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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In the four Myer's Briggs letters who do you like better? S's or N's? Who would be easier to live in a long-term committed relationship with? What are the advantages and disadvantages of each? Probably the most important question, would an S or an N find you easier to live with? I realise that some people are more "S" than other "S"'s just as us INFJ's are apparently stronger in our intuition than other types might be, so feel free to take this into consideration in the discussion. I'm primarily interested in what INFJ's think about this question, and also how S's and N's might think about this in relation to us INFJ's and our intuition, so fire ahead :)
 

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I'm so intuitive that I generally can not comprehend people who aren't. I just stand there like "WHAT are you not getting here?!" So yeah, I'd say N.
 

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I'm so intuitive that I generally can not comprehend people who aren't. I just stand there like "WHAT are you not getting here?!" So yeah, I'd say N.
I'd have to agree with this.

Although, I could never claim to 'dislike' any type - it all comes down to the individual.
 

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I was in a long-term relationship with an ISTJ. I'm now going out with an INFJ. What I perceive to be the S/N difference in the way the relationships interactions go is huge. I definitely find N a whole lot easier. It would partly depend I think on how much you feel like it helps to feel understood. I'm hardly ever a weirdo to the Ns I meet and get along with, but can be a source of fascination to the Ss. They might think it's cute or endearing but it's still difficult when you see how incomprehensible your natural way of thinking is to them.

ISTJ found it easy to live with me and be in a long-term relationship with me. I personally think that the S/N difference put a certain cap on how close we could be. We were close for a number of reasons but there is a limit there where there isn't one with Ns. I also highly value the sort of ridiculousness and weirdo sense of play that comes naturally to Ns. When I was younger I thought stability in a relationship was important, but I eventually learned that a stable relationship without playfulness and possibilities and mind-adventures is stale. The trips and tangents you can go on with other Ns is just the best thing.

I think for me NF tends to provide the easiest, most smoothly flowing relationships. From what I've seen from family and friends as well.
 

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I prefer XNFXs or ISFPs. Both tend not to be afraid about going deep when it comes to conversation, both tend to embrace unorthodox styles, and both tend to be really giving in bed. What I hated about dating sensors was that they judged me a lot, and would many times simply put up with me because of how I'm in-shape, and how I kill it in the sack. What I hated about dating intuitives was how they knew me too well. They could always tell when I was angry, which was all the time, and tried to "fix" me, even though that's impossible. They also made me feel like a bad boyfriend, for when they had a bad day or dropped an immense confession on me, I didn't know the first thing about handling it. Also, no sensor or intuitive can tolerate me well, especially if he or she lived with me. I can be sort of an asshole....Okay, Okay....I can REALLY be an asshole.
 

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From own experience: Nearly always ISxPs. I never looked for them actively, I'd think that would be rather stupid indeed, but I just get along best with them, as both friends and partners. I'm generally not a great believer in all those stereotypes, and I'd love to say it plays absolutely no role in relationships (which I genuinely believe it doesn't have to), but I need to eat my words where it comes to my own friends and partners.

Despite being an iNtuitive myself, I find surrounding myself with other iNtuitives for too long exhausting at times, especially if they're immature Ns who still feel this need to stress how different they are, and that no one understands them. I was like that when I was very young, too, but today, I find it tiring when it's extreme.
It might be that they have a better understanding of my cognitive processes, but I find the communication with (in my case auxiliary) Sensors generally easier because they have the ability to just take things at face value - something Ns are sometimes sorely lacking, and that can at times greatly complicate things.
 

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I think for a long term relationship, I'll need an NF. I have some ST-friends, well... two ST-guys I used to have something with. They have their own great qualities, but it's really difficult to get a real connection with them. They often make me feel stupid for being upset about something (not intentionally, but still), because they're having a hard time dealing with emotions.

And all S-people I've met, think I'm a bit crazy and tell me often that I think too much about stuff.
 

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I like them both for different reasons.

S's are really good at life. They know what needs to be done and they get shit done, excellently. If I'm behind with my chores or bills, I can ask an S for help and they fix everything. They are also really good, in my experience, at making me feel better when I'm panicky or depressed. Being more concerned with whats happening in the moment and convincing me that I'm not dying- that everything is OK. N types tend to perpetuate my anxieties in this realm, even if they're trying their best to help.

N's really "get" me though. I can have deep conversations with them, I can relax and not have to worry about coming off as weird. I'm at home with N's. Also, most of my friends are N.
 

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My husband is ISTJ, we've been together for almost 8 years, and yeah there are some difficulties specially at the beginning, and there's definitely difficulty for him to get the deeper me; on the other hand, he's simple, stable, I always know what to expect from him, he can take care of things, his feelings are constant and strong...

I guess that it would be nice to be with Ns as we probably have an easier time getting each other, and then things would probably be more exciting lol... thought I might not have patience to deal with pure Ni'ness, or emotional instability that might come from fellow NFs. :p Thinking of possibilities or stuffs Ni style might probably too tiresome if my partner's Ni gets stronger.
Also, fellow NFJs might be nice but it can be a two edge sword: I might not live up to his expectations, or be able to get the deeper him; or he might be immature and driving me crazy with all the emotional roller coaster lol.
 

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I honestly have no N vs S preference for any kind of relationship, and see no type-dependent advantage or disadvantage to either. They each might present different challenges to a relationship, but I wouldn't say those qualify as disadvantages.

I've connected deeply with both sensors and intuitives, and I really don't understand the difficulty some intuitives seem to have connecting deeply with sensors, as that just hasn't been my experience. My dearest friend is an ISFJ, and our friendship has been one of the most abiding and fulfilling relationships of my life so far. It took time and effort for us to build it, but the connection is no less strong for its lack of immediacy. If anything, the amount of dedication it took to achieve it perhaps ultimately made it stronger. The only difference between my connection with fellow intuitives versus sensors seems to be how quickly that connection is established, which isn't a factor that matters to me at all.

For me, interactions with sensors versus intuitives might have a slightly different "flavor," but they are no less deep and abiding for it. I tend to find conversations with sensors perhaps even more fascinating, generally speaking, simply because their perspectives, at least initially, can seem so different from my own. And there's a curious sense of satisfaction when, metaphorically, you end up in the same basic place despite taking an entirely different route to get there.

Though I wouldn't rule out anyone based on type, it's clear in hindsight that I have a strong preference for T-types over F-types when it comes to romance, so that seems to be the MBTI "letter" that matters to me when it comes to that kind of relationship. Platonically, that element doesn't seem to matter at all, nor do any of the other MBTI letters.

But as far as romantic relationships go, the more similar to me someone is, personality-wise (not value-wise or life-goal-wise), the less interesting and attractive they are to me. As long as someone's core values and life goals aren't in complete opposition to mine, if I'm attracted to him, I can forge a romantic relationship with him. As for other kinds of relationships, I haven't encountered a type-related factor that makes it impossible for me to live with a person comfortably, converse well with them, or work cooperatively with them.

For me, it all comes down to observing people and asking them the right questions to determine how they want to be treated, what modes of interaction they prefer, what subjects interest them, and how they communicate, and then adapting to that as far as I can without compromising myself. If I cannot accommodate that, then the relationship (regardless what kind) isn't viable, but if I can, I often find that the other person responds to my efforts in kind, at least to some degree, and the relationship thrives.
 

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There is a difference between having difficulty connecting deeply with a sensor and finding it very easy to do so.

I connected deeply with my ISTJ ex, mainly because that is the way I have close relationships with people. But that mainly came from me reaching out to him. He really appreciated it because he had never been as close to anyone before and said he thought I knew him better than himself. But the beyond face-value stuff always had to be initiated by me.

This isn't just about good friendship or knowing someone deeply. One thing that surprised me about interactions with Ns when I started really noticing it was how there is so much you don't have to say. You can start at point A and then they reply or continue the conversation at point F and you realise that they are completely with you in what you're thinking. I've also found that Ns tend to be more interested in rambly, in-depth abstract conversation more often than Ss, which is one of my favourite things to do in life.

I've had a number of good friendships with Ss and naturally since they're friends have found them to be lovely and intelligent and interesting. But if we're talking about how easy it really is to live with someone and how many barriers come up along the way - my experience with my NF mum and little bro are so different to that with my NT bro or my SJ dad. I am still very close and appreciative of my relationship with my NT bro, and love my SJ dad despite the fact that he isn't so great at keeping in touch and communicating. But there is no doubt that my NF family members and I adjust to each other naturally much more easily and have a better (though not perfect) instinct about each other's motivations. I have also found this to be the case with housemates - fewer misunderstandings with the NFs.

People are talking about their personal experiences. And who someone prefers for a relationship depends on what they think they need or value most at the time, and what they learned from previous experiences. I was surprised once to see a number of INFJs stipulate that they could never be with a P because it would drive them crazy. I love Ps. Then again I grew up entirely amongst Ps and have become less strong in the domain as I got older. This is to say that people have their own arc in life and I think it's quite invalidating to chalk people's preferences down to immaturity or lack of ability to communicate with sensors.
 
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Doesn't matter to me much. Seeing as how my girlfriend is an N herself and one of my best friends is an S, honestly speaking, it doesn't matter. So long as they're not jerks, I don't mind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks everyone for your well-thought out and interesting responses :) Although it may have been touched on in one or two responses I am still interested in knowing who you feel appreciates you better; S's or N's, and also who finds it harder to tolerate your faults...

As an example, I know that I can be a bit obsessive with things such as health sometimes, and it drives my N family members half mad when I talk about it all the time, but the S's I know seem to find it all very interesting.

Just wondering if you have experienced anything else regarding how N's and S's treat you and appreciate you, because I feel that that also is a very important part of being happy in a relationship... for me to be happy I think the other person is going to have to be happy with me, not just me like them; and thanks also to the couple of people who weren't INFJ's who responded regarding this :)
 

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People discover things at different times.
That is my point. But also that it's not the case that the sequence and timing of discovery is merely age- and maturity-linked. We're all starting out with different contexts, influences, and positive and negative experiences of what we think of as behaviour typical to type.
 

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N.

I have an ISTJ mother and ESTJ friend. I'm not sure if it's their S that drives me nuts, or the S combined with T. I will never be able to have a close connection with them, which is quite sad. Understanding on certain important things can never be reached.

So it would be impossible for me to have a relationship with an ST.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
N.

I have an ISTJ mother and ESTJ friend. I'm not sure if it's their S that drives me nuts, or the S combined with T. I will never be able to have a close connection with them, which is quite sad. Understanding on certain important things can never be reached.

So it would be impossible for me to have a relationship with an ST.
Yeah, N's are cool. I wouldn't rule out those ST types though. I am good friends with an ESTJ and I'm pretty sure my mum is one too. Although we don't always understand each other we have worked a lot on our relationship and generally we get along quite well (in fact, despite our arguments we are very close and she is definitely the person who has forgiven me the most in my life (and she's had a lot to forgive; mind you, she is a Christian, and so is the other ESTJ I am friends with).

The thing I like about ST types is that we seem more sensitive than them to the problems in the relationship and therefore although it might seem like it's a really bad relationship to us, thankfully they don't seem to feel the tension so much (well maybe they feel it, but are able to get over a lot quicker than we would be). This does seem to have a positive effect in relationships... I find it frees us in a way. I also find that people who aren't willing to work through things and forgive are VERY hard to build relationships with, and the ST's (that I know anyway) just don't seem to have that fault of holding grudges or refusing to communicate.

We do have very different means of expression though, and for me at least this seems to be a major cause of tension and problems which need to be sorted even before we work out whether we actually do disagree on the issue... does any of this resonate with you?
 

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Thanks everyone for your well-thought out and interesting responses :) Although it may have been touched on in one or two responses I am still interested in knowing who you feel appreciates you better; S's or N's, and also who finds it harder to tolerate your faults...

As an example, I know that I can be a bit obsessive with things such as health sometimes, and it drives my N family members half mad when I talk about it all the time, but the S's I know seem to find it all very interesting.

Just wondering if you have experienced anything else regarding how N's and S's treat you and appreciate you, because I feel that that also is a very important part of being happy in a relationship... for me to be happy I think the other person is going to have to be happy with me, not just me like them; and thanks also to the couple of people who weren't INFJ's who responded regarding this :)
In my experience -- and this is just my experience and is not intended as some sort of "universal" commentary -- the S-types in my life are more likely to listen to my point of view completely and then try to understand it as long as I present it in a rational, non-dramatic way (this is more true of the ST-types than the SF-types, but even the latter tends to respond better the calmer I am), while the N-types are more likely to cut me off before I've finished explaining, regardless of my demeanor, jumping to often erroneous conclusions about where they think I'm going with what I'm saying, and then, if they're offended by what they've concluded I mean, they often get very judgmental and "lecture-y" about what I should feel or think about the subject at hand. The S-types are more inclined to accept my thoughts and feelings as is, and are more likely to go into lecture-mode as to what I should do in a given situation.

I have to watch what I say with N-types more often than with S-types because the N-types in my life are more prone to reading into what I say based on what they think they know or some pattern they think they've identified, leading to misunderstandings and conflicts that I find exhausting to sort out.

The upside of this aspect of my friendships with fellow N-types is that it made me aware of that potential tendency of mine earlier in life than I might otherwise have identified it so that I could work on not doing this very same thing to others. My success there varies depending upon my stress levels at any given time. It pains me to admit that I'm guilty of doing this to others when I'm under significant stress. That's a work-in-progress for me.

This is not universally true of every N-type and S-type among my circle, but is merely a situation I find to be more common with the N-types I know as opposed to the S-types I know. As a result, I find that, though my relationships with S-types take much longer to establish (and it takes longer to build a solid and deep connection with them), I ultimately end up feeling more appreciated and accepted by them than the N-types, as they don't seem to feel the all-consuming need to analyze and understand and "validate or invalidate" every aspect of my personality and ideas and behavior like some of the N-types do. I don't find myself feeling like I have to "justify" myself to them as often as I do the N-types in my circle, which I personally find to be a very easing dynamic.
 

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I think the main point is to achieve a relationship where mutual respect is given for the desired emotional connection. I don't like a partner to place expectations on me that I cannot meet, especially those that are emotional. It's not something I can change, because I am always somewhat emotionally modest to everyone around me. I don't want people to know or have 200% of me. This creates a feeling of overexposure and insecurity within myself. A healthy relationship to me is two independent individuals who enjoy each other ... which is what I have with my ISTJ husband of 15 years.

I really think placing these emotional expectations is setting up your relationships for failure. People open up at their own pace, and it's self centered to think that it has to be on your timetable. As much as I adore "NF"s, they tend to create problems that weren't there in the first place. I consider myself to be extremely "down to earth" and practical, and constantly lending my ears to NFs with problems. What I see is a milking of my encouragement to better themselves, and then I am left dry ... with no reciprocation in the exchange. I know I am allowing it, and it's in my helpful nature to do so. What I realize is that most "NFs" do not possess the ability to empower other people, which are words that I need to hear from time to time too.
 
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