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Discussion Starter #1
I've heard a lot of opposing views about ISFJ + INTP relationships but I haven't heard much from ISFJ's currently in those relationships/marriages.

So, to ISFJ's who have made it work with an INTP:

What do you think makes the relationship work so well? What sort of issues have you encountered? How do you resolve problems? How do you control being emotionally needy? Do you have an outlet for your emotions? Do you live together well?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Well, I’ll start! INTP's feel free to contribute- I sense there are more INTP's on this site than ISFJ's. Is that a part of our personality? Probably, I've been coming to this site for a while without posting anything :)

What do you think makes the relationship work so well?
We have both studied our personalities a lot. I think knowing how we differ, how we are similar and what our weaknesses are has been very helpful. Sometimes when I’m having a hard time understanding him I like to go on to websites and read about INTP’s just to remind myself that we are very different and something that means something to me can mean nothing to him. Communicating to each other what is important to us has been really helpful.
We both realize if it is going to work, we both need to work at recognizing and appreciate each other for who we are. It’s pointless to try to change each other- we both like who we are now. But we can both make an effort without changing who we are.
I read somewhere that an ISFJ and INTP relationship will never work. Mostly because the ISFJ will never recognize what the INTP does for the ISFJ. While I can appreciate that sentiment and see where it might derive from, I believe that if both parties make an effort- it is possible to have a fully functioning and well developed ISFJ/INTP relationship. I think for this kind of relationship to work, both partners have to be mature and have common interests beyond their personalities. For example: we both love to travel and we are great travel partners.

What sort of issues have you encountered?
Of course the emotions have been a huge obstacle. Sometimes I feel unappreciated, I feel neglected, or that he just doesn’t get me, or I try harder than he does. The latter I’ve been feeling less and less. The more I read about INTPs the more I realize that the things he does for me take a great deal of effort for him. The process of thinking to buy flowers, buying the flowers, and then producing flowers at appropriate time is actually a really hard task for an INTP. The same goes for dates, vacations, etc. As an ISFJ I like little surprises and I like them to happen all the time! I am still trying to learn to appreciate the “little things” as “big things” for him and for us. He gets really boyishly proud of himself when he does something cute for me or when he can solve one of my problems. That’s what I’ve come to appreciate. It’s not going to happen all the time, but when it really matters, he’s there (like when there is no milk for breakfast in the fridge and it’s 11:55 pm and the store across the street closes at midnight).
Chick flicks are a HUGE issue for me! I constantly have to remind myself that they are movies  things aren’t always perfect 100 percent of the time in real life and you never know your own ending. Sometimes I like to nudge him and say “that was really cute” during a movie, in the hopes that he’ll do something like that for me. But just having a boyfriend who will watch a chick flick with me is nice, and in turn sometimes I watch movies that have violence in them just so we can spend the time together.

How do you resolve problems?
As an ISFJ I have a lot of patience. Patience is always helpful when dealing with an INTP. Communication is also important. I used to think I was excellent at expressing my feelings. Then when I started a long term relationship I realized I sort of suck at it. I express my thoughts really eloquently in my head but when it comes to getting words out in the heat of the moment I’m a complete mess. I do need to work better at not exploding in a fit of emotion and depression after a night out (I don’t know if this is a common ISFJ thing…) It’s better to get things that I’ve been thinking about out in the open before they explode without warning. I have a feeling this is easier the longer the relationship and the more comfortable you feel. I’m still working on this.

How do you control being emotionally needy?
It’s something I have to be really aware of. Both being Introverted and needing our alone time has been helpful- just having him in the same room makes me feel like I’m getting some “time” with him even if we aren’t talking or doing the same thing.
I obviously haven’t mastered it. But I have great friends to bounce my emotions off of and an INTP who will listen even if he can’t reciprocate my gush of emotions.

Do you have an outlet for your emotions?
I keep a private journal.

Do you live together well?
The ISFJ in me wants everything done right and done now. The INTP in him wants to put it off until later, or doesn’t “see” it therefore it doesn’t bother him. I’ve found that if I ask him to do something and I make it easy to do, he will do it. Example: Please throw your laundry in the basket. Instead of having a laundry bag that you have to open and close or a basket with a top on it- having a bin with no lid allows for easy access and dunk shots.
I think one of the best thing about INTPs dating an ISFJ is that they are very VERY laid back and we are very much not. It’s a great balance. He loosens me up and I keep him down to earth. After all, I can’t be uptight all the time, and he has to pay his bills .
 

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He loosens me up and I keep him down to earth. After all, I can’t be uptight all the time, and he has to pay his bills .
Haha, I'm married to an ENFP and this is exactly how I describe our relationship too. That's totally off topic but I thought it was interesting. I do think the key in these so-called difficult relationships is to remember that differences can complement each other and not necessarily be dreadful barriers to communication.
 

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I've been married to an ISFJ for 4 years now and it's not easy. Communication is tough. I'm the big picture guy and she gets hung up on all the details. Anything that I get fascinated she sees as an obsession. She's right, but thinks its unhealthy, whereas I see it as essential to my sanity. Up to this point she has approached our personality differences as a 'Love Language' problem, which covers some of it, however we've got much work to do trying to understand the other's point of view. I see it as a personal growth issue.

After reading up on INTP weaknesses I believe I have fallen into certain traps which inhibit my ability to empathize with her. Also, I've been a bit too isolated and that's putting stress on our relationship. We have to avoid certain subjects or conversation goes absolutely nowhere. I think my solution is to balance myself a bit more by really opening up my EI function and stop being such a narcissistic A-hole. :dry:

On the positive side, We're both very committed to each other and continually trying to improve communication. Oddly enough I tend to be the more vulnerable one. It's not really odd, but I can express my feelings easier, which merely seems odd to me, since she's the one with a a big F in her profile.:wink:
 

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dont ruin ur life

i just got married this isfj female. big mistake. worse, i got a kid.

my issues:

1) she always nags. ALWAYS, unstoppedly. hot weather, some construction work near our house, me being messy, baby crying... nagging NEVER EVER stops.

2) obsession on being clean. I dont know if anyone else gets this, but this drive for hygiene makes me crazy. we got all sorts of house cleaners, bleaches, and they get used every day. I explain to her, that the real issue for the baby is NOT germs of microbes, but Its's the everyday chemicls! after all our bodies can fight with the germs, but cannot dispose of chemicals, right? proven? yes. but nope. there is NO WAY she sill make sense out of this.

if something smells good and makes bubbles, that's clean! period.

3) she will NEVER talk about and communicate her thoughts (or feelings). never ever. she'll always keep it to herself. you cant tell how reticent she can be. if she would cheat on you, her revealing this and your probability of finding it out from her manners is 0% chance. ZERO. will never ever know.

regarding her thoughts and feelings, she'll never tell them too and what you get is always IRRATIONAL sulks. you say ok, and ask and she never tells and expects you to know!! how can I, how will I if you wont tell me goddimt????

4) no depth in speech and thought (at least manifested). she will watch celebrity news all day and never care about deeper issues (science, working of the universe etc.) sometimes she surprises me on this though, but once a year at most.

guys, beware... I may have ruined my life already, so if there's anyone reading this please, maybe I could be of some use. do not ever get involved in relations ship with XSFX types.

she could be a good mother, but that's all. now someone you'd like to marry. and i even regret I have this cutest 8 months baby girl...

ever ever...

(sorry for my bed engrish and typos. been drinking and trying to get some cortex cells hoping to get them killed to forget and get out of this misery lately.... )

i began to hate this life...
 

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Well, I don't really have any substantial romantic experiences with INTPs, but I do have two very deep friendships with two INTP males (I am a female). While we don't always "get along" on the surface (we can both be sarcastic and stubborn), I feel that for the most part we bring out each others' good qualities. For example, compassion in the ISFJ and analytical skills in the INTP.
The one INTP who I tried to pursue (not too seriously) got sick of me and my intimacy issues. Basically, I wanted a relationship but didn't want to do all the work for it (do other ISFJs have this problem - being emotionally unavailable and needy at the same time? What a paradox.)
 

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Also, I'm not 100% sure about my type (I've also considered INFJ and ISFP), so take what I say with a grain of salt...
 

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Sorry, I know this is an older thread. I just thought I would chime in for anyone reading.

I'm an ISFJ, my boyfriend is an INTP. We really love and adore each other. I have read a lot of depressing posts about this combo, however we've managed to make it work. A lot of our friends compare us to Dexter and Emma (Glee)...they say it's a cute coupling, but it's EXTREMELY STRANGE (plus I'm sure Dexter is an INTJ).

I am almost positive we have two HUGE advantages:
1. He comes from a very female-feeler dominated family. This has taught him how to emotionally connect. He and I can talk for hours about feelings, and not once does he act bored or disinterested. He actually really enjoys how the mind works, and we bounce ideas off each other all the time.
2. I'm from a family dominated with INT males. I understand and can respect their need to withdraw. I also understand they aren't eloquent and I'm not getting a knight in shining armor--which I don't mind because charming men make my skin crawl. I enjoy my socially awkward, blunt boyfriend.


I adore him. He is brilliant, can fix absolutely anything I send his way (I break stuff a lot), and is always there for me in practical matters. If I was in need, he would be the first one there to help me. He has been really blessed to find a job that requires him to apply his brilliant mind, so he is usually always in a good mood. He is extremely observant. His bluntness, and VERY dark sense of humor, has opened me up to sharing how I truly feel about things--which is rare because I don't like people to think things bother me.

He loves that I take care of him in practical matters, he loves that I take the time to make him feel important. He says I'm always there for him with an ear to listen. One of the biggest things that drew him to me was that I'm very motivated and work so hard to keep a great job and stable home. He was so happy not to be with a deadbeat. He does not want to be with someone that is looking to be taken care of. He said, out of anyone he has ever met, opening up to me and being emotional is a rare occurrence, but he managed to tell me everything within a month of knowing me. He said he has never trusted someone so much.

We did have a rocky start though. My feelings were frequently easily hurt by some of his comments, but after talking to him and realizing he doesn't have a hidden agenda or he wasn't being passive aggressive, I've just learned to shrug if off when he says something offbeat, or laugh with him:

I began to back away from our relationship because I FREQUENTLY heard "you are the most beautiful girl I have ever seen", followed up with the constant need for sex. I actually thought he was messing with my head (most ISFJs think they are ugly, not sure why). This made me not want to have sex because I was very very very self-conscious after hearing him talk about my looks all day. So this was just a frustrating cycle for both of us, as he was giving me a genuine compliment and was confused when I was giving him the cold shoulder. I actually ended up confronting him...that's how much I heard it. He kept telling me that I was a supermodel girlfriend, and I finally said, "are you fucking making fun of me? because that's not nice." We discussed it and he was so confused that something as genuine as a compliment about my looks could be taken so different. We actually found something about ISFJ's having an extreme dislike of compliments on personal appearances, and that helped him understand.

Another example of miscommunication was, right after an argument about some guy at work having a crush on me, we had this conversation:

Me: Ugh I wish I didn't have to wear makeup
Him: Don't wear it then. At least you wouldn't get hit on.

I guess my guy can't move from one conversation to another, as his mind must have been on the guy liking me at work. I thought we had been over and done with that conversation. But I thought about it for MONTHS. I wouldn't be seen without makeup. Finally, one night, he said "god why do you wear this all the time?" and it was pretty much a huge cryfest about the comment he made. He was shocked, didn't realize what he had said because his mind was somewhere else at the time. He admitted to being insecure and terrified of someone else taking me away from him, but he never ever intended to say that.

I've just learned to call him out on his ridiculous statements, or laugh at him, or (the easiest) ignore his lack of eloquence.

We have a couple other minor bumps in our relationship. We both have trouble expressing our needs. And when we do it usually ends up in a HUGE blowup. I think we have some underlying issues that are uncommon though and really don't have anything to do with our personality types. I did, however, get hurt anytime he did want alone time. It bothered me so much that he didn't want to be near me when he had time off from work. I've just learned to accept it and do my own thing, and I'm actually so much happier I take time for myself and my interests. It makes me a more well rounded individual, and it gives me substance to discuss with him. He does, HOWEVER, take me out every single Saturday. We spend the entire day together, which is pretty amazing and I love that he puts that effort into it. (He takes me out of little dates too during the week, but he has given me all of Saturday). I has told me over and over, "I would never do this for anyone else, but I love you and I know its important for you to connect with me." I have the misfortune of knowing his exes, and I know for a fact he never took them out anywhere. It's just not something that interests him.



I love him, and I could see where the two types would clash like oil to water. I think that if you try hard enough, you can make anything work.
 

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Well im with a INTP...But he thinks hes an INXP with how he scores. We have our ups and downs...about 3 times a week. We have pretty good communication till i think hes saying something with an additude. Then i defend myself then it turns into a fight. usually we fight about doing things differently.I want things to be fair and he wants to do things rationally.We both are great listeners and we're both super supportive of each other.He does everything for me when im at work (hes at home for the time being..till work is found) He's very clean, more so cleaner than me.Hes very affectionate.loving and always wants me around.hes always considers my feelings.Now that we are learning each other more hes more aware of how to put things to me and Im constantly reminding myself that hes not out to attack my emotions.Hes very sexual but so am I...We are definitely evenly matched in bed.For him hes always thinking of math or science,telling me things on his mind.I enjoying learning about what he has to say...Even though he wants my opinion on certain topics...But im just taking it in. Hes very self sacrificing.If i dont agree with something he'll look for the best quickest solution and just go with what I say to solve it.We both are very similar, but we do things different ways....but get the same results. We're on our second attempt to date. The first time was 6 months and I never opened up to him..But this time is different and hes the greatest boyfriend i could ever ask for and we both agree we are soulmates...or twin flames as he says :)
 

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The ISFJ in me wants everything done right and done now. The INTP in him wants to put it off until later, or doesn’t “see” it therefore it doesn’t bother him. I’ve found that if I ask him to do something and I make it easy to do, he will do it. Example: Please throw your laundry in the basket. Instead of having a laundry bag that you have to open and close or a basket with a top on it- having a bin with no lid allows for easy access and dunk shots.
XD that may be any man, my ISTJ has the same problem.
 

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Hmmmm I'm ISFJ and He INTP .... oh yeaaaah all you wrote is true .... and yes - other ISFJ also " do need to work better at not exploding in a fit of emotion and depression after a night out" .... :)
 

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Well, I’ll start! INTP's feel free to contribute- I sense there are more INTP's on this site than ISFJ's. Is that a part of our personality? Probably, I've been coming to this site for a while without posting anything :)

What do you think makes the relationship work so well?
We have both studied our personalities a lot. I think knowing how we differ, how we are similar and what our weaknesses are has been very helpful. Sometimes when I’m having a hard time understanding him I like to go on to websites and read about INTP’s just to remind myself that we are very different and something that means something to me can mean nothing to him. Communicating to each other what is important to us has been really helpful.
We both realize if it is going to work, we both need to work at recognizing and appreciate each other for who we are. It’s pointless to try to change each other- we both like who we are now. But we can both make an effort without changing who we are.
I read somewhere that an ISFJ and INTP relationship will never work. Mostly because the ISFJ will never recognize what the INTP does for the ISFJ. While I can appreciate that sentiment and see where it might derive from, I believe that if both parties make an effort- it is possible to have a fully functioning and well developed ISFJ/INTP relationship. I think for this kind of relationship to work, both partners have to be mature and have common interests beyond their personalities. For example: we both love to travel and we are great travel partners.

What sort of issues have you encountered?
Of course the emotions have been a huge obstacle. Sometimes I feel unappreciated, I feel neglected, or that he just doesn’t get me, or I try harder than he does. The latter I’ve been feeling less and less. The more I read about INTPs the more I realize that the things he does for me take a great deal of effort for him. The process of thinking to buy flowers, buying the flowers, and then producing flowers at appropriate time is actually a really hard task for an INTP. The same goes for dates, vacations, etc. As an ISFJ I like little surprises and I like them to happen all the time! I am still trying to learn to appreciate the “little things” as “big things” for him and for us. He gets really boyishly proud of himself when he does something cute for me or when he can solve one of my problems. That’s what I’ve come to appreciate. It’s not going to happen all the time, but when it really matters, he’s there (like when there is no milk for breakfast in the fridge and it’s 11:55 pm and the store across the street closes at midnight).
Chick flicks are a HUGE issue for me! I constantly have to remind myself that they are movies  things aren’t always perfect 100 percent of the time in real life and you never know your own ending. Sometimes I like to nudge him and say “that was really cute” during a movie, in the hopes that he’ll do something like that for me. But just having a boyfriend who will watch a chick flick with me is nice, and in turn sometimes I watch movies that have violence in them just so we can spend the time together.

How do you resolve problems?
As an ISFJ I have a lot of patience. Patience is always helpful when dealing with an INTP. Communication is also important. I used to think I was excellent at expressing my feelings. Then when I started a long term relationship I realized I sort of suck at it. I express my thoughts really eloquently in my head but when it comes to getting words out in the heat of the moment I’m a complete mess. I do need to work better at not exploding in a fit of emotion and depression after a night out (I don’t know if this is a common ISFJ thing…) It’s better to get things that I’ve been thinking about out in the open before they explode without warning. I have a feeling this is easier the longer the relationship and the more comfortable you feel. I’m still working on this.

How do you control being emotionally needy?
It’s something I have to be really aware of. Both being Introverted and needing our alone time has been helpful- just having him in the same room makes me feel like I’m getting some “time” with him even if we aren’t talking or doing the same thing.
I obviously haven’t mastered it. But I have great friends to bounce my emotions off of and an INTP who will listen even if he can’t reciprocate my gush of emotions.

Do you have an outlet for your emotions?
I keep a private journal.

Do you live together well?
The ISFJ in me wants everything done right and done now. The INTP in him wants to put it off until later, or doesn’t “see” it therefore it doesn’t bother him. I’ve found that if I ask him to do something and I make it easy to do, he will do it. Example: Please throw your laundry in the basket. Instead of having a laundry bag that you have to open and close or a basket with a top on it- having a bin with no lid allows for easy access and dunk shots.
I think one of the best thing about INTPs dating an ISFJ is that they are very VERY laid back and we are very much not. It’s a great balance. He loosens me up and I keep him down to earth. After all, I can’t be uptight all the time, and he has to pay his bills .
This was cute. I recently thought of something, thinking this mix of temperaments (NTs with SJs) could actually be quite complementary given both types are willing to learn, grow, accept, and respect each other. It will be like the traditionalists paired up with opportunists. Both can gain a lot from being with one another. But I would say that it probably would be best if both sides had friends who were nearly the same temperament, just so they can each have an outlet for their debates or emotions if needed.

On another note, has anybody watched "Richman Poorwoman", a japanese drama that came out recently? I strongly suspect the lead lady is an isfj and her love interest is an *ntp (either entp or intp). The story of their love is really good and it kind of brings up the issues that people are talking about in this thread. It got quite famous because of the interesting chemistry between the two leads, so I highly recommend people to check it out! PM if you want a link to watch it!

 

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To the guy who said to never date SF types, honestly, shut the hell up, lol. Sensing doesn't mean we have no depth. Some Sensors don't, but some do. In fact, I refuse to date a man with no depth to his mentality. Also, we don't all act the same way as that one person. Don't equate every type to your /one/ bad experience and assume everybody is the same... and I thought you were the Thinker, ha!
 

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I dated an INTP for 2+ years and it was pretty sweet for the most part. A lot of mind melding and great conversations, and we were really close friends. I was the weak link, in that I always reverted back to guilt and a religious upbringing so it didn't end up working out but even now we are pretty good friends.
 

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Sorry, I know this is an older thread. I just thought I would chime in for anyone reading.

I'm an ISFJ, my boyfriend is an INTP. We really love and adore each other. I have read a lot of depressing posts about this combo, however we've managed to make it work. A lot of our friends compare us to Dexter and Emma (Glee)...they say it's a cute coupling, but it's EXTREMELY STRANGE (plus I'm sure Dexter is an INTJ).

I am almost positive we have two HUGE advantages:
1. He comes from a very female-feeler dominated family. This has taught him how to emotionally connect. He and I can talk for hours about feelings, and not once does he act bored or disinterested. He actually really enjoys how the mind works, and we bounce ideas off each other all the time.
2. I'm from a family dominated with INT males. I understand and can respect their need to withdraw. I also understand they aren't eloquent and I'm not getting a knight in shining armor--which I don't mind because charming men make my skin crawl. I enjoy my socially awkward, blunt boyfriend.


I adore him. He is brilliant, can fix absolutely anything I send his way (I break stuff a lot), and is always there for me in practical matters. If I was in need, he would be the first one there to help me. He has been really blessed to find a job that requires him to apply his brilliant mind, so he is usually always in a good mood. He is extremely observant. His bluntness, and VERY dark sense of humor, has opened me up to sharing how I truly feel about things--which is rare because I don't like people to think things bother me.

He loves that I take care of him in practical matters, he loves that I take the time to make him feel important. He says I'm always there for him with an ear to listen. One of the biggest things that drew him to me was that I'm very motivated and work so hard to keep a great job and stable home. He was so happy not to be with a deadbeat. He does not want to be with someone that is looking to be taken care of. He said, out of anyone he has ever met, opening up to me and being emotional is a rare occurrence, but he managed to tell me everything within a month of knowing me. He said he has never trusted someone so much.

We did have a rocky start though. My feelings were frequently easily hurt by some of his comments, but after talking to him and realizing he doesn't have a hidden agenda or he wasn't being passive aggressive, I've just learned to shrug if off when he says something offbeat, or laugh with him:

I began to back away from our relationship because I FREQUENTLY heard "you are the most beautiful girl I have ever seen", followed up with the constant need for sex. I actually thought he was messing with my head (most ISFJs think they are ugly, not sure why). This made me not want to have sex because I was very very very self-conscious after hearing him talk about my looks all day. So this was just a frustrating cycle for both of us, as he was giving me a genuine compliment and was confused when I was giving him the cold shoulder. I actually ended up confronting him...that's how much I heard it. He kept telling me that I was a supermodel girlfriend, and I finally said, "are you fucking making fun of me? because that's not nice." We discussed it and he was so confused that something as genuine as a compliment about my looks could be taken so different. We actually found something about ISFJ's having an extreme dislike of compliments on personal appearances, and that helped him understand.

Another example of miscommunication was, right after an argument about some guy at work having a crush on me, we had this conversation:

Me: Ugh I wish I didn't have to wear makeup
Him: Don't wear it then. At least you wouldn't get hit on.

I guess my guy can't move from one conversation to another, as his mind must have been on the guy liking me at work. I thought we had been over and done with that conversation. But I thought about it for MONTHS. I wouldn't be seen without makeup. Finally, one night, he said "god why do you wear this all the time?" and it was pretty much a huge cryfest about the comment he made. He was shocked, didn't realize what he had said because his mind was somewhere else at the time. He admitted to being insecure and terrified of someone else taking me away from him, but he never ever intended to say that.

I've just learned to call him out on his ridiculous statements, or laugh at him, or (the easiest) ignore his lack of eloquence.

We have a couple other minor bumps in our relationship. We both have trouble expressing our needs. And when we do it usually ends up in a HUGE blowup. I think we have some underlying issues that are uncommon though and really don't have anything to do with our personality types. I did, however, get hurt anytime he did want alone time. It bothered me so much that he didn't want to be near me when he had time off from work. I've just learned to accept it and do my own thing, and I'm actually so much happier I take time for myself and my interests. It makes me a more well rounded individual, and it gives me substance to discuss with him. He does, HOWEVER, take me out every single Saturday. We spend the entire day together, which is pretty amazing and I love that he puts that effort into it. (He takes me out of little dates too during the week, but he has given me all of Saturday). I has told me over and over, "I would never do this for anyone else, but I love you and I know its important for you to connect with me." I have the misfortune of knowing his exes, and I know for a fact he never took them out anywhere. It's just not something that interests him.



I love him, and I could see where the two types would clash like oil to water. I think that if you try hard enough, you can make anything work.
So true to all this post lol, my gf is ISFJ.
 

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I'm an INFJ girl, but I can relate to a lot of this. I'm friends with an INTP guy, and this thread is pretty similar to how we interact.
 
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