Romantic rejection can happen to anyone, but it can be a tough thing to experience as an INTJ (or other introverted type). INTJs have Introverted Feeling (Fi), a function that tends to deal with personal values and feelings internally. Although INTJs are sometimes mislabeled as having “no emotions,” it simply isn’t true. INTJs do feel emotions, and in fact, they can feel them very intensely. The difference is that we rarely show them on our face, as we prefer to deal with them privately.
Because our Fi is in the tertiary position, Fi is not our first judging function (Te is our first judging function). As a result, INTJs tend to dislike outward expression of feelings, even though we feel them deeply. We prefer to look at things logically and objectively first (externally), subjectively and emotionally second (internally). (People who are very emotional can be draining to us for that reason).
Many INTJs would describe the expression of emotions or feelings as “awkward” or “unnecessary,” except with a trusted friend or mate. Therefore, you can imagine the awkwardness or hurt that INTJs can experience when they put themselves out there romantically (expressing feelings of interest or love), only to be rejected.
Ouch! That stuff hurts.
INTJ Romance and Rejection
I’d often develop “crushes” on girls in school, and I can remember one experience very well. In high school, I thought a certain girl was attractive, and I was creating all of these scenarios in my mind of how the next 50 years of our life could play out together. I was thinking about her as I listened to songs, and so forth. I hadn’t spoken to her yet, but I did know that she was friends with a girl in my class.
Before I approached the girl I was interested in dating, I thought I’d try to find out if she was interested in dating me, so I asked a girl in my class to ask her what she thought about me. I made her promise that she wouldn’t indicate that I put her up to it, and I was anxious all day wondering how the girl I wanted to date might respond.
The next day, I went up to the girl in my class and asked, “Did you ask your friend what she thought about me?” The girl said, “Yes, I did. She said you were okay, but she wouldn’t want to date you because you’re too skinny.”
Ouch! My whole world came crashing down with those few words.
Being an INTJ, I didn’t show any emotion on my face. I simply said, “Okay, thanks for asking for me,” and I walked off, slowly pulling the dagger from my chest. Then, I went home and researched ways to gain weight. I soon went to GNC and bought some “weight gainer” powder. The stuff tasted nasty, though, so I stopped using it after a week or two. I then licked my wounds and moved on.
I’ve been there many times. The problem with school is that some people will like you, but you won’t like them, and vice versa. It’s hard to find a match. Even when you do find a match, it still might not work out for whatever reason.
Also, boys and girls tend to mature at different rates. Girls are often frustrated by the boys’ immaturity (especially NT girls). Many girls prefer to date guys who are a little older for that reason, so dating can be rough, especially in high school.
In this article and video, I’m going to give you five tips for dealing with romantic rejection as an INTJ.
Tip #1: Don’t Focus on Your Flaws
INTJs are driven individuals who are constantly seeking ways to improve everything about themselves. Therefore, when someone rejects you or points out some flaw, it’s easy to obsess about that particular flaw. You can begin to think that your whole life would be better, if only you were ________ (insert your issue: taller, shorter, more handsome, more hair, less acne, prettier, smaller nose, extroverted, wealthier, smarter, more curves, more successful, etc.).
The truth, however, is that the problem is not YOU; it’s with the person who rejected you. People want different things out of a mate. For some people, beauty or physical attraction is emphasized, which is complicated in itself since beauty is highly subjective. Others are attracted to how you make them feel. Still others place great importance on things like status, wealth, skills, intelligence (some people consider themselves to be sapiosexuals), spirituality, etc.
In truth, we take many factors into account when selecting a mate, and those things are emphasized to different degrees, based on the individual’s preference. If someone rejected you, it doesn’t mean there is a problem with you! You aren’t broken. You just didn’t have certain qualities that the person was looking for in a mate. That’s it. Remember that fact in an objective (and non-emotional way), and move on.
You have to think of things logically: There are billions of people in the world, and some of them will love you and accept you as you are, and some will prefer something different. Don’t allow yourself to obsess over some aspect of your appearance.
Shake off the rejection, and keep moving forward.
Tip #2: Remember that People Can Change
Most INTJs know what they want in a mate. We can be picky about choosing a mate, and many INTJs would prefer to remain single as opposed to “settling” for someone who doesn’t meet their extensive checklist of requirements. We say what we mean, and if we tell someone we aren’t interested, then we probably won’t change (easily, anyway).
Therefore, it’s easy to think that everyone else has that same mindset that we do, and we can project our way of thinking onto other people. However, that simply isn’t true. Many people don’t know what they want. Many people are very flexible and are willing to change their minds about things.
Let me give you an example: My wife once worked with a nurse at a local hospital. This particular nurse was interested in a guy who worked on their floor (his name was Andrew), but the two never dated. Instead, another guy who worked on the same floor kept asking the girl out. She’d tell my wife, “So and so asked me out, and I turned him down again. I feel bad for rejecting him, but I’m just not attracted to him at all. I want Andrew!”
Fast forward a few years, and guess what? That same girl ended up marrying the guy she kept turning down, and she has one son with him and another baby on the way. They are happily married.
Here’s the moral of the story: Be persistent. Don’t give up on a rejection, because some people are willing to change their mind once they get to know you. Not everyone thinks like you, INTJ!
And yes, even INTJs could change their minds, but it might take more work…
Tip #3: There Might Be a Better Person in Your Future
This might surprise some of you, but my wife is not the woman I wanted to marry. Let me explain…
A preacher was asked to speak at a university, and he agreed to do so. After he introduced himself and spoke a few words, he said this: “As I reflect back on my life, I’ve observed a few things. First, God did not allow me to marry the woman I wanted to marry…”
The guy’s wife was seated in the audience, and people probably thought to themselves, “This guy’s sleeping on the couch tonight!” But he continued, “And God did not let me attend the university that I really wanted to attend.”
As he said that, people really started to squirm around in their seats, for he was speaking at the university from which he graduated. But then, he finished with this: “What I’ve observed is that God always ended up giving me so much more than I wanted.”
I like that story, and I can relate. The first girl I wanted to marry was a girl in my 4th grade class. After that, I think I wanted to marry another girl in the 7th grade, and then the 8th. High school was the same.
Each time, I’d think that the girl was perfect for me. I’d imagine that we’d be married or dating, and everything in my life would finally be complete. However, it just never worked out with those girls. Some of them didn’t like me back. Some of them did like me, but after dating, it just didn’t work.
A few years later, I met the girl I would marry, and she was more amazing than I could have ever imagined! I could not have dreamed up or masterminded a better spouse than what I have now, because I could have never imaged all of the amazing traits and qualities that my wife possesses. God gave to me the most amazing wife in the world, and she was 1,000 times better than any girl I had a crush on in school.
My point is this: In the moment, it feels like your world is over after you’re rejected. However, you might meet someone six months or one year from now, and he or she might be better for you than anyone you could have ever imagined.
Hang in there, and don’t lose hope. Have faith that there is someone even better out there for you. It happened to me, and it can happen for you.
Tip #4: Be Yourself, But Be the Best Version of Yourself
If you’re an INTJ, don’t pretend to be some bubbly extrovert. You’d probably just end up attracting the wrong person and wasting precious time. There are people out there who will be drawn to your personality, and the only way you’re going to attract them is to be yourself.
I’ve had countless people comment on my YouTube channel, and some are on the prowl for an INTJ personality type to date (and yes, INTJs date other INTJs). Don’t try to change your core mode of operation. You’re an introverted rational who likes to make endless lists and plan your entire life. So what? There’s nothing wrong with that, even if we don’t readily fit in with the world.
Having said that, it might not be a bad idea to do a quick checkup and evaluate how you come off to people. If you’re bitter and depressed all the time, it might turn people off. If you’re blunt and rude, people might become offended around you. If you use profanity every other word, some people will view it as immaturity. You can improve those things.
Furthermore, it doesn’t hurt to improve minor things about your appearance, either. Do you have a decent hairstyle? Do you dress in decent clothing? Do you take care of your basic hygiene? Those things don’t change who you are—they’re just accessories. You can change those things. However, don’t obsess about your appearance, especially things you can’t easily change (see point #1).
Tip #5: Don’t Give Up
It’s easy to get discouraged in the dating game. First, there’s the awkwardness of trying to explain to someone that you’re interested in them romantically, and wondering if they are also interested in you. You might end up coming off like Jim Carrey in the movie Dumb and Dumber, and saying something like: “I like you. I like you a lot…”
Then, there’s the awkwardness of the first date, and trying to decipher who should do what (who pays for the meal, should you attempt to hold someone’s hand or kiss, etc.).Then, when you are rejected, it’s easy to want to scrap the whole thing due to the incredible effort and awkwardness involved.
Yep, dating is tough. In fact, many INTJs, INTPs, and other types have shared their dating woes on my channel. Some have said things like, “I’ve given up on dating and have accepted that I’ll be single my entire life.”
I felt that same way before I met the girl I would marry. I had become burned out with even trying to find someone. My wife had lived in my neighborhood since we were children, but we never really talked (aside from one time when I made fun of her…oops). But many years later, we met outside in the neighborhood while I was passing football with other kids, and we would talk here and there.
One day, one of us had mentioned AOL (America Online, a dial-up internet service), and we exchanged our usernames. We began talking more and more online, and the next thing you know, we’ve been married for over a decade.
During all those times of rejection and dating disappointment, I could have never imagined that the girl who lived a couple of houses away would be the girl with whom I would marry and have a son. Life and love can be funny like that.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think there is anything wrong with remaining single. Some people choose to dedicate their lives to some cause, such as feeding the poor or doing missionary work. Isaac Newton never married, and he greatly advanced our knowledge of science and mathematics.
Nevertheless, if you do feel a deep desire for physical intimacy and companionship, I’d advise you not to give up so easily. I’ve been happily married for almost 12 years now, and it has been one of the greatest blessings in my life. I’d probably be some isolated INTJ living in the woods if it were not for my wife and son. I can’t imagine life without them.
Conclusion on INTJs and Rejection
To all you single people out there, don’t lose hope. Lick your wounds of rejection, and keep moving forward. Dating is hard, but I’d submit to you that it’s worth the awkwardness, rejection, and aggravation.
Rejection is just an unfortunate part of the dating process. It helps you weed out the people who are’t a good fit for you (and vice versa). But you might soon find the right person, and he or she could change your life.
My wife is an ISFJ, but other INTJs have reported marital satisfaction with every other type. ENFPs often feel that INTJs are a good match, as do INFJs, ENTPs, other INTJs, and the other types. MBTI has stated over and over that type does not affect marital satisfaction. Any type can be compatible, so go get ’em!