Tuesday, February 26, 2013

personality types and romance

I'm sure that a good number of people reading this have at one point or another googled something along the lines of "relationship with [insert type here]," hoping to gain some insight into an existing or potential romance with another person. There are lot of different perspectives on personality types and romantic compatibility (like this one) but I'd like to shed some light on how Socionics theorists approach the topic.

Romance Styles

The idea is that romantic compatibility is driven by a person's irrational ego function [1] (see Model A)--meaning that people how people express themselves (and how others react to that behavior) is the biggest factor in determining compatibility. The sixteens types thus broken down into four categories, based on their creative function. Each of these groups has an unfortunately blunt name.

  • Aggressor (Extraverted Sensing) - ESTp, ESFp, ISTj, ISFj
  • Victim (Introverted Intuition) - ENFj, ENTj, INFp, INTp
  • Caregiver (Introverted Sensing) - ESFj, ESTj, ISFp, ISTp,
  • Infantile (Extraverted Intuition) - ENTp, ENFp, INFj, INTj

As you would expect, these groups imply two ideal sets of pairings:

Aggressor/Victim Relationships

ESTp, ESFp, ISTj, or ISFj paired with ENFj, ENTj, INFp, or INTp

Typically these relationships are more dynamic and have an element of "playing mind games" to them. The Aggressor will actively and openly pursue his object of interest, finding enjoyment in the chase and great satisfaction when a relationship is clearly attained. The Victim usually lacks confidence (about their own feelings as well as potential partners' feelings) and appreciates the Aggressor's direct approach. Their reticence (playing hard-to-get) plays into the Aggressor's courting game.

Caregiver/Infantile Relationships

ESFj, ESTj, ISFp, or ISTp paired with ENTp, ENFp, INFj, or INTj

These types of relationships emphasize mutual enjoyment of activities and shared interests. The Caregiver becomes invested in the well-being of their partner and looks for a positive response to their attempts to improve the condition of the relationship. Meanwhile, the Infantile brings a cheery, positive vibe to relationships, attempting to engage their partners through joking, fun activities, and general light-heartedness.

...there's a lot more to be said about the romance styles (specific behaviors, non-ideal couplings, intra and inter-quadra couplings, etc) and I plan to go in-depth on the topic. Until then, see the link below for loads of interesting information.

More information:
[1] http://www.wikisocion.org/en/index.php?title=Romance_styles

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