As of Friday last week, I’ve been married to an INTJ for 13 years. I attribute most of that success to finding someone who was willing to put up with me. That and the fact that I’ve never expected her to make me happy. Your personal happiness is a big burden to place on another person.
I’ve always believed that if my life was crap, burdening someone else with the responsibility to relieve the crappiness is just a crappy thing to do someone. They have their own crap to deal with.
For my part, I don’t try to make her happy. She finds that on her own. I just make it easier for her which mostly entails doing dishes, cooking and keeping my mess confined to my office.
I don’t agree that there’s an ideal MBTI pairing for potential mates because lasting relationship are built on similar values. If one INFP is a vegan and the other INFP is a vegan axe-murderer, I don’t think that relationship is going to work out.
However, certain MBTI pairings make it easier with the day-to-day. Here’s why I think things have worked so well being with an INTJ:
- We’re both I’s so neither of us needs to be the center of attention. I love E’s but being with outgoing E’s can be draining.
- Her J balances my P. One of us has to remember to pay the bills on time.
- Her J keeps us moving ahead. It’s good that at least one of us knows what they want. I can tag along until I figure out what I want.
- Being N’s helps us both recognize that we’re heading into rough waters before the problems blow up.
- My wife being an NTJ makes her driven which makes me want to get my act together. I can’t be a dilettante forever.
- Being NTJ and NFP, we approach problem solving differently which increases the chances of finding a solution.
- Being a P tends to make me more easy going which balances your her J need to make things happen right away. Life doesn’t always want to do things by our schedule.
- Being INT and INF, we’re pretty strong in our sense of ourselves and our values which is the basis of any relationship.
- Her NTJ keeps me grounded and focused when the NFP side makes me flighty trying to do a too many projects at once.
- As a P, I don’t mind when she changes her mind later. I’ve managed to adapt.
Dec 14, 2009
Hi Corin – I love what you have to say at the beginning of this post. Basically, that other people are not responsible for your fulfillment. So, expecting someone to “make up for” things you lack or want is unrealistic, and so is expecting them to cater to your happiness. I’m glad you found your INTJ. Maybe as INFPs we have a tendency to idealize people and relationships (actually I know we do!), so this is a well needed message! Nice work. 🙂
December 15th, 2009 at 1:43 am
As INFP, we hold so tightly to our individuality. We consider an affront if someone tries to change us.
On the other hand, some INFPs don’t ever learn to connect to others so they feel cut off and isolated. And in the back of their minds, they think that if they meet the one special person then they won’t feel lonely.
That feeling of isolation and loneliness comes from INFP behavior that needs has to change in order to connect to others. I’ve always found those to wants so diametrically opposed.
Do we want retain the individuality and behavior that makes us who we are, but also at times cuts us off? Or do we want to meet someone we can connect with but will have to change us in order for us for that connection to happen?
It can’t be both ways and I don’t think many INFPs understand that.
March 6th, 2013 at 12:34 pm
How does one connect with others without feeling like they have betrayed their individuality/values?
January 8th, 2018 at 9:12 am
“Do we want retain the individuality and behavior that makes us who we are, but also at times cuts us off? Or do we want to meet someone we can connect with but will have to change us in order for us for that connection to happen?” – I think I’m just starting to understand this, and it’s so very strange.
I can now feel more connected to people when I consciously focus on enjoying the social situation more than on my feelings/my inner world. I used to be okay/tolerate social situations, but looking back I always felt very detached, while that has been changing lately. It’s like I started enjoying swimming as opposed to diving. However, if I’m not careful I find that I almost lose access to my inner world, which makes me want to withdraw from society for a few days to ‘gain myself’, but I end up feeling lonely and isolated which is not what I want. It’s all very strange and new, and I hope I can find the balance, soon. I know you’ve posted this ages ago, but if you got a notification on this, would you care to share if you’ve managed to find that balance and if so, how?
Feb 26, 2010
I love the last item, #10:
As a P, I don’t mind when she changes her mind later. I’ve managed to adapt.
Read: I wish my “S” didn’t freak every time I change MY mind.
I’ve been in a relationship with an ISTJ for 25 years and I still drive him nuts with my ever changing mind.
Jun 27, 2010
hi, Im a INTJ going out with an ENFP. I laughed so much when you said
“I’ve always believed that if my life was crap, burdening someone else with the responsibility to relieve the crappiness is just a crappy thing to do someone. They have their own crap to deal with.” Iv always felt the same way, but my boyfriend on the other hand almost wants me to set the responsibility of making me happy on him. And he wants me to do the same. I feel perfectly able to do that for him, but I dont think he could do that for me (on a regular basis) because ENFPs are like bouncy balls, they never go back to the same place twice!
Jul 6, 2010
This is a great post. NTJs generally get along great with NFPs. I’ve seen many examples in real life. Check out this article on entj infp compatibility
July 6th, 2010 at 3:55 pm
One of my good friends is an ENTJ. I tend to like the bluntness. However, most of my ENTJ friends have great communication skills. It’s the occasional ENTJ that hasn’t fine-tuned their communications skills that I find off-putting.
July 6th, 2010 at 7:43 pm
I’m a gay male INFP and have a close transgender (MTF) friend who I just figured out is ENTJ. I always asked her to take the online test but she never did. Initially, I had typed her as ESTJ. I was one letter off.
Then one day BOOM! It hit me… DUH! How did I miss this? How can she NOT be an ENTJ???
She’s a big wig… literally and also heads a big company in a big office with a big chair and knows everything. Or at leasted acts like she does.
Although I’ve become a skeptic at times, I’ll give it to her for the ability to wing-it in unfamiliar topics. Pretending like she is the expert. I used to always fall for it, being the typical gullible INFP.
I see how she can sometimes alienate others who do not understand this type. She often picks on everyone, but she’s just being funny. If she’s not giving you shit, then she probably doesn’t like you.
Mark – AZ | GAYS
July 12th, 2010 at 2:56 am
One of my good friend is an ENTJ. I’ve always gotten along with ENTJs. I don’t take things personally and I stand my ground when they start treading on things I have strong feelings about. They’re always surprised when I stand my ground the first time. My reply is always the same, just because I don’t say anything about all the other stuff doesn’t mean I agree with you or that I think that you were right. The other stuff wasn’t important enough to bother disagreeing with.
Jun 13, 2011
i am deeply encouraged because i began dating an INTJ! 🙂 I am so happy to find this blog. I keep coming back here; it’s like a breath of fresh air! I surely hope I can interact with you, Corin! I am most certain to learn so much from your rich experience as an INFP!
Jun 24, 2011
seriously, what is it with this pairing? great compatibility although i wish he were more spontaneous sometimes.. he probably wishes I was more logical sometimes 🙂
-infp female, married to intj male
March 31st, 2014 at 7:41 pm
How did you get your Huby’s attention who went to who first. sorry I’m curious I’m an INFP and i like an INTJ i think he likes me too but i dont know what to do.
Sep 24, 2011
Really grateful for this entry- it’s a good affirmation of the beautiful INFP-INTJ r’ship I have right now. In others’ eyes it’s a really weird r’ship, but it always amazes me how well it works. Hope you write more about yours.
Nov 2, 2011
How does the INTJ – INFP relate to the ever lauded INTJ – ENFP “perfect match”? I’m a female INFP dating a male INTJ, but he’s developed feelings for an ENFP (I think partially because of all the research about those being the best possible match). Is there something to this?
November 3rd, 2011 at 8:40 am
When it comes to relationships, most people by default tend to enter relationships to balance out perceived voids. Voids becomes values. If you perceive fun as missing from your life then fun becomes something you value. In turn, you try to meet fun people to fill that perceived void. Basically, you get attracted to people who you think will fill missing pieces in your life. Some of the things you want to fill may be more prevalent in some personality types than others. However, what a person perceives is missing is very individualized based on history and not personality.
ENFPs tend to be more physically affectionate, happy-go-lucky, emotionally warmer, etc. If an INTJ perceives those qualities are what’s missing from their life then that’s who they’ll be drawn towards.
Jul 18, 2012
I am an INFP, through and through, and I had dated an INTJ for the last year and a half. We were engaged to be married as soon as I was able to move in with him, but he suddenly, in the span of a few hours after saying ‘I love you’, said he had no feelings for me whatsoever. He began dating another INTJ a week after breaking off the engagement. Is there any way to explain this random behavior using his personality type? I am rather confused about it because we had been almost exactly like you and your relationship.
Jul 31, 2013
I looooove your site,dude!
My INFJ wife is very much the same.I admire the J, I’m terrible at organizing anything.
Oct 23, 2015
I’m an INFP female and have been married to an INTJ male for 30+ years. It is a growth-oriented relationship. We have evolved together although it hasn’t always been comforting or comfortable. A good relationship for the long run!
Aug 14, 2016
I’m curious to hear about how the two of you met and got together? I’m an INFP female, and the INTJ male I am interested in is extremely awkward, like me. We can barely put two sentences together around each other because we both get incredibly nervous. How can two introverts get to know each other like that? I’m only ever attracted to introverts. We just need to get past the initial stages of getting to know each other somehow.
Oct 31, 2016
I would urge extreme care if dating one of these more organised, together, commander types. Honestly: do not become too relaxed and complacent.
My other half grew tired of having to be my mother, as she put it. Taking care of me. I always said, “I don’t need you to be my mother or take care of me. I’m perfectly capable.” But you know what? If I’m completely honest she gets the major things done because I hold off doing them until long after she can bear to leave it. She’ll start planning a holiday 6 months or more in advance. After a while I just let her have her way, not by joining in immediately, but letting her get on with doing what she enjoys: planning and organising. We actually met in art college, but really, she was always destined to become the Senior Project Manager that she is at work (and at home).
So I’d strongly urge my fellow laid-back, flaky INFPs to be very careful indeed. At the very least, show as much appreciation as you can – constantly – for what your more organised partners do for you. And use your own strong abilities to help them in whatever way you can, even if it’s not booking the holiday or shopping around for quotes and researchjng the best suitcases. I believe TJs and FJs REALLY need to feel that their efforts are appreciated and they need to see that others are pulling their weight. If they feel people aren’t doing their share it will infuriate them.
John W Reply:
October 31st, 2016 at 10:42 am
Did I write ‘dating’? I meant relationship/marriage.
Oct 31, 2016
I wrote ‘dating’ at the start of my previous comment. I was actually thinking of very close relationshis/marriages.
Jan 18, 2019
I’m a female INTJ. I recently dated my daughter’s English teacher who is a very strong INFP. We dated for only a few months, but I was head over heels for this guy (the first time I’ve ever felt such strong feelings for someone after so short a time). I’m 40 and have not been married, no desire to do so, until having met him. However, my very strong NT tried to define a J path, aka define the relationship, which he thought initially was me trying to break up with him. Almost immediately afterwards, we had a very long 6 hour conversation in which it was identified that I was trying to figure out what the language was to use to define the relationship before we could even have the relationship defining conversation. I also said that my typical dating relationship usually was from within a close knit circle of friends and having dated someone I wasn’t initially friends with was throwing me off because I didn’t feel I knew him as well as I would like to for having such strong feelings. Within 5 days, he told me that we should just be friends. Three weeks into this now and every time I see him I feel like my heart is being ripped into a thousand pieces, I can keep it together around him, as I must because he’s my daughters teacher, but I leave and feel like I want to die. I had told him that I wanted to build a life with him when we were dating and I was serious. This, as anyone who knows an INTJ, knows is not something that is to be taken lightly. I despise dating. I really found in him someone who I thought was a wonderful match. So, being “friends”, now I barely get responses to my text messages, which those I do get, I feel have mixed responses. I have sent some thinking it’s just better to back off and then decided to stop texting today. I know our love languages are different as well: his primary is physical touch, and words of affirmation (not a surprise for an INFP) and mine are spending time, and acts of service. I know he just got out of a 7 year relationship (married 5 years), and told me that was the longest relationship he’d ever been in, and was longer than the total of all his prior relationships put together. I told him I didn’t want to be a rebound and that I was serious about being in a relationship with him. If there’s still a chance to salvage anything, I’d love to hear some feedback. Does he need time? Do I need to let him know how seriously I feel (I never told him I thought he is “the one”)? I’m so terribly awkward in trying to translate the INFP language. Ironic because I have two sisters who are INFP’s.
June 17th, 2019 at 11:50 pm
I am an INFP woman in a seriious long term relationship with an INTJ woman and I was struck by your post as I can see bost perspectives so clearly here. Your INFP needs time. Ithink he got a little frightened by the strength and depth of your response and how you could ‘know’ so quickly. We are creatures that ‘know’ deep down too but we take longer to get there than you and we don’t know how we ‘know’ when something is right.
Take a step back, take some time and give him the space he has asked for. He needs time to properly heal from his previous relationships. Be a solid and supportive friend, listen and give him what he needs which is time to adapt to the idea and reality of being in a new relationship with you.
I hope this is helpful.