Dating people with the ISTP personality type (Virtuosos) is a tango, complex and interesting, with alternating detachment and genuine care, some frank conversation, and plenty of spontaneity and enjoyment of the moment. Nothing can be forced in ISTP relationships, but so long as they are given the space they need to be themselves, they will gladly enjoy the comforts of a steady partner.
An Independent Heart
Early in dating, these individuals can be especially difficult to get to know. They live in the present, and they generally prefer partners who are also more focused on the practices of the present than the hypotheticals of the future or feelings of the past.
If a potential partner doesn’t measure up, these personalities may simply walk away. They also need a great deal of personal space, both physically and mentally, and any attempts to control them or forcibly schedule their activities only heightens the risk of their departure.
As their relationships progress, ISTPs’ partners tend to find that intimacy is one of the more accessible avenues to open emotional expression. It’s not that they don’t have feelings – they actually run quite deep and strong. They just conceal and protect those feelings partly because they are unsure of how to deal with and express them and partly because they tend to think people should deal with their emotional baggage privately.
The Subtle Art of Communication
People with the ISTP personality type often leave things unsaid that they think are mutually understood. Attempts to push understood arrangements, even the relationships themselves, into open discussion in order to secure commitment, especially early on, are often met with something close to panic or disdain. Nothing is so acutely terrifying to them as knowing that there’s no way out. Every day is a new day, and ISTPs review their obligations from moment to moment.
None of this should be taken too personally by their partners – it’s just how ISTPs’ minds work. People with this personality type live in the present, in a world of physical activities that engage the senses, and they just need to know that they have the freedom to be passionate about something one day and indifferent the next without being grilled on when they’re going to finish something or why they’ve “suddenly changed their mind.”
That said, being a little more expressive and a little more comfortable with the idea of consistency and follow-through can go a long way in rounding out ISTP personalities.