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  1. #1
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    Question Feeling like opposites. ISFP and INTP

    Me (female ISFP) and my INTP boyfriend have been together for a little less than a year. Yet some issues regarding our different personalities seem to never stop clashing, i.e.:

    • his need for an enormous amount of alone time. I'm pretty independent but compared to him I feel as clingy as ivy, with me working an "I miss you" after half a week of not seeing each other and him starting to miss me after at least 10 days
    • my way of needing more communication when distant (that is 5 days a week, more if something comes up in the weekend)
    • Me not being too assertive or vocal about things that bother me (I've stopped complaining after he told me I was smothering him at first) while he can be brutally honest easily

    .. And some more things. Now reading what I wrote I'd give myself the advice of breaking it off and not look back, cause like this it does seem his emotional coldness is too much for me to take, although we have both learnt to cope with each other's weaknesses. But we can also be very happy together (in person it's always better than when distant) and he's often said these are issues that don't have to do with me but with him being a strongly independent introvert. I'm '"borderline" introvert, as in I enjoy alone time 51% of the times.
    He's shown me in many ways he cares about me, and I trust him very much. Meaning that I have no doubts that if he thought he was done with me he'd tell me. But what I do question is if a relationship between such different individuals can be good for me. Anyone else has similar experiences?
    Last edited by Polinares; 05-30-2017 at 09:20 AM.

  2. #2
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    I'm an introvert who does require a 50% alone time ratio mainly to process things which is impossible to do in a meaningful deep way if I'm too distracted and I get distracted easily. However with a SO I'm definitely more affectionate than with anyone else and I mean in terms of emotionality not just the obvious physical closeness. There's an entire part of me reserved for that person alone.

    I obviously don't know either of you but I'd think it may be harder for him to express more to you than he is being a thinker. Being an intuitive might make him apt to wander in his mind about possibilities and that might add distance between you two even when you spend time together.

    You have to ask yourself if you can live with that. Can you live with his traits knowing they're unlikely to change? Balance the pros and cons in your head. If you can discuss it with him in a manner that isn't excessively emotional (I'm not saying you're too emotional but if he's a thinker a less emotional more rational layout of the issue may be more easily processed by him) and tell him your concerns it might help. Of course he'll probably vanish to sort through the information. I'm not sure if anything I've said is helpful but I hope so. Good luck!
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Population: 1 View Post
    I obviously don't know either of you but I'd think it may be harder for him to express more to you than he is being a thinker. Being an intuitive might make him apt to wander in his mind about possibilities and that might add distance between you two even when you spend time together.
    This is so spot on!

    As an ISFP, I tend to live in the moment and, turning out a "peacemaker" type (-.-), tend to avoid conflicts.. thus our happy moments (many) shadow the few not quite right ones, for me.
    He overanalyzes them instead. Not by like making them huge, but rather by projecting them into the future and coming up with solutions to problems I don't even see as problems yet.

    Ugh, ths sound so complicated..

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    Quote Originally Posted by Polinares View Post
    This is so spot on!

    As an ISFP, I tend to live in the moment and, turning out a "peacemaker" type (-.-), tend to avoid conflicts.. thus our happy moments (many) shadow the few not quite right ones, for me.
    He overanalyzes them instead. Not by like making them huge, but rather by projecting them into the future and coming up with solutions to problems I don't even see as problems yet.

    Ugh, ths sound so complicated..
    Well I'm an intuitive who leans towards thinking even though I'm more feeling overall. Being in the present can be a challenge. Someone needs to grab my feet and yank my head out of the clouds frequently. It's definitely tough to keep us in the moment.

    A thinker is definitely going to process what you say and do but quite possibly misinterpret it because he's attempting to rationalize emotions. You might even see the steam coming out his ears while he tries!

    Seriously though it can be hard to get me out of my shell. He might be tempted to go into hermit mode. Very difficult to get me out of it. I get comfortable and don't wish to budge. Again if someone just can tug me out of it I might grumble at first but I'll quickly appreciate the effort. Not sure if that'll work with your INTP. Hopefully you can get an INTP guy or two in this thread to explain that particular mindset.
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  5. #5
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    gross! emotions are sticky! *wink*...

    how much time do you spend together? has the volume fluctuated significantly?

    i note you that you feel unable to express your emotions to him... do you think (as i do) that something about either the presentation, escalation, or application of your feelings at that time brought that response? when strong emotions are at play (in particular negative ones), i withdraw if i feel i am being targeted... perhaps it is worth examining how you present, and not just what...

    prolonged absence is different for me (an intp), than it is for most people i meet... everything freeze frames the way i left things...i guess if they ended on a particularly foul note, i may spend time analyzing it... in any case, i am always a bit frustrated when people don't accept that my feelings are stable, and don't need to be verbally reaffirmed as proof of their consistency... i doubt that he doesn't miss you at all for ten days... perhaps that is merely his level of tolerance...

    to be honest, you aren't giving much information concerning his viewpoint...
    "The vanity of intelligence is that the intelligent man is often more committed to 'one-upping' his opponent than being truthful. When the idea of intelligence, rather than intelligence itself, becomes a staple, there is no wisdom in it."
    Criss Jami

    "When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but creatures of emotion."
    "Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain but it takes character and self control to be understanding and forgiving."
    Dale Carnegie

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    we usually spend together 2 days a week, during the weekend (me at his place or him at mine). The amount hasn't changed and although I'd like something more spontaneous more often that's pretty undoable cause we live 1 hour apart and both work pretty much.
    I agree with you that he can probably put stuff on "freeze" (I do too.. with friends. For like few days).
    I think I became wary of bringing up negative feelings after he told me he needed a bit more space. This happened after I became (objectively) clingy when I started seeing this pattern of him getting into his cave when very absorbed and stressed with work. Now I have actual problems at expressing my concerns in fear of bringing up that situation again.
    His viewpoint is things are going good but he's always looking for improvement. Which can be seen both as a good and bad thing. (I know this is pretty generic; if youhave specific viewpoints of his that you feel are missing, do ask! )

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    If you feel like you aren't getting what you need in the relationship and compromise is off the table find someone else.

    I would not want to be in a relationship with someone who was unable to fulfill my emotional needs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Polinares View Post
    we usually spend together 2 days a week, during the weekend (me at his place or him at mine). The amount hasn't changed and although I'd like something more spontaneous more often that's pretty undoable cause we live 1 hour apart and both work pretty much.
    I agree with you that he can probably put stuff on "freeze" (I do too.. with friends. For like few days).
    I think I became wary of bringing up negative feelings after he told me he needed a bit more space. This happened after I became (objectively) clingy when I started seeing this pattern of him getting into his cave when very absorbed and stressed with work. Now I have actual problems at expressing my concerns in fear of bringing up that situation again.
    His viewpoint is things are going good but he's always looking for improvement. Which can be seen both as a good and bad thing. (I know this is pretty generic; if youhave specific viewpoints of his that you feel are missing, do ask! )
    this sounds like a communication problem more than anything else... i would try to organize your concerns and let him know that you would like him to think of ways to compromise...maybe let him go first to decrease the likelyhood of withdrawal from the situation... i still don't feel i have a clear picture of what he thinks of any of this, but the approach above is a good catchall approach... bringing the problems up and giving him time to consider is good... a deadline to consider by is bad... focus the conversation on solutions instead of blame and do your best to make sure he has finished making a point before pressing forward... i mention the last part because i have had experiences with isfp that were so busy being heard they never heard themselves (when emotion was involved); it isn't meant to be presumptuous...
    "The vanity of intelligence is that the intelligent man is often more committed to 'one-upping' his opponent than being truthful. When the idea of intelligence, rather than intelligence itself, becomes a staple, there is no wisdom in it."
    Criss Jami

    "When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but creatures of emotion."
    "Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain but it takes character and self control to be understanding and forgiving."
    Dale Carnegie

  9. #9
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    the thing is I don't have a clear picture either. He can be very sweet but if things are keeping him (pre)occupied he goes into robot mode. And he's allergic to say anything he doesn't mean, so where another man would "lie" and say "yeah I missed you too" or "I'm thinking about you" out of niceness to keep things smooth, he wouldn't and just say "I have been busy; I feel like I just saw you; I haven't had a chance to miss you yet". I'm actually pretty fine with that, but just to give you an example.
    The only thing I've seen works to get him out of the cave on his own (not me poking him) is me being busy as well. Which is ok, but I would like to be able to just have a easy communication without playing hard to catch.
    I have never given deadlines, but I do tend to be emotional about issues rather than logical. And yes, what you said is true, I go fast forward while he pauses. It's just so difficult understanding how complicated something emotional can be for him, while with other isfps they'd think "duh!!"

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Polinares View Post
    the thing is I don't have a clear picture either.
    maybe work on that and not fast forwarding (a joint problem?)... i bet you will have a more clear understanding of how you wish to proceed afterwords...

    post script:

    if he is still talking he is still attempting to communicate... if you cut him off during that process, chances are he thinks you don't want to listen... sabotaging communication and then acting puzzled drives me batty with partners... maybe he doesn't react the way i do? i know i just get tired of trying and shut up... i often adopt a"fuck it let 'em talk" approach to those scenarios...
    "The vanity of intelligence is that the intelligent man is often more committed to 'one-upping' his opponent than being truthful. When the idea of intelligence, rather than intelligence itself, becomes a staple, there is no wisdom in it."
    Criss Jami

    "When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but creatures of emotion."
    "Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain but it takes character and self control to be understanding and forgiving."
    Dale Carnegie
    Likes Gentleman Jack liked this post

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