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Thread: NFs and Dating

  1. #1
    Senior Member Rebe's Avatar
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    Default NFs and Dating

    I don't know if this has been done before, if yes and in a lot of detail, link me, please.

    I have noticed that I am somewhere between my SP friends and SJ friends in regards to dating. My ISFJ and ESFJ friends only consider serious dating. They never do flings and they don't date around a lot. When they get involved, they mean business. This honestly freaks me out because not every time I get involved, I consider the relationship to be long-term material or marriage. But I'm not as carefree as my SP friends who are okay with short-term involvements because they are fun and you learn a lot, etc. I consider myself somewhere between the two and I think other NFs might agree with me. We want to deeply emotionally bond, we want relationships to be sincere and authentic, but we also like our options and our freedom and our experiences. So, my question is, how should we best approach dating?

    One advice that I have read somewhere is taking it very slow, get to know the other person before thinking about a serious commitment, think about what you want, listen to what they want... In the past, I have gone really fast and this hasn't gone well. But I enjoy the fast pace sometimes because well, it's fun. Though...not ideal because it tends to blow up in your face sometime in the near near future. How should we combine these two things that we want from dating? I'm talking about more serious dating. Casual dating isn't much of anything, is it? When I take the time to get to know someone, spend time with them and we have fun together, I am emotionally attached. I don't think it's a bad thing. I think it makes dating enjoyable, but yet if it doesn't work it, it's quite hurtful sometimes.

    Right now, I'm taking time off from guys to think about what I want and I think these questions will bother me until I figure it out a little bit more. Any advice and insight welcomed!

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    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    I'm probably a weird case for a handful of reasons, but I was pretty dead serious about dating. I considered it a process for selecting a suitable life partner.

    I dated two guys. I was engaged to the second after knowing him for two months (I thought that was a little soon, but it's hard to come back from turning down a proposal, so I decided to play along and see how things went) and married within a year of meeting him.

    Looking back, it might not have been the best way to have done things, but thanks to God or dumb luck or whatever, I have yet to regret it. He is the best thing that ever happened to me and I'm not just saying that because he has a beautiful ass.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
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    My sex life is probably an NFs worst nightmare, an INFJ once said to me "you seem to like a lot of people."

    Funnily enough, I don't even see it that way. I actually really fall HARD for people, I'm really INTO whomever I'm with and it can take me a while to get over certain people.

    I think if I was famous, my life would be a tabloid; and the realization of that sometimes makes me a little self-conscious, but the truth is, I am sincerely seeking something that lasts.

    It's just that I'm too "open minded" about sex, lust, and love to be so selective or cautious.

    NFs ARE different about sex than me. But I have a very unusual relationship to sex from my past as an adult entertainer, but I've always been this way, really.

    I'm always curious about how NFs are about sex.

    And partly because I wonder if a guy I've been seeing could be INFP.

    I doubt it though... I think I dated one NF in my life, and I did not really care for the sex, though he was a really nice guy.

    He's probably ISFJ or ISFP.

    Tell me, do you place sex as a high priority? I mean like sexual compatibility and satisfaction? Are you easily led by sex?

    I'm deeply curious about sexual psychology and sociology in general, and I truly wonder if the difference between SPs and NFs and sex is real.

    Even ESFJs can be deeply sexual. They are just really picky about it. I think Si as a function can be sensual, but in a picky way. My ESFJ ex was super clean, always wanted me to be super clean, was funny about oral sex, but would do weird things like lick my ass and say that proved how much he was into me; I have an ESFJ female friend who says she's never liked giving blow jobs, that she does it because she likes the person, not the act, but she seems VERY sexual OUTWARDLY otherwise: she gives a glowing appearance of being very sexual, more sexual than me in fact, even at 50. But she looked at me, with narrowed eyes, saying I was just like one of her daughters, with this incidental underhanded sexuality, almost like we act like we aren't sexy or don't know we're sexy, but end up being sexier than girls who are high maintenance.

    And since she compared me to her daughter, and at the time I was sleeping with her son, I didn't want to traumatize her with "yeah no matter what it looks like, it's because we actually enjoy the physical act of sex more than you do."


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    Senior Member Rebe's Avatar
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    Looking back, it might not have been the best way to have done things, but thanks to God or dumb luck or whatever, I have yet to regret it. He is the best thing that ever happened to me and I'm not just saying that because he has a beautiful ass.
    That sounds amazing. Sometimes it's just 'dumb luck' as you put it, which is something my ISFJ friend said also. But both her and you, I think, took a giant leap of faith, set your mind on one person and rolled with it. Whereas if I were in such a situation, I would have a lot of doubt and questions and might run away or fuck up an otherwise good thing. I believe it takes A Lot of Faith and conviction to make it work.

    And who can turn down a beautiful ass? Kudos.

    Tell me, do you place sex as a high priority? I mean like sexual compatibility and satisfaction? Are you easily led by sex?
    Absolutely Yes, yes and yes and Yes. Bad and inconsistent sex is a deal breaker. I prefer guys who are very sexual and earthly. I'm pretty sure I stayed in relationships longer than I should have because sex was good and I don't like sex with strangers. I prefer sleeping with someone I know really well and we have formed very close friendship ties.

    My ISFJ friend is the same way. She's very, very sexual, but only with the person she is in a committed relationship with. Otherwise, even if she haven't had sex for three years, she would wait. But mix that ISFJ in with being generally conservative and religious and that's what you end up with. She didn't plan on having sex before marriage but she slipped, lol, twice.

    I'm deeply curious about sexual psychology and sociology in general, and I truly wonder if the difference between SPs and NFs and sex is real.
    Well... I think NFs need and want to be emotionally connected to whoever they are sleeping with and sees sex as an expression of affection first and foremost and fun/exploratory/kinky second. Whereas SPs could potentially only see it as physically engaging and fun even without the affection and are okay with one-night-stands and hook-ups more than NFs do.

    I'm not talking in absolute terms, just more or less. I'm not trying to stereotype. SPs like playmates and NFs like soulmates based on Keirsey so in there lies a fundamental difference. We feel and perceive differently than SPs so we probably experience sex differently. Think about the difference between experiencing life with Se and life with Ne. Also, there are individual and cultural factors to consider in determining how liberal or conservative you are sexually.

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    insert random title here Randomnity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rebe View Post
    This honestly freaks me out because not every time I get involved, I consider the relationship to be long-term material or marriage. But I'm not as carefree as my SP friends who are okay with short-term involvements because they are fun and you learn a lot, etc.
    These sound like exactly the same idea to me. Unless you're using "short-term" as a euphemism and just saying that your SP friends are more up for no-strings sex that you are?

    I think you might get further by thinking about what you, as an individual, want. Because I know NFs who enjoy casual sex, or who don't need a particularly strong emotional connection before they have sex. The ones I've known were male, though - keep in mind that cultural gender stereotypes may be playing a role in your perceptions here, since NFs are more likely to be female than male. And not all SPs I've known have been up for casual sex either, for that matter, although I'd agree that they'd probably be more likely than NFs to go for that kind of thing, with Se and all.
    -end of thread-

  6. #6
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    For myself, I really struggle with dating because I always have an "endgoal" that colors all things. If I'm going to do my best at it and put my all into it, then I almost feel like I have to see it as serious, otherwise I'd rather be doing something else that's more meaningful. When I dated, I pretty much went into it with the "eh I don't really have anything more important to be doing right now" attitude, and, more than likely, if I was going on a date, it was only because my close friends were busy. And by the same token, once I'm in, I'm really in.

    I'm currently paired up with an SFJ who seems to operate about the same as me in terms of not formally committing too quickly (him because he's a pragmatist; me because I'm a P!), and I think we both tend to see it in terms of aiming for a forever-relationship. We were a couple for about three months before upgrading ourselves to boyfriend-girlfriend status, and now we've been dating for almost two years. It's been interesting because within that time span I've had a good friend of mine (ESTJ, I think) meet a man (ISTJ?), get engaged at 6 months, marry at a year, and now almost be at her first anniversary with him - a total of 1.5 years in comparison to our 2, which is funny. In some ways I feel a bit envious that they're more of a "real" couple, even though they haven't been together as long, but then I also have coworkers cautioning me that I'm too young to marry (mid-20s). But internally, I'm very comfortable with the pace that we're moving at, so I really don't want to change anything right now.

    Quote Originally Posted by Marmotini
    Tell me, do you place sex as a high priority? I mean like sexual compatibility and satisfaction?
    Yes, but not an initial priority, if that makes sense. I think it's very important over time that couples enjoy whatever kind of sexual interaction they have together and that they can mutually satisfy one another. But I think that's not generally something I would try to gauge early on and something that I assume is likely to improve over time as you discover better ways of coordinating yourselves. I think I tend to place drive in the mental "needs" category alongside hunger, thirst, etc - more of a slow-burning physical necessity than a conscious desire, like filling up the car every once in a while, lol.

    I do think that an issue that can arise with NFs is that as much as we like to idealize things into otherworldly exchange of energy and emotion, sex is ultimately a very real, earthy encounter, and the realities of it can be distracting to the idealization. I think there's a learning curve in terms of NFs balancing that idealization and embracing earthy reality. I don't figure SPs really have to deal with this split, which may be a reason they seem to more easily derive pleasure from sex (which is not at all to say all SPs are gung-ho for casual sex, nor that all NFs avoid it). Most SPs I know seem equally to decline sex as other types in particular because they realize it would create a situation that's a pain in the ass for them. They're just more realistic overall.

    I think Si as a function can be sensual, but in a picky way.
    Absolutely. I like Socionics' association of Si with comfort, coziness, pleasure, and acclimation to environment. I think it captures that sensuality of Si that is often overlooked.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rebe
    That sounds amazing. Sometimes it's just 'dumb luck' as you put it, which is something my ISFJ friend said also. But both her and you, I think, took a giant leap of faith, set your mind on one person and rolled with it. Whereas if I were in such a situation, I would have a lot of doubt and questions and might run away or fuck up an otherwise good thing. I believe it takes A Lot of Faith and conviction to make it work.
    Yes... I wish I had copied down what my ISFJ had said to me once. I had expressed to him my fear of longterm commitment (despite my ardent desire for longterm commitment), and what he said was that essentially it boils down to either taking a leap of faith and trying your hardest even when times get tough, or walking on the edge of the void forever, always wondering what may have been.

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    Badoom~ Skyward's Avatar
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    I struggle with staying on the radar. Days go by and I suddenly remember that I should contact a person.

    I prefer face-to-face communication- the phone is just a tool to get that- and since I'm lazy and a major nightowl, I forget to message people or call them. I also have a fear of calling someone when they're busy, which is another roadblock Ive been betting better at crossing. When I find out where a person's free time is, I become much more comfortable contacting them.

    The fear of rejection is an issue, too, but as Ive matured each rejection has been something to learn from.
    'Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius and its better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.' - Marilyn Monroe

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  8. #8
    my floof is luxury Wind Up Rex's Avatar
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    I've pretty much run the gauntlet of NFs in my dating career, and I think it's important to point out that what constitutes a "best" approach is a bit different for NFJs vs NFPs. NFPs in general (and INFPs in particular) seem to need a space where they can be emotionally raw, and that that depth of feeling will be accepted by the other person. I felt like the NFPs I had been involved with valued me as something as a home base, an emotional touchstone they could return to when they were done exploring.

    NFJs I've dated were different in that while they still valued being understood, it seemed to come from a different place. Like, they were so accustomed to carrying the weight of responsibility of caring for others that they were very tentative about letting go enough to allow themselves to be cared for. It was less about pure self-expression as it is with NFPs, and more about the need for reassurance, if that makes any sense. In a lot of ways, the need for trust was even greater with my NFJ SOs than the NFPs.

    I think that just based on those experiences it's hard to prescribe a universal best approach without sounding too generic. I think NFs are innately oriented towards relationships, but even within that group your needs are pretty divergent. I think you all seek to care for people in your way, and I guess to that extent my advice would be to make sure that the person you're involved with is worthy of your investment. On the same token, I'd say you guys have nothing if not a pretty attuned emotional instinct, so you can probably pick out who those worthy people are more often than not. I think @Rebe that your decision to take some time to figure out your own needs is a pretty well-considered one, because ultimately dating is a matter of trial and error and willingness to continue to experiment even after you've been disappointed.
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    Professional Trickster Esoteric Wench's Avatar
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    ^^^^^
    I thought the above a pretty darn accurate and insightful response.
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    Senior Member Rebe's Avatar
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    ^^^ Wow, that's really right on the money, Wind-Up Rex. I can def. see what you mean about the difference between NFJ and NFP, it's really a difference between Fe and Fi expression. I def. agree with the emotional touchstone part as well as our need to go out and explore, and come back to a set of understanding and supporting ears. My ex-boyfriend was my emotional touchstone and I stayed with him for a while because he was my rock, even though there were so many issues.

    Definitely really, really insightful. Thank you for sharing.

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