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INTP + INFJ Benefactor-Beneficiary

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I've always thought it curious why I was usually the "pursuer" when I find an INTP, but in the friend that I know very well, it often true that I was the one in a lower social position. Yes, he asked for advice and discernment in many ideas, but this was nothing more than his usual INTP search for knowledge and not necessarily him putting me up on a pedestal. (He certainly puts certain people up on pedestals and make them look like intellectual giants from whom he could absorb all knowledge.)

I always felt like the Beneficiary in the social interaction with an INTP and that he was socially superior. Even though he utilized me for practical reasons or sometimes as a "wingman" for new social situations in which he feels shy, I always felt dispensible and that he had others who filled the same role, except that he respected them and was more devoted to them. I felt almost zero respect from that INTP friend.

This article made perfect sense about the general context of my relationships with all INTPs:

http://www.socionics.com/rel/bn.htm


[ARTICLE]These relations are asymmetrical. One partner, called the Benefactor, is always in a more favourable position in respect to the other partner who is known as Beneficiary.

The Beneficiary thinks of the Benefactor as an interesting and meaningful person, usually over-evaluating them in the beginning. The Beneficiary can be impressed and delighted by their partner's behaviour, manners, thoughts and their ability to easily deal with things that the Beneficiary conceives as complicated. When partners are together, the Beneficiary involuntarily starts to ingratiate themselves with the Benefactor, trying to please them without any obvious reason. In the worst cases this starts from little things and then becomes bigger until the Beneficiary realises the foolishness of their situation.

The Beneficiary can see the weakness of the Benefactor, wishing to help their partner to strengthen themselves. Because the strongest point of the Beneficiary is the weak and unconscious point of the Benefactor, the Beneficiary is convinced that they are able to help. However, when the Beneficiary tries to help, the Benefactor usually refuses the help without any good explanation. The Beneficiary usually listens to every word the Benefactor says but there is no feedback, the Benefactor can not hear the Beneficiary. This may be sometimes unpleasant and even irritating for the Beneficiary.

The Benefactor accepts the Beneficiary as somebody who is lower in rank or social position and often undervalues them in the beginning. The reason for this is that the Benefactor feels that the Beneficiary needs something from them, that special something that only the Benefactor can provide. Therefore the Benefactor naturally finds themselves in an advanced position in respect to the Beneficiary, but are at the same time willing to encourage and take care of the Beneficiary.

Relations of Benefit may appear even and conflict free. Usually it is the Benefactor who initiates the contact. Partners can even feel some kind of spiritual connection between them. However, relations last only as long as the Benefactor has something to give and the Beneficiary has need of it. If this major condition is no longer fulfilled, relations enter quite an unpleasant stage of their development. The Beneficiary may begin ignoring the Benefactor completely or they may start to accentuate too many of the Benefactors inability, provoking arguments and quarrels. Finally, when the Benefactor is in a superior position to the Beneficiary, it can work quite well, but not when it is the other way round! [/ARTICLE]
 

Dimensional Transition

Bill Cosbor, conqueror of universes
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Interesting. I don't know many INFJs, but with most I can get along pretty well. I haven't noticed anything benefactor-beneficiary about those relationships. Maybe I was the benefactor all along?
 

Chronomar

NOPE
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I cannot speak for all INTPs...but, I would like to take my chance to explain (complain) from one perspective here:

One of the people I have to interact with generally everyday is IXFJ. She has somehow got the idea that we are close friends just because I have acted spontenaously around her, not, "afraid to be myself." From her perspective, assuming this meant we were friends would make sense; she would never act as anything other than unassuming and reserved unless she trusted whoever the other person was completely, and considered them to be friends.

I on the other hand have to have an outlet for The Crazy, and since we are forced to spend lots of time together, she gets a share of it.

Reasons why the whole "super-close fuzzy happy friendship thing" will not work out:

- people who constantly need reaffirmation that I enjoy their company and will not abandon them are annoying, and aren't going to get the affirmation they apparently need. I don't like making assurances or being pigeonholed into some kind of...socially contractual friendship agreement. Not happening.

- also, people with the above-mentioned trait tend to give off an air of low-self-confidence, weakness, and just general, "high-maintenance friend"

- when it's between a conversation with an IXFJ about her poetry/personal life/the mundane, or a conversation with an NT type about ideas or systems...well...and I only have so much time in my day to socialize...

- they seem to never stop trying to make plans "final" or "secure," which is just not going to happen, and they don't seem to understand that in a complex world with many possibilities you just need to calmly identify those possibilities, and make contingent plans based on those or accept the unknowable with the understanding that you'll handle it when it arrives.

- solving her problems becomes repetitive after the 3rd iteration of the same problem. Apparently, she cannot learn.

EDIT:

reading some parts of the benefactor/beneficiary thing...I can see how that would happen, may even be happening in my case. I suppose I could have been benefiting from having somebody around to use as my "family member replacement," having met her as assigned roommates after just leaving home, going to college. It is true, being around someone with low self esteem is liberating, in a way. You know they could never view you worse than they do themselves, so you are free to say and do nearly anything. I didn't really realize this...

I don't really know what I should do. I'm going to go with polite continuation of friendship but also with covert attempts to integrate her into other friend groups who may be better friends. This is good for everyone.
 

Moocow

Semantic Nitpicker
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This seems like one of the more difficult relations in socionics to understand. I know there is a proneness towards distrust and disrespect, but it is subtle and varies from one situation to the next. I do recognize a bit of what it's talking about between myself and INFJs, as well as between observing ISTPs and INTJs.

Keeping in mind that socionics flips the J and P for introverts, this makes the INTP the beneficiary and the INFJ the benefactor. Part of why the relationship is odd is because there's something very unconscious going on.

Why does the benefactor automatically feel superior in role? I assume it's because their strength isn't present in the beneficiary. Instead, the beneficiary is strongest where the benefactor only has a weak interest.

For example: ISTJs' Si doesn't impress an INTP, and INTP's Ti doesn't impress an INFJ, and INFJ's Ni doesn't impress the ISFP.
However, the beneficiary sees the benefactor using these functions only as a tertiary, so it appears weak and flawed.

Going the other way though, the strength of the benefactor is mysterious to the beneficiary making it a likely object of obsession until the beneficiary comes to understand it better.
 

Moocow

Semantic Nitpicker
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Chronomar, that sounds more like an INFJ. They tend to make and act upon more unspoken assumptions about social relationships.. using Ni and all. ISFJs are not really quick to presume upon a new friendship.

Edit: In everyone's defense... it often takes more than 3 iterations to teach something depending how much it conflicts with your natural disposition. If you can not have long term patience with people then relationships will never be satisfactory.
 

tikru

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I cannot speak for all INTPs...but, I would like to take my chance to explain (complain) from one perspective here:

One of the people I have to interact with generally everyday is IXFJ. She has somehow got the idea that we are close friends just because I have acted spontenaously around her, not, "afraid to be myself." From her perspective, assuming this meant we were friends would make sense; she would never act as anything other than unassuming and reserved unless she trusted whoever the other person was completely, and considered them to be friends.

I on the other hand have to have an outlet for The Crazy, and since we are forced to spend lots of time together, she gets a share of it.

Reasons why the whole "super-close fuzzy happy friendship thing" will not work out:

- people who constantly need reaffirmation that I enjoy their company and will not abandon them are annoying, and aren't going to get the affirmation they apparently need. I don't like making assurances or being pigeonholed into some kind of...socially contractual friendship agreement. Not happening.

- also, people with the above-mentioned trait tend to give off an air of low-self-confidence, weakness, and just general, "high-maintenance friend"

- when it's between a conversation with an IXFJ about her poetry/personal life/the mundane, or a conversation with an NT type about ideas or systems...well...and I only have so much time in my day to socialize...

- they seem to never stop trying to make plans "final" or "secure," which is just not going to happen, and they don't seem to understand that in a complex world with many possibilities you just need to calmly identify those possibilities, and make contingent plans based on those or accept the unknowable with the understanding that you'll handle it when it arrives.

- solving her problems becomes repetitive after the 3rd iteration of the same problem. Apparently, she cannot learn.

EDIT:

reading some parts of the benefactor/beneficiary thing...I can see how that would happen, may even be happening in my case. I suppose I could have been benefiting from having somebody around to use as my "family member replacement," having met her as assigned roommates after just leaving home, going to college. It is true, being around someone with low self esteem is liberating, in a way. You know they could never view you worse than they do themselves, so you are free to say and do nearly anything. I didn't really realize this...

I don't really know what I should do. I'm going to go with polite continuation of friendship but also with covert attempts to integrate her into other friend groups who may be better friends. This is good for everyone.
hmm I see quite a bit of myself in your friend. I tend to take things way too seriously sometimes. I think INFJ's have a lot to learn from INTPs...
 

Auburn

Luftschloss Schöpfer
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I'm not sure this has anything to do with INTPs or INFJs at all..
I think either/both can be the beneficiary/benefactor given the individual.

There are manipulative INFJs who use others, and there are INFJs with low esteem who generally get taken advantage of.

There are INTPs who are cold and sincerely don't care much for intimacy but will take help if offered without really thinking much about giving back, and there are INTPs with inferiority complexes who try damn hard to please others as much as they can.


However, I do agree with Chronomar. It is healthiest to not require constant affirmation because then it is difficult to not end up in the beneficiary position -- and you can't really blame another for it if you put yourself in that position.
 

EyeSeeCold

lust for life
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Your MBTI type may not turn out to be your Socionics type.
The P/J flip for Introverts is an invalid translation.
You can't reason MBTI theory with Socionics concepts.

etc etc
 

Reluctantly

Resident disMember
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It helps to talk about things only in terms of cognitive processes. Four letters don't have the rigorous derivations that were put into Jung's cognitive processes.

As it stands you have a psychological tool, but don't understand how it's to be used or where its limitations are. So no offense, but how is anyone supposed to understand what you are getting at? You have a generic description that could apply to many things and isn't a clear presentation of what the types are.

What do you actually want to know?
 

Architect

Professional INTP
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Any relationship could be characterized in the benefactor/beneficiary roles I think, so I'm not sure how useful this is. Consider a traditional marriage, the man provides the input to the family (salary, hunting etc) and the woman provides the maintenance and cohesion (cooking etc). Mutually symbiotic, same as for the sexual relationship where it takes two to tango and reproduce.

Having said that I'd describe my relationship with my INFJ wife as benefactor/beneficiary, in both directions. She feeds off my intellect and insight and I feed off of her humanity, personality and appreciation. She's a "Real Human" while I'm rather a cold fish. Without her I'd go off an live in a cave. Likewise my intellect grounds her out. She would fly off the handle with what she reads in the news, if it wasn't for my interpretation and ability to put that into a greater historical and sociological context.

For example, she reads about some terrible murder and freaks out. I explain that actually mankind has been reducing violence for tens of thousands of years, and will cite Steven Pinkers research as support to boot. She calms down and is more comfortable dealing with it, I'm happy to discuss the concepts and have such a willing audience, then she showers me with praise and affection for making her world a better place.

Who is the benefactor, and who is the beneficiary? Mutual parasitism.
 

EyeSeeCold

lust for life
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Alright, well if its gonna happen might as well help to explain.

The Benefactor/Beneficiary phenomenon can go in both directions, just like Architect said, it is oscillatory. Although the initiating roles of Benefactor and Beneficiary goes to INTP and INFJ, respectively.
 
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