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Thread: INFJ woman needs advice about INTP man1576 days ago

  1. #1
    Newbie Beautiful Souls's Avatar
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    INFJ woman needs advice about INTP man

    Hello all,

    I'm new to the forum, and although I'll also post this question in an INTP forum as well, I feel like there are enough members here who know INTPs intimately enough to offer some sound advice. And of course, if you're an INTP yourself, I'd love to hear from you.

    I'm an INFJ and have been dating an INTP for a year and a half with two breakups. Both times I ended things because I didn't feel validated, which led to deeper insecurities, making me question whether or not he actually loved me. Our short breakups only remind us of how much we really do love each other, but once we're back in the relationship again I start feeling those same insecurities. He doesn't easily or often give words of admiration or validation and I've asked him to try to work on it, but I'm not sure if it's something he's capable of in the end. I'm scared that if I become too starved for those little pleasantries, I'll end up harboring a lot of resentment towards him and villifying him. I absolutely don't want to go down that road.

    For my part, I've made a concerted effort to acknowledge his "I love you" actions as such. For example, he makes sure to spend lots of time with me, he encourages me to go after my goals, he really listens when I have to express something and he gives thoughtful and practical advice when I need it. He's a young INTP - 26, and I am almost 5 years older, so I don't know if he needs time for his emotional intelligence to develop or if this is a forever thing. He's a really special guy and I love him very much and would ultimately like this relationship to work out, which is why I pose this question to you:

    Would it be wise for an INFJ to greatly alter their expectations for words of admiration and validation?



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  2. #2
    Donor Billy's Avatar
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    If you are asking if you should settle, I would say no, if youre not getting what you need, you have a problem. Is he happy?

    In my experience, dating NT's has been this way for me as well. I need a lot more then they are typically willing to give, at least vocally.

    I heard someone say that NTs in the dating world could be described as conceptualists and NFs as Idealists.

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  3. #3
    XXXX Norton's Avatar
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    I can only speak for myself, an INTP, and my experience with my INFJ wife of 34 years. INTP's start out oblivious and they can improve from there, but through no sense of malice, will always retain a bit of obliviousness. At 59, I'm still a work in progress, but I've learned through patient INFJ tutoring how to be a more feeling human being. Since I love my wife deeply, I'm always looking for ways to understand her and please her--I'm highly motivated. One bit of practical advice: be explicit. We really don't get it! We really don't pick up on others' emotions. I have learned to be more sensitive and never to disparage or invalidate my wife's emotions. I don't know any other INTP's IRL, but I imagine there is a lot of diversity among them as there is in any MBTI type. For an INTP, Fe is low on the list of traits, so it isn't well developed until perhaps one's thirties or beyond. I believe if somebody is nice, means well, and loves you, he will be receptive to change. Learning new things does not diminish a person. It only adds more to the old.

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    Community Member Peppermint's Avatar
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    Some INTPs simply don't understand the need for validation others have. It's not something they do on purpose, it just escapes their mind. There's no malice either, and the INTP may very well have strong feelings for someone, they just express it in subtle ways.

    It's good you talked to him about it, but bear in mind INTPs sometimes need quite some time to mull things over and reach a conclusion.

    INTPs tend to have a different view of romance than most people. Words of affirmation, gifts, mushy sentimentality - some people thrive on them, to an INTP they carry no significance. Just being in a relationship and being committed, in INTP language means they are interested in a person and have some kind of attachment. With how relationships aren't really a priority to an INTP, already being in one means there is a sentiment towards the other person.

    For example, I don't like to have to give forced affection to make someone feel good. If I care about them, I want to be genuine and show my affection on my own terms and in my own ways. It's not selfishness, but the 'flashy' tokens of appreciation just feel fake. I think that being Fe inferiors can sometimes create this apprehensiveness of Fe, I call it "Fe paranoia".

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  5. #5
    What do you mean, I can change my Usertitle magister343's Avatar
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    Generally INTPs won't bother with relationships unless they care very deeply. Extroverted Feeling is our Aspirational function, what we feel least competent using and most deeply desire to improve. Although we can get better with time and practice, expressing our feelings for others always remains very stressful. In general people do not become comfortable utilizing their 4th functions until around middle age; the manifestation of this process is thought to be the source of the mid-life crisis. I've heard INTPs often mature faster than other types and so reach this midlife crisis well before mid-life though, perhaps because as social creatures it is hard to get by with so little Fe. After the midlife crisis an INTP will be more comfortable validating others, but even when we learn to do it well it remains exhausting.

    We are probably the least capable of anyone of feigning affection (to us any trace insincerity turns validation into insult), so you can be fairly confident that what is expressed in genuine. We typically don't have emotions about most things or people, but when we do they are seem too great for words to express. Since our emotions react to so little, our emotional states tend to be unusually constant, and we subconsciously assume others are the same way. An INTP will tell you when his emotions change, but assume that nothing changes when nothing is expressed. From what I've read INTPs are often very expressive of their feelings fairly early in a relationship, but we don't see the point of ever repeating ourselves once we are confident that these feelings have been understood. If you make it clear that you don't understand how he feels anymore he'll likely be glad to explain it again, although possibly also annoyed that you'd think him so fickle. We are also quite bothered if someone we care about does something that shows they are in a bad mood towards us and does not make it clear when this changes, as to us it may seem that such a state lasts months instead of minutes.



    (I'm afraid most of my advice will have to be theoretical, as I've not yet gotten so far as having an actual romantic relationship. I fell hopelessly in love when I was 12 years old (ok, actually by the time I can be sure it was really love I was almost 14) with an INFJ girl from my church who was 2.5 years older than me. Its a complicated story (which I started to tell here but decided would be too hard/distracting to explain in adequate detail), but suffice it to say that it took 5 years for me to first try to tell her how I felt (after she had moved away), and after doing a horrible job at that another 5 years before making contact again, developing and friendship, and feeling ready to move on. It has been 5 1/2 since our only in person meeting in 5 1/2 years. I thought it went quite well, but have recently been sort of freaking out that she has not returned my emails since then. This is also right around the 5 and 3 year anniversaries of meeting the nest 2 most important girls I've known, one of whom is now married and the other I've been thinking of asking out. I've had very little contact with anyone outside my family this summer, and have spent several sleepless nights trying to decide what to write in response to the only friend who has emailed me lately.)
    Last edited by magister343; 28-06-10 at 07:35 PM.
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  6. #6
    Satisclassifaction NeverAmI's Avatar
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    In a romantic relationship I am extremely low maintenance. When it first starts out I am quite flowery because I am so emotional, I think as things calm down and the dust settles, a lot of that dies down, I am not rude or anything, but since I am not so emotional, I am not so expressive.

    I have found most times that my mates have figured that my lack of words and placid demeanor, lack of consistent validation, signify disinterest or a falling out of love, which isn't the case. A lot of times I have a lot running through my mind all at once, and while I am not rude, my aloofness does tend to cause problems. I have learned over time to be more considerate, and place a higher priority on my relationships. Teaching your INTP partner that small things mean a lot and make a big difference can help out, I think. Perhaps telling them to study massage or some other form of sensual study that is affectionate would be interesting to them.

    From the perspective of an INTP male, I have always wanted my lovers to approach me with a candid relay of their feelings, what they neeed, and what they expect from me. A lot of times I truly was clueless as to what was needed. I have grown a lot in that respect through both my own observations and testimonies of others.

    Also, I had tried to comfort by giving practical/logical advice in the past, I have since learned that people often don't want the truth and don't want advice, they just...want...comfort. That has made a HUGE difference in my relations with others. To many an INTP a new problem is like a shiny new toy and it is a REAL lesson in self-discipline to avoid immediately trying to solve whatever problem has a potential mate upset.

    If my lover was too impatient to teach or explain to me what they need, and instead expected me to read minds, then I was often too impatient to go so far out of my way for them. That isn't to say I can't be romantic, I just think that sometimes I was too neutral when my lover's expectations of me were different. Any relationship is a two-way street; candid, clear, communication and both partners going out of their way to help one another is the golden road to happiness.

    Edit: Also, I was thinking about past relationships, and I did often try to be more expressive, based on the urgings of my mate. I think from the outside of an INTP looking in it is like there is a HUGE stone wall that is inpenetrable without the key, which is incredibly hard to obtain - our trust. Like someone who has never danced, asking an INTP to be more expressive is like throwing someone out onto the dance floor and asking them to start dancing flamenco. Things like this not only require time and patience (which it sounds like you have been giving) but also candid advice/encouragement.

    For me, sometimes expressing emotions is like telling me to go on stage and sing accapella, it is terrifying, and even when I think I am going WAY out of my way to be expressive, to someone who is normally so expressive it may seem like we are barely trying. There is a vast gap many times between perspectives and I think both need to try their best to bridge it over time.

    I say, just keep encouraging, keep that trust flowing, and perhaps the drought will cease.
    "Don't worry about people stealing your ideas. If your ideas are any good, you'll have to ram them down people's throats." -Howard Aiken

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  7. #7
    Community Member Ecton's Avatar
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    My wife and I just had the following conversation this morning.

    Wife: "Oh man, time to move. Its like that time we moved from New YOrk and it was our wedding anniversary."

    Me: "Yeah"

    Wife: "Hey, wait a minute. Is today June 28th?"

    Me: "I donno"

    Wife: "Its our wedding anniversery. Whaddaya know?"

    Me: "I guess we're moving again"

    MY wife is an INTJ. Now, she would love for me to romance her, but the fact that we have both been crazy busy lately was funny and we both appreciated that we ARE moving again. TO each couple their own (I still better buy a card! )

    I really disagree with Vicky Joe on this one. I have a strong Fe, but I prefer shared experiences like this to tokens.
    Last edited by Ecton; 29-06-10 at 12:15 AM.
    Ni > Ti = Fe > Fi = Ne > Te > Se = Si

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  8. #8
    Community Member frozen_water's Avatar
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    I'm an INFJ and have been dating an INTP for a year and a half with two breakups. Both times I ended things because I didn't feel validated, which led to deeper insecurities, making me question whether or not he actually loved me. Our short breakups only remind us of how much we really do love each other, but once we're back in the relationship again I start feeling those same insecurities. He doesn't easily or often give words of admiration or validation and I've asked him to try to work on it, but I'm not sure if it's something he's capable of in the end.
    So... bear in mind that I'm only 21, so I'm even younger than he is..... but this is something thatI'd hesitate on a lot, before I started it up with a girlfriend. There are two major things that would be going through my head if someone needed validation from me that badly:

    Why is it so important that you get that validation? Are you so heavily invested in what other people think of you that you would leave an otherwise-perfect relationship without it? Am I ok being with someone who derives that much of their "substance" directly from other people? Is it a healthy trait for me to encourage? That is, is it actually good for you to continually whitewash insecurities, rather than looking for a more permanent solution?

    Why are you irritated when you don't get that validation from me? Am I getting placed up on a pedestal where I don't belong? I don't think it's good for someone to idolize another or to be idolized by another, so if my opinions about a person are being held in excessively high regard by them, it makes me uncomfortable and I'll probably just freeze up so long that the moment's already passed and the chance to validate is gone.

    Why do you need me to say validating things, anyway? Is there such a lack of trust that you don't believe me unless I say it? [insert indignant whining here]. It's not like it would be hard for me to lie about, if I wanted to.... so shush and stop being silly.

    What kind of person would you be without those insecurities? This is more of a recent development for me... but (contrary to how this post probably sounds, hehe) I've gone out of my way to be excessively encouraging to people who seemed to need it, and the results have been disastrous. I'm like this to people when I could quiet the two concerns I just mentioned--people who were insecure due to absues growing up, or have some anxiety disorder (irrational fears, which they knew were irrational and wished they could change, but just couldn't)... but very often they've turned out to be really nasty, judgmental people, once they actually got the confidence to voice their thoughts. A few times I've found myself wishing I'd never encouraged them or tried to alleviate their insecurities at all... and since I'm still not entirely sure what the "primary cause" of the character change is (past abuse, or the insecurities themselves, or whether I just misjudged their character and got unlucky, etc), I'm a little wary of trying to help people overcome things like that.

    I don't mean to say you're doing one or both of those things... but unless you could point out some other reason why you wanted the validation, I'd hesitate because I were wondering about them. Of course, like everyone else already pointed out, even if I knew that in your cases none of those things were applicable, there's still the fairly common problem of "I forget."

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    Community Member Rogue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Norton View Post
    I can only speak for myself, an INTP, and my experience with my INFJ wife of 34 years. INTP's start out oblivious and they can improve from there, but through no sense of malice, will always retain a bit of obliviousness. At 59, I'm still a work in progress, but I've learned through patient INFJ tutoring how to be a more feeling human being. Since I love my wife deeply, I'm always looking for ways to understand her and please her--I'm highly motivated. One bit of practical advice: be explicit (very very explicit). We really don't get it! We really don't pick up on others' emotions. I have learned to be more sensitive and never to disparage or invalidate my wife's emotions. I don't know any other INTP's IRL, but I imagine there is a lot of diversity among them as there is in any MBTI type. For an INTP, Fe is low on the list of traits, so it isn't well developed until perhaps one's thirties or beyond. I believe if somebody is nice, means well, and loves you, he will be receptive to change. Learning new things does not diminish a person. It only adds more to the old.


    I have found that my INTP is sometimes....oblivious to my needs or how I really feel. To be honest, it has been a real learning endeavor to voice my needs or how I feel about something(something that does NOT come very natural for me, a fault in myself) It is unrealistic/unfair to expect someone to read my mind and give me what I need without opening my mouth to tell him/re-tell him. I am rewarded with his "highly motivated" desire to love me. I have always felt like it was a fake reaction to have to tell someone how to love me, but I have found that communication/hard work is how fairy-tales are made...they don't just happen. My INTP has told me several times that he appreciates when I tell him what my needs are, and he then seems eager to please...like he has just figured out a neat code or something....his memory seems to fade quickly so I have to re-tell him, and then he is eager to please all over again. I also have to step back and ask myself is there something missing in me that makes me need extra at times, and that is something no one else can validate except myself. At times I can get too needy and I just need to take a step back and ask my self some questions....like is this true. Sadly, the first thing that pops into my head is.."he doesn't love me as much anymore". He has told me....often....that, "if you could just crawl into my head, you would see how much I love you" I have to step back and ask myself, what is real??? Then, I replay what he has told me before. When I see his lack of enthusiasm it can cast a bit of doubt, but I have to ask, is this real. My Sweetheart has had to work a lot lately and I have felt a bit...empty...very empty because his mind was elsewhere. When it finally became more than I could bear...I dumped it all on him. He gave me the "Uh Oh" and in five minutes I was reaffirmed and I felt loved all over again....what a wasted few weeks it was with all of my fretting. All people are a work in progress...I would tell him often, be realistic, grow in yourself, and watch him grow. It honestly sounds like he is comfortable and that he loves you. It might be good to see what his love language is...and yours too. It could help you guys not have to work so hard.
    .ExternalClass .ecxhmmessage P{padding:0px;}.ExternalClass body.ecxhmmessage{font-size:10pt;font-family:Verdana;}www.afo.net/hftw-lovetest.asp

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  10. #10
    Newbie gator's Avatar
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    As an INTP, it's often hard to put what I feel into words, or to even know how to express how I feel. I don't always know what's expected of me in a relationship because for me the act of just being in the relationship and spending time with someone is enough. Clearly I love the person otherwise I wouldn't be in the relationship. Why state the obvious?

    I know that for me if I'm usually very willing to do things that people ask of me, even if it's something I wouldn't normally do or enjoy. I recognize that showing affection is just not something I'm good at. It can leave me feeling kind of lost.

    I say if you feel that your relationship is worth working on and saving then you need to be more explicit about what it is that you need.

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    Regular Poster durentu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beautiful Souls View Post
    Would it be wise for an INFJ to greatly alter their expectations for words of admiration and validation?
    I've dated an INFJ for 4 years, and broke up with her specifically on this.

    If you want him to validate you in the way you want to be validated, you can either keep dreaming or put in hard work and wait 10+ years

    And this is the part that absolutely pissed me off about my ex. I explained to her that I show my validation in other ways. Explaining to her that my thoughts are my most precious things and that I share them with her freely and openly. We go out, cook together, try new things and such. I encouraged her skills in baking and in crafts. Even proposed the idea of starting a business to sell her crafts. This is my language of validation. She understood it and accepted it. A month later, she'd ask "Why don't you validate me". To which we'd go through the explanation all over again with new insights. She understood it and accepted it. Few months go by, and this happened again.

    After altering strategies and tactics, nothing worked. And about 3 years into it I've internalized it as "I'm never going to be good enough for her". From then, it kept going on and turned into emotional abuse. I had to leave for good, never to return. While the rose smells sweet, I have no more blood to spill over its thorns to dwell in its delights.

    She didn't realize that the validation she seeks can only come from herself. I wanted to become better and I wanted her to become better too. She agreed and we started bettering ourselves. This must start with opening up the self and working through the problems towards self-acceptance. I was learning about psychological therapies and philosophy at the time to help her in case she fell off the deep end. It was my dream that she could one day see herself as gold. But whenever we try to open the door to her inner self, she would slam it shut and then guard it until I went away.

    The validation that she seeks can only come from her self behind that door, but she'll never open it.

    I could never provide it for her nor is it possible, so I had to leave.

    ------------

    for practical concerns

    "Too good to leave, too bad to stay" Mira Kirschenbaum
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    he can predict with 90% accuracy if the couple will break up or not within 10 minutes of watching a couple.
    Last edited by durentu; 01-07-10 at 07:52 AM.
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    Community Member yepunsarang's Avatar
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    Very interesting how many of you INTPs say how it's difficult to be outwardly expressive. My question to you guys is---have you always been that way? How about toward the beginning of a relationship when things are all lovey-dovey? Do you think one reason why it's difficult to be in touch with that side (in addition to it not being as "natural") is the fact that it's difficult for INTPs to be fully open and trusting of another person? (Comfort level perhaps)?

    I'm just wondering because my INTP is actually quite physically affectionate. I've also had a little trouble with doubt and being fully open too---not because I don't love myself, but just because I'm scared. I needed just a little validation to know just how much he cared about me (but note this is at the beginning of a relationship). When I'm in these moments though, I make sure I validate HIM first, just to show show him exactly why I like him, what he means to me. He tells me he likes it when I'm this open with him---and in return, he thinks about what I mean to him and tells me. It's very comforting. May be "validation" doesn't work if you merely demand it from someone. But it's something that needs to be reciprocated and shared in a "moment of connection". That way, it doesn't feel artificial and pressuring.

    I think comfort level and level of intimacy/ closeness is also a factor in this perhaps. INTPs I've noticed especially have a hard time fully opening up. If that happens, it means you guys really trust us. My INTP does trust me a whole lot and vice versa. Of course, I also think he's not a hard-core "T" and might have learned from "F" relatives.

    I've heard INTPs also act as chameleons and I can't imagine anyone not appreciating physical affection. I'm thinking if two people (INTP + INFJ) are really close and if the INFJ is affectionate---but not overtly so---the INTP should naturally want to reciprocate? Key word though, is naturally and not through pressure or feeling they must be because it's "standard" in a relationship.
    Last edited by yepunsarang; 01-07-10 at 03:21 PM.

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    Community Member Rogue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yepunsarang View Post
    Very interesting how many of you INTPs say how it's difficult to be outwardly expressive. My question to you guys is---have you always been that way? How about toward the beginning of a relationship when things are all lovey-dovey? Do you think one reason why it's difficult to be in touch with that side (in addition to it not being as "natural") is the fact that it's difficult for INTPs to be fully open and trusting of another person? (Comfort level perhaps)?

    I'm just wondering because my INTP is actually quite physically affectionate. I've also had a little trouble with doubt and being fully open too---not because I don't love myself, but just because I'm scared. I needed just a little validation to know just how much he cared about me (but note this is at the beginning of a relationship). When I'm in these moments though, I make sure I validate HIM first, just to show show him exactly why I like him, what he means to me. He tells me he likes it when I'm this open with him---and in return, he thinks about what I mean to him and tells me. It's very comforting. May be "validation" doesn't work if you merely demand it from someone. But it's something that needs to be reciprocated and shared in a "moment of connection". That way, it doesn't feel artificial and pressuring.

    I think comfort level and level of intimacy/ closeness is also a factor in this perhaps. INTPs I've noticed especially have a hard time fully opening up. If that happens, it means you guys really trust us. My INTP does trust me a whole lot and vice versa. Of course, I also think he's not a hard-core "T" and might have learned from "F" relatives.

    I've heard INTPs also act as chameleons and I can't imagine anyone not appreciating physical affection. I'm thinking if two people (INTP + INFJ) are really close and if the INFJ is affectionate---but not overtly so---the INTP should naturally want to reciprocate? Key word though, is naturally and not through pressure or feeling they must be because it's "standard" in a relationship.
    This is very similar to our situation.

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  14. #14
    XXXX Norton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yepunsarang View Post
    Very interesting how many of you INTPs say how it's difficult to be outwardly expressive. My question to you guys is---have you always been that way? How about toward the beginning of a relationship when things are all lovey-dovey? Do you think one reason why it's difficult to be in touch with that side (in addition to it not being as "natural") is the fact that it's difficult for INTPs to be fully open and trusting of another person? (Comfort level perhaps)...
    This thread has been interesting to me because it has caused me to think about how I am with my wife. The operative word is think, because this is what I do all the time. Why I think all the time, I don't know, but it seems to be the most natural, automatic thing--It's how my mind works. Throughout my life, even as a child, I've had sleepless nights thinking about things that interest me. It's not as if I don't feel things all the time, but the feeling is more like an underlying background to the thinking.

    Anyway, despite being extremely reserved, since the beginning of our relationship, I've always been affectionate with my wife. This came naturally, and I could express my love because she has always made me feel secure in her love, too.

    But, I observe and I think and then I do. For example, because of this thread, I reminded myself that my wife likes flowers and finds receiving flowers from me to be sweet and romantic. Seems silly to me, but, I don't disparage her feelings. So, I went to the florist's today and bought her a bouquet, which is now sitting in a vase on the table waiting for her to come home. The problem is that I should probably be doing these things consistently, but I get caught up in my thoughts and forget. Because I love my wife very much, I really must try harder.

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  15. #15
    Regular Poster Nighthawk's Avatar
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    I've found a lot of what is written here to be true with respect to my INFJ lady and myself. I'm a bit more of a mature INTP, so my Fe is a bit more developed ... or so I have been told. When the Fe comes out to play, we have very few problems with affirmation or validation. It is primitive and childlike, but very vocal and loving. I try to give her whatever she needs to feel loved and validated, as she is a very special person and deserving of no less. The problem occurs when I'm in situations where my Ti comes to to forefront. When I am in the "zone" for work or problem solving, I become very internally focused and don't validate as much as I could ... or should. During these times I take the love we share as a given and try to deal with the technical or logical issues I am facing. I think she might see that as our initial love fading, which is not the case in my mind and feelings.

    I don't want to say that I put us on hold, but my Ti does take the fore front and I need to be reminded to pay attention to my relationship as well. It is not because I am falling out of love .. I am still very much in love and feel it strongly. It is just a different mode of operation. The feelings are still very much there ... just something different (my T) is being externalized. To be honest, it is still a learning experience for me and I want to try everything I can to make her happy. I don't think it will be a difficult thing for me, but I do appreciate her "reminders" to pay attention to us. If there is something amiss, I want to learn from it and take care of it.

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  16. #16
    Regular Poster Honey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by durentu View Post

    The validation that she seeks can only come from her self behind that door, but she'll never open it.

    I could never provide it for her nor is it possible, so I had to leave.
    I think you may have been right to leave, I know I would because I dislike dealing with emotionally demanding people due to the sheer energy drain involved. I think "feelers" and (ESTPs), at least the ones I have dated could do with being more self validating in general. I am a type of person who needs a lot of space, do not want or expect flowers ( I consider cut flowers household clutter and a bother most times) and probably the word 'I love you' said once over the course of a relationship is enough for me, I pay more attention to actions than words.

    I do think most INFJs probably become less emotionally needy with time and experience and INTPs become more emotionally in touch with others over time so in the end if both can stick it out or are at the right level of maturity then a pleasing balance will exist or be reached.

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  17. #17
    Regular Poster durentu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Honey View Post
    I think you may have been right to leave, I know I would because I dislike dealing with emotionally demanding people due to the sheer energy drain involved. I think "feelers" and (ESTPs), at least the ones I have dated could do with being more self validating in general. I am a type of person who needs a lot of space, do not want or expect flowers ( I consider cut flowers household clutter and a bother most times) and probably the word 'I love you' said once over the course of a relationship is enough for me, I pay more attention to actions than words.
    Yes, I too find more truth in action than in words.

    What was interesting was the realization that MBTI had very little to do with relationships at all. In the final analysis, only 3 things really matter about the partner in the relationship: which principles do they live by, what is their world view, and what do they want to become.

    In thinking about the relationships I've had in the past, the best times in my life were with the best relationships. At least for me, the more independent the girl was, the happier we both were. The MBTI type mattered only slightly, which is a far cry from the magnum theory that it seems to have taken hold on MBTI sites.

    I used to have faith in the MBTI system when thinking in relationships, but upon study of it and self examination, it's just not potent enough to carry something as complex as a relationship. There's also a danger in using MBTI when diagnosing or troubleshooting a relationship because while one is INTP and the other is INFJ, these labels are applied (perhaps strongly) and then it becomes a form of stigmatization. I could have used a racial slur and it would be the same effect. I had detected this when going through rough patches with my ex, and so I abandoned it.

    I think what drew me to the MBTI system to troubleshoot relationships was that it shielded me from my own insecurities and in certain instances, it provided me an excuse for poor behavior in myself and in her. It seemed to provide a solid foothold to work from, but I see now that it could never have held.

    MBTI does have merits in that it helps to point in a direction, but it's not to be confused for the real thing. It's as if to look at a sign "Las Vegas 500miles" and claim that you're in Las Vegas.

    I do think most INFJs probably become less emotionally needy with time and experience and INTPs become more emotionally in touch with others over time so in the end if both can stick it out or are at the right level of maturity then a pleasing balance will exist or be reached.
    While there are some interesting correlations and trends, it's really about each person individually that is emotionally dependent or otherwise. To say that INFJs are emotionally dependent and INTPs are emotionally retarded is to stigmatize the entire group which I think is unfair to the individual.

    [ramble warning]

    Ironically, one goes to determine their MBTI type, to be a different MBTI type

    Which brings me to to my next point.

    While it's great that many people here know their MBTI type. That's a great start, but that's only awareness. Jung describes an individuation process to find yourself starting from where you are. It actually deals in cognitive processes like Fe Ti etc, but he provides a maps through the shadow, finding the anima/animus, finding and controlling the ego towards are much more actualized individual. Full of vibranace, brilliance, and vigor. If you ever met one, you feel different around them. Jung believed that this could be achieved through dreams based on Joseph Campbell's "Hero with a Thousand Faces": aka the monomyth or hero's jounrey.

    Taking INTP for example. Ti Ne Si Fe
    The Fe is sometimes called the Inferior function, and Jung calls it the Shadow function. The whole idea is for an INTP to understand that Fe function. This is to say that the INTP should keep the Ti around, but work on the Fe, to go out and discover beauty/aesthetics in the world (Fe has absolutely nothing to do with being emo-goth or touchy feely or whatever). In doing so, I've discovered that my aesthetic is that of elegance. I've come to respect the works of Coco-Channel to which she said "Elegance is refusal" and suggested before heading out the door, to look in the mirror and take one item off. This is what Jung meant for INTPs to find their shadow.

    For INFJs (Ni Fe Ti Se), it's to find the Se.

    The Enneagram system works in the similar fashion in that the point is to be integrated enough to be able to assume all 9 types at any time and to reinvent or renew the self. (based on a sect of sufiism going back a few thousand years)

    refs:
    http://www.cultkitsch.org/ciencia/ps...al%20Types.pdf
    Last edited by durentu; 02-07-10 at 04:46 AM.
    "Prove to me that the Ego exists. When you can't, you'll discover that the ego is a fantastic myth created out of fear of insecurity. As one becomes more entrenched in being this Ego, the more intolerant one becomes to anything that doesn't fit which leads away from faith and into belief. There is no such thing as the self. It is only created from being a formless god: this is our nature we have forgotten"

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  18. #18
    Regular Poster Honey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by durentu View Post
    In thinking about the relationships I've had in the past, the best times in my life were with the best relationships. At least for me, the more independent the girl was, the happier we both were.
    I am not surprised, it has been the same for me. Granted, I do know of relationships where one of the individuals involved have acted under the banner of "independence" to justify all sorts of seemingly selfish, neglectful acts. Like with many things, there is a kind of balance involved.


    I used to have faith in the MBTI system when thinking in relationships, but upon study of it and self examination, it's just not potent enough to carry something as complex as a relationship.
    To some extent you might be right but I think MBTI type does play some sort of role in successful relationships, especially with communication. It is probably just not the main factor determining the succuess of the relationship but personally I have found it easier and more pleasant to communicate with certain MBTI type than others.


    While there are some interesting correlations and trends, it's really about each person individually that is emotionally dependent or otherwise. To say that INFJs are emotionally dependent and INTPs are emotionally retarded is to stigmatize the entire group which I think is unfair to the individual.
    Well, I would not go so far as to say that INTPs are emotionally retarded and INFJs emotionally dependent but there does seem to be a trend evident in the posts of some of the INTPs and the INFJs above which suggests that the types probably have a need for different levels and kinds of emotional affirmation overall. However, I am INFJ and I have posted of my dislike for some of the things INFJs are thought to need emotionally and someone spoke of knowing an affectionate INTP so the individual differences of people within types was alluded to as well.

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  19. #19
    Permanent Fixture Phoenix Down's Avatar
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    MAke a list of grievences and how you would like them to be fixed... then say "I'm a woman Damnit I'm allowed to be THIS irrational." but not like that because that invites an INTP to argue that there are no differences in "irrationality" between men and women blah blah blbebity boo

    I think its been said but if he's been dating you that long, he's obviously invested and cares a lot.

    You might try like 10 things you like about me
    even if the delivery is dry, INTPs think things through and like to be precise so that they aren't misinterpreted... (which it annoys the heck out them when I purposefully take the other meaning) anyway, What I mean to say is if you take what they say as they mean it, it will be flattering.

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  20. #20
    Regular Poster Nighthawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by durentu View Post
    What was interesting was the realization that MBTI had very little to do with relationships at all. In the final analysis, only 3 things really matter about the partner in the relationship: which principles do they live by, what is their world view, and what do they want to become.
    Quote Originally Posted by Honey View Post
    To some extent you might be right but I think MBTI type does play some sort of role in successful relationships, especially with communication. It is probably just not the main factor determining the succuess of the relationship but personally I have found it easier and more pleasant to communicate with certain MBTI type than others.
    For me, MBTI does play a significant role in a relationship. I've found that I get along much better, and communicate much better, with other Intuitives. I've been in relationships with both Intuitives and Sensors ... and I can only go so far with a Sensor. It usually remains pretty superficial. I find that I can craft a much deeper relationship with another Intuitive.

    This does not mean however, that I should be comfortable in a rut and attribute it all to this being the way I am according to MBTI. I do believe in exploring and growing other aspects of myself that might not be my preferred functions. I also believe that a relationship depends on more than MBTI ... it is simply one of my cornerstones for understanding and growing a relationship. If I know the needs, desires, and preferred communication methods of my partner ... then I can be more responsive to them.

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