Yes, yes, I know, O, maiden, thou does not need a man to complete thy life – and it seems a little ironic, to say the least, to write this after recently taking a vow of celibacy – but just because I have decided not to get into any relationships doesn’t mean I can’t speculate on the various types of people who might be suitable romantic candidates, which I shall detail in this post, and whom, I might add, are, as of yet, entirely the products of my imagination. Which accounts for the vow of celibacy, I suppose.
For those of you idealistic, sensitive men out there, and my heart does go out to you for your continued survival in a conformist society that tries to mold men into masculine archetypes – please feel free to change the gender of the following types of individuals to that of Female, or Male, depending on your preferences.
The Sensitive Artist
Marrying the Sensitive Artist, with his deep, soulful eyes and melancholy outlook on life, is sure to be rewarding – especially if he lives in a dingy attic that overlooks other rooftops in a romantic city, like, say, Paris.
The two of you can spend twilight evenings walking down the boulevards, past quaint cafes with green awnings and golden lights flickering behind the windows, other strolling couples, the odd bicycle rider passing by in a tinkle of bells, having deep, philosophical conversations.
Back at his “studio”, the prints cluttering the walls and the floor resembling multi-coloured puked-up guts can offer plenty of fodder for further philosophical thought – as an INFP, you are sure to discover the meaning of life in a splotch of red and green paint, or uncover a fantastical scene in something that looks like a dog’s breakfast after it has been partly digested. Your rapture at his artistic talent will satisfy him greatly.
In return, he will listen to your deepest desires and dreams, understand the despair you feel towards life and the world, and refer to you as his “Muse”, which you will brush off with an embarrassed air, smiling shyly, but secretly feel very pleased about. However, be prepared to pay for meals and other necessities while with him, and, when the man racks up hundreds of dollars in debt buying new easels and paint tubes, remain uncomplaining as you scrawl your signature onto the bill handed to you by the delivery man at the door.
Who knows: Through your experience with the Sensitive Artist, perhaps you will learn something new: that your INFP nonchalance towards money was wrong, and that no matter how “deep” a partner is, sometimes the depths of his pockets is a little more important.
The Good, Caring, Responsible Man
What INFPs need most of all from other people, and which they very rarely receive, is kindness; and this man is bound to provide this scarce resource in abundance.
He will care for you, just as if you were his own flesh and blood, treating you as the fragile, little creature you are: Helping you with real-world tasks, like filing for a savings account at the bank or getting your car registered; comforting you in the middle of the night when you start crying remembering something horrible you said to someone last year; and he will never berate you for being “too sensitive”, or “too quiet.”
No matter what happens to you in the outside world you can have the comfort of always returning to someone who will tell you that he loves you, and cooks you nice, warm meals to show you that he cares. Unfortunately, though he will be smart enough to work as a system’s manager at his accounting firm, chances are he will not possess a drop of imagination, and bore you to bits. In which case, you will have to decide which is more important: having your own equivalent of a talking pillow to soothe you after being battered by the vagaries of life, or someone you can intellectually connect with.
Intellectual stimulation is simple to obtain on your own, in the form of books and, well, more books, so perhaps it would be nice just to settle for someone who cares. Then again, books are fine company on their own, and, unlike this particular breed of the male species, never become too smothering.
The Executive is assertive, confident, and bold – in other words, the ENTJ Myer-Briggs Personality type, who values rules, systems, actions and logic, and is the antithesis of the INFP personality type.
Isabel, creator of the Myer-Briggs Personality Type Test, however, has proclaimed the Executive to be the most compatible with the Dreamers. Though I have yet to completely puzzle out her reasoning – the two personalities could not be any more different – nevertheless, it does not require too great a leap of the imagination to envision the Executive being charmed by the INFP’s air of mysterious shyness, and the INFP attracted to the Executive’s boldness and social ease. After all, we often admire what we lack in ourselves, and opposites, as they say, do attract.
In this relationship, regardless of what gender you are, who the dominant partner is clearly defined. You will always have someone to tug you down from the clouds back to earth with his rational thought processes, thereby helping you to take action rather than daydream your life away; but be prepared, as he is a predominantly logical thinking, to sometimes have your feelings trampled over, and to pick up your battered heart from the floor at the end of a long day. On the other hand, expect good conversations, as both of you, being intuitive, will probably enjoying imagining the future together, and developing long-term plans. You will also not have to worry about having your bank account drained, as this type of man is often quite successful in the career, usually opting to work in lucrative fields such as business.
Ultimately, he will be appear powerful and dynamic – captivating, even – but this relationship is liable to go down in flames unless either he grows a little more sensitive to your feelings, or you grow a little tougher in order to withstand his constructive criticism. Still, it can be the basis for a good partnership, and you may even find yourself peeping a little more out of your shell due to his influence, growing a tougher exoskeleton – but, if I were you, I’d stick with the books for less heartache in the long run.
The Quiet Writer
For those INFPs out there who are fond of writing themselves and are looking into it as a career, the Quiet Writer has the ability to offer the perfect partnership – it will be practically like dating yourself! A shared love of literature will be the glue that binds the two of you together, and dates will probably consist of visits to the bookshop or the library, tottering back to the car with tiny towers of novels balanced in your respective arms.
The rest of your time together will probably be spent sitting together or in separate rooms writing or reading, with the occasional visit to the other’s room or lifting of eyes from the page, to comment on what one has read, or written, and ask for additional input regarding it. Birthday presents will be books, and more books, and for the two of you, the idea of a good evening is to sit, side-by-side, at the kitchen table, upon which lies an open dictionary, and giggle over the strange words that exist in the English Language – erinaceous, for instance, which means to resemble a hedgehog. The next morning, you will say to the Quiet Writer, as he awakens with scruffy bed-hair beside you, “My darling, you look most erinaceous,” and the two of you will burst into laughter again. By all accounts it sounds like the perfect relationship, but there is always the chance, the two of you being equally retiring and antisocial, for the relationship to dwindle away into something that more resembles two roommates, sharing a living space, than anything romantic or loving. But, you know, at least you’ll have plenty of books.
I hope this selection of potential mates has given you some food for thought. Do not forget that dating is not confined to Myer-Briggs Personality Types, and that any personality type can fall in love with any personality type, as each of us are too complex and nuanced to be encapsulated by four mere letters.
I, however, in the process of writing it, certainly came to some conclusions of my own – namely, that, well, as long as I have books, there is very little else I need; but, we all desire companionship, sooner or later, so it’s best to keep an open mind regarding such things, even if having a partner, though it might be an evolutionary imperative, is not exactly a psychological necessity. This should not rule out the possibility of one enjoying having someone warm to curl up against at night, when your heart is too cold, and the world is too big.
But, then again, you could just get a cat for that – much less maintenance.