Personality Cafe banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So I'm pretty sure my boyfriend of 2 years is an ESTJ. He's taken the test and he gets ExTJ but I've come to the conclusion he's ESTJ based on his practical nature around the house, his love of history, his attention to detail etc.

I was quite surprised when I learned his type because I didn't think I'd last in a relationship so long with someone so opposite to me. I guess in Socionics terms he would be considered my dual but I know most people here don't believe in Socionics.

I think the reason it has worked well so far is because he's a very mature and emotionally intelligent ESTJ. While he prizes logic over feelings, he still makes an effort to be sympathetic towards me and always tries to empathize with where I'm coming from. I've learned I need to be more direct with him, though. He doesn't always pick up on my subtle hints like say an ENFJ would.

He also loves to take care of me in practical ways (e.g. he loves cooking for me and seeing my face light up when I enjoy his food). He likes wrapping me up in blankets when I'm cold or running me a bath etc. As an INFP who was so used to be alone and inside me head, it was both overwhelming and refreshing to have someone so intent on making me comfortable.

He has told me that I've brought him down-to-earth and showed him how to appreciate the smaller things in life. He admires my love of nature and creativity and likes to explore new places with me, knowing that novelty excites me. He likes my perceptiveness and capacity for empathy.

He tends to be happy to go along with what I want to do most of the time which I was quite surprised by - as long as he can prepare in advance and make sure all of his tasks are sorted.

We have different interests, though, and I worry this will cause problems further down the line. He loves history, politics, and true crime. I love fantasy, art and meditation. It's sometimes difficult to pick a movie to watch or a topic of conversation that we're both passionate about. We thrive best when we're out doing new things together or hanging out with mutual friends, but sometimes I worry about how it would be to live with him.

One thing I do love about him is he's always willing to listen to my anxieties and offer me very logical advice when I'm too emotional to think straight. While he predominantly trusts experience and known processes, he's very open-minded for an ESTJ and is willing to try more unorthodox approaches to life as long as he can rationalize how it will improve things. We often have a teacher-student dynamic and that's not necessarily a bad thing, although sometimes it can be an issue when he's trying to explain why something is the correct thing to do and I feel like I've been put on the spot and I'm too "in my feelings" to agree to what he is saying.

Another thing is, he knows what he wants. He has had his life plan set out since he was a teenager and he has been working steadily on it ever since. This is a complete contrast to myself as I've never had a long-term plan. I've often been decisive about what path I wanted to take and prefer to go-with-the flow. So sometimes I worry that I'll end up going along with his plan just because I don't have one of my own and I'll end up feeling stifled (which wouldn't be fair on him because it's not his fault I haven't set any boundaries).

Also, sometimes I worry we don't have that soul-bond that I've had with other, more creative, people in the past. But then I remember those people were also rather toxic and wishy-washy so our relationship never went anywhere, unlike the stability I have now.

I guess I'm just looking for advice on how to improve this pairing? Or if anyone has any previous experience of this dynamic?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,824 Posts
Both ESTJs and INFPs have Ne and Si functions in the middle. ESTJs will rely more on Si, things that are tried and tested. Dependence and construction of life around these will only increase with time. INFPs rely more on Ne, which is more exploratory. The trouble is, unlike ENFPs, INFPs are not really all that outgoing. So, your ideas of exploring life may depend upon the partner you choose. With an ESTJ your life will be set. They are one of the most, if not the most, conventional of people. Only ISTJs and ISFJs would be more conventional than them. It depends upon your hunger to explore the world, upon how hungry your Ne is. My Ne is voraciously hungry. My wife is INTJ. We sometimes have abstract discussions that build up beautifully. She is a painter, I am a writer. On the other hand, our social life is a total mess. We are both introverted and an INTJ has no need of socialization at all.

Every relationship has trade-offs. Your own satisfaction and priorities matter. I think at your age the idea of an emotional bonding is an urgent issue. Whatever TJ you find, you can count on them for material stability in life. What do you want from your own life? Have you figured that out? How long do you want to take to figure it out? A year? 5 years? 20 years? You don't want to settle into anything? Whatever it is, how comfortable and respectful is your partner of that? He had planned his life so far. He might have planned the rest of his life as well. Have you inquired about it? How much space do your dreams have in that?

Fi and Te are fundamentally opposite forces. Fi makes us who we are from within. Te makes us what we need to be for the outside situation. I don't think there is any such thing as too "in your feelings". That is Te overriding Fi. And that is a red flag for me. This is more your fault than his though. He is not supposed to be that sensitive. You need to stand ground for your vulnerability as a legitimate part of your relationship and not be apologetic about it. It might open doors for him to find his vulnerability as well.

Does he have any creative interest? Do you have any creative interests? And have you looked into your enneagram types?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
423 Posts
first things first, the title itself made me smirk a bit XD that's one bizarre pairing

honestly you've been in an evidently functioning relationship for 2 years now before you found out your types. and now it all seems problematic, after you've studied the differences and opposites - that you have already been dealing with for quite some time.
it seems to me you shouldn't focus on mbti too much. it only highlights your obvious differences and separate approaches, it will only carve a deeper line between you two.

if we have to talk mbti, here's three meals for thought XD :
- every pairing can work if there's mutual respect and love and genuine effort.
- he is obviously a border Sensing/Intuition, and whatever other classifications may be it is rarely extreme. people are nuanced and the final type does not mean the full stereotype.
- are you sure you're complete infp? mistypes are not uncommon in this arena of ours.

it's your boyfriend you're talking here, who you know and love and not some abstract mbti category impersonation.
go live with him and see if it turns out well.
considering last thoughts in your post, it is something only you will be able to decide on. take no one's advice on this one. whether you feel the superspace connection or not, whether it is good for you or not.. the biggest mistake here is to ask for an advice.

honestly the only advice i can give you is
what you have to do is whatever you cannot not do.

good luck.. :)
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
4,845 Posts
I don't know about estj-infp relationships. But a thought I had was that your concerns seem to be in part about powerdynamics, (student/teacher, his plans becoming the the plan for your shared life), in a way, and I wonder if mbti could help with seeing where you have strengths too, and so you can be the "teacher" in those areas, and you can support each other. Like possibly in dialogues about introspection, you might be more adept if the stereotypes apply (just to use as an example), and be able to guide him. Teaching each other things I think is great, but if it is always giving one person the upper hand I guess it could be a bit problematic in the long run.

If you don't think you will ever have a long term plan for life, perhaps it could be possible to carve out space for your short time pursuits somehow? in the shape of physical space, savings, spare time in the daily schedule, whatever it is you'd need to be able to do the things you want once the fancy strikes. (a desk for creative crafts, a savings account for future travel, two hours of unplanned time in the afternoon for random strolls and adventures, or whatever...)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
433 Posts
Why are you freaking out?

INFPs and ESTJs are in relations of duality according to socionics, aka ideal match, the yin and yang that complements one another while feeling very different: INFP Love & Friendship Types

You're just living this out currently. Congrats!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
So my ESTJ boyfriend actually said something surprising to me yesterday: "I think you were right. Life shouldn't be about routines. We only get one shot at this. We should be off exploring new things etc...", so that does actually give me some promise. Even if ESTJs are not the greatest match, I think he's a rather mature one and he's more open-minded than the majority. I think I also realised yesterday that I do teach him things too. I teach him how to let go and enjoy the moment. I'm also hoping to teach him how to follow his passions and to stop caring about what other people think, but that's harder than it sounds... The other day he mentioned trying to learn how to skateboard (because he thought it would be a cool activity and it would impress me as well), but then his friends started making fun of the idea and he didn't want to go ahead with it anymore. He cares a lot about status and giving off a good impression and sometimes I worry he's not being true to himself.
 

·
Registered
My vehicle is INFP, 9w8. Vroom vroom!!
Joined
·
1,592 Posts
I've learned I need to be more direct with him, though. He doesn't always pick up on my subtle hints like say an ENFJ would.
It's good to need to be direct. Someone who thinks they know what you mean all the time can be very overbearing. They aren't really hearing you, just themselves.

Also, sometimes I worry we don't have that soul-bond that I've had with other, more creative, people in the past. But then I remember those people were also rather toxic and wishy-washy so our relationship never went anywhere, unlike the stability I have now.
If you magically had a soul-bond with him tomorrow, what all would you have that you don't have right now? Is it a big change?

Since you've been in the relationship for two years and you have TONS of good stuff to say about it, I think you're in good shape. You are both willing to learn and grow.

I know that for my Si-dom partner, what allows our relationship to continue is that we have the same main desires and areas of interest. (A big one for our career is that we're both able to choose the relationship over career status and program notoriety. There is a lot of divorce in our field.) Our paths would have never crossed and we would have never gotten together if something about our life path wasn't the way it is. Think about what in your past caused you and your boyfriend to meet up with each other and stay together. It is possible that you may find what you really want to do, and it might be drastically different than what he is set on. Two mature people can make it work—if you think the relationship is worth it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
So I'm pretty sure my boyfriend of 2 years is an ESTJ. He's taken the test and he gets ExTJ but I've come to the conclusion he's ESTJ based on his practical nature around the house, his love of history, his attention to detail etc.

I was quite surprised when I learned his type because I didn't think I'd last in a relationship so long with someone so opposite to me. I guess in Socionics terms he would be considered my dual but I know most people here don't believe in Socionics.

I think the reason it has worked well so far is because he's a very mature and emotionally intelligent ESTJ. While he prizes logic over feelings, he still makes an effort to be sympathetic towards me and always tries to empathize with where I'm coming from. I've learned I need to be more direct with him, though. He doesn't always pick up on my subtle hints like say an ENFJ would.

He also loves to take care of me in practical ways (e.g. he loves cooking for me and seeing my face light up when I enjoy his food). He likes wrapping me up in blankets when I'm cold or running me a bath etc. As an INFP who was so used to be alone and inside me head, it was both overwhelming and refreshing to have someone so intent on making me comfortable.

He has told me that I've brought him down-to-earth and showed him how to appreciate the smaller things in life. He admires my love of nature and creativity and likes to explore new places with me, knowing that novelty excites me. He likes my perceptiveness and capacity for empathy.

He tends to be happy to go along with what I want to do most of the time which I was quite surprised by - as long as he can prepare in advance and make sure all of his tasks are sorted.

We have different interests, though, and I worry this will cause problems further down the line. He loves history, politics, and true crime. I love fantasy, art and meditation. It's sometimes difficult to pick a movie to watch or a topic of conversation that we're both passionate about. We thrive best when we're out doing new things together or hanging out with mutual friends, but sometimes I worry about how it would be to live with him.

One thing I do love about him is he's always willing to listen to my anxieties and offer me very logical advice when I'm too emotional to think straight. While he predominantly trusts experience and known processes, he's very open-minded for an ESTJ and is willing to try more unorthodox approaches to life as long as he can rationalize how it will improve things. We often have a teacher-student dynamic and that's not necessarily a bad thing, although sometimes it can be an issue when he's trying to explain why something is the correct thing to do and I feel like I've been put on the spot and I'm too "in my feelings" to agree to what he is saying.

Another thing is, he knows what he wants. He has had his life plan set out since he was a teenager and he has been working steadily on it ever since. This is a complete contrast to myself as I've never had a long-term plan. I've often been decisive about what path I wanted to take and prefer to go-with-the flow. So sometimes I worry that I'll end up going along with his plan just because I don't have one of my own and I'll end up feeling stifled (which wouldn't be fair on him because it's not his fault I haven't set any boundaries).

Also, sometimes I worry we don't have that soul-bond that I've had with other, more creative, people in the past. But then I remember those people were also rather toxic and wishy-washy so our relationship never went anywhere, unlike the stability I have now.

I guess I'm just looking for advice on how to improve this pairing? Or if anyone has any previous experience of this dynamic?
My ex wife is estj. Run away!
 

·
exploring space
ENFP
Joined
·
9,002 Posts
how exactly do you ground him? I'm so curious because it usually goes the other way, at least based on other testimonies
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,192 Posts
For me, the pitfalls with ESTJ tend to be their lack of intuition when it comes to certain feelings -- that is not to say they are intentionally insensitive or uncaring, and I typically find them extremely sorry if they find out feelings were hurt in some cases. But, often, I find they just keep barreling on and barreling on without much regard for the reaction of others or unless the underlying tone is made very obvious.

I think as long as you feel comfortable voicing how you feel in certain sensitive situations - like if it doesn't bother you to have to say anything - it should be fine. Personally, I do not usual find ESTJs to be super tactful, and it is difficult for me not to feel embarrassed in certain social situations because of them. It is hard because as INFP, I do not feel all that comfortable myself in these settings, so if the only talking person is offending people left and right, I have to do a lot of damage control afterwards. Lol.

I know this sounds super negative of ESTJ, but I do actually like them. I think what you said about the open-mindedness can be very true (it is probably that Ne in there). And, of course their ability to take action and get things done - which, can translate into feeling taken care of for the INFP - is impressive and quite awesome.
 

·
Administrator
INTP
Joined
·
11,692 Posts
I think you can't have everything in a relationship. There will always be an area of incompatibility. The key is learning how to meet your own needs in the area's which your partner can't or isn't interested in doing so. You don't have to be everything to each other, it's ok to have your own, different interests and perspectives. At worst, it can ruin everything, but at best it can facilitate growth. I find that similar people are great to be with, but the relationships often lack spark and spark keeps it going more than similarities do.

Don't worry about potential problems. Worry about actual problems when they occur. Like, cross each bridge as you come to it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
894 Posts
Sounds like you guys have a healthy relationship, perhaps because he's so emotionally intelligent for an ESTJ. That's good! My INFP best friend was married to an ESTJ but he wasn't very healthy or tolerant or emotionally intelligent - they've since divorced. It seems that INFPS and ESTJs have an attraction/chemistry towards each other (maybe because they're duals?) but I don't know if it's GENERALLY recommended to be the best pairing...again, generally speaking. According to socionics, INFP and ESTJ would be a supervision relationship, I think.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top