Do you consider yourself a nurturer? Do you have a nurturing friend?
Hm, that was a little bit tricky for me, since I felt like I hadn’t have very clear idea of what actually nurturer means. It’s because there’s no equivalent word for it in my native language which is Polish, so my idea of it was rather brief, just someone who nurtures, and the word nurture actually can’t be expressed in one word either, at least as far as I know. But I found a very interesting definition, not in any dictionary, but apparently there is a personality type based on MBTI, which is called nurturer and this is ISFJ. At least the site personalityperfect.com calls this type the nurturer. I did the MBTI test only once and not very carefully but it says I’m INFP, but I used their description of ISFJ to see if I can consider myself as a nurturer.
They say nurturers are philanthropic, altruistic and generous, to put it simply. I don’t know if I’d call myself philanthropic, rather not, but I think I am generous and I like to help people if I can. I used to be a real altruist like REAL, as is my Mum, but I’ve noticed it isn’t always the very best thing to do, so I try to be reasonably altruistic, although as in many other interpersonal situations it’s often hard for me to deduce where actually the middle is and where the extremes begin, but I’m learning with time, I believe.
They say that: “The people and things they believe in will be upheld and supported with enthusiasm and unselfishness.” Well, I try to be supportive towards people whom I believe in and I quickly engage in their lives and am always happy with their successes, as for things, everyone who knows me a bit knows that if I’m into something, I am always way too enthusiastic about it, which is the more hard for other people to stand that I have a lot of interests, so a lot of things to be enthusiastic about, which at times is just the only thing that keeps me motivated when both my mood and energy are so low that otherwise I wouldn’t even be able to move my finger, which really saves me.
They say they’re warm and kind-hearted. Well I don’t think many people would say I’m warm, in fact I’ve heard either directly or via some other kind individuals that I am frosty or even icy, and I think they’re right because after so many years of stifling emotions it has become damn hard for me to release tem even when I am just with myself not to mention with other people. I try to seem as warm and emotional as I can though. As for kind-hearted, um, yeah, I guess I have the genes for it as my family consists of incredibly kind-hearted and sensible people, but I’d rather leave it for others to say, as I think no one can be objective about themselves in this case.
“They value harmony and cooperation, and are likely to be very sensitive to other people’s feelings.” I do value harmony in my environment and surroundings a lot, I do value harmony in music even more, as for cooperation – emmmmmm well naaah, I’m not for it at all, well I wouldn’t be like rebellious if I’d have to cooperate with you and I’d try to do my best for me and for our team, but I’ve never liked cooperating and had never been good at cooperation, I was always either the one who let all the others do everything just doing my job as quickly as possible to be free from it, or I was the “leader” doing everything for everyone to not have to communicate with them too much, I am oversensitive for other people’s feelings, which can have its advantages, but often sucks, which I think every empath with a lot of imagination and interest in others would confirm. I am not only sensitive to their emotions, but also sometimes to how they feel physically, like it often happened when my Mum had period I just felt kind of like I had it too, even though mine was just gone. 😀 That’s so weird.
They say nurturers are considerate – um, I guess I am, – and bring out the best in others – not sure.
So that’s all about the nurturers, and I think I can say that overall I am a nurturer.
As for friends, yes, I do know lots of people who would fit these “criteria”. First of all my Mum, who is definitely my friend (my Mum is an ISFJ!!!), one of my blind Polish friends who had just a heart of gold despite having a total hell of life herself. Since like a year I’ve made a lot of friends in mental health communities, particularly on email lists, and now here on WordPress, and I see a lot of people everywhere whom I could call nurturing. And then there is my best friend, about whom I’m actually not sure anymore if we’re still best friends since he seems to decide to not keep n touch with me anymore, though I don’t know any reason for it, we haven’t written or talked together for almost half year now but I still do think about him as my best friend even just because I got used to it so much. Anyway, I could see a lot of traits in him that would match the above very well. So I think he is a nurturer, even if nurturers don’t usually end their relationships out of the blue, but as I said I don’t know his point of view, so don’t want to base my opinion just on my feelings. I also had to cut off all the contact with some people in the past so I don’t think I have the right for judging him, even if from my perspective he hadn’t have any reason to do it.
OK, so how about you? And your friends? Feel free to use this description of nurturer I used, or any other definition, however you want to answer this. 🙂