accomplished that goal.

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Old 07-19-2011, 08:55 AM   #11
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Maybe I'm the odd intj out here but I would absolutely adore any children I had, I'd have no reservations about expressing it with hugs or whatever they might need. Not to say I'd be a soft touch, because I would still be very much about the discipline, but to me discipline and love aren't mutually exclusive when you're a parent.

I'd have to do a heck of a lot of research on parenting before I have a clue to the exact methods though, hehehe.
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Old 07-19-2011, 08:52 PM   #12
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Don't gauge your parenting ability with other people's children. It's different when you have your own child. I knew that I would love my son intensely before he was born. I am more attached, loving and nurturing with him than I ever was with any other child. That's to be expected though.

I don't know that I can discuss the benefits and challenges of parenthood until my son gets older. He's still a baby so... I've got a limited view.
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Old 07-19-2011, 09:30 PM   #13
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I like to think I am a good parent (my daughter just turned 6). I have a feeling when she gets older my quirky antics might annoy her. She isn't an INTJ (from what I can tell so far).
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Old 07-21-2011, 08:11 AM   #14
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Due to the apparent reluctance / inability of INTJ's to self promote, the answers are likely to be a little vague.

Anyway, here's one that i strongly believe:
Children are truly amazing, to see that and act accordingly makes you a good human, ergo: good parent.
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Old 07-21-2011, 08:42 AM   #15
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I don't think I would have a problem with hugs, or being warm in general. I'm already quite affectionate with children of people I don't know very well, so I expect it'll come even more naturally with children of close friends, nephews or nieces, and of course my own.

There might be a problem if I have a very extroverted child. I'm very introverted, need a lot of time alone, and that's certainly going to be difficult with any kid, but even more so if it's an E who cannot play alone.
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Old 07-21-2011, 08:47 AM   #16
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  Originally Posted by Foxglove
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I'm an INTJ, but neither of my parents are. I have read that INTJs can often seem cold to their children and aren't naturally good nurturers. Yet statistically, INTJs have a pretty high marriage rate and probably have a lot of kids.

I wonder about this myself. I enjoy being with children when I develop relationships with them, but I'm not naturally good at reaching out to them, and I'm not always the best empathizer.

So I ask: what are the benefits and challenges of INTJ parenthood?


*Edit: I meant to place this in the Relationships forum, but placed it here instead. Hopefully this qualifies in one way or another as "philosophy."

INTJs tend to be educated, and the #1 indicator of success in school is the educational level of the parents. INTJs can be good teachers, too, so kids who need help have help in their INTJ parent.

Also, INTJs don't respond to emotional manipulation, in part because we don't care much what other people think. SO, other than a video of a mom dragging her screaming 4 year old through a parking lot, when kids act up in public to try to get what they want by embarassment, INTJs just give "the look."

Kids will also learn to think independently and critically, if they pay ANY attention at all to their INTJ parent.


And, there's just something about procreating that affects even the INTJ to act in loving and significant ways towards their kids (and spouse), if they give into that, which they should... most of the time.,

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Old 07-21-2011, 09:59 AM   #17
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I'd be a terrible parent, at least until the time that the kid could form a cogent and interesting thought on his own. But by then, the damage to the relationship would already be done. Younger children just aren't a hobby that I find interesting or worthwhile.
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Old 07-22-2011, 12:49 PM   #18
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My dad is INTP and taught me quite a bit at an early age, so much so that I could have skipped my first year of school. I think an INTP and INTJ might be somewhat similar in parenting style, being somewhat of a teacher.

I think INTJs are just as capable of caring deeply as any other type, especially since the child would be part of the INTJs inner world, not a casual outsider.
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Old 07-22-2011, 06:24 PM   #19
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One of my INTJ pals is a single mother, and is coincidentally the most well-rounded and balanced INTJ that I know. Regarding the effect having a child might have on a person, I speculate that it just boosts maturity, including personality maturity.
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Old 07-23-2011, 12:36 PM   #20
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There are some basic principles of good parenting that will be evident, no matter of one's type. These principles are based on the SJ institution. We keep our children safe and provide them at least basic security. So as I have said before, dependents will always look at the provider as SJ types, the same way most look at athletes as SP types, academia as NT and so on. It's not the type we see in others or play the role of, it's the institution that temperament belongs to. Type is not either/or, it's a fluid adaptation to the environment and circumstances.
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Old 07-26-2011, 01:55 PM   #21
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My mother is hands-down INTJ, and a large part of why I'm INTJ (my father, who I gauge to be ENTP, was always working or out and about). I wouldn't call it "cold" as I would "tough love". Her lack of concern for my emotional outbursts, while to other parents was seen as a lack of compassion, would always manifest itself positively in all the achievements i racked up growing up (particularly in school). She was definitely harder on me than both of my older sisters, but without it, I would probably have ended up a victim of peer and society's influences (I skipped a grade and was always playing catch up socially. even worse when you're already an INTJ...). We would always have intense debates/arguments, and when we reached a stalemate, she just let me go off and do it my way... which 9 times out of 10 was the wrong way. She did her "I freaking told you so" face, I listened, and life moved forward.

So, in my personal opinion, INTJ parents don't necessarily have the best MEANS, but they help provide excellent ENDS for children.
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Old 07-26-2011, 08:09 PM   #22
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I'm 28, an INTJ, and pregnant with my 4th. My husband, a 34 year old ENTP, and I decided we wanted children when when decided to get married. I saw in him the potential for a very loving and present father and in myself, a source of stability and direction for my family.

I'm not at all warm and fuzzy, but it certainly brings a smile to my face when my youngest says, "Hug me!" I see so much potential in my children and I know that they will be extremely independent and for those of them who are extroverted, they have a bunch of siblings and a father to fall back on if not me.

I listen to them and provide them with tools for success. I breastfed them all as infants, not because I enjoyed it, but because I heavily researched the subject and felt it best. Each obstacle is something I feel that I can strategize my way through and there is no end to the challenges, so in that sense, I find parenting rewarding.

My husband and I joke that we are "making friends".
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Old 07-29-2011, 01:57 AM   #23
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  Originally Posted by Foxglove
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So I ask: what are the benefits and challenges of INTJ parenthood?

I find that I can homeschool my kids, but distance myself from their activities enough to see their longterm progress and the big picture. It helps that they are probably NTs.

I love having a family of my own to get infinite hugs. I'm usually not touchy feely.

My wife takes issue with my pulling apart any idea. Nothing is sacred.

She believes this leaves the kids with little foundation for life. (She is not a NT.)

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Old 07-30-2011, 07:29 PM   #24
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My daughter just turned 2 yesterday.

My approach to parenting is...fairly laid back, I suppose. As someone mentioned, I'm not emotionally manipulated by her at all, and she has pitched tantrums and fits about all sorts of things and I don't give in, not even in a store. I tend to enjoy letting her explore the world and figuring out consequences to things (unless she's going to, you know, drown, or run into the street). I always explain to her why I make the decisions that I do, even though she is likely unable to really understand yet anyway.

My challenges lie mostly in being patient. Toddlers are absolutely inefficient and I can find it very frustrating, though it's entirely not her fault. I also, occasionally, find it frustrating when she will just do something totally irrational, but again, she is just a 2 year old. :P

Otherwise, I am very warm and affectionate, and very emotionally available. These are things that have come to me naturally, as they typically do when I dote very much upon another human being.

I was just thinking that INTJs would make great parents, always making logical and rational decisions. I can see how they'd be cold, sometimes, or so engaged in making the right decision that, when the children are older, they can feel like their personal feelings are never taken into account.
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Old 07-31-2011, 04:03 PM   #25
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I've always gotten feedback from teachers, etc. that I am a good parent. I am not naturally touchy-feely, but make it a point to be constantly hugging and kissing and snuggling with my kids. We talk about their day and I make it a point to help them try to identify and express their feelings. I also make it a point to tell them I love them (often), praise them when they did something well, and try to connect with them emotionally. I let them know my feelings about things (especially when I was a girl) and it always interests them very much to hear about it. It helps them relate to me as well as letting them discuss issues and process their own thoughts and feelings. We constantly discuss relating with others and the feelings that other people may have about something.

Academically my kids do well, as I am their private tutor at home. No difficulty with INTJs having long-term goals for their kids, in terms of academics and life skills. As for the relational skills, they are skills like any other and they can be learned by a committed INTJ for sure.

My parents certainly did not have relational skills, either with each other or to me and my sister. But you can acquire these skills if you are committed. One thing I did was to join a co-op preschool, which gave me a lot of early childhood parent education, roles models in the form of experienced preschool teachers to watch, and time in the classroom as a rotating teacher's aid. (All while I was working full time too.) Was it natural? No. Was it harder for me? Yes. Could I still learn how to do it? Yes.

I would not have thought I would naturally make a good parent. Nothing in my natural personality type or relationship with my own parents would have predicted it. But 1) the maternal instinct kicks in after all; 2) INTJs naturally make consistent and stable parents; 3) we can acquire a bunch of other parenting skills because we are typically willing to work at relationships, including the parent-child one.
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