Thought Catalog
January 11, 2017

Here’s Why They Pulled Away When You Were Starting To Get Close, Based On Their Myers-Briggs Personality Type

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 Brandon Woelfel
Brandon Woelfel

ENFP and ENTP: They started worrying that being with you would limit their freedom.

Ne-dominant personality types enjoy the passion and excitement of new relationships – but they also enjoy the passion and excitement of the world that surrounds them. Which means, if a relationship threatens to limit their ability to explore that world, these types won’t be sticking around for long.

Freedom is of the utmost importance to ENFPs and ENTPs. A partner who displays any controlling tendencies is an instant turn off to these types – as is a partner who might hold them back, in any way, from pursuing their lofty ambitions.

ENTJ and ESTJ: Being with you was starting to infringe upon their other priorities.

Te-dominant personality types know what they want in life – and they need a partner who fits neatly (enough) into those plans. No matter how much an ENTJ or ESTJ likes you, they are highly unlikely to continue a relationship with you if doing so means they have to compromise their core values or priorities.

These types look for partners who make sense to them – those whose values, interests and aspirations are relatively in line with their own. Which means if you start to see them pulling away, chances are, they’re realizing that you two just have different priorities. And they’re looking for a partner whose interests aligns with their own.

INFJ and INTJ: They were having trouble deciphering whether they could see themselves with you long-term.

Ni-dominant personality types do not rush into new relationships. These types need time to get to know you, to understand you from various angles, and to determine, with as much certainty as possible, whether or not they can trust you.

If an INFJ or an INTJ pulls away from you as you are starting to get close to them, there’s a strong possibility that they’re questioning whether or not they can trust you (and consequently, whether they can see themselves with you long-term).

However, their pulling away isn’t necessarily a bad thing. These types just happen to take relationships a little more slowly than other types – and if you’re able to understand and respect that, it will likely go a long way towards showing them that they can, in fact, rely on you to be there for them.

ESFJ and ENFJ: They weren’t sure if you were as invested as they were.

Fe-dominant personality types are used to giving relationships 100% – but they’re also used to dating people who don’t give quite the same back. These types have learned through experience to select partners carefully. Before they go all-in with a new relationship, ESFJs and ENFJs need to feel certain that they’re with someone who’s as ready and invested as they are.

If an Fe-dominant type pulls away as you’re starting to get close, they may be questioning your investment – and waiting to see if you’ll pull in closer. These types are more than willing to fight for the people they love in their lives – they just need to know that those people are willing to fight for them, too.

ISFJ and ISTJ: They were overwhelmed by the commitment they’d feel the need to make to you.

Si-dominant personality types take their commitments to others incredibly seriously. Once they enter into a relationship, say ‘I love you,’ or tell you that they’ll be there for you, they have every intention of following up on what they’ve said.

The catch-22 of this tendency is that ISTJs and ISFJs need to think incredibly carefully about who they’re making promises to. They don’t want to enter into anything before they’re absolutely certain that they both want and are capable of taking on the commitment of being with them.

If an ISFJ or ISTJ is pulling away from you, it’s likely that they’re thinking over the commitment they may or may not be ready to make to you.

ESFP and ESTP: They weren’t done exploring their options yet.

Se-dominant personality types are explorers at heart – which means they need to have a solid grasp on what’s out there before they feel totally comfortable settling down with any one situation (or person). This doesn’t necessarily mean that these types need to play the field or date multiple people at once – it just means that they might not be the quickest type to jump into a long-term commitment.

If an ESFP or ESTP pulls away as you are getting close to them, chances are they’re feeling panicked or rushed to make up their minds about something before they’ve had adequate time to explore and decide upon how that something makes them feel. These types take their freedom very seriously and they aren’t quick to limit it unless and until they’re 100% sure that they want to.

INFP and ISFP: The reality of your relationship didn’t match up to the relationship they’d been envisioning.

Fi-dominant personality types tend to see the absolute best in people – often to a fault. These types are prone to idealizing new relationships, and may spend a great deal of time imagining how they hope a budding relationship is going to unfold.

However, if the INFP or ISFP realizes that there is a major discrepancy between the way they’d pictured their love interest and the way their love interest actually is, they may feel disappointed or abruptly turned off by them, and be at a complete loss as to how to ‘turn their feelings back on.’ When an INFP or an ISFP pulls away, they are often attempting to reconcile the idea they had of you in their mind with the reality of who you actually are (and how your collective relationship might unfold).

*Note: sometimes this is a good thing! Often, the two versions can be reconciled. Giving them some time to think things through may be the most beneficial thing to do.

INTP and ISTP: They couldn’t figure out what you wanted, and didn’t feel like sticking around to play guessing games.

Ti-dominant personality types crave straightforward communication with their romantic partners. Because their feeling function (Fe) is in the inferior position in their stacking, they have a hard time distinguishing whether someone is interested in them platonically or romantically – which means that any attempt to ‘play games’ to capture their attention will likely lead to them checking out of the relationship altogether.

If you find an ISTP or INTP pulling away once you have started to get close, you may need to give them some time to sort through their thoughts regarding your relationship – but when in doubt, simply ask them what’s going on. They’ll likely appreciate the straight-forward nature of your approach, and be glad that you’re taking the initiative to discuss what is or is not going on between you. TC mark

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