The INFJ door slam is the way this personality type deals with toxic people. Why and how does it happen and, most importantly, how to avoid being door-slammed?

Out of all the 16 Myers-Briggs personality types, the INFJ is the rarest, making up only 1 to 2 percent of the U.S. population. Though INFJs are known for their gentle, considerate nature, they’re also known for something cold-blooded and flat-out controversial — something that often shocks and bewilders those closest to them. That something is the INFJ door slam.

What Is the INFJ Door Slam?

The INFJ door slam is this personality type’s method of cutting toxic people from their life. This person can be anyone close to them —  a romantic partner, family member, or dear friend. When an INFJ slams the door on a relationship, they will cut off all contact with that person and often attempt to wipe every trace of them from their life.

There are some instances where an INFJ is forced to have continued contact with a person they’ve door-slammed — such as when that person is a co-worker they see in the office every day. In these situations, the INFJ does an emotional door slam. They’ll politely endure the other person’s presence but do their best to minimize any interaction with them. They also cease to share any personal thoughts or feelings with said person.

Why Do INFJs Do This?

Completely cutting someone from your life — someone who was once very close to you — may seem extreme to the outsider. It may even look like the choice to do so came out of the blue. But that’s rarely the case. For most INFJs, the door slam is a result of withstanding months (or years) of pain at another person’s hands.

INFJs are extremely compassionate and forgiving creatures, which means they often attract narcissists and emotional parasites. Their penchant for loving selflessly is abused far too often.

Since they take their relationships with others very seriously, they find it hard to leave even the bad ones behind. INFJs try to give the people they love the benefit of the doubt, offering multiple chances in the hope the person will change. Unfortunately, emotional abuse — even when it’s perpetrated by a “friend” — can cause trauma.

That said, once an INFJ cottons on to exploitative behavior in their relationships with others, things start to change quickly. As the reality of the situation starts to become clear, an INFJ will start to resent the other person.

Ultimately, the INFJ comes to the conclusion that they can no longer endure any more emotional abuse and decides to remove the offending party from their lives.

What the INFJ Door Slam Looks Like

infj door slam relationships

It’s sudden, it’s brutal, and it’s absolute. While every Myers-Briggs personality type is capable of cutting people out of their lives, no one does it quite like an INFJ.

Before an INFJ slams the door on someone, they do their best to resolve the issues at hand. They usually give out numerous warnings, letting the other party their behavior is unacceptable.

INFJs take their relationships very seriously — lifelong connections are their ultimate goal. They loathe letting go of the people they love. This is why the door slam is always their last resort.

An INFJ takes a lot of time to come to the decision that they must cut someone from their life. After being repeatedly hurt by someone, and coming to the conclusion that the other person isn’t going to change their behavior, it’s often the smallest of things that pushes the INFJ over the edge.

And that’s when the door slam happens.

When an INFJ decides to slam the door on a relationship, their emotional state changes dramatically. They go from being sad, hurt, and disheartened, to being level-headed, rational, and even cold. This can be slightly disconcerting to people who are used to seeing their INFJ as warm and gentle.

INFJs grieve the loss of the relationship before they actually sever their connection with the person. They acknowledge that the relationship they had was based on an illusion and didn’t actually exist. By the time the door slam actually happens, they have accepted things as they are and have moved on emotionally.

While the door slam is often silent, it is almost always merciless. The INFJ will work hard to remove all reminders of the past. This often includes unfollowing the person on social media,  blocking telephone numbers, and getting rid of pictures and other mementos.

When they’re done, they feel relieved and liberated. They set to moving forward immediately, almost as if the relationship never existed at all.

How to Avoid the INFJ Door Slam

When an INFJ slams the door, they don’t look back. It’s extremely unlikely that a person will ever be let back in, and even if they are, the relationship will never be as close as it was before. It’s for that reason that you’ll want to do everything you can to avoid the door slam altogether.

The words you say to an INFJ and the way you treat them really matter. As emotional creatures, INFJs need their emotions to be both heard and respected. They need balance in their relationships — if things are one-sided, they’ll end up leaving.

If an INFJ expresses that they’ve been hurt in your relationship, it’s imperative that you show you’re sorry for the pain you caused and understand why your actions were damaging. You must also commit to changing your behavior in the future. If you meet these conditions, healing can begin.

INFJs understand that people make mistakes. They are incredibly forgiving and are often willing to help the people they love resolve their issues. If you are kind and honest with your INFJ and do your best not to hurt them, they’ll see no reason to show you the proverbial door.


As an INFJ, I’ve executed the door slam six times in my life. Each time was extremely painful, and I didn’t come to the decision lightly. However, I can honestly say that I haven’t regretted a single one. The people I cut from my life were emotionally abusive, and getting rid of them improved my quality of life as well as my mental health.

The INFJ door slam, no matter how controversial it may be, is how people with this personality type protect themselves. While it may appear to be ruthless to outsiders, it plays an important part in the INFJ’s life — it’s their ultimate defense mechanism.


Liz Greene is an introvert, makeup enthusiast, and anxiety-ridden realist from the beautiful city of trees, Boise, Idaho. When she’s not writing, she enjoys eating fancy cheeses, fantasizing about what life would be like if she had an Iron Man suit, and re-watching Venture Bros. episodes for the 100th time. You can follow her latest cosmetic misadventures on her blog, Three Broke Bunnies  or follow her on Twitter @LizVGreene

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This Post Has 11 Comments

  1. Christina

    what should I do if my infj partner door slamed me?

    1. Lygeia

      hi there 🙂 As an INFJ i need to tell you something that it will really help you, so… We tend to pass some stages before the door slam, it doesn’t happen in one day. We will try to say that we are troubled by something. If the things remain the same, we will talk again about it after some time of non-act. if we reach the level of accepting that the things are not going to change, or that we had enough, then you have the door slam. The fact that we will talk about the problem many times and that we give chances, does not mean though, that you (or anyone else) has the ability to play with the stages again and again, because even if someone does this, we will notice it because we are very aware of patterns, and we will door slam as well. Pretty much in the last case (playing with the stages, taking your time intentionally ), the door slam will be really heavy, so i don’t recommend it at all. But I DO recommend that: If your INFJ (or any other person/type that you want in your life), wants to talk about something, discuss it and try to do something about it. I am not saying that you have to do whatever that person wants, but you probably can go half way each of you, and find each other in the middle.
      And for the main part of your question: the only way to do something about the door slam, is to prevent it. After that, it’s too late. Btw you still have chances if your INFJ still talks to you. In that case, it might seem like door slam, but it’s not. Doorslam is when you have no cracks or windows to crawl your self back in their lives..

    2. bb

      As an INFJ, I can tell you to give up. I door slammed three people in my life so far, and never have them back. Even if the last one made apologies to me a couple of times, I felt nothing.

    3. PIDNTR

      Had this happen to me, though I was trying to leave. She would talk crap on her friends, and would hangout with them. She would always state how she hated being a counselor. Always taking care of her friends, she said. She had ex-boyfirends she would bring up a lil the time. I wasn’t jealous, I found it interesting. She was supposed to be this innocent person, someone whos a saint. She would bring up how they wanted to sleep with her and tell me. We rarely had heart to hearts. Though she did say, ” If we don’t workout, we can still be friends”.That was a red flag for me, cause I’m sure once I’m the dicarded fiance. She would talk behind my back. She began to distance herself and talk about dating older men. She was a type that would cheat on a ex and never tell them about it. She eventually stopped calling me and texting me. She even stopped texting me I love 20xs a day. She was talking to other men online, when we would chat. I gathered up the courage to say goodbye. I told myself, yeah I got engaged and we were together for 8 years. So what, she left me because of her repeative egotistical ways. I didn’t have to dig deep, didn’t even have to gather much info. She moved back to her home state, she had all this planned out. She even dragged me along, thinking I would stay. That’s my story, I wasn’t the best partner. At least I was honest, even I should of lied. I told the truth.

    4. INFJ

      Move on and get out of their life. Move on with yours. If the door slammed you know what you did. Own up to it, narcissist, and move on to better, easier, stupider prey. You blew this one.

  2. I’m on the outside

    Loyalty and mutuality is important for an INFJ. We see things differently, it doesn’t make us special. We’re highly intuitive, yes. Though we feel love differently. Sometimes our trust can come off as pompous or threatening. This maybe because of our ever growing nature, that’s related to personal growth. INFJs will never play the victim, we want nothing more than to love someone. INFJs are emotional with partners, though if it’s not reciprocated. The relationship is as good as dead. While someone is busy plotting revenge, we are plotting our emotional escape. When someone is uncertain, we are looking for answers. When things become one-sided, we dig deep to find truth. While we test your intentions, we are analyzing you. These little tests may come off as crazy, we like to reciprocate behavior. This allows us to decide if the relationship dynamics are mutual. INFJs are smart, though we are smart emotionally and understand typology. Many think we surround ourselves with old classmates, ex partners, lawyers and doctors. Everyone loves us, no not really. We don’t hold onto a lot of people from our past. You don’t have to be a genius, to be our friends. We value close honest relationships, this is why our friends circles are small. The door slam comes on slow, though it’s our only way to keep our sanity. Could you imagine? Being emotionally sick forever, being sick physically as well. This is a what a break up does to us, it digs deep and causes us so much mental anguish. INFJs are thinkers, so individuals that withhold truth or ghost us. These toxic individuals will make us insane if we stay. As INFJs we prefer truth over heartache. We will even forgive those who cheat and try to work on things. Though you may not backstab or lie to us, that will make sure the door never opens. While everyone that once stayed, we will be the only one that ever left.

    1. Melody

      Very well put!! So true.

  3. Julie D

    100% me. I found out my narcissist was cheating on me with 2 other women, ie.he was sleeping with the 3 of us behind all our backs.I immediately kicked him out of the house and it literally took me 7 months to slam the door. You explain this accurately here. Even though I took 7 months to finally rip the bandaid off, it was extremely emotionally painful. And, just like you said in this article, I feel liberated, like a huge weight has been lifted off of me.

  4. Mandy Fard

    I have slammed that door.
    There came a time in my early 50’s when I began to see how I have surrounded myself with multiple narcissits. It was PAINFUL. But I had to slam the door on all of them. One by one, and it took about two years. By the time I slammed the door, I had nothing to say anymore. An old coworker said something one day that resonated with me and that was “By the time I stop talking to someone, they’ll already know why. No explanation will be necessary.” That’s how I feel, when I slam the door each time.

  5. jackie

    Right on! :O

  6. kit

    My INFJ former friend posted this link on her FB page (that I’m blocked from) so I think this is a great place to respond, especially from the person who’s been slammed’s point of view.

    First, this is the 2nd time she’s done this. I missed her then, I don’t now. This time I see clearly how she needs help – professional help, as I directly told her. I no longer want to be part of this situation where I’m supposed to parrot back what she wants to hear. (That’s the part she calls ‘giving me many chances.’)

    From the slammed’s point of view – I’m the one who’s heard and seen this multiple times (also with other people she used to know), I finallyy see this as her repeating patterns that puts her back in the same place…with the same result.

    At what point do INFJ’s or other ‘rare’ personality types realize – hey – we ALL have quirks particular to our personalities. At what point can we go beyond. I wish my friend could see that labeling herself as a certain personality type is the first step to not being able to face the issue that might be blocking her from this and many other behaviors.

    If you think you’re an INFJ – I hope you can get beyond this label – and just be you, a little of this, a little of that, with a whole lot of what makes you unique.

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