One of the most well-researched and understandable personality inventories is the Myers-Briggs Type Inventory, the MBTI. Some people, especially rational and logical types like the INTJ, might scoff at the MBTI and compare it to those social media quizzes that tell you what kind of onion you are. However, the MBTI is backed with solid science and is an excellent descriptor of personality. Today, we’re going to discuss INFP INTJ relationship compatibility. Can two people as different as the Idealist and the Mastermind get along in a romantic relationship? Is an INFP INTJ relationship viable?
INFP: The Idealist
The first party in an INFP INTJ relationship is the INFP, sometimes known as the Idealist, the Mediator, or the Empath. INFP’s are defined by Myers-Briggs as being introverted, intuitive, feeling, and perceiving. This means they tend to recharge their energy away from others, rely more on intuition than on sensorium, and use emotion when making decisions. INFP’s tend to be reserved, idealistic, and adaptable. They’re open-minded and diplomatic, curious about other people’s lives, and reluctant to judge others based on their lifestyle. Famous INFP’s include Johnny Depp, Bill Watterson, and Lenny Kravitz.
So what is an INFP like in person? These personalities tend to be reserved at first. INFP’s don’t always like attention (even though they are often drawn to the performing arts), and they often find large groups of people exhausting. They are intuitive, big-picture thinkers who enjoy thinking about big ideas. One of the hallmark traits of an INFP is that they are very diplomatic. INFP’s are tuned in to the emotions of others and will take pains not to offend or irritate those around them. Unfortunately, INFP’s are vulnerable to negative moods; exposure to angry, mean, or just plain unhappy people can cause INFP personalities to become sullen as they mirror those emotions.
They may seem quiet and unassuming on the outside, but INFP’s are very idealistic and empathetic on the inside. They have ideas about how the world should be and often value justice, fairness, and compassion. These personality traits frequently lead the INFP into careers in the helping professions: they make great physical therapists, rehab workers, counselors, and mediators. They are also dreamers and thinkers, and many INFP’s seek to find self-expression through art or performing art. This diverse personality type feels at home painting a landscape, counseling a client, or volunteering at a homeless shelter. INFP personalities also make excellent philosophers: Albert Camus and Soren Kierkegaard, two of the most important philosophers from recent times, are INFP’s.
INFP is good at relationships. Despite being introverted and private, once an INFP has opened up to you, you will find them to be warm, loving, sensitive, and appreciative. Their diplomatic and caring nature makes them excellent partners. Still, it can sometimes backfire, as INFP has a strong dislike of conflict that can sometimes drive them to avoidant or even self-destructive behaviors. As the nickname “the Idealist” would imply, INFP’s have a strong idealistic streak that often colors their worldview. That being said, as with any idealist, INFP can find themselves bitter and disappointed when reality fails to live up to their expectations.
Their idealistic streak makes INFP a natural romantic. They strongly prefer authentic relationships and seek a deep, soul-mate kind of connection. INFP’s do not like fake people or superficial relationships, and they place far less value on things like status, possessions, and money than other MBTI types. Some people want the diamond rings and the mega bling, but INFP’s value spending time together more than any material trinket, and they especially like warm, loving chats with their partners. While this might not seem like it would work with the more emotionally cold INTJ, both value authenticity and commitment, which makes an INFP INTJ relationship very viable.
INTJ: The Mastermind
INTJ, like INFP, is an introverted and intuitive person. Known as the Mastermind, people with this personality type are often very good at strategic thinking, and they make excellent computer programmers or scientists. Unlike INFP, INTJ is very rational and tends to discount emotion when making decisions. An INFP might spend months agonizing over a relationship decision, where an INTJ will find a way to plug it into a spreadsheet and use logic to make the call. While you might not think of a rational and logical person as having much of a sense of humor, INTJ’s are often gifted users of sarcasm and dry wit, which gives them a unique and subtle sense of humor. Famous examples of the INTJ personality include Elon Musk and Greta Thunberg.
INTJ’s might not sound like party people, and that’s because they’re not. The Mastermind prefers to work alone, away from other people. They are gifted at finding the meaning behind sets of facts. Much like INFP, they dislike bureaucracy and mundane things, strongly preferring to set their own course. INTJ personalities place more value on being right than being popular and can sometimes be seen as rude or indifferent. INTJ relationships are sometimes doomed by this tendency to be blunt. Another famous killer of INTJ relationships is romance, or more specifically, INTJ’s complete lack of interest in traditional romantic gestures.
You might be thinking that INTJ relationships are a bad idea: Masterminds sound a little too cold, a little too calculating, and not nearly romantic enough for the average person. However, INTJ relationships can be quite wonderful. While they may not be conventionally romantic, Masterminds are good partners in a relationship. They find special value in partners who are creative and help them think outside of the box. They’re quite good at working with their partners for the sake of mutual growth and would especially enjoy opportunities to learn with their loved ones.
INTJ relationships work best with another introverted type. The Mastermind needs time alone to work on their projects, decompress, or just enjoy the absence of social expectations. This is perfect in a relationship with another introvert; INTJ is very good at giving space to partners who need it.
One weak point in INTJ relationships is their difficulty in communicating. INTJ’s are not very emotional thinkers and often struggle to communicate their needs. They also struggle to listen to or participate in emotional conversations. INTJ relationships are not likely to be super emotional or loving in traditional ways. If you are a highly emotional person, or if you need emotional validation, you will struggle with INTJ relationships.
The analytical nature of the INTJ personality type makes them excellent logicians, scientists, and thinkers. Their highly rational nature leads them to seek opportunities to optimize things; they prize efficiency and seek to find the most efficient and logical way to do things. This drive to optimize can create conflict in INTJ relationships. It can also come across as the INTJ being stubborn or nitpicky.
INFP INTJ Relationship – Can It Work?
Can an INFP INTJ relationship work? These two personality types are very different. INFP is a warm, caring, emotional person. INFP relationships are warm and full of communication, connection, and support. INTJ relationships are cooler, with more space and distance and much less emotional expression. It seems like an INFP INTJ relationship might be doomed from the start!
As different as the Idealist and the Mastermind are, they have a lot of things in common. An INFP INTJ relationship can be quite successful. Mutual introversion is the key to success in INTJ relationships. In an INFP INTJ relationship, both parties need time alone to do their own thing and recharge their batteries. The Idealist and the Mastermind could easily spend hours sitting together on the couch doing nothing or even entertaining themselves in separate rooms.
An INFP INTJ relationship also thrives on connection. INTJ relationships are marked by a strong intellectual connection: the Mastermind likes to talk about science, business, and technology. INFP relationships skew more emotional: the INFP is more intrigued by the humanistic side of things and will want to discuss how ideas, technologies, or businesses impact human beings. In an INFP INTJ relationship, the conversations will likely be long and winding even if the partners are interested in different aspects of the same topic.
This can spark some conflict in an INFP INTJ relationship. The INFP might find the INTJ to be heartless or find their obsession with data and processes to be devoid of humanity. The INTJ might think the INFP is some kind of bleeding-heart bundle of irrationality and emotion.
On the other hand, this difference of interests can become hugely valuable in an INFP INTJ relationship. Both partners likely have the insight to recognize that their approach to life is not perfect. The Idealist needs to be balanced by real-world considerations, and the Mastermind needs to find a way to be in touch with their emotions. The complementary nature of these types means that an INFP INTJ relationship can be very well-balanced!
INFP INTJ Relationship – Dating
In a strong relationship, dating continues even after the couple has married. Date nights with your spouse are a great way to keep the chemistry alive and spend some time together! In INTJ relationships, dating can be especially challenging. INTJ’s are not usually considered to be the romantic type, and their partners will need to learn to accept this facet of the INTJ. In INTJ relationships, the partners must be able to function independently: the Mastermind is brilliant in their own way but likely does not place a lot of value on mutual functioning. They can also be very aloof and often prefer to skip the small talk in favor of deeper subjects, which can pose some unique challenges in the early stages of INTJ relationships.
INFP INTJ relationships often revolve around conversation. The INTJ likes to have deep, intellectual discussions, and INFP’s appreciate this kind of dialogue. INFP’s also find value in INTJ’s candor. While they can be highly sensitive, direct communication is appealing to the Idealist, as it helps them understand exactly what is happening in the relationship.
In an INFP INTJ relationship, it can be hard to find good dates. Both personalities tend to be introverts who dislike crowds, tradition, and superficiality, so many dating rituals don’t make sense for this pair. An ideal date for an INFP INTJ relationship would be taking a stroll through the park and then head to the museum: the green spaces of the park are open and often uncrowded, and the museum is intellectually stimulating and sure to spark some intriguing conversations!
INFP INTJ Relationship – Lifestyle
In an INFP INTJ relationship, both partners have different approaches to life. Your typical INFP is not especially needy in the material sense. They have little use for pretentious possessions, fancy designer names, or complicated lifestyles and usually prefer to live a simple life. Living in a van down by the river might not sound so bad for some INFPs!
INTJ’s tend to be a little pickier about their surroundings. While they’re not necessarily materialistic, they often exhibit highfalutin taste. They may enjoy fine wines, luxurious homes, or high-end automobiles. Masterminds are very intellectually driven and prefer surroundings that will let them stay in their heads; physical comfort is, therefore, somewhat important to them. However, this is unlikely to become a serious point of contention in an INFP INTJ relationship. INFP’s are rather flexible and want to make their partners happy. If they are engaged in an INTJ relationship, they will likely do whatever they can to make their partners happy.
INFP’s are often drawn to rugged activities. Their curious minds enjoy travel, and they often love the outdoors. However, INFPs in INTJ relationships may need to adjust their expectations. INTJ’s are a little more finicky about their environment and often do not like things such as camping and hiking. However, a traveling lifestyle can be very successful for an INFP INTJ relationship, as long as some creature comforts remain in place.
INFP INTJ Relationship – Sex
The Mastermind can be a very complicated personality when it comes to sexuality. INTJ’s tend to view sex as either a perfunctory part of a relationship or as an opportunity to generate an intense, passionate bond with their partner. It is impossible to predict what your specific INTJ’s relationship with sex will be like. However, if you’re lucky, you’ll score a passionate INTJ, one who wants to bring fire and energy to your sex life. If you get a spicy Mastermind, they will likely view sex as a way to generate an intense connection and bond, which can make sexual experiences with them truly effervescent. If you end up with a more bland INTJ, well…you’ll need to be willing to have a blunt discussion with them about your needs. Subtlety doesn’t work on an INTJ, so if you have specific needs they are not being met, you will need to be able to explain this to them in a very direct way. This need for direct communication is a common thread through most aspects of INTJ relationships.
Much like the spicier INTJ’s, INFP’s view sex as being about connection more than a physical act. While they might seem a little shy or reserved on the outside, an INFP will often prove to be a passionate and capable lover. They often like to take their time with their partner, providing them with stimulation and pleasure while using the experience to grow closer. In an INFP INTJ relationship, sex can either be an amazing, mutually stimulating journey of bonding and connecting or a physical act that is done so the INTJ can check it off the list and get back to something more interesting. Hopefully, your INTJ relationship involves more of the connected and passionate sex and less of the perfunctory check-the-box (so to speak) sex.
INFP INTJ Relationship – Parenting & Children
Few things can be as challenging to a relationship as children. Children are all-consuming and highly demanding, and couples often find it challenging to blend their parenting styles. In an INFP INTJ relationship, there’s a good chance that children will be off the table. INTJ’s are not naturally gifted at parenting and may view children as distractions from the more important things in life. INTJ’s need a lot of alone time, and having children is not usually compatible with alone time. INTJ’s also like organization and schedules, and children have a way of throwing off plans.
However, if INTJ decides that they want to have children, they will generally dedicate themselves wholeheartedly to parenting. They will commit 100% to raising their children and will often take pains to teach them not just intellectual skills but also to teach them independence. In other words, INTJ parents tend to raise strong and capable children.
INFP’s are sometimes seen as free-spirited and also may not always prefer to have children. An INFP INTJ relationship may well stay free of children. However, much like the INTJ, INFP’s make strong parents once they decide to have children. They enjoy how children are naturally curious, and they also enjoy guiding their children as they learn and grow. However, as children mature and reach adolescence, it’s possible that their rebellions or experimentations with competing worldviews may cause INFP emotional distress.
INFP INTJ Relationship – The Verdict
So what’s the verdict? Can an INFP INTJ relationship work? Are these MBTI types truly compatible? Considering all of their differences, it may seem like the Mediator and the Mastermind are not compatible. INTJ relationships tend to be emotionally closed, intellectually focused, and private. INFP is more emotional and thrives on humanistic connection. On the surface, it might look like an INFP INTJ relationship is straight-up doomed.
But, a closer look reveals that these two personality types have a lot more in common than you might assume. INFP’s are attracted to intelligence and often find the minds of INTJ’s fascinating. INTJ’s find open, honest, and committed people to be highly attractive, which makes INFP’s a great catch for them. Both personality types are introverts who will enjoy quiet evenings in, watching a show together, or even working separately on their own things. Both enjoy stimulating conversations, and even if their points of interest are different, the Mediator and the Mastermind will enjoy talking about the problems of the world together. Not only that but the INFP and INTJ’s differing approaches to life tend to balance out. As long as the couple communicates, an INFP INTJ relationship can be strong, loving, and enduring.