[INFJ] Once you experience intimacy, do you necessarily experience commitment…?

Once you experience intimacy, do you necessarily experience commitment…?

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This is a discussion on Once you experience intimacy, do you necessarily experience commitment…? within the INFJ Forum - The Protectors forums, part of the NF's Temperament Forum- The Dreamers category; Hi all – I realized something about myself today that is helping to explain why (among other things) I am ...

  1. #1
    INTJ - The Scientists

    Once you experience intimacy, do you necessarily experience commitment…?

    Hi all –

    I realized something about myself today that is helping to explain why (among other things) I am always more attached to my friends than they are to me, and why it’s so much harder for me to end the friendship than it is for them.

    For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Triangular Theory of Love, it is based on 3 dimensions:
    Intimacy – Which encompasses feelings of attachment, closeness, connectedness, and bondedness
    Passion – Which encompasses drives connected to both limerence and sexual attraction
    Commitment – Which encompasses, in the short term, the decision to remain with another, and in the long term, plans made with that other

    My realization was that whenever I experience Intimacy, I seem to automatically experience Commitment as well, in the sense that getting close to someone makes me highly-devoted to that person and makes me want our relationship to be permanent. To date, I don’t seem to have been capable of experiencing a high degree of Intimacy with a person without simultaneously experiencing a high degree of Commitment to that person.

    This has proven problematic because it has always been extremely painful for me to lose friends with whom I had developed Intimacy, but the fact that our parting wasn’t as painful for them makes me realize that they were probably not as committed to the friendship as I was, and that they were capable of experiencing Intimacy without Commitment.

    So, I have a few questions for you.

    1. Are you able to experience a high degree of Intimacy without Commitment?
    2. If so, does this just seem to happen naturally, or can you point to particular things you do that enable you to feel close to other people without feeling so committed to them that you will be hurt if/when the friendship ends?
    Last edited by D4P; 11-10-2015 at 01:39 PM.
    Vivid Melody, hppygrl, cocoinfj and 1 others thanked this post.



  2. #2

    1. In most cases yes. Probably because I've already boxed you in prior to engaging.
    2. Because I've already boxed you in I set up road blocks that are really just checkpoints of distance. It's like, you can cross as many of them as you yourself choose to go through, but so long as I don't let you make it to the nuclear reactor - there won't be any devastating fallout. Also, at times you may think you've made it through a checkpoint but in reality, you actually failed and were sent on a roundabout detour.

    "Sometimes we hurt. And sometimes we know not to hurt... But how would you know when we've done either?"

    **Keep in mind also of the difference between romantic interests and friendship. Commitment and loyalty.
    Last edited by BenevolentBitterBleeding; 11-10-2015 at 01:06 PM. Reason: **

  3. #3

    I am like you: if I experience a high degree of Intimacy with someone, I automatically experience Commitment as well. I become devoted to that person and I find it natural for our relationship to be permanent. I had some extremely painful friendship experiences, because of this.
    Vivid Melody, hopebeat, cocoinfj and 1 others thanked this post.

  4. #4
    INFJ


    The answer is somewhat multifaceted.

    Yes, I can certainly experience a high degree of intimacy without commitment. However, this is not the ideal or even what is desired.

    INFJs -- or at least I know that I've done this -- will use their Fe to push intimacy in attempt to obtain commitment. Frankly, this isn't exactly a healthy way of going about it, and it's certainly gotten me into a lot of trouble in the past.

    I would say that INFJs, younger ones in particular, have such a strong drive to connect with others that it can push us to do some pretty irrational things for the sake of connection. Fe works in the moment, and sometimes it can override our Ni during times of desperation or excitement ("I know that doing this with this person probably won't be good in the long run, but I don't want to pass up this opportunity right now. I just want to feel this"). Again, that very phenomenon has gotten me into trouble.

    We actually discussed the INFJ relationship with Fe not so long ago, and the general consensus was that our emotions are like drugs. We have to go out and do something in order to "obtain" them a lot of the time, and sometimes that can push us into bad decision-making. Ergo, we jump into intimacy before establishing commitment. Intimacy is probably on the "heroin" part of the "emotion drug scale" that we have.

    Sometimes jumping into it like that can work out for the best (this is sort of what I did with my boyfriend; I pretty much bared my soul to him during our first conversation. But that was with my Ni's inexplicable approval), but a lot of the time, it doesn't.

    Another undoubtedly unhealthy manifestation of our craving for intimacy is our tendency to use people as "quick fixes". This can be done consciously or unconsciously -- usually it's the latter.

    In summary, any reasonable INFJ wants a level of commitment that is in line with the level of intimacy we've established, but our Fe can cause us to push for intimacy if it's all we can get at the time.
    Nox, user87, Windblownhair and 6 others thanked this post.

  5. #5
    Unknown Personality

    For me it is like once they are passed a certain point I am super committed and will do almost anything to make their dreams come true which is why that list of ppl needs to be kept to a minimum and it is probably why so many ppl want to get on the list. Who wouldn't want to live in a world where someone makes magic happen? I do not know how I could function if too many ppl had my commitment. I think I would be okay if I just had one other very interesting person in my world. Haha.

    It is a very vulnerable position for myself to be in. The objects of your affection can get very territorial with the other objects of your affection. I am not talking exclusively romantic obviously.

    On a romantic level I think the commitment, intrinsic understanding/relating of/to them and the way you make their dreams come true with your big ideas makes you extremely attractive to ppl. Especially ones who respond to the feeling understood.

  6. #6
    INFJ - The Protectors


    Quote Originally Posted by zosio913 View Post
    The answer is somewhat multifaceted.

    Yes, I can certainly experience a high degree of intimacy without commitment. However, this is not the ideal or even what is desired.

    INFJs -- or at least I know that I've done this -- will use their Fe to push intimacy in attempt to obtain commitment. Frankly, this isn't exactly a healthy way of going about it, and it's certainly gotten me into a lot of trouble in the past.

    I would say that INFJs, younger ones in particular, have such a strong drive to connect with others that it can push us to do some pretty irrational things for the sake of connection. Fe works in the moment, and sometimes it can override our Ni during times of desperation or excitement ("I know that doing this with this person probably won't be good in the long run, but I don't want to pass up this opportunity right now. I just want to feel this"). Again, that very phenomenon has gotten me into trouble.

    We actually discussed the INFJ relationship with Fe not so long ago, and the general consensus was that our emotions are like drugs. We have to go out and do something in order to "obtain" them a lot of the time, and sometimes that can push us into bad decision-making. Ergo, we jump into intimacy before establishing commitment. Intimacy is probably on the "heroin" part of the "emotion drug scale" that we have.

    Sometimes jumping into it like that can work out for the best (this is sort of what I did with my boyfriend; I pretty much bared my soul to him during our first conversation. But that was with my Ni's inexplicable approval), but a lot of the time, it doesn't.

    Another undoubtedly unhealthy manifestation of our craving for intimacy is our tendency to use people as "quick fixes". This can be done consciously or unconsciously -- usually it's the latter.

    In summary, any reasonable INFJ wants a level of commitment that is in line with the level of intimacy we've established, but our Fe can cause us to push for intimacy if it's all we can get at the time.
    Ehhh, I'm so mad at you right now. For pointing this out and making me realize this about myself. I must have missed that thread, but this is absolutely spot on in so many ways.. And even with the lack of intentionality, as you mentioned, there is definitely an allowing of myself to fall into it, and letting the Fe run wild, if there is even a chance as seen by Ni... :S Now I do feel like such a snake..

    Zosio913 thanked this post.

  7. #7

    .
    Last edited by StableSun35; 11-10-2015 at 02:08 PM.

  8. #8
    INFJ


    Quote Originally Posted by Koheleth View Post
    Ehhh, I'm so mad at you right now. For pointing this out and making me realize this about myself. I must have missed that thread, but this is absolutely spot on in so many ways.. And even with the lack of intentionality, as you mentioned, there is definitely an allowing of myself to fall into it, and letting the Fe run wild, if there is even a chance as seen by Ni... :S Now I do feel like such a snake..

    I've been spending a lot of time contemplating how INFJs are inadvertently wolves in sheep's clothing a lot of the time. It's a weird position to be in, but then again, what about INFJs isn't weird...



    But acknowledging it is the first step to getting it under control!

    Edit: @Koheleth -- Here's the thread where we all discussed Fe and its drug-like relationship with emotions: https://personalitycafe.com/infj-foru...l#post22346378
    Last edited by Severin; 11-10-2015 at 02:14 PM.
    Deejaz, hppygrl and Koheleth thanked this post.

  9. #9
    INFJ - The Protectors

    No, I do not experience commitment in the same way that you do. I am actually pretty fickle by the general Fi standard. I definitely do experience commitment, but it doesn't really just happen to me like that, I actually find the idea sort of strange. Commitment generally comes from reflecting on the relationship and making a conscious decision, which is in some ways largely mental. It's like being surprised at the conscious realization that I actually don't want to be with anyone else, it isn't a presumed or automatic outcome. And I prefer it that way, that seems more romantic to me, it's like human nature is fickle but I'm consciously deciding on fidelity :p
    Vivid Melody and Zosio913 thanked this post.

  10. #10
    INTJ - The Scientists

    Quote Originally Posted by StableSun35 View Post
    [FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3][COLOR=#000000]Your rational conclusion (that someone who experienced intimacy with you can do it without commitment) sounds plausible but in my world, there are an infinite number of answers to any question I have. My intuition tells me you don’t experience intimacy frequently so felt the loss more, the other person experienced intimacy frequently so didn’t feel the loss so much, it wasn’t as special or limited. Just a thought.
    Yes, this has occurred to me and I think you are on the right track. I have had relatively few intimate relationships in my life, such that losing a rare intimate relationship is a big deal to me. It would be great to have more intimate relationships so that all of my eggs wouldn't be in one basket, but that's easier said than done...
    hppygrl, SummerDaisy and Marvin the Dendroid thanked this post.


     
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