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Thread: INTP relationship apathy

  1. #1
    Unknowable Array geniusndisguise's Avatar
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    Default INTP relationship apathy

    Pulling one thought from the Ode to an INTP girl thread to concentrate on it here.


    It seems that some female INTP's have said they had no interest in relationships early in their life. I can't relate one bit.

    I fantasized about a busy, exciting social life filled with many boyfriends and drama. I had lots of crushes and felt a little disappointed when there wasn't anyone around to crush on. Although I fall on the introverted side, I'm not VERY introverted, and the same with feeling and thinking.

    So, is it maybe higher introversion and thinking preferences, mixed with lower testosterone, that makes some female INTP's apathetic to social situations, especially romantic relationships? (Because we know that young INTP males are just as horny as the rest of the guys!)
    If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put foundations under them.-- Henry David Thoreau

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    Senior Member Array Arachne's Avatar
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    When I was a teenager my self-esteem was too low to even imagine myself in a relationship. Plus, I grew up in an evangelical christian family where I was told that masterbating or even thinking about sex was a mortal sin. I couldn't understand why I didn't have the self-control to stop and that just compounded the low self-esteem thing. God, you ever wish you could travel back in time and tell yourself that all the stuff you were agonizing about as a teenager is just bullshit?

    For me, sex came before relationships. I reached the point where I just couldn't stand it anymore. My self-esteem was still very low but I either had to have sex or I was going to end up killing myself. I'm not kidding... I was so horny it was physically painful at times. So anyway, I did what I had to do... found a cute guy and asked him for sex. I was so backwards about things and my sex drive was so strong that one guy I knew used to call me "a gay man trapped in a woman's body". Interestingly as I began to have sex regularly, the crippling depression that had plagued me for so many years evaporated. Once the depression was gone, I was able to date, make friends, etc.

    I never liked dating though and rarely went out with a guy more than once until I met the INTJ who is now my husband. So, he is my first and only "romantic" relationship. As far as that goes, there aren't many flowers or candy hearts involved. Plenty of love though.

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    Junior Member Array duende's Avatar
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    I have never been apathetic about relationships, though I've often been clueless about them. I did not, in fact, have an active dating life until college, but not for lack of interest on my part. Like many INTP women, I was pegged with the "intimidating" label and tended to scare the guys away despite being an otherwise attractive girl. As a single adult, I am still interested in having a relationship, but am really not much more skilled at finding one that I was as a teen. Part of is strong introversion, which creates a push-pull effect wherein I deeply desire the strong connection of a relationship, but at the same time am horrified at the idea of losing my solitude. Plus, I hate going out, and never meet anyone for that reason.

    I was recently reading about the Enneagram, and it shed some light, for me. I had known I typed as 5w4 for ages, but had never come across the subtype stacking concept. Based on that, I type as 5w4 sx/sp which pretty well illustrates my conundrum. The sx wants relationship and connection, but the sp wants to maintain the solitude. Its very frustrating!

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    Paratrooper At Heart Array Nighthawk's Avatar
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    Flip-side persepective from an INTP male. I've loved relationships from an early age and usually sought them out. Hell, I've been married 3 times and had dozens of girlfriends. I'm on the extreme end of the introversion scale, but something inside me overcomes that when the desire for a relationship is strong. I will bypass my introversion and approach persons with whom I desire a relationship ... and get shot down a fair amount. I even get some sort of rush out of doing so. Perhaps a shadow extraverted function. Not sure how this relates to the mainstream INTP society. Somehow I think it is a bit out of the ordinary?
    Nighthawk
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    Then gradually I began to intellectually reject some of the delusionally influenced lines of thinking which had been characteristic of my orientation. This began with the rejection of politically-oriented thinking as essentially a hopeless waste of intellectual effort.
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    Made in Thailand Array Jennywocky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arachne View Post
    ...God, you ever wish you could travel back in time and tell yourself that all the stuff you were agonizing about as a teenager is just bullshit?
    If you could package and market that, I'd buy it in a heartbeat.

    I craved intimate connection at a young age but didn't have it, nor knew how to get it, so I tried to just live my life as best as I could and focus on other things. But it was pretty agonizing through the teen years, not feeling there was anyone to connect with and feeling so clumsy with socializing and small talk. I was very passive with pursuing relationships (or just danced around the issue).

    The things I thought about myself, and many of the fears I had about other people, just weren't true. But I didn't learn this until later in life.

    What Duende says rings true, I also rate as 5w4 sx/sp. The stress of the variants just tears you apart.
    "The word on her lips is always YES, and all her being says YES YES YES to all that is happening and all that is offered her." - Anais Nin
    I love my life.

  6. #6
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    Another male perspective, for whatever it's worth:

    I had and still have next to zero interest in relationships, platonic, romantic, sexual or otherwise. (This is not to be confused with a lack of interest in sex; there is a difference between sex and relationship).

    Early in life, the other gender didn't interest me any more or any differently than my own : which is not much at all in any fashion. Adolescence changed things a bit, but only added confusion: I didn't seek a relationship : I sought physical intimacy and intercourse with attractive females. By adulthood, I had sorted out the difficulty of my adolescent conflict (between thought and impulse) and returned to a stable social (non-)orientation. Somehow I got married, and now the whole thing is moot (thank god).

    If my wife were to disappear, I don't think I'd care to bother with relationships (and not out of grief or anything like that) apart from how I met my wife in the first place: accident. Honestly, reconciling physical impulse with the de facto standards of proper "romantic" courtship is just too much bother to ever willingly undertake; and I'm fairly certain I could survive just fine -- happy and healthy --- without any regular sexual/intimate contact or relationships (potentially) yielding such.

    Seriously, it's not worth the hassle.

  7. #7
    Banned Array MacGuffin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by geniusndisguise View Post
    So, is it maybe higher introversion and thinking preferences, mixed with lower testosterone, that makes some female INTP's apathetic to social situations, especially romantic relationships? (Because we know that young INTP males are just as horny as the rest of the guys!)
    I think you'll also have to talk about gender roles and reaction to societal pressure.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ptah View Post
    Another male perspective, for whatever it's worth:

    I had and still have next to zero interest in relationships, platonic, romantic, sexual or otherwise. (This is not to be confused with a lack of interest in sex; there is a difference between sex and relationship).

    Early in life, the other gender didn't interest me any more or any differently than my own : which is not much at all in any fashion. Adolescence changed things a bit, but only added confusion: I didn't seek a relationship : I sought physical intimacy and intercourse with attractive females. By adulthood, I had sorted out the difficulty of my adolescent conflict (between thought and impulse) and returned to a stable social (non-)orientation. Somehow I got married, and now the whole thing is moot (thank god).

    If my wife were to disappear, I don't think I'd care to bother with relationships (and not out of grief or anything like that) apart from how I met my wife in the first place: accident. Honestly, reconciling physical impulse with the de facto standards of proper "romantic" courtship is just too much bother to ever willingly undertake; and I'm fairly certain I could survive just fine -- happy and healthy --- without any regular sexual/intimate contact or relationships (potentially) yielding such.

    Seriously, it's not worth the hassle.
    Seriously, just switch to INTJ. I have no clue what you are talking about, but I see it a lot from young male INTJs.

  8. #8
    justified and ancient Othello Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion Array bluebell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by duende View Post
    I have never been apathetic about relationships, though I've often been clueless about them.
    That's pretty much what it was like for me. I don't relate at all to the 'can't be bothered with a relationship' thing that the OP is referring to. Traditional relationships and gender roles don't appeal to me nor does the cliched 'romantic' things of flowers, Valentine's Day, dating etc. But that's quite different to general disinterest in relationships.

  9. #9
    Dark Rabbit Array s0978's Avatar
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    I don't know if apathy is the right word in my case, I have had a tendency toward ambivalence.

    Personally, I'd guess it stems from unpalatable relationship role models. Less INTP or testosterone or anything else.
    .

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arachne View Post
    Plus, I grew up in an evangelical christian family where I was told that masterbating or even thinking about sex was a mortal sin.
    Same here. I didn't ever plan on having sex until I was married...I had these views up until I got out of highschool. (I did think about sex allllll the time though, which I knew was bad, but God forgave me for EVERYTHING when he died for me..haha)

    However, I'm still a virgin..for the most part
    Masturbating (which I discovered on accident ) was a major relief. I don't even feel a very strong desire for real sex anymore. My imagination is vivid..very vivid... And I've discovered recently that it takes a lot to turn me on. Probably due to a large amount of introversion, I have a refined idea of what I love. It is like music. I like a lot of music....but only some music really gets to me, and there is a big difference there! Nice tune vs. Mental Orgasm. Same with people..maybe... When it comes to sexual interest, not every man has the ability to turn me on.

    I've gone so long already with only ever having one real friend (not counting family). Well, what I would consider a true friend (but that was a long time ago too). Now that I'm home, I'm happy enough with having a family, but all kinds of thoughts run through my head when I'm at college. There have been times I've wondered if it would be best to try to break off my relationships with my mom and dad.

    When I was in middle school, I got crushes on guys all the time, but I didn't even speak to kids (at all) in school back then.

    It isn't that I don't want a relationship, but I don't think that it is very probable that I will enjoy one as much as I would ideally like to enjoy one.. I'm use to being alone. I need nothing around me to be entertained...Don't need any sound, nothing to read, nothing to watch.... Of course, all of that helps, but it isn't necessary. What 'turns me on', for the most part, needs to be something I'm creating in my mind of fetching from memory, because that is just how I do it. So, when a guy is touching me, I'm thinking about it..but.I need to fetch something--some memory and deep down angsty stuff--to get turned on.


    A life with friends really doesn't have more value than a life without. If I give it value, then it has value for me. If not, then no. It doesn't mean that I don't care about people, because I could never really wish harm to anyone.

    So far, I haven't done so well with forming a relationship. I really wish that I could believe in true love. It greatly bothers me (at times that 'love' ..as I had seen at as a child..doesn't exist. I want someone to explain it to me (even though, deep down, I know it isn't real). There should be some way to make love 'make sense' and there should be a good reason for relationships too.(that outweighs the bad) For me to consider being in a 'romantic relationship' with a guy, or even a girl, there would need to be a hell of a lot there. A physical body without a feeling of deep connection does nothing for me.
    I was lonely all the time as a kid and yeah I did fantasize about having a boyfriend.I don't know if anyone ever tried to be my friend. I was and still am, clueless in that area. But I'm not lonely anymore. Only sometimes I get upset.
    When I stop to think and really analyze my situation, there really is nothing to be depressed about.

    That was longer than I had planned, but that is my experience with it all.
    I'm not even sure if it answers your question, because I had interest 'early' in life. I'm still young though. I've been really trying to figure this out lately....

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