Major INTJ/ENTJ clash


Hi guys/girls,

INTJ here. I’ve had this ENTJ coworker for several years now. After we’d met we quickly started to hang out, ending up sharing almost everything (especially he did). Our conversations were very stimulating and fun, I felt a very deep connection and had grown very fond of him.

Our friendship went south after in a stressful time he suddenly started to express mistrust, and began to push my buttons which he had been investigating for quite some time. (One time, when he was drunk, he actually smirked about how nicely I was responding to his pushing.)

We were very close coworkers, in a somewhat uncoordinated team, both insecure of our positions. Off and on, he became more and more narcissistic and threatening towards me. I used all available means to try and defuse the situation, but none of the strategies got us back to where we started: a joyful friendship. Even though I still felt like he was my soulmate, and he actually attempted to include me more in his personal life. But meanwhile he kept pushing my buttons and one day, after tolerating a month of transgressions, I just had to tell him off.

To my disbelief he instantly cut me out of his life completely in a very hurtful and impersonal way, offering no closure whatsoever. We were still working on the same floor, so I would bump into him 5, 6x a day and he wouldn’t acknowledge my existence unless others were present. I tried not to impose our conflict on others, so this was mentally very exhausting. It felt as he needed to depersonalize and punish me. And while I kept trying to get us out of the swamp (through alternative communications), he basically put semtex on all my known buttons and blew it up.

I don’t care about many people, but once I do, I cannot shut this off easily. I found it to be impossible when you run into the person over and over again. I ended up badly obsessing over this, and am still recovering. I’m suspecting this was exactly per his plan, though I still find it hard to accept this. He has more or less explained himself, but never satisfactory and always in a condescending and obviously manipulating way.

Now I wonder: is this just an extreme example of “classic” INTJ-ENTJ failure (I’ve read some warnings recently), or would you deduce a genuine personality problem in the ENTJ? (and/or the INTJ, for that matter)

For his silent treatment he’s been giving me several reasons, but none really seems to hold.

What does silent treatment mean to you?
How would you look at this situation from an ENTJ point of view?
What would you have expected from the INTJ in this situation?

As they say, thanks for your support.


It appears like he feels as if you somehow failed to him. And the consequences of that failrue may be changing the outcome of everything you have done so far. Maybe he thinks that the consequences make the whole pursuit somewhat worthless to begin with. It’s unusual that he tries to punish you. I for example have a perfect set of goals and try to avoid stupid people. Not reprogram them. Perhaps he’s dependant on you somewhat more than just a friendship. Perhaps financially, or projectwise. Probably he’s currently incapable of changing his conditions regarding you right now. Since it pisses him off and makes him hate himself every day more, he’s unloading that unhappiness on you. Making you part of his misery.

This is what I could sum up from what you explained. More details can be helpful.


Thanks, Wasabi. I don’t want to overload you guys with all the details, unless that might be helpful.

The ‘off’ thing to me is the fact that my colleague is very good at handing out criticism, but seems to feel threatened by fair criticism from others, which then makes him unload on me. It’s very hard to maintain a dialogue with someone like that, especially since he projects his feeling onto me.

My main concern is with the silent treatment. Basically, to me as a feeling INTJ (they exist) that is a harsh assault when coming from someone I care about, more so than any kind of name-calling, intimidating or threatening (which has occurred). I actually would prefer physical violence. A recent study showed that cutting people off socially actually inflicts physical pain in their brain. I’ve also in the past informed him of the distress it caused me, after he’d been acting like that for a few days.

Since my colleague is trained in neurology and is surrounded by psychologists in his family, I really can’t come to any other conclusion than that he IS aware of just how this makes me feel, and either enjoys it, feels the need to use it to control me or just doesn’t care. Which, in my book, is all very awkward coming from anyone who is supposed to be your friend.

I guess an ENTJ’s approach would be to try and forget about the friendship, but the situation makes it hardly possible and I do care for the guy.


He’s threatened by the fair criticism from others?

Maybe he doesn’t want his private life to be in everyones mouth. He doesn’t want everyone to know whats going on. The less they know, the less a possibility for complications. He cares about his surroundings and his future. Unlike you don’t. Maybe that’s where your disagreement comes. Keeping mouth shut?

Maybe he just given up in trying to explain you the sensitivity of the situation? That’s where silent treatment comes. To manage this crappy situation as best as possible (and with less emotional damage on his own part) before it can be mitigated. It seems like you are forcing his hands on this situation pretty much.

I don’t think he consciously abuses you. This is always out of question. What I see here as a pattern is that he does his best to manage this as silently as possible without rising some waves, because on his part it is apparent that you can’t be reasoned with. His attepts have failed. So he jumps into unknown course, without even knowing himself where this is all going. Obviously if you don’t know where you go, ocassionally you will get burned here and there.

Forgetting friendship looks like instant action. Perhaps many would do that. But I also doubt that he weights the situation only from friendship perspective. It’s rare, but possible. It is quite possible that he puts his feelings away from his way as much as possible before more suitable solution could be found. Maybe he already has that kind of solution, but there are some loose ends that he needs to take care off before making a clear last stand that will throw this whole issue into dustbin.


Mm, I have to disagree on most of that. He actually is the one to talk to our mutual friends about the situation, whereas I have tried my utmost to keep everyone (including our bosses!) out of the argument. When I informed him about this, he twisted it around into (yet) another spiteful accusation. I’m not forcing anything, just want to have a stress-free situation while we both work there.

I do recognize that his image he portrays of me is completely skewed, and my image of him is hardly based on reality because I feel intimidated by this zombie floating through the office, who only acknowledges me when others are present. This is very spooky and yes, I have been fearing a ‘last stand’ for a while now. Which is exactly the reason I want to try and reason with him.

Hm, I’m more and more reaching the conclusion that he is not a ‘typical ENTJ’. But I’m open for suggestions. :slight_smile:

What would make it ‘work’ again (more or less) for you as an ENTJ after such a major clash had occurred?


He aknowleges your presence while others in the same room while ignores you in their absence and at the same time telling his personal problems about you including his and your boss? (you said co-worker, I presume your boss in the same person). In that case I presume that he wages an undeclared war even to the point of undermining your presense in the work. This isnt good. Not good at all. It seems like he is making a surgical strike for your removal while preserving his good image amonh the rest for later use.

Or maybe bosses become aware indirectly?

Suggestions? That depends on the person. You said he’s a neurologist. I presume he’s not a loose cannon (meaning he doesnt freely roam between different businesses). This is odd. Usually ENTJs do not stay in one single profession and grow roots in there. The point is, loose cannons are not ruthless. In fact they are opposite of that. But in such a fixed position like being a doctor (or something like that) could force him to be ruthless and stupid. In that case you probably wont be able to reason with him. If he has power over you, it is likely he will use it.

I am personally a loose cannot. And I personally hate when things like that happen with people. Especially when it’s done towards INTJs. If I were to face this situation personally, or been done to one of my friends, I would poke that scalpel up in his ass until it splitted apart (I don’t care even if its ENTJ). Our choises define who we are. And our choises bring consequences. If this ENTJ comes from wealth family and never faced poverty, chances that he’s stupid very high. You don’t know how much hate I have towards such rich brats.

Btw we have one of such idiots on this forum.


Thanks for your support! It really helps me to ‘get’ the situation better. Yes, perhaps he’s stupid in a sense. He has a lot less life experience and I have tried to warn him of dangerous paths, but also supported him big-time when he chose them any way. So I’m just…puzzled.

I’m very intrigued by your INTJ remark. Why do you find it more serious when it’s done to an INTJ? (I do suspect an answer, but I’m really curious about your motivation).


Yep. ENTJ’s can be thick heads like that. It’s pretty awful experience when you look back and see yourself as a thickhead for your last experiences. I understand you getting puzzled. He probably doesn’t know what he’s doing either. But he sure as hell will be awfully sorry for what he does once he realizes it.

Because they are the second closest thing to what makes this world a livable place. In this crazy, illogical, psychopatic world under which there is nearly nothing you can do unless you are rich motherer, having people who can stand their ground with you is like a miracle. Bullying INTJ’s are way too inefficient. Efficient or die babe!


Hehehe, now that’s a very good observation. Our fights/meta-discussions used to last weeks (and many pages). Indeed, if you’re gonna fight me, you’d better come logically-prepared. :wink:


Dumb, insensitive think head. Hit him with the club in the head next time. Maybe it will help him to get some of the balls in proper order. It seems he need some tough love here.




I do the same thing. As you pointed out, there is something he finds inconsistent to your behavior and will be passive-aggressive/aggressive/withdraw/attack/etc because we want to know what you’re made out of especially when it comes to interpersonal relationship/emotions which is something that I am sensitive to and perhaps other ENTJs as well. Depending on your reaction, he will give you a pass/no pass depending on his standards of how he should trust an individual.

If there are things bottling up, all it will take is one wrong and you’re on a lower level than a homeless person.


Cutting people off cold-turkey is a part of the personality. Once for example, an INTJ is done with someone 9 times out of 10 they will never look back. When things are over, they’re over and that’s it. So, his reaction isn’t surprising. I’m an INTJ myself and I do the same thing. I know you said that he is an ENTJ, but the only different between you two, is that he’s extroverted and you’re an introvert.


Is there physical damage involved?? :frowning:

Oh god, the feels. You need a better logical firewall to protect your feelings, because it can get ‘‘too late’’.


I’m a light switch, once I’m done, its final. I do forgive tho, until my logic applies and is unwilling to accept excuses further. I can appreciate humility and admire, appeals to my soft side but that too only works for so long. Any failed relationship is always disappointing to me.