ISFJs love being parents and they work hard at it. People of this personality type are always trying to be better in this aspect of their lives, trying to learn to be more patient and more understanding and more empathetic. And their children are the lucky recipients of all that effort and work.
Warm and empathetic, ISFJs usually love being parents and thrive in their role. Even before they’re parents, this type has the tendency to mother others, and when they do have children this tendency will only intensify. ISFJs couple their emotional intelligence with a deep sense of responsibility that drives them to do everything they can to encourage their children to grow into capable adults. And their natural altruism means that they’ll even sacrifice their own goals and happiness in pursuit of this goal. This can have its downsides of course, but it can also offer some great advantages when raising a child.
Household Organization and Discipline
ISFJs are good organizers. They’re judging types, which means they prefer to organize their external world, and they do this very well. ISFJs lead with introverted sensing, which means they have a deep respect for past norms and values, so their household is likely to reflect that. An ISFJs household will usually have very rigid expectations about the various roles, including the parent and child role as well as gender roles, and they’ll instinctively reinforce these whenever possible.
But despite their naturally organized nature, ISFJs sometimes struggle to discipline their children. They’re so soft hearted that it can be hard to say no and mean it, and the idea of punishing their child may cause the ISFJ actual physical pain. This type uses extraverted feeling as their auxiliary function, which means they like to make others happy. And this can lead to them being reluctant to make their children unhappy by making them face the consequences of their behavior.
The ISFJ and Emotional Support
ISFJs will thrive when it comes to giving emotional support to their children, and they’ll do their absolute best to help them develop their own emotional intelligence. To an ISFJ, this is their greatest strength, and the most important skill they can pass onto their children. The ISFJ’s natural warmth is something that makes them such excellent parents, and they’re usually the type of parents who always try to understand and empathize with their children, even if that seems impossible.
The ISFJs Engagement Level
ISFJs are extremely engaged parents. They often feel as if they were born to be parents, and enjoy being a part of every aspect of their children’s lives. But with some personality types, this kind of extreme oversight can be stifling or overbearing. The ISFJ often means well, they want their children to grow up to be confident and capable people, and their preference for organization means they usually schedule their children’s lives with that in mind. But when their children are more independent, or flat out reject their ISFJ parent’s way of doing things, they can feel very confused and hurt. They may also struggle to understand why their child is fighting against their loving attention and good intentions.
The ISFJ and SJ Children
An ISFJ with an SJ child will know exactly what their child needs to feel safe and to grow and develop. ISFJs use introverted sensing as their primary function, which means that they’re very tightly bound to the past to determine the value of the future. SJ children also use this function as their dominant or auxiliary function, and so will understand and respond to their ISFJ parent’s clear structures and organized routines. Their ISFJ parent will make them feel very safe, and this is an ideal situation for a child to grow up within.
The ISFJ and SP Children
As SP children mature, they will probably have a lot of battles with their ISFJ parent. SPs need a lot of freedom and autonomy and they have a lot of dislike for rigid routines and schedules. The ISFJ will naturally create schedules because they need to know what’s coming next, and this will seem unbearably restrictive to SPs. SPs also don’t have the same connection to the past, and won’t understand why their ISFJ parent insists on doing things according to rules and norms from the past. This will also cause a lot of conflict as the SP matures and starts to question everything around them. And if the ISFJ parent isn’t aware of this different focus, they may take this as an attack on their most important values and beliefs. If the ISFJ isn’t very careful, this could turn into a very bad situation.
The ISFJ and NF Children
When they’re very young, NF children will benefit greatly from their ISFJ parent. This type needs strong emotional connections to feel healthy, and the ISFJ will give that naturally and easily. This can make their NF children feel very secure, though this may not continue to the same extent as the NF grows. NF children use an intuitive function as their primary or secondary function. This gives them a strong connection to the future and a penchant for independent thought that can cause them to quietly evaluate and see the disadvantages of their ISFJ parent’s values as they grow. Because they’re also feelers, NF children probably won’t be overt about this because they’ll understand that outright rejection would hurt their ISFJ parent, but the end result will be the same.
The ISFJ and NT Children
An ISFJ parent will struggle to understand or to connect with their NT child. All that warmth and empathy is usually lost on NTs as they grow. Although they may sometimes need the understanding an ISFJ can offer, they’re not usually capable of returning it to the same degree. And this can leave an ISFJ feeling rejected and as if there’s something very wrong with their NT child. NT also use an intuitive function, and their practical, rational mindset often outright rejects being bound to past values just because they worked for previous generations. An NT usually won’t understand what this has to do with the world now and would strongly prefer values and strategies that are connected to the present or to the future rather than holding onto something for what seems like sentimental reasons.
ISFJs are warm parents who honestly want the best for their children and are willing to put in a lot of effort to get it. This can make them the ideal parents, because they always accept their children, even if they don’t always understand them.
- Storm Susan. “How Do YOU Use Extraverted Feeling?“. Dec 17, 2015. (Retrieved Feb 2018).
- “Podcast – Episode 0093 – Sensing Personality Types“. Nov 23, 2015. (Retrieved Feb 2018).
- “ISFJ – The Nurturer“.