INFJ Dating Bible or: How to Date an INFJ

infj

Note: I recently discovered the original website this list went to has been deleted; fortunately, I cached the list. Here it is.

INFJs are, by definition, rare, reserved, and unlikely to initiate anything, which means that many of them can end up alone and misunderstood. To help with things, I’ve compiled a list of points which I think would be of great use to anyone considering dating someone who identifies as an INFJ.

For most INFJs, omitting or distorting information is equivalent to lying, and at the very least will rouse their suspicion. INFJs have an acute sensitivity for stories which don’t quite fit. At the same time, INFJs also like to assume the best and can be extremely gullible.

INFJs are adept at nonverbal communication (eye gaze, touching, body language, etc.). Just because they’re not speaking doesn’t mean they’re not saying something.
INFJs have an extremely complex internal value system. An INFJ will see if you ‘fit’ into their world, and they’ll bend their own rules if they really like you. INFJs tend to have very high standards, but are also very accepting once they trust you and know you’re safe.

INFJs can be pretty intense emotionally. This isn’t to say that they can get into a heated argument, in fact INFJs avoid conflict, however they are easily hurt and feel very deeply. It’s not uncommon for INFJs to cry if they feel something very deeply.

INFJs are weird / odd / strange / extremely rare and they very much know it. They yearn to be understood and want to be accepted as they are (as most people do, of course). An INFJ is incredibly complex, so complex they confuse even themselves. They almost always feel misunderstood and ‘hidden’. They will be offended if you pass them off as ‘simple’ or ‘average’. Getting to know an INFJ takes work, so be prepared for that. A lot of gentle enquiry is required.

INFJs can often mimic other types.

INFJs are typically better in writing than in verbal communication. If you want to know an INFJ’s true feelings, ask them to write out what they think and feel.

INFJs don’t typically engage in casual relationships. Most of them will become too attached for it to be possible. If your intentions aren’t serious then you should probably steer clear of an INFJ unless it’s very obvious beforehand that they aren’t interested in a serious relationship.

An INFJ’s allegiance is no trifle. If an INFJ wants to stick by you, it means they really like you. Do not violate that gift.

INFJs consciously choose the people that are close to them. They would rather have a few very close friendships as opposed to numerous superficial ones.

They open up at a dinosauric pace. They typically hold themselves back and consider that behaviour to be part of their nature. They’ve been described as having ‘layers’ which only a select few people are privy to, the closer the layer to their heart, the fewer people are granted access. Do not expect to find yourself in the ‘top tier’ overnight. It often takes months or years to access the deepest recesses.

INFJs, like other idealists, love harmony. While an INFJ is relatively adept at conflict resolution, they do not appreciate the unneeded creation of conflict. An INFJ will strive for harmony.

The ‘N’ combined with the ‘J’ in INFJ means that they are future oriented. Do everything you can to make yourself seem like a long-term option. If you become destructively impulsive, an INFJ will lose the ability to see you as a long-term mate, and will become unhappy as a result. INFJs are future-oriented and have powerful imaginations and superb insight.

INFJs are extremely sensitive. Make sure that criticism is handed as lightly as possible and constructively. At the same time, INFJs love to please their partner, and will work on an issue if presented in the right way. When to be blunt with an INFJ: never. Be honest and direct, but there’s a fine line between direct and insensitive.

INFJs love helping people. If you’re bad at accepting help (yes, accepting help is a skill), then get ready to have problems. To reject an INFJ’s help is to reject their love, and one of the things they hold nearest to their hearts.

An INFJ’s ability to help people goes hand-in-hand with their ability to destroy people. Their keen knowledge of people’s weaknessess means they can either help you incredibly or destroy you, however the latter is extremely rare and is only reserved for people they believe have done serious harm to them or others.

They need patience but they give patience in return.

They’re curious about other people. To their friends, they are very accepting. However, the closer one gets to an INFJ’s heart, the more their standards will apply to the other person, which can sometimes create issues.

They often have darker periods where they close up. They can become monk-like and reclusive. It doesn’t mean they don’t like you, it just means they need to recharge.
They can be stubborn once they believe they’re in the right, especially if it has to do with their values.

INFJs hardly ever initiate anything. They like it when the other person initiates a conversation, contact, etc.

INFJs need 2 things to thrive: trust and safety. Trusting you is about knowing that you’re ethically and morally upstanding (or at least in accordance with their values), and feeling safe is knowing that you’ll stick by them. INFJs don’t want to open up to people who might disappear overnight. If an INFJ feels they can trust you and feels safe with you, they’ll be very happy. The only added bonus is to tell them how much you appreciate them.

Their energy drains when around others. They will need time alone to ‘feel like themselves’.

Your energy will easily affect them. If you seem unstable, etc., it will seep into them and poison them. It has often been said that an INFJ’s partner has to be strong, and this is generally true.

INFJs live in a world of fantasy. They can have problems consolidating their idealism with the reality of the world.

23 Replies to “INFJ Dating Bible or: How to Date an INFJ”

  1. I’m an INTP man and have been dating an INFJ woman for about two months. She is stunningly beautiful, but what makes her so attractive to me is not physical; it is her “way.” There is just something captivating about peeling back the layers.

    That said, a few of those layers came off almost immediately. We have discussed how we got so far so fast in our relationship, and at one point she actually became a little overwhelmed and had to take a step back. I gave her the space she needed and we are much better now than before, moving forward in a wonderful and wonderfully supportive relationship.

    I am a widower and my late wife was an ESFJ. One of the things which makes my current relationship so fulfilling is that she “gets me” in a way my late wife never did in nearly 34 years of marriage (and over 3 years of dating before the marriage).

    I found your article amazingly consistent with my observations of this woman, but also found some insight that I hope will prove helpful.

    The sense that she is holding something back is something I have felt, and I asked her not to, not realizing at the time that this is innate to the INFJ. Noted. I’ll not press the issue.

    Being an INTP, I can also be blunt, so I’ll know now to be very careful to be more gentle with her than is my first nature.

    I will also take note of the point about her offering help. As an INTP I have always been pretty independent. But the idea of a true partner is very attractive.

    One thing I find to be a bit different about her as compared with your description, is that she does initiate contact. So based on your description, I’m going to take that as an indication that she’s just really into me — which she has already demonstrated very well in other ways.

    Great article and very helpful/encouraging. Thanks for posting the insights!

  2. Reblogged this on She-Who-Hears.Net and commented:
    this could be titled “the correct care and feeding of an infj” vs. “dating an infj”. wonder if I could hand this out to people I’m considering becoming serious friends with.
    “Hey, man, I gave you an instruction manual, and according to Item 5.3.2, you have screwed up.”

  3. Yeah, pretty accurate. I myself am an INFJ, and relationships don’t come easily to me. However, if someone is genuinely interested in who I am and wants to learn more, it’s like an instant connection

  4. I liked this entry. Mostly accurate. The only bit I do not agree with is that we are gullible, I have read that elsewhere and feels wrong. I am aware of a number of occasions in which I have appeared gullible, I even know when the other person thinks he is having me. It is just easier to play along than to pick up a fight with someone with such low moral values. Just not worth the energy required.

  5. I came across two sentences of your article and within those two sentences you where describing me and my ways of being. Got me wondering what was this all about.” infj” what dose that exactly stand for? I started to read the full article and i felt like this knowledge to my way of being. Am always questioning why am the way i am.

    1. You’re not crazy — INFJ/INTJ are a LOT alike, particularly if the INFJ is super analytical and super-rational like I am, in which case I can look like an INTJ 98% of the time by approaching things facts-first, emotions-second.

      Well, thank you. I like you too. 😀

    1. I think there’s a lot the INFJ female doesn’t understand about herself — much less in allowing anyone else to understand her! 😀

      I like all the cat pictures on your blog. Big cats = awesomeness.

      1. Much so. And i feel it natures clashing heavily, male intj and female infj. Former brutally direct, perhaps insensitive, blunt. Latter highly sensitive, mysterious and slow to open up. Feel the intj might want all the details and information on the table as soon as possible, and work out if it can be assembled to a functioning, productive relationship. With the infj on the other hand with all these layers which just wont come off! Anytime soon anyway.

        Hehe, it’s funny though, how drawn i am to their complexities, both male and female infj for that matter. It’s like the hardest most bothersome nut to crack, but by the gods is that the exact nut i feel the urge to wrestle with

        1. The biggest potential problem for the two types is the INFJ’s sensitivity toward other people’s feelings clashing with the INTJ’s internal focus.

          I’m not sure about other INFJs but for me, I do want all the facts on the table as soon as possible, so I can decide whether or not to let this other person even start to peel away my onion layers.

          (Now, I’m laughing thinking about Shrek — “Not everybody likes onions!”)

          Yeah, it’s probably the challenge of it. Nobody else can crack this nut, but you bet I can! 😉

          1. “I do want all the facts on the table as soon as possible, so I can decide whether or not to let this other person even start to peel away my onion layers.”

            But how would one have proper understanding of potential mate, if the layers was to be left intact in the first place. Or would you want to know your partner fully without perhaps him/her knowing you just as good? Perhaps i weigh more heavily the value of absolute, unconditional honesty. When i suppose one could do without the entirety of it, and still manage a happy relationship, strictly speaking, and at the very least the initiation of it. Perhaps i just fear, or try steer away from, a bumpy, messy road ahead.

            I just see so many relationships bloom up in wild love, and all these resources, time, energy, being spent into it. Perhaps even child is in the making. Only to see them shortly after break up, not “fitting” each other, not “matching” one another. Why even bother start it when one doesn’t know the other.

            It’s like this grossly expensive purchase of market shares one’ve just had half a glance at. “Well it’s going up at the moment right so it’s gotta be good”. Some weeks/months later the shares plummet and they along with it~

          2. I’m just talking about facts and compatibility — is this where I want my life to go? Do I like being around this person? Are they quick to anger? Resentful? I can pick up a lot about a person over lunch with them. In fact, I can usually rule someone out in the course of an hour — more if they are really, really reserved and it takes awhile to see the “true” person they are.

            Instant love is overrated. That’s how you wind up with messes.

            If you want to date an INFJ, or fall in love with an INFJ, or marry an INFJ — you’re going to have to be patient, because we can’t just “speed up” the “get to know me” process. We protect ourselves really well and I’m not sure there’s any way around that. That was my primary source of conflict with some of my girl friends until they knew me better — they always sensed I was holding part of myself back from them, and I probably was! Why? Don’t know. Fear of rejection? Uncertainty over whether or not to trust them completely?

            I don’t even share my whole self with my parents, who know me better than anyone else in the world. So to be brutally honest — I’m not sure you can EVER completely know an INFJ, in part because we don’t completely know ourselves.

  6. Whenever I read extremely accurate articles like these half of my mind is thinking “OMG this is so scary! Did someone read my mind?!” and the other half is thinking “Yes! Yes! Yes! I feel validated!” : D

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