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  1. #1
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    Default INTJ, INFJ and age gap

    I'd like to hear any thoughts about a situation I am facing...

    I am 30 years old INTJ guy and there is an eight years younger probably INFJ girl that I am interested in and who also has shown some signs of interest in me. I am wondering if I should do something about her and my main concern is certain things likely to be caused by our rather big age gap.

    I am not absolutely sure of her type but I still dare to assume that she is an INFJ. IJ is what she is for sure. As for S or N, I would assume N because she is more like a free soul than something conventional. As for F or T, I can see both in her but even though she is somewhat shy and very private, she is clearly more into people than things and that make me assume F.

    We have known each other due to common interests for several years but we only see each other when it is about those common interests and that happens only a few times a year. We don't talk a lot but it's very easy for us to catch on when we come across. We have trust between us that has been built as friends for years and even though our connection is almost wordless, I think it's something she has with very few others. If any, that is.

    I have always had my eyes on her both because of what she is as a girl and because of what she is as a person. Even though she has always been exceptionally mature (or "grown-up") a person for her age, until now, she has definitely been too young for me. The last year has, however, changed her in a way that makes me think that thinking about having something more than just friendship with her would no longer be pure utopia. It might still be utopia but not purely and unquestionably.

    Seeing more often would require either of us to be proactive and to be honest, I have no idea how she would react if I actually suggested something. I mean, it would take no effort at all from me to ask her out for a casual lunch and try to figure out if she sees me as more than a friend but nevertheless, doing something like that would be a significant change into what our relationship as friends has been until now. Now that we share a lot of friends and interests, I am very cautious in whatever I do about her.

    Any thoughts? Remember, I am an INTJ and therefor, what ever I am to hear, I like it direct
    INTJ, HSP, 1w9 or tritype 154, sx/sp

  2. #2
    Lay the coin on my tongue SilkRoad's Avatar
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    I don't think a 30 year old and a 22 year old poses a problem if you are generally compatible and like each other. Between the ages of 20 and 22 I dated one guy with approximately that age gap and came close to dating another with the same age gap, and although things wouldn't have worked out I liked the fact that they were more older and apparently (haha) more mature than myself.

    Being an INFJ, I personally would appreciate it if someone was fairly direct with me. I've ended up in those dreaded situations where I'm not sure if someone likes me or not, and we're hanging out together in datelike situations but it's not officially a date, etc...and it just tends to cause heartache for me. If a guy liked me I'd prefer he not let it linger too long as an ambiguous friendship. I'm not good at saying "I like you" to someone myself (unless I'm already in a relationship with them!) and perhaps being somewhat old fashioned I prefer that the guy would make the move to clarify whether he just wants friendship or actually wants more.

    Although I do have to admit I get a little weirded out when people say things like "I liked her for years but she was too young, but now she's old enough." (To be fair, I'm not sure that's quite what you're saying.) I've liked or been liked by people with an age gap of 8 years or more, but those friendships/relationships had always started at a point where I was already old enough to date them.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilkRoad View Post
    I don't think a 30 year old and a 22 year old poses a problem if you are generally compatible and like each other. Between the ages of 20 and 22 I dated one guy with approximately that age gap and came close to dating another with the same age gap, and although things wouldn't have worked out I liked the fact that they were more older and apparently (haha) more mature than myself.

    Being an INFJ, I personally would appreciate it if someone was fairly direct with me. I've ended up in those dreaded situations where I'm not sure if someone likes me or not, and we're hanging out together in datelike situations but it's not officially a date, etc...and it just tends to cause heartache for me. If a guy liked me I'd prefer he not let it linger too long as an ambiguous friendship. I'm not good at saying "I like you" to someone myself (unless I'm already in a relationship with them!) and perhaps being somewhat old fashioned I prefer that the guy would make the move to clarify whether he just wants friendship or actually wants more.

    Although I do have to admit I get a little weirded out when people say things like "I liked her for years but she was too young, but now she's old enough." (To be fair, I'm not sure that's quite what you're saying.) I've liked or been liked by people with an age gap of 8 years or more, but those friendships/relationships had always started at a point where I was already old enough to date them.
    Thanks for your reply!

    I don't think this is about being unclear about my intentions. I have always liked her but I have also always intentionally kept our friendship purely platonic and that has been easy. I have thought that she is not mature enough to be asked out and I have assumed that the day she would be, she would have no problem finding company. So, in a way, I have reasoned myself out of the game.

    Now, however, as I said, something has changed. I can't describe it but something in her tells me that she would be "ready" to date now, be it with me or someone else. And, as far as I know, there are no other candidates so far.

    I have always admired her for what she is as a person and I have never tried to hide. Lately, I have, in addition to that, let out some rather innocent flirtation (I am on INTJ so I could hide such if I wanted to). I haven't got any clear answer yet but I think she is more likely to like me than not. Last time, she ended up offering me a personal favor she knew I would value and I wouldn't ask for myself. She hadn't done such on offer before and even though it was nothing sexual, it was easy to see as a way to get close to me physically and express care without making the friends in the same room suspicious.

    For now, I am going to be passive about this. There is a slight chance for me to come across to her just by a chance each day and if that happens, I will probably ask her out for a lunch. For now, I am not sure enough of the situation to call her for that. What ever happens next must not be apparently dating-oriented.

    Could you explain what you mean when you think that "things wouldn't have worked out" with your older dates? I asked my original question mainly to get some ideas on potential problems that might be waiting ahead and your experiences might be helpful.
    INTJ, HSP, 1w9 or tritype 154, sx/sp

  4. #4
    Lay the coin on my tongue SilkRoad's Avatar
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    Oh, in terms of those guys I dated or almost dated, in all honesty I don't think any issues that arose had much to do with our age gap. The guy I dated (I was 20 and he was 27) was still hung up on his ex-gf, and I ended up being sort of the rebound. Fortunately, although I liked him as a friend, I wasn't really that into him as a romantic partner so I didn't particularly get hurt. He also had some fairly serious emotional issues to do with a difficult family background and so on, so honestly I was probably well out of it. From anything he said to me, I came across as very mature and very stable, though from what I recall of our interactions I probably came across quite naive/innocent in some respects too. I've always been kind of a combination of very mature and kind of naive.

    The other guy - I was 22 and he was 30, I think. He had MAJOR emotional issues. I mean, as judgmental as it sounds, basically he was emotionally stunted. I have some mutual friends who know him too and still have some contact with him and they say that ten years on he's still emotionally stunted. Again I think he had kind of a messed up background. He made me it extremely clear to me that he was attracted to me (and by extremely clear, I mean he said it straight out) and that he was on the point of asking me out, and then he backed right off and started treating me like I was some sort of evil distraction. I heard that subsequently he did something similar to at least a couple of other girls (acted very very into them and almost involved with them, then turned cold and nasty.)

    The guy I most recently liked is about 13 years older (though I'm now in my early thirties). He hung out with me (occasionally in somewhat datelike scenarios), paid me a lot of compliments (some of them rather suggestive) and seemed to go out of his way for me, etc...then one day informed me that he'd started dating someone else only a little older than me (and called me a child, as well. Not nice.) I don't think there the age difference was extremely relevant except for the notable fact that I realised this was a guy in his forties who exclusively hung out with women at least eight years younger than himself, made disparaging remarks about women his own age, and had a history of dating women with serious issues (jealous; in bad financial situations; "high maintenance"; serious health problems; etc.) But you don't sound like someone who exclusively goes for much younger women or who wants someone they can manipulate, which I think was the case with this guy (control freak). I think in future though that might be where I'd have alarm bells about someone significantly older than myself (by "significantly" I mean something like more than seven years older.)

    With those guys I was involved with in my early twenties, I think the only really notable thing about the age gap might be that they had had more time to pick up baggage and general hurt than I had. I didn't have a lot in the way of dating experience, baggage from family background, etc, and they did. The first guy later got back together with his ex-gf, who had supposedly been a cow to him and who he was supposedly on the rebound from (it didn't work out though.) The other guy, several years later, had a long-ish relationship with someone quite a lot younger than himself (I think about twelve years) and from a different culture - also didn't work out, and from what I heard he wasn't even getting to know properly what kind of person she was.

    Sorry, probably not very much useful from all that rambling!
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Porcelain Hearts's Avatar
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    I think this has more to do with the individual than the age gap itself. The only concern I can see surfacing is weak communication and a stubborn view justifying someone's age to handle things maturely. I've seen it in an INFJ/INTJ couple myself and from my own experience.

    As you already know, relationships are a way of learning new features about yourself. It seems obvious you want to explore your love so put it out there, with the attitude of not looking back, and take whatever goes from there.

  6. #6
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    Actually, what bothers me the most is how our rare talks usually go. I mean, it is almost always me who is proactive and keeps the discussion alive. On the other hand, she clearly likes me asking her questions now that she always at least gives a very sincere smile if not a laugh even though she is not one of those people who share their thoughts easily.

    Still, what I would like in order for me to take the next step would be her to be proactive as well, to show that she is interested in what's going on in my life. One possible explanation for lack of that could be that she actually often hears those things when I talk with our common friends who are more talkative.
    INTJ, HSP, 1w9 or tritype 154, sx/sp

  7. #7
    Lay the coin on my tongue SilkRoad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gandalf View Post
    Actually, what bothers me the most is how our rare talks usually go. I mean, it is almost always me who is proactive and keeps the discussion alive. On the other hand, she clearly likes me asking her questions now that she always at least gives a very sincere smile if not a laugh even though she is not one of those people who share their thoughts easily.

    Still, what I would like in order for me to take the next step would be her to be proactive as well, to show that she is interested in what's going on in my life. One possible explanation for lack of that could be that she actually often hears those things when I talk with our common friends who are more talkative.
    INFJs are good listeners She may just be shy or a bit uncertain of where things are going... Hard to say. I kind of flip-flop between a lot of disclosure and wanting to keep the focus on the other person. If you're a guy and I start telling you a lot about my feelings and hopes and dreams and frustrations, there's a good chance I like you... I'm very turned on by a conversation with a lot of "flow", for sure. If I keep turning away the conversation to the other person, and asking a lot of questions, it is probably because I sincerely want to know what's going on with them but I may also be feeling self-protective or uncomfortable with the direction the conversation is taking. But if you're someone I like, I would normally be happiest in a convo with lots of give and take, and I would probably be happy talking about almost anything with you.

    I'm a pretty Fe-heavy INFJ, though, for the record. Unlike a lot of INFJs my closest type wouldn't be INTJ - it would probably be first ISFJ and second ENFJ.

    By the way, I was curious as to what specific concerns you have about the age gap issue.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilkRoad View Post
    By the way, I was curious as to what specific concerns you have about the age gap issue.
    It's not the age gap itself but the relative difference of our ages.

    She has just started her studies at university. She is thus starting to live a period of life when she is more free than ever to try out anything and should be given a chance to do that to avoid problems later. I, on the other hand, finished my studies and started working full-time some years ago and am in a way starting to settle down.
    INTJ, HSP, 1w9 or tritype 154, sx/sp

  9. #9
    Lay the coin on my tongue SilkRoad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gandalf View Post
    It's not the age gap itself but the relative difference of our ages.

    She has just started her studies at university. She is thus starting to live a period of life when she is more free than ever to try out anything and should be given a chance to do that to avoid problems later. I, on the other hand, finished my studies and started working full-time some years ago and am in a way starting to settle down.
    Yeah, I do see what you mean. I had finished my BA when I was 20, and didn't end up doing a Masters. So at least that part of my life had been experienced. I think that if I had got really serious with someone when I was 20 or 22 I would have missed out on a lot of experiences I've subsequently had which have been important to me. I didn't move away from home till I was 23, but then I moved to another continent. Mind you, I had a sort of vision of living on my own for a few years, then meeting the right person and getting married at 28... LIfe doesn't work out the way you think it will, but it's both good and bad.

    I do think you make a very good point about being at different stages in your life, rather than it being specifically about an "age gap". Timing is so hard to get right. I hope things work out for you in any case.
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  10. #10
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    depending on her enneagram she may be a more quiet INFJ. being in school for psychology i have had the fortune to meet quite a few INFJs and they have ranged from incredibly shy to group leaders. what i have found universally is they tend to listen more than speak...

    i actually am running into a time problem with my own SO even though we are on the same time frame... we are both graduates now and looking at more school. but the problem is, figuring out how to coordinate our very different needs... to be honest with you i feel like there are always going to be time problems in relationships... my SO and i are 2 weeks apart in age and graduated 1 year apart and yet we are still struggling... if it isn't one thing it's another...

    i also found that university was a fairly steady time in my life, besides my short study abroad (6 months). if she has 4 years of school ahead of her, it may not necessarily be a bad time for her to try out something steady with you.

    basically i think that i love you Ni users but you're like me (enneagram 6) and should ease up the worrying about the far future a bit and go out into reality and see if you guys have a connection that is stronger than time and space. i think you stand a lot more to gain than lose.

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