INTP Relationships

When it comes to romantic relationships, INTPs have an interesting mixture of traits that often pleasantly surprise their partners. People with this personality type are always full of ideas, but they have few opportunities to explore their more romantic notions. As with any of their theories, INTPs love sharing with others, and in finally meeting someone where romantic thoughts are appropriate, they show themselves to be excited, enthusiastic, and even playful, flirting with word-play and intellectual games.

None of this is to say that these relationships come easily to INTPs – they are shy and withdrawn individuals, and getting out and meeting new people, risking rejection and making themselves the center of attention in emotionally delicate situations are far from being their strengths. It is more likely that INTP personalities will leave a trail of breadcrumbs for a potential partner, allowing them to make the first move and committing to their partner as an act of reciprocation rather than bravado.

Marry! A Good Wife Makes Happiness, A Bad One, Philosophy

From the start, INTPs take their relationships seriously – their imagination and vision, and the challenge of getting to know new people, make them all too aware of how important it is that they’re involved with someone, and they will prove themselves surprisingly loyal. Even early in the dating phase, INTPs are unusually direct and honest, doing their best to express their mindset and create mutual understanding, believing that this shared knowledge will help to minimize misunderstandings and avoid conflict.

As their relationships progress, INTPs’ daily needs prove remarkably simple. Gifts, surprises, complex social plans and date nights are all fairly unimportant to people with the INTP personality type, but this is also one of their chiefest weaknesses – their partner may very much need these things, and it won’t even occur to INTPs to plan them out. For all their analysis and attempts at mutual understanding, INTPs are notoriously bad at picking up on others’ emotional needs.

INTP romantic relationships
When it comes to conflict, there is a certain willful ignorance for INTPs, and they often set aside their partners’ feelings, and their own, for far too long.

When these conflicts do arise and are inescapable, INTPs will do their best to find a logical solution. But this hardly helps if the problem is logic itself, that INTP personalities aren’t meeting their partners’ emotional needs. INTPs should keep this in mind, and try to meet their partners halfway by communicating on an emotional level – if they make this effort, understanding partners will recognize and appreciate the gesture, clumsy though it may be. After all, they need to afford INTPs the same benefit, and meet them halfway with logic and simplicity as well.

Beware the Barrenness of a Busy Life

All this material asceticism and conflict avoidance support one primary goal – to free up mental resources for more important things. INTPs’ creative, vivid imagination make for a surprisingly enthusiastic, passionate, and romantic partner. While INTPs may prioritize their inner world too much, imagining interesting and exciting intimate situations that are never expressed to their partners, they also use this rich inner world to achieve as much as possible in intimacy – they rarely want for ideas.

Physically, intellectually and with a little effort emotionally, INTP relationships are rich and rewarding connections. Partners who share the Intuitive (N) trait are usually best, along with one or two opposite traits to create variety and balance, but so long as INTPs remember that they are with people who have their own, independent wants and needs, and so long as their partners remember the same of their INTPs, these are long-lasting and satisfying relationships.

Dianne
4 years ago
I'm an INTP in a relationship with an ISTP. It's very relaxing being with someone who loves me totally but also shares my strong need for autonomy. And who is also introverted. I can't imagine being in a relationship with an extrovert and find it a bit astounding that all the introverted types I've checked out on your site recommend introverts partner up with extroverts. Most of my introverted friends are partnered very happily with fellow introverts. And the INTP/ISTP thing works because he likes the way my mind works in nutting out ideas in ways he hasn't thought of and I love the way he can mentally (or actually) pull any machine apart and can tell me how it works. He has all the practical knowledge and INTPs just love expertise, whatever the area.
Lillianne
5 years ago
This seems quite accurate; my best friend often says I am a very complicated person, although all of my actions are very logical, simple and honest. I never lie, I don't even hide something away. But all that honesty tends to make the situations much more complicated than it should be. People don't reply with statements when I present my own: they mix feelings and judgments into their replies. And about the 'linking' some things entirely different to others - yes! So right!
Kitty
5 years ago
This is accurate, almost to a fault. So much so in fact that I shared this site with my boyfriend! What was eye-opening for me was that many of the things he's complained about in our relationship are so closely tied to these traits... Interestingly though he's an INTJ and we're very happy together!
Hunter
5 years ago
I'm an INTP, and while I find a lot of your information useful, I feel the need to clarify a common belief which is echoed here. INTPs are the Kalashnikov (AK-47) of the relationship realm; meaning, we're so often called low maintenance that people think we require no maintenance. While that is largely true outside of a relationship, in a relationship it isn't. Personally, I don't care about most normal signs of affection, but they show my partner cares. For example: you really love your new car, so you wash it every day. Does it need it? No, but you do it anyway. And nobody would doubt that you love it. But if you only do required maintenance, it won't seem like anything special. And if you do the bare minimum? Let's just say you shouldn't do that with cars or people. So while you can get away with not giving much to an INTP, you'll wear them out very quickly. Because personally, I put a lot into my relationship but it feels wrong to ask them to do more when I feel like they aren't doing much. And maybe this is all just me personally and regular INTPs don't feel like this.
Shweta
5 years ago
Incidentally i agree!! In our own (maybe not so emotional sense) we are givers, and when feelings/actions go un-noticed/ or un-reciprocated, we are bound to feel a void only a few of us understand! While we're at it, i'd also like to add that rather than saying that we dislike emotional involvement, one might say we look at emotional situations with a mixed bag of intuition and logic. Personally, ignoring emotions is not first nature to me!
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