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  1. #1
    half-nut member briochick's Avatar
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    Default NFP in a relationship with an INTP

    Hi, I'm dating an INTP. I'm an I/ENFP in grad school for art therapy, he's an engineer. Unfortunately, because of school, I live about 600 miles from him. I know some good things are my perceptiveness about his feelings and responses and motivations and my acceptance of him and his quirks and his need for time. That he doesn't have to "state" everything, and that I'm not offset or hurt when he does. I acknowledge and appreciate motivation, not just presentation.

    That said, I'm a feeler and so I do find myself hesitant to "flood" around him, which is a fairly normal and common thing that happens in my life, when the emotions spike. I'll not talk to him on the phone or I'll go to someone else when I'm "intense." I've mentioned that I cried to someone else and then felt I shouldn't have mentioned it at all because his response implied he felt kind of helpless and confused, and (perhaps) hurt that I'd gone to someone else(???). Should I have just gone to him and trusted he could handle it?

    He is responsible and practical (compared to me) and thoughtful, though a lot of understanding him requires experimentation on my part (I worry sometimes that he thinks he's my psychological guinea pig, but really the whole world is, and it's not because I want to manipulate, I just want to respond the best to meet people's needs so...yeah).

    Long short of it; it's a relationship, I'm doing some stuff right, and assume I must be giving him something he wants or he wouldn't be dating him, and probably doing some stuff wrong.

    I want to know how can I best serve my INTP. What are some things that INTPs are looking for in relationships, particularly ones with feelers, that I can provide (if I'm not already)? Also, is there any way I can ease the pain/difficulty of the distance?

    p.s. If all NTs apply the scientific method to the bedroom the same as my INTP does I have no idea why you guys aren't way more popular than you are! Actually, I don't know why everyone doesn't love you; I'm still baffled that no one had snatched up my awesome INTP...
    -Brio

    "I have never in my life envied a human being who led an easy life; I have envied a great many people who led difficult lives and led them well."
    -Teddy Roosevelt
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Pseudo's Avatar
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    I think you should go to him with your emotions. He wont be the best with them but if he cares about you he'll want to here them. INTPs are often describes as not interacting well with emotions and people. Yes, we may not be good at it but it doesn't mean with don't want to be. I often feel helpless like i cant help people with their feelings but I still want to be there for them, I wish I could do more. Keep in mind he may try to get to to "get over things" but not because they don't matter just because i think INTPs are less comfortable with emotions so our strategy is to stop the "floods"as soon as possible through rationalization. I'm dating and ENFJ and he will "flood" occasionally leaving me at a loss. I've learned that he needs to be in that emotional mood to sort it out, where as i have to take a step back to process. You INTP might do this too.

    Anyways I think you should tell him. INTPs have hearts too and we want to connect and support our partners!

  3. #3
    half-nut member briochick's Avatar
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    Okay, thank you! I'll do that.
    Last edited by briochick; 10-12-2013 at 09:45 AM.
    -Brio

    "I have never in my life envied a human being who led an easy life; I have envied a great many people who led difficult lives and led them well."
    -Teddy Roosevelt
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    Tell him what you said here. What do INTPs like, in general? Well, sex, time alone to think, no need to talk a lot, moral support (like you just did), and (a little bit of) affection. It's more important to look for things to avoid than for things to do. So watch for that. Like, it's ok to bring up emotional topics, etc, but trying to force him to open up with his feelings, or trying to change him will not go over well. If you are good at it, then he'll open up eventually anyway (on his own time-- try not to laugh), but another thing to watch for are those moments when he's calm or happy and not really feeling any "emotions" (because deep and negative emotions seem to be the only emotions with feelers, meh) which will lead him to say "nothing." He's just chilling, so back off. If you weren't really trying to get him to open up with his emotions, but instead wanted to discuss something in that arena, then you have to realize that and come clean with what you really wanted.

  5. #5
    half-nut member briochick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CapLawyer View Post
    Tell him what you said here. What do INTPs like, in general? Well, sex, time alone to think, no need to talk a lot, moral support (like you just did), and (a little bit of) affection. It's more important to look for things to avoid than for things to do. So watch for that. Like, it's ok to bring up emotional topics, etc, but trying to force him to open up with his feelings, or trying to change him will not go over well. If you are good at it, then he'll open up eventually anyway (on his own time-- try not to laugh), but another thing to watch for are those moments when he's calm or happy and not really feeling any "emotions" (because deep and negative emotions seem to be the only emotions with feelers, meh) which will lead him to say "nothing." He's just chilling, so back off. If you weren't really trying to get him to open up with his emotions, but instead wanted to discuss something in that arena, then you have to realize that and come clean with what you really wanted.
    Thank you for the suggestions.
    Unfortunately, the distance between us limits sex quite a lot. I think I'm equally as disappointed about that as he is. On principal I do not ask the "whatcha thinkin'" question because of a previous bf who would undoubtedly always answer with "nothing" or "about you" which he thought were valid answers and I thought made him sound brain dead. I now ask specific questions with either a yes/no possibility or open ended depending on how much I'd like to hear from the person. I also begin with "I'd like to know if you..." or "If you're willing to share I was wondering what you..." For the record, we feelers can have deep non-negative emotions. I would never ever laugh at someone's feelings.
    -Brio

    "I have never in my life envied a human being who led an easy life; I have envied a great many people who led difficult lives and led them well."
    -Teddy Roosevelt
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    Quote Originally Posted by briochick View Post
    Thank you for the suggestions.
    Unfortunately, the distance between us limits sex quite a lot. I think I'm equally as disappointed about that as he is. On principal I do not ask the "whatcha thinkin'" question because of a previous bf who would undoubtedly always answer with "nothing" or "about you" which he thought were valid answers and I thought made him sound brain dead. I now ask specific questions with either a yes/no possibility or open ended depending on how much I'd like to hear from the person. I also begin with "I'd like to know if you..." or "If you're willing to share I was wondering what you..." For the record, we feelers can have deep non-negative emotions. I would never ever laugh at someone's feelings.
    No, I meant that many feelers don't think an emotion is valid (from another person, when asked the "how do you feel question") unless it's deep and negative. But I understand.

  7. #7
    half-nut member briochick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CapLawyer View Post
    No, I meant that many feelers don't think an emotion is valid (from another person, when asked the "how do you feel question") unless it's deep and negative. But I understand.
    My apologies for the misunderstanding then
    .
    I can see where you get that though, I am reading a book in my counseling class that proposes that anyone who steps into therapy is, at their core, experiencing either devastating grief, crippling fear, or homicidal rage and that those are the only options. I have little doubt the author is a feeler.
    -Brio

    "I have never in my life envied a human being who led an easy life; I have envied a great many people who led difficult lives and led them well."
    -Teddy Roosevelt
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  8. #8
    half-nut member briochick's Avatar
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    I'm curious about how much value there is in declarations of affection by an INTP? For example, with an SP I wouldn't hold declarations of affection at much value; they're feeling it in the moment and may change their mind soon. My INTP texted me in the middle of the night last night to tell me I make him very happy. It is out of character for him as I'm usually the one who's like "I like you... I like it when you... I like [this] about you..." Not that he doesn't reciprocate, but he doesn't usually initiate.
    My instincts are telling me this is not likely to be something he has done flippantly, but I wondered if someone might give me a bead on how much so...
    Also, how prone are INTPs to flights of fancy or imagining how things "could be" without intent behind them?
    -Brio

    "I have never in my life envied a human being who led an easy life; I have envied a great many people who led difficult lives and led them well."
    -Teddy Roosevelt
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  9. #9
    Senior Member anticlimatic's Avatar
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    How old are both of you?

    Ti vs Fi, and Te vs Fe, are very difficult obstacles to overcome in a relationship, in my opinion. Not to say it can't be done, but there is a certain level of maturity and understanding required if you're both going to meet one another's needs. The distance could very well be a blessing for the time being.

    I'd say that the 3 big things an INTP needs from a mate are acceptance, space, and mostly positive vibes.

  10. #10
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by briochick View Post
    I'm curious about how much value there is in declarations of affection by an INTP? For example, with an SP I wouldn't hold declarations of affection at much value; they're feeling it in the moment and may change their mind soon. My INTP texted me in the middle of the night last night to tell me I make him very happy. It is out of character for him as I'm usually the one who's like "I like you... I like it when you... I like [this] about you..." Not that he doesn't reciprocate, but he doesn't usually initiate.
    My instincts are telling me this is not likely to be something he has done flippantly, but I wondered if someone might give me a bead on how much so...
    Also, how prone are INTPs to flights of fancy or imagining how things "could be" without intent behind them?
    I usually consider such declarations pretty weighty. They may not always be. IME, their emotions can be somewhat childlike, which is very cool but sometimes confusing.

    And, this is just my opinion based on my INTP, they are very prone to flights of fancy or imagining how things could be without intent. And even when there is intent, real life almost universally does not measure up to what was in their heads. You always have that to compete with and sometimes you have to be patient while they adjust to the disappointment. That took me some getting used to and sometimes it still catches me off guard because I so often expect the worst that I'm pleasantly surprised when things don't blow up in my face, plus I get a lot of pleasure from seeing how theory plays out in reality. Life is sort of like a giant lab to me, but to him, he doesn't have a strong need to take things to the lab. He's just fine in his head, TYVM. So dragging him out of it . . . I'm selective about when I do that because he can be an awful grump and ruin my good time without gaining anything himself.
    “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.”
    ~ John Rogers

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