Relationships - Love - Sex


Hello and welcome to the Wide World of Relationships!

It seems some conversation has already begun on a different thread. Let’s make this easy to navigate for all of us Starlings and guests. Let’s make this the place of questions, answers, and discoveries.

Look at the title. That’s what this thread is (and everything in between related). Got a question? Ask it. Got something to say. Say it.

This is gonna be fun, I know it!

Let’s talk about love. Is it real? Do you love someone? Does someone love you? Do you want a relationship with someone, but don’t want all the confines that a stereotypical relationship demands? Have you cheated? Did someone cheat on you? Was it okay, because you didn’t love that person and it was only lust? What is lust? Sex, sex, sex. Is it just for procreation or is it for celebration? Sex with the opposite sex. Sex with the same sex. Marriage and children. Does it ruin things. Does it enhance things? Do you wish you were younger with the same mind you have today? (ha) And what ever happened to the soulmate? Is that person real? Or is it just a spirit animal? Maybe it’s just something we make up while making s’mores around a campfire.

It’s all relationships, people. How do you view them? What does this Wide World of Relationships look like to you?

Best relationship match for INFP

Haha love the intro paragraph, @Ankh. Currently single…when I think about romance, things feel “fuzzy”…a lot of things when it comes to relating feels very difficult. I’d love to find “home” in a person but I can’t visualize it very well…


I love lots of people!

But romantically? Hm. I guess one.

I do not have a varied nor dramatic love life.
In highschool I sent out a lot of anti-relationship vibes because I had the “relationships in highschool are dumb and doomed for failure 90% of the time” and had almost zero empathy for my friends who were going through dating woes. Just kinda awful. xD
But I was also idealistic and lived in my head a lot and thought about how nice it would be to have a cute and cool guy to have fun with and relate to. Of course I then made that guy into a “character” like an imaginary boyfriend to play around with because that’s how socially inept I was. Gave him a “cool” backstory and symbol and just told myself I’d find this guy one day. lol
Anyway, near the end of highschool I developed a crush on a guy I thought looked cool and even though he wasn’t very academic, he was cute and seemed sweet and then I started getting weird dreams with him in it, so I took it as a sign and I pursued it with success! We were together for 10 years before getting married (married for about 3 now). He’s probably INFP to be able to put up with my quirks (or a soft ISTP? lol).

We are both too lazy to really cheat on each other. And why complicate things anyway? Haven’t really had any sort of real argument. But perhaps having kids in a few years will change that! My parents often comment that we seem more like buddies who live together than a married couple, but isn’t that ideal? Haha. I think of the love types, we’re fairly Ludus (playful love) and developing the Pragma aspects as time goes on. Generally an easygoing and mutual trust relationship where we stay out of each other’s way but with a lot of affection. Aw~

He’s probably my soulmate. Or rather, I believe that in our lives, we can have many soulmates. There is probably not a 1 exact person for any person in this world, but there can be good or great matches. Your friends can be your soulmates, and I’ve had a few friends I feel really comfortable and just click with, and it brings me great happiness to talk with them or witness their successes in life.

I think a lot of the time, people ask for and seek perfection–a lofty ideal, and that is where they get disillusioned in the end after their searches, and then they start seeking easy 12-step solutions to their relationship woes, and thus a whole industry on “matching” and hooking up is churning away. I do not really have solutions though. I think I just got lucky or have gathered good enough karma that the universe has kindly rewarded me. Or perhaps I am a good judge of character and have swatted away the right people. :smiley:

Anyway, given my credentials, I am sure to give great advice in this thread!!!
Warning: most of it will be “that sounds dumb break up with that jerk” or “you are the jerk and they should break up with you” lol.


Staying out of each other’s way but with lots of affection sounds ideal to me. Must be that Fi that likes its space well defined. It just feels considerate to me to give each other a space. Not always easy but super healthy in my worldview.


That is my ideal, yeah!!

I love the idea of “each go off doing their own thing, their own adventures, and come back to each other and report cool or funny stuff that happened”. A touch and go and free-will return kind of thing is my romantic ideal when it comes to relationships or even friends. A somewhat easy reciprocity instead of a very defined one where one feels obligated to “do things together” or “text/call me back right away!!!”.

I think many people don’t really see that as ideal though, like some are much more needy in terms of immediate reciprocation or validation of existence or something, and that structure “proves” a bond to them, but I wouldn’t have the energy to upkeep that.


If I try to think about whether love is real or not I get very sad. So I barely spend time on it.

I cheated once. It wasn’t okay for anyone involved.

I can’t stand the pain of love. There was an estj I loved once. It was a disaster relationship that made no sense. But if I see something that reminds me of him, can even be on a lady’s face, it is like no time passed. It is like his vulnerable tension, ethical spine, mule work ethic, rigidity and sometimes quite drunken spirit just walked in the room. There is something so eternal about being in love like that. Does love die? But then what does it even mean??

Each person you love and part with it is like they died. I don’t miss that life.

Geez sorry this is all kind of negative.


Yeah there is also the ideal of "I prod you to see if you love me. Drop everything for me. You do it to me and I will drop everything for you."
This is like the most stressful thing imaginable to me. It is the prodding part to “test” the love that stresses me out, because Fi sucks at just delivering on that in a readable way. Stress!


Hahaha REMINDS ME OF MY CHARACTER so I can sort of understand how you feel!

From my character’s perspective, sometimes a love can be so powerful, it’s like a torrent, and it permanently carves a canyon or scar or impression across the terrain of one’s heart. So even when all love runs “dry”, all it takes is some more water to refill that crevice and everything can be relived again as if it were the first time. Maybe that is a very INFP kind of love.

Love is real, but sometimes it leaves, and the impression it leaves behind can be ghost-like in its ache, like a phantom pain from a phantom limb after a person’s limb has been amputated but they still have tingles it’s “there” sometimes, if you’ve ever looked that up.

I think to myself that if cheating did happen, it would change the relationship dynamic, but I myself am a very practical person, and if it is too much trouble to break the relationship (finances, kids involved, etc.), I’d probably just keep it going with new rules established for the sake of keeping good boundaries. I think some people might see that as weak or unprincipled in some way, but I am going to do what works out best for me and hopefully everyone else involved. lol


Cool. I enjoy When you share how you make sense through created characters.


You have so many images. Seems like you’re constantly generating them.


i can’t help it
is it ni or is it ne? :smiley: maybe i am just infp in my soul!!
a soft romantic! haha


Putting words on these experiences feels oddly cheap. I typed like 20 replies and deleted them all. This topic is like quick sand…


I almost want to ask how old you think I am. :wink:


If you think it, can it truly be achieved?

That’s how I feel about relationships.

There is all the light and airy shit about it in my head, and then there is the unforgiving execution of it in the real world. I zoom in on it. I zoom out. I play with it. If I can’t solve it, it’s out.

I have never really wanted to pursue a relationship.

I much rather be pursued.

I’m just really passive about entering into a relationship. Nothing moves me to the formation of one. I never get a “sign” or whatever the fuck one needs to feel like “I wanna be together”. I guess my “I wanna be together” is more reality oriented. Like living together, having similar religious beliefs, all those little and big things that can add up over time to the point that it may end a relationship.

Now lust? I’m right here with you. But love at first sight? I won’t call it bullshit, but I haven’t had it happen to me, so you won’t see me preach about it.

I would probably be angry about this if I was constantly finding guys that invigorated me to want to handle all the practical aspects of a relationship together with them. But I don’t. I can find a lot that are pretty to look at. But they couldn’t give me enough money to actually be with them. If we don’t click, we don’t click. It’s as simple as that to me.

Also, I just feel like I reserve a certain right to enter into a relationship that is actually desirable to me it all respects. I don’t know what everyone else is looking for, but if I am not feeling you physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally, I don’t really see a point in being with you. Now, my hormones might convince me to stick around, but even that will fade. Plus, I would never truly just act on my hormones. It would feel so selfish, knowing I don’t want to be with someone, but still being with them just to satisfy an urge that occurs for every well formed physique I see. How meaningless. I want more.

But can’t relationships just be so trivial? They can be intense, short-lived, and drama filled. I guess this is just up some people’s alley, but this sounds like more of a horror fest on Halloween to me. I feel like two things are forming my mindset.

The first thing is that whenever I think of a relationship I could currently indulge in (short and sweet, long and stormy, whatever seems attractive at the moment), I also have a feeling of wanting more. Ah, why have a short love affair when it can be a long love affair? Why be with someone who looks good when you can be with someone who looks good and has substance? It’s like there’s always something or someone better waiting around the corner. When you consider my lack of impetus to form a relationship in the first place, waiting around for another option (a BETTER option) to come around seems like the most logical step to make.

The second thing is that I am interested in cultivating a long term relationship. With that said, I can admit that most of the people who catch my attention are more along the lines of invoking “opposites attract”. They are so different and foreign to me, they stick out like sore thumbs to me (pretty much ESFPs, ISFPs, ENFJs, surprisingly, not really NT types). Those bright and talkative folk. I am like a moth to a flame. Except not really, cause even though I can see them, they don’t see me. As for ISFPs, they make me feel oddly settled in myself. Can’t really say what draws me in about them, it’s an attraction that has only started recently.

But I understand slow and steady. Long work. Consistent effort. When I seriously think of entering a relationship, my mind instantly goes to the long term and the practicality of the whole affair. Are we compatible? What evidence do I have to support this? Imagine a couple scenarios, do you like how they act in them? Do you like how you act in them? I pretty much toy with a relationship and its potentials until it seems plausible beyond a responsible doubt that we will be fruitful and happy. This is why I would ideally prefer to be friends with someone and for romantic feelings to bloom after that. That way, we could get to know each other without having the heavy expectations of entering into a relationship. I also feel like I know them better that way because they are being more unfiltered. I would find this information way more valuable than the one that would come from dates.

I guess that is really all I have to offer on relationships thus far. I look forward to entering one, but I won’t if it doesn’t seem right. Can you blame me? I am under the notion that if I can choose something, I mind as well try to choose wisely. I also feel like I have no choice in the matter. I know that if I enter into a relationship and we quarrel, it would effect every other part of my life. I would love the highs, but hate the lows. I also would feel very exposed in a relationship. For someone like me, who generally presents a heavily reserved and polite demeanor, it’s scary to know that in a relationship, I would have to let this mask go. Instead, all the emotions and insecurities would be put on display. Not only that, but I would have to allow them the same respect.

Do you know how scary and hard that will be for me? I actually am gonna put myself out there. I’m not gonna half ass it, but I am actually going to let them see me, flaws and all. And I’m just like, how could I? Like wait, do you not see all this messed up stuff about yourself? You obviously need to hide that, no one wants to see that crap! But I don’t think I could truly feel loved if I am trying to hide every bad or flawed aspect about myself. I, too, wouldn’t feel like I am really loving someone unless I have seen their good, bad, and ugly as well. It’s gonna be a lot for the both of us to deal with, but it is something I aspire to do, and really, have to do if I intend on having a meaningful and long lasting relationship.

But all of this stuff is just the beginning. Aha, I guess I can’t really complain about being single. I want a lot, but I also have a lot to give. Relationships can be a lot of things, but they sure are easier to deal with when you know what you are in for and what you want. If you have those two things worked out, I can’t see how the relationship will not work out. And be stubborn about it! If you know what you want and need, go for it. I’ve seen a lot of my friends enter into relationships that, I hate to say, were clearly not gonna work out. Then they are heart broken, and I will of course play the comforting friend, but on the inside, I am wondering why they did it. They KNEW they weren’t compatible, but they still went for it. It’s crazy, but there is no guarantee to how to pursue the perfect relationship.

Relationships. Hm, maybe a “don’t hate the player, hate the game” mentality is the best point of view to take for a relationship. When you pursue a relationship, just realize that you are potentially opening yourself up to something that you may not of predicted. There is no certain guarantee that you will have A or B result from the relationship. Even with all the stuff I said before, there is no guarantee that the methods that I am using or want to use will work out. I can be a guy’s friend for a decade, date him, and we might break up a week later. All the observation and time that I used could not predict that we would break up. Or at least I think it didn’t, unless I was cruising for a bruising.

Haha, yes. Don’t hate the player, hate the game.


Hahaha yeah, I was all pretty calculating about it, thinking if we could put up with each other for 10 years without issues, we were probably a good match personality-wise. And this was despite me being a weirdo and kind of prudish for the heck of it. He put up with a lot just out of respect, bless his sweet soul.

HAHaha… living in separate homes too would theoretically be ok, but I kind of need someone to help me do chores because I hate them so much (yet want a cleanish environment). And possibly be around to call ambulance or witness events with me. Perhaps if i were rich, a maid would suffice, but alas!

I am way too egocentric to really accept a perfect complementary soul in some kinda… ego merge. I am me. This is MY space. I ALLOW another person to possibly enter and play and collaborate with me, but they are SEPARATE and they can be DISMISSED. That kind of mentality. Hahah. Perhaps this has to do with a lower Fi/Fe priority in my function stacks? :0 Many boundary between people.

I also think because I got somewhat “lucky in love” (hopefully it just lasts because I cannot be bothered to redo steps and must move on with my goals hahaha), I do not have full appreciation of people’s woes and loneliness, so my capacity to really understand heartbreak is always a bit arm’s length or by proxy (like through created characters hahaha–I feel sometimes I can channel them like a medium and suddenly I can experience these separate mindsets and emotions that are uncommon or foreign to me).

I had similar kind of thought processes, but if you know how to make friends, I think it’s similar to having a relationship!

I think sometimes people dive deep in thinking “oh, now i have significant other, I CAN JUST SPILL EVERYTHING BECAUSE TRUST = LOVE and THEY SHOULD BE ABLE TO HANDLE ME AT MY WORST IN ORDER TO GET MY BEST!!!” but I question that a lot. Sometimes we don’t even like our friends showing off their bad to us all the time–and by bad, I mean their manipulative or toxic side that brings us or others–or themselves down. So why should you expect a “significant other” to put up with that BS? You should not become that other person’s “responsibility”. You are responsible for yourself. They are responsible for themself. When two (or more for your polygamous peeps!) people are able to trust each other’s levels of responsibilities for themselves, a sense of safety and mutual respect can form to build up a strong relationship. Otherwise, it is always anxious and unstable and can probably lead to ruinous health for all parties.

So I think during my 10 year trial and observation period with my boyfriend (lol), I was having fun but also observing how responsible each of us were for ourselves, how co-dependent we might become vs being supportive of each other maintaining our autonomy and maturing as responsible people. Was he too clingy? Will he throw a fit and blow up my phone if I don’t respond to his texts or phone calls (I am very bad at this–I don’t respond unless it’s an emergency or a question that needs to be answered promptly)? Was I going to feel like I would die without him (no. lol). We may have our individual bad days, but can we trust each other to do our best to deal with it but also be supportive in helping? A kind of psychologist mindset maybe… you can’t really help people who do not truly want to change and put effort into helping themselves first. You try to empower the person, not just enable them.

How is this really different from a deep friendship though? Maybe it isn’t? Maybe just more sex/mutual trust with body is involved or exclusive access to money and property. :smiley:

That’s my approach and philosophy anyway! It is not wild passionate or deeply vulnerable or any of those exciting things because the world is already stressful and exciting enough without it being invited into my home where all my stuff is.


YES I FOUND OUT HOW TO QUOTE SOMEONE HAHA. “Live in separate homes” … I keep getting intuitive hits for this exact setup in my ideal “long-term” “relationship”…I wonder how many people here would be down with that as well…I can’t agree with sex sucking. I can’t agree with that. I can’t. But…the Fi rabbit hole…sucks. Yes.


Hahahah yessssssss

And nope!!! lol


will be 29 this year. why did u guess so old?


Well, I think you reveal what you need to for an informed choice.
But I am also of the mind that no one completely “knows” another person anyway. What I share with another above what is an obligation is a privilege. I guess an example is like, I can reveal my sexual preferences or when what type of porn I watch or something to the extent that it reflects my values, but am I OBLIGATED to list my porn for the other person to further critique?

I also think some people do not know what to “do” with all the “info” they can be presented with, and in their earnest think they have to make use of it in some significant way, and it usually manifests as some defensiveness or wariness or other neurosis about the person they now have more information about (cue the romantic drama scenario of the person learning how silly they were to be insecure and how much love overcame this, yada yada…). You kind of have to make the decision and ask yourself whether you are with this person because you need them to handle this kind of information, or did you just unnecessarily throw it onto them as an experiment or “test”. I only test what I think is necessary to be tested for the results I seek, I guess? Haha. My general motto is, “if you don’t want to be disappointed by someone, don’t enthusiastically test them in a way so they can disappoint you.” If I expect something, I make it explicit (like if I want a gift for a certain occasion), otherwise I revoke a right to really complain about a failed expectation.

I like information, so I like knowing everything, but does everyone like it? Probably not. Probably some can’t handle it even though they wanted to know. I also have my limits. I do not need to be in constant communication or hearing someone’s emotional states and insecurities or past goings-ons all the time. Just thinking about this angers me! :laughing:

I think INTJ in general cordon themselves off emotionally and even mentally (perhaps this is an Ni-dom thing, there are just some spaces no one will ever reach or understand), and this complete merging or ultra-Fe interpersonal experience is really not my thing. I think with ENFJ, I tend to have a mutual respect with them (I think INTJ-ENFJ can easily admire one another’s contrasting competencies), but unless the relationship were very detached or if they are fine with me completely ignoring them sometimes, I am not sure I could be in a romantic relationship with one. Chances are they’d get bored with me and skip off onto some next adventure anyway. lol

Maybe for an INTJ-ENFJ romantic relationship to really work, they have to have a shared project/vision, or possibly children right away in order to focus on the kids as their shared venture. I otherwise feel they would drift apart or cheat on each other. Perhaps good for occasional flings with no strings! :thinking:


I think I rambled a little, but did I encourage you? (Hopefully.)

Well it is nice to have someone listen like you did. I just think woah what I was even writing. Just a kneejerk reaction of wanting to put it back in the box. I feel very inadequate when trying to tell myself how “it is” and also find that I just can’t figure things out. As for feelings…I learned that having feelings and noticing them versus knowing how to deal with them and extract useful information from them are different things. Also…feelings can be triggered by so many things and if you have no understaning of the triggers it is like a big sea. What to pay attention to and what to ignore…

Honestly the more words come out like this the scarier. Cuz at some point the words part hijacks my brain. It is not well connected to nonverbal part is my best guess how to describe it.

So…relationships is like a really difficult thing. So entwined, entangled. And with sex, then just this complete opening up. So intimate and dangerous. If something goes wrong you could mess up everything else in your life while dealing with it…I find that as I don’t see things too straight to begin with, there is nothing scarier than merging with someone.

Even though…well…I can’t really lie…it is nice when it happens. At least when we think it does. If it is real.