If you already know about INFP relationships, you’ve heard or read up on the Myers-Briggs personality model and the types it categorizes participants into, and you probably have some idea of what kind you are, or at least an approximation of your personality type. If you haven’t, well, go read up on it! Broadly, the model is an introspective list of questions designed to identify personality type, strengths and preferences. Based on the results, you can then go further and see how your personality type would be at work, with family, and of course, in love.
Here, we’re looking at the INFP personality type in romantic relationships. INFP stands for ‘Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling and Perceiving’ so INFP in relationships tend to be of a very specific kind. We’ll look at the INFP love language, the INFP partner and what they’re into, and INFP compatibility with other types of personalities. Read on to find out more about INFP relationships.
INFP Personality Traits
So, before we get into INFP relationships, let’s take a look at what the INFP personality type is all about. As we said, these people are deeply intuitive and trust their gut implicitly. While they’re usually pretty great at reading people and their needs, they’re not judgmental and are rather fatalistic, preferring to let things unfold as the universe wills it to.
- INFP personalities are empathetic and compassionate, concerned with universal suffering. They rarely hold biases, preferring instead to see the world as one whole.
- INFP types are fierce about their authenticity. Regardless of what society may expect, they will find it very difficult to be anything other than exactly who they are.
- Known as the mediators of the personality types, INFPs have a rich inner life, full of imagination and creativity, and they prefer to dwell in their minds than in the real world, often making them impractical and reluctant to face reality. Their emotional attunement in relationships is high, but practicality, not so much.
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What Is An INFP Relationship?
The term ‘hopeless romantic’ might have been made for an INFP in relationships. These are people who don’t just want a relationship or partnership, they’re all about soulmates or twin flames.
This makes an INFP partner work very hard to make a relationship work. In fact, they may sometimes end up giving too much and taking or expecting little in return. INFP relationships could mean they make excuses for a partner because they’re so convinced of the power of love to make things perfect.
An INFP partner is loyal to a fault. However, since they value their own space so much, they will be respectful of independence in a romantic relationship, too. INFP relationships often start with the INFP person having high ideals of what a partner should be, and slowly having to learn that to be human is to be imperfect, and that love is often messy and complex.
7 Things You Should Know About Being In A Relationship with an INFP
So, you’re in a relationship with an INFP partner. Well done, you! INFP dating can be a fun ride with a lot to learn. However, a little homework never hurts in life or in love. Here are some things you should know about INFP relationships.
1. They’re all about commitment
INFP relationships are all about being hopelessly devoted to a partner. Their loyalty knows no bounds and there’s very little they won’t do for the person they love. INFP dating is all about committing deeply and valuing what they have. Now, that’s not to say an INFP romantic match will never be into one-night stands or a fling, but they will always believe in true love no matter what shape it takes.
INFP people will go to pretty much any length to make a relationship work, that how deep their commitment runs. This is both a positive and negative quality because while it means you can nearly always count on an INFP partner, it also means they find it hard to let go of toxic relationships.
2. They tend to idealize love
INFP relationships tend to dwell on the roses and champagne version of love. This means INFP in relationships will always be looking at happily-ever-after, and love will always be the biggest thing in their lives.
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This does mean that INFP relationships are often in for some rude shocks when romance realities bite them. Love doesn’t always come wrapped as a gift basket with a pretty bow. Things get messy, fights happen and not every relationship is destined to last forever and be happy all the time.
3. They need a lot of alone time
Yes yes, we know we just spent a lot of time talking about how love looms largest in INFP relationships, and now we’re saying that you also need to leave them alone for large periods of time? Hey, people are complex and we contain multitudes, so yes, the INFP love language also includes lots of solitude.
INFP folk are deeply empathetic, as we’ve already discussed. Much of their life is spent soaking up emotions and feelings wherever they go from whoever surrounds them. While this makes them wonderful friends and listeners, it is also tremendously exhausting, which is they need alone time to recharge.
So, don’t be alarmed or offended if your INFP partner suddenly switches off or delves deeply into meditation, reading or takes off on a retreat. Be a supportive partner as far as possible and let them be. They will return to you in their own time.
4. They tend to fall in love fast
Believing in love at first sight is a major factor in INFP relationships. Since love is a guiding light in their lives, INFP personality types dive heart-first into love, even if they barely know the other person or people.
You’ll hear a lot of INFP people tell stories like, “I fell in love with the way his hands looked when he cupped them to light a cigarette.” Or “Her way of saying the word ‘gorgeous’ was my undoing.” They’ll never call it attraction or anything less than absolute love, because it never occurs to them that feelings so strong could be anything less than love.
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While they believe in the sanctity of love, INFP folk tend to throw the word around a lot, but not carelessly. But they mean it every time, as in they truly do believe that it is love – they’re not being trite when they say they absolutely LOVE their partner(s), their cat, that sandwich at a new restaurant and so on.
5. Their communication can be cryptic
INFP people tend to live in their own heads a lot. And their heads are filled with a lot of things. They’re not natural sharers, though they are good storytellers. They’re also not very good at articulating their own needs and desires in a relationship, since they’re more givers than takers.
In INFP relationships, a partner will need to earn their absolute trust if they want to really get to know their INFP romantic match. INFP people can suddenly disappear deep into their own thoughts, leaving their partner frustrated and quite literally left out. If you ask them if anything is wrong, or if you can help, they’re liable to make a vague response or shrug it off.
Mind you, they’re not deliberately shutting you out – it’s just that INFP people like to sort through their own thoughts before sharing them. They’re also very conscious of what and how much they share, fearing reproach or mockery, leading to communication issues in the relationship.
A lot of INFP dating is about them learning to share and open up, and their partner learning to give them their space, but also knowing when to be there when needed.
6. They need a partner who works on the relationship too
In INFP dating, you as a partner will need to take regular, long looks at yourself as an individual and as a romantic partner. INFP relationships compatibility does rely largely on both parties being willing to work on themselves and the relationship, together and apart. Using the psychology of love to work on a relationship is always important after all.
As we’ve said, INFP folk love love. And while they might find it hard to accept that love needs work, they will have no problems going out of their way to improve themselves and their relationship to make things better, and make things last. An INFP romantic match cannot have the INFP person doing all the work – that’s messed up no matter what kind of relationship you’re in.
7. You need to take their feelings seriously
As someone who is probably a closeted INFP personality type but is always pooh-poohing too much emotion (at least in public), remember that your INFP partner is often an expert at hiding their true feelings because they’ve likely learnt the hard way that showing too much feeling only ends up hurting them.
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Keep in mind that the entire INFP personality premise is built on deep emotion and intuition, so you need to take their feelings seriously. Even if you feel they’re not being particularly realistic or practical, never dismiss their feelings off hand. INFP folk process the world through the prism of their own feelings, so it’s important in INFP relationships for a partner to be respectful of this.
INFP relationships compatibility can be difficult if a partner is overly critical or makes them feel too ‘touchy-feely.’ Of course there are people who are uncomfortable with too much emotion, especially when it’s on display, but if you are in one of those INFP relationships with other types of personalities, it’s up to you to at least try and understand an INFP partner’s critical emotional needs, even if you don’t necessarily understand it. Believe us, they would do it for you, no matter how different you are from them.
INFP Relationship Compatibility With Other Personality Types
INFP relationships with other types certainly bears some thought and reflection, whether you’re thinking about how INFP-INFJ relationships or others. INFP folk tend to gravitate towards people who value emotion and authenticity in love, and also those who will prioritize their relationships, doing more than just the bare minimum in a relationship. Here are some types of personalities that INFP folk are compatible with, or not.
- INFP-INTP – Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking, Perceiving (INTP) and INFP will do pretty well in the compatibility department, since they’re rather similar. However, INTP tends to focus on logic, while INFP is guided by feelings. This makes for some deep and fascinatingly intellectual conversation, but could also bring about some romantic clashes.
- INFP-INFP – This makes for a deep emotional and spiritual relationship and the similarities can bring about great harmony. But, two INFP types may struggle to make practical decisions and face harsh realities, and also rarely challenge one another to be anything other than they are.
- INFP-INFJ – Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Judging (INFJ) also have many similarities with INFP, but the ‘judging’ element in their personality may be a turn-off for INFP people if it comes across too strongly. INFP-INFJ relationships have many sources of love and harmony, as long as they’re clear and respectful about their differences. INFP relationships are all about complete acceptance of a partner, so judgment, no matter how clear-sighted, may not go down well. INFP-INFJ relationships will certainly rarely be boring.
- INFP- ENFP – Those with an Extraverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Prospecting (ENFP) personality are all about embracing big ideas and acts. While an INFP will actively support these, they must be careful to ensure that their own desires and needs are not submerged beneath their ENFP partner’s more dynamic, outgoing self. INFP relationship compatibility is strong here, as long as the INFP partner speaks up for themselves.
- INFP-ISFP – If you have an Introverted, Observant, Feeling, and Prospecting (ISFP) personality, your INFP relationships could be a challenge. You tend to embrace the moment and rarely live in your head, which is exactly what INFP people do. However, the two of you are both Introverted Feelers, so you’ll still have a connection and there’s much you can learn from each other.
- INFP-INTJ – So you’re all about that Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking, Judging (INTJ) personality. Your INFP relationships will be interesting since you’re all about what makes sense, and they’re all about what works best for people. Your cool logic and their extreme intuition can work magic together, but you’ll be in for some battles, too.
- INFP-ENTP – As an Extraverted, Intuitive, Thinking, and Prospecting (ENTP) personality type, you’re going to often be way more energetic and enthusiastic than your INFP partner. INFP folk, be sure to set healthy relationship boundaries and be clear about when you need quiet, contemplative time for yourself.
- INFP-ENFJ – An Extraverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Judging (ENFJ) personality is warm and honest and loves helping others, making them almost perfectly compatible in INFP relationships. This will be a values-based relationship where harmony is highly prized. Be sure to air out any grievances you have in healthy ways, so you’re not letting resentment simmer under the garb of harmony.
- INFP-ISTP – An Introverted, Sensing, Thinking, Perceiving (ISTP) type is solid, real, and spontaneous. This is more or less the polar opposite of the INFP type despite the common ‘perceiving’ in the type. On the plus side, an INFP type will brighten an ISTP’s rather melancholy mind and make them a little more daring. On the downside, their communication will be tough since INFP types are all about abstract ideas and theories and ISTP talks in concrete steps and flowcharts. But hey, opposites do attract.
- INFP-ISFJ – Those with an Introverted, Observant, Feeling, and Judging (ISFJ) personality like things as they are and cherish tradition. INFP folk, on the other hand, are deeply idealistic and always look to give dusty, established institutions a good old overhaul. This can be a major bone of contention between them. However, if they can work together, the ISFJ type can lend a practical hand to INFP’s dreamy, giant ideas and actually bring them to fruition. What’s more romantic than changing the world together!
- INFP-ESFP – Extraverted, Observant, Feeling, and Prospecting (ESFP) people are usually grounded and full of fun. Given that INFP folk are often serious-minded (though they do have a sense of humor), and always interested with the abstract and the idealistic, there could be challenges here. A warm friendship based on their differences is largely possible, but a romantic attachment here will need a lot of work.
- INFP-ENTJ – If an INFP is in a relationship with an Extraverted, Intuitive, Thinking, and Judging (ENTJ) personality type, there are some obstacles to overcome. ENTJ people are decisive, quick-thinking and generally chatty and outgoing. Now, it’s great for the more introverted INFP partner to have someone who can keep the conversation going, but they need to make sure they get their say as well. This is an introverted-extroverted relationship. Conversation will flow easily in this pair, though the ENTJ’s more detail-oriented approach to life may clash with the INFP’s conceptual, abstract thoughts.
- INFP-ISTJ – The introversion, sensing, thinking, judging (ISTJ) personality type is often thought to be the most common of the Myers-Briggs type. This is one of the most challenging partners for INFP relationships, due to their stolid personality and stubborn lack of imagination. So, an INFP person happily sharing their dreams and visions could be met with blank stares and lack of comprehension.
- INFP-ESTP – The Extraverted, Observant, Thinking, and Prospecting (ESTP) personality is another polar opposite to the INFP type. ESTPs prefer to see things as they are, rather than as they could be. While they do care about the world around them, it’s not the heartfelt empathy of the INFP folk. They would rather help out from a sense of duty and do something practical than because their entire value system depends on saving the world as much as possible.
- INFP-ESTJ – The Extraverted, Observant, Thinking, and Judging (ESTJ) personality type is blunt and honest about their feelings and opinions. Since an INFP person is easily bruised by harsh truths about marriage, love and most other things, this is going to be a tough relationship for sure. A lot of what the INFP partner says could be brushed off with a ‘get your head out of the clouds’, which will lead to hurt and resentment on both sides.
- INFP-ESFJ – The Extraverted, Observant, Feeling, and Judging (ESFJ) folk are organized, orderly and like things just so. This includes their feelings and thoughts, too. The INFP type prefers things a little more flexible and could end up feelings smothered by an ESFJ partner’s need for structure in all things at all times. On the other hand, the ESFJ partner could feel resentful and confused by the INFP counterpart’s seemingly vague and messy life. A challenging relationship for sure.
INFP relationships need work, as do all relationships we care about and want to preserve. Their sensitive, idealistic natures are always seeking the highest, purest form of love, and they could end up being disappointed when reality does not match up. They need a lot of reassurance and care, but they also give everything of themselves to a relationship. Whether you’re an INFP type yourself, or in love with one, we wish you all the luck in the world.