6 Things You Need To Know If You’re Dating An INFJ, The World’s Rarest Personality Type

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INFJs are said to be one of the rarest Myers-Briggs Personality types, making up only 1-2% of the population. Their type stands for Introversion (I), Intuition (N), Feeling (F), and Judgment (J).  They are empathic, introspective, imaginative, have rich inner worlds and they also happen to make devoted partners, friends and activists for justice. They also tend to be on the complex side. But what’s it like dating them? Here are six things you need to know if you’re dating an INFJ:

1. When they love, they love deeply. So you have to be able to match their devotion where it counts.

When it comes to romance, there is usually little to no grey area for the INFJ – they’re usually all in or all out. INFJs are known for their extremes and their romanticism is no exception. These types make great partners because they can be incredibly thoughtful, warm and attuned to your needs. You may be surprised at how much they carefully take into account your thoughts, opinions, and surprise you with their ability to remember what matters to you. They cherish meaningful connections and take special care to satisfy the ones they love – and when they’re committed, they are faithful.

However, it takes a lot for them to settle down. INFJ types are always in the pursuit of the “ideal” relationship – which means they want someone who they can connect with physically, emotionally, intellectually and spiritually. A one-night stand or a meaningless encounter, no matter how fun it may be at the time, just doesn’t do it for the INFJ in the long-term. They want someone who is going to fulfill them – they want a soul connection.  There is nothing that turns them on more than a partner who can engage in witty banter, satisfy them in bed and excite them mentally. They love deep philosophical discussions and they have an extroverted side to them which is open to adventure – so in order to have a successful partnership with them, you need to be able to do both. They want someone who can both cherish and challenge them in healthy ways. They want someone just as multifaceted as they are – someone who can wear many hats and play many roles. Their ideal lover is someone who can be friend, lover and confidante – all at once.

2. They’re highly sentimental, but they’re also kind of badass.

INFJs are usually stereotyped as sensitive, reserved and emotional personality types – and they are! The depth of their emotions is powerful, and at times, a bit overwhelming to encounter for less emotional, stoic personality types. However, these types can be just as logical and reason-based when it comes to knowing what they want. And they eventually recognize when they are being disrespected or their efforts are not being reciprocated.

Remember that because an INFJ is focusing a great deal of attention in meeting your needs, they may sometimes fail to advocate for their own. That’s why it’s important to “check in” with the INFJ, especially if you sense they’re withdrawing from you.

They are not the types you should mess with, lest you encounter their infamous door slam as they leave. Don’t make the mistake of mistreating them continually and exploiting their kindness – they, too, have limits. Once these limits have been crossed a sufficient number of times, INFJs possess a Herculean-like emotional strength that enables them to cut toxic people and narcissists out of their life without so much as a second glance.

3. They need time to disappear into their inner world – but once they’ve taken a break, they can be the life of the party.

INFJs are extremely generous with their time and energy, but what they really need is a great deal of time to recharge alone. These types love people, especially people they connect with – but being the natural introverts that they are, they can find too much time spent with people taxing. If you’re someone who constantly needs their attention, just realize that they will be more drained than energized by spending too much time in your presence. This is just the way they are wired.

They also tend to be highly creative and intellectual – so giving them some breathing room (even if they’re shy about asking for it) to reflect and create is actually essential to not only their success but the success of the relationship as well. INFJs need time to work on their goals and mission, as these types tend to be activists and advocates for social justice. You’ll find that they’re much more fun to be around after they’ve come back from one of their introspective ‘retreats.’

Their ability to flourish away from people and within social interactions can thankfully benefit your relationship. This trait can come in handy in that it allows for a variety of activities with an INFJ, allowing for a fine balance of nights in as much as nights out. Date nights with this personality type shouldn’t just be all about going out to restaurants: they should contain a mix between meaningful and exhilarating. They can range from connecting with nature on outdoorsy outings, going to art galleries and museums, a night of jazz or dancing, all the way to bold adventures on your combined bucket list. An INFJ (given that they are comfortable doing so) can just as easily go out to a bar and ride a mechanical bull for the first time as they can spend a quiet evening alone cuddling and watching movies on the couch.

4. They’re not afraid to call you out – and emotional validation is a must when they do.

Since INFJs tend to be advocates for justice and equality, they tend to look towards fairness in all things. That means that if an INFJ sees that you’re acting in a way that is out of alignment with integrity, they will usually call you out on it, and they have no qualms in doing so – no matter who you are.

They are not a fan of hierarchies, so your position, status or perceived role in their life bears little to no bearing on defending themselves or defending their loved ones. Gentler INFJs can skirt around the issue when they initially communicate their unease, but eventually, they too will have to resort to direct communication (which can feel like it can come out of nowhere if you aren’t prepared).

Recognize that when an INFJ has called you out, it’s not because they don’t care for you or love you. In fact, it’s usually because they care enough and are invested in the relationship to try to make it work. Rather than shutting down or criticizing them for expressing their needs, it’s best to find a common ground and validate them.

This doesn’t mean you have to agree with them – it just means you should be willing to see their perspective and understand what needs are still being unmet. The fact that you’re seeking to understand is usually enough for the INFJ. Since INFJs perform the due diligence of always being quite conscientious about meeting the needs of others, all they want in return is the same form of respect. Emotionally invalidating them or making their needs seem unimportant is a surefire way to get an INFJ withdraw from you – and sometimes even the relationship altogether.

5. They are perfectionists – and sometimes, they may project these high standards onto you.

INFJs are always on some sort of mission (usually involving saving the world in some way) and they hold themselves up to extremely high standards. This can cause them to doubt and criticize themselves moreso than other types, because they have a tendency to want to be the best at all times.

Their perfectionism, however, doesn’t just end there. They are especially ardent about making sure that the people in their life support their core values and morals.  This can be a valuable trait to have in toxic relationships, where the INFJ can suss out whether or not this person is truly the person for them. On the other hand, since they tend to be over-the-top in all that they do, they may make the mistake of holding a partner in a healthy relationship to unrealistic ideals. When an INFJ does this unfairly, it’s also more than fair to call them out – especially if you feel they’re missing something in their assessment of you.

6. They have a wild side and you might be left wondering how many personalities they actually possess.

INFJs tend to be independent thinkers and while these types may be pigeonholed into one category or the other, it’s important to realize that they have many layers and cannot fit in a box. They are highly multifaceted and one of those facets include a side that can be very assertive, bold, adventurous, fun-loving and sassy. If you try to stifle this side of them, they can feel extremely constrained and feel suffocated. They’ll feel caged and want to escape. They require the freedom to explore their seemingly contradictory characteristics.

That’s why it’s important to allow them the space to express themselves fully without judgment (so long as you’re both still clear on what your boundaries are in the relationship). A partner who does so is sure to please an INFJ and satisfy him or her in the long-term. Enjoy “unraveling” the INFJ – this is one personality type that is both predictable in their core traits yet rather unpredictable in who they can be. Appreciate their versatility – it is one of the many beautiful elements about dating this dynamic type. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

About the author

Shahida Arabi

Shahida is a graduate of Harvard University and Columbia University. She is a published researcher and author of Power: Surviving and Thriving After Narcissistic Abuse and Breaking Trauma Bonds with Narcissists and Psychopaths. Her books have been translated into 16+ languages all over the world. Her work has been featured on Salon, HuffPost, Inc., Bustle, Psychology Today, Healthline, VICE, NYDaily News and more. For more inspiration and insight on manipulation and red flags, follow her on Instagram here.

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