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Hello! I was wondering if anybody could relate to this - not having a lot of friends.

Granted, I'm not lonely, but I notice that I tend to have a lot of people I consider acquaintances...but only one or two friends. For me, I consider a friend somebody I buy gifts for (and they send me gifts back)...besides being a person I can relate / have fun with. To me, acquaintances are people I somewhat know, though I'm not close with them at all.

Can anybody else relate to this? Thanks!
 
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I relate. I have 3 close 'inner circle' friends (the 4 of us do stuff together every weekend but I'm also in daily contact with each of them -- typical teens really). Plenty of 'outer circle' friends/acquaintances. Part of it is a time thing (I only have so much time to be social and frequently prefer to spend 'free' time alone to recharge) and part of it is preference (I prefer fewer but deeper friendships).

I can see myself having even fewer close friends when I'm older with my career in full swing and I'm married and my husband is effectively my 'best friend' on top of everything else. I wouldn't be surprised if it was just him and then everybody else was an acquaintance to varying degrees. I'd be happy with that although I can see value in having a close XNTX female friend I could relate to too.
 

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IMHO your Enneatype/instinct is more relevant here, although I think 5 is the most common Enneatype among INTJs. It also tends to be the least social. SP 5s are probably the least social types overall.

As an sp/sx 5, I have always had an instinctive preference for solitude over company - even as a child. I have not found it difficult to connect when I want to, but I tend not to maintain my connections. I am also more often than not uninterested in connecting, including when I was a teenager and "supposed" to care about my peers. I did play sports with them, but our minds did not connect. Generally, maintaining a connection feels like too much effort for not enough return. This very much echoes my family's social preferences. We are hermits.

I had a small but relatively stable circle of friends a long time ago, before I hit the road and we lost touch. I have been moving from one country to another for a long time now, usually once every one or two years. I make connections when I feel like it, and I know that they are unlikely to last beyond my next move. Having sampled the other side for a long time now, it would be nice to find a long-lasting romantic connection at some point. Since I am not willing to sacrifice my space however, it remains an unlikely prospect.
 

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Totally relatable.

What I have is two friends (but I classify as acquaintances) whom I rarely talk to, yet still keep contact with whenever we meet. There's a criterion people have to pass in order to be considered 'worthy' to talk to and those elements are hard to find in everyday folk. Those traits would be an explorative mind, a tolerance to controversial thoughts, or open-mindedness to all forms of ideas (especially if you're in a religious area) there's more but you get the rough sketch.
In the end, it comes down to the fact that many INTJs don't have many people to relate to.

There's also the sad fact that Rationals make up 5-10% of the population, making it super difficult even finding someone who doesn't rely on emotions and peer pressure to decide everything.
 

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Always remember that the average adult has only 1 or 2 close friends!

I actually have a lot more than that, 5-6 depending on how you count them.
But I don't spend much time with them.

Sent from my EVA-L09 using Tapatalk
 

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It as already pointed out depends on how you count.
I have perhaps one close friend left.
Problem with reaching out is that the other person might be at their max.
People who report more than a few, usually have very low standards for the label.
Hence they count their aquanit... *cough* friends in the hundreds.
 

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I have the ability to form great friendships, but I do not know that I could handle the maintenance involved with a larger circle. That is to say, I do not have many people I consider to be friends.

There is no question that I am quite an agreeable individual. I am good at being warm toward and charming to others; being likeable or seen in a positive regard has almost never been an issue in my interactions. However, that mode of operation for me as an introvert is tiring and as such many of my interactions are kept brief.

When I pursue more of a relationship with someone I often have difficulty with not being intense and personal. I tend to break the typical emotional barriers that people erect for everyone else, but their closest friends. This is not a conscious effort, rather the consequence of my normal level of curiosity when applied to an individual that catches my interest.

Broadening my circle with my typical level of inquiry and investment would certainly be stressful for me. I do not know that I am capable of lightening the way I handle my friendships, but I also do not like the idea of diminishing the quality of them. Also, I know that I can be incredibly guilt-ridden from circumstances that put me out of touch with someone; it can make me very neurotic.

So, to revisit what I said in the beginning, I can form a deep, meaningful friendship with someone; I can certainly form or strengthen bridges with a great number of people if I tried. However, I feel I would be emotionally overextending myself. Thus far, I enjoy keeping myself to a small circle of really great friends nested inside a much larger network of good acquaintances and connections.
 

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I only have two friends. The rest are just associates.
 
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Excluding spouse and family, nope. Too much into hobbies and other necessary parts of my daily regimen. Don't worry, it's not weird :happy:
 

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I have dozens of acquaintances and allies, but few true friends. However, I think it’s not necessarily a bad thing. After all, scarcity makes things valuable and quality matters a lot more than sheer numbers.
 

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I don't have any friends.

I've even moved over 7 times and traveled to 10 countries.

People come, people go. Then, I've had personal issues with people who I've encountered in my life, which I rather not get into. At this point, I don't care to have friends either. As people get older, their circle of friends get smaller anyway, I believe.

Thankfully, I aways know how to keep myself busy as well.
 
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I have two friends, plenty of acquitances and two people in between. Not a lot and still extremely difficult for me to keep up. I don't see them often and I can't really handle more than that.

Sometimes people have approached me with the intention to begin a friendship and I have given it a try if I've thought it could work, but then it usually happened that I had to end it because they were too demanding for me and it always ended up being a waste of time, so I don't even try anymore.
 

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I think INTJs feel very comfortable on their own in most situations and look for other people only occasionally and only if they have a strong connection with them. INTJs like their independence. It's quite normal to not have a lot of friends.

For me a friend is somebody I can count on for a non-trivial favor. For example, if I need a place to stay for a night, my friends would be those I feel comfortable asking and I know they will help me if they can.

I have about 10-15 friends by this definition and they are all people I know for a very long time (at least 5 years). I can make acquaintances, but making friends has been very difficult. I just cannot get close to anybody else to the point of developing a strong connection. I moved to a new city about a year ago so I've been trying but I guess more time is necessary.
 

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I got 2 close bitches
I know ton's of people
take up to much social time than to have more
 

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I currently don't have any friends. In the past I used to have 1-2 at any given time.

I've lived in several countries in the last years and what I found out is that you can't stay friends if you don't see each other for months or even years. People simply move on with their lives, focus on what is next to them.

I have acquaintances.
 

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I currently don't have any friends. In the past I used to have 1-2 at any given time.

I've lived in several countries in the last years and what I found out is that you can't stay friends if you don't see each other for months or even years. People simply move on with their lives, focus on what is next to them.

I have acquaintances.

Yes. I've long realized that people come and people go. Distance can definitely make you a low priority in most people's social circles.

I even had an opportunity to travel to this certain country 2 times in one year.In that country, I met this one person who hung out with me and messaged me every 1-3 days when I was physically present in that country. We even met up when I re-visited the second time.Then, both times when I left that country, he only messaged me the day after my plane landed in home country to ensure that my flight went ok. Two days later,we stopped talking for good lol. The same crap happened after the first time I left this person. So for the second time, I was like 'I'm moving on.'

I've got to give my old Singapore friend (I lived in Singapore for 6 months) more credit though since he still messaged me 6 months after I moved away from Singapore. We no longer talk though.
 

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Yes. I've long realized that people come and people go. Distance can definitely make you a low priority in most people's social circles.
I tried to stay in touch with the first friends I made on the road, back when the internet barely existed and they did not have e-mail. Snail mail letters. It did not work out. I later gave up trying to keep in touch with "friends" I made, figured it was not worth the trouble. You meet people, you share an experience or collaborate in some way, you move to the next country and that's that. I feel that it has been normalised somewhat since digital nomadism has become a thing in the last decade or so.

I do still exhange the odd e-mail with a couple of guys though. They are some kind of intuitive introverts as well, although I do not think MBTI has ever been brought up. You read an interesting book or come across a fascinating idea, you know the other guys will appreciate it, you shoot off an e-mail and there is a couple of lengthy replies and some back-and-forth. I have not met either one in years, although I will be visiting Georgia (the country) soonish and one of them is there now, or was recently.

I suspect they are 5s as well. There is this quiet dynamic that just works with them, in a way it does not with people in general. Difficult to define - it has something to do with the speed and rhythm of communication. Odd thing is, I do not think we spent much time together back in the day. A hike here and there, a piano concert or a library visit. Maybe we are still in touch because we all prefer writing to talking.
 

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I tried to stay in touch with the first friends I made on the road, back when the internet barely existed and they did not have e-mail. Snail mail letters. It did not work out. I later gave up trying to keep in touch with "friends" I made, figured it wasn't worth the trouble. You meet people, you share an experience or collaborate in some way, you move to the next country and that's that. I feel that it has been normalised somewhat since digital nomadism has become a thing in the last decade or so.
Yes, it's definitely normal.

But I also find it depressing to some extent. Because this refers not only to superficial relations (went to a country, had a few beers with someone) but also to those that had a potential of becoming something deeper.

After my parents met each other they had to split for a year. They visited each other every few months for a day or two but they lived in different cities for a year. I find something like this hard to imagine nowadays, although modern technology would make is easier, not more difficult. And I do feel sorry about that, I think this instability puts people into a lot of stress.
 
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