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In this episode Joel and Antonia talk about how each of the Myers Briggs types say “I love you.”

In this podcast you’ll find:

Please reference the article How Does Each Type Say, “I Love You?”

Based upon the program Personalities in Marriage and Relationship

Looking at the 4 decision making or judging functions and how they express and receive love.

Judging Functions determine how we evaluate information and criteria. When we are giving and receiving love we are accessing what we place value on. The Judging Process is how we determine how things should be. Love is very much based upon how we think the world should be. It’s a transaction between two people. The Judging Function is incredibly influential in how all of us experience love.

First Cluster: FJ (ENFJ, INFJ, ESFJ, ISFJ) – The Judging Process they all share is Extraverted Feeling (Fe) or Harmony.

Harmony is how these types make decisions. They worry about keeping harmony with people and getting everyone’s needs met.

How do Harmony users ask, “Do you love me?”

Extraverted Feeling is very interested in emotional interplay between people. They find satisfaction with interpersonal connection. “Your feeling matches my feeling.” In tune. All 4 types are insanely interested in connection. “Do you feel connected to me?”

When getting everyone else’s needs met, FJs need to remember to get their own needs met. A massive sign of love to Fe users is if those in their lives check in to make sure their needs are also being met. It takes the burden off the Fe user. “Will you acknowledge and take care of my needs?” “Will you take action to get MY needs met?”

“Am I safe with you?” Since Fe users are made to express emotion in the outside world, they are very in touch with other’s emotions. This puts them in a vulnerable space. Fe users have to know they are safe. That their vulnerability is going to be honored. Harmony (Fe) users are the most vulnerable to emotional terrorists, crazy makers, unstable hangers-on, etc.

“Do you accept and approve of me?” Giving and withholding approval in social groups. If someone withholds approval it can be a sign they don’t love you. This is the marker Fe users are tuned into.

How do Harmony users tell others they love them?

“I will meet your needs before I meet my own.” Fe cannot help themselves from meeting the needs of others first. If an Fe user is not caring about the needs of another person it is because they don’t’ consider them in their intimate sphere. Fe user will check in regularly to make sure the ones they love are okay. They are emotionally tuned in to those around them.

“I will do my best to keep morale up.” Fe users are very impacted by the energy and emotions of others, so they like to make sure everyone is feeling good.

“I will show you appreciation in whatever way I like to be shown appreciation.” We all overvalue our experience, So it is common to believe other people think the same as we. If someone is communicating something particular to their type but meaningless to us it is easy to reject that gift. Like knocking a taco out of someone’s hand. We don’t understand the gift they are offering so we reject it because it doesn’t mirror our ideals. If you are in a relationship with Fe user, remember that when they show you appreciation don’t devalue it. Take note that these are the things they would like to be appreciated for.

Fe users can feel intrusive as they keep trying to check in emotionally. Misinterpreted as smothering. Harmony users tend to be very service oriented, and other types may resent such acts of service. Fe are appreciative when they get feedback about their service – good or bad. They want to know how to provide the best service to others.

Second Cluster: FP (ENFP INFP ESFP ISFP) – The Judging Process they all share is Introverted Feeling (Fi) or Authenticity.

They are very concerned with what resonates on the inside in a core value way.

“What is in alignment with me?” “What feels right to do in this situation?”

Introverted Feeling is private – “My feelings.” ”What I am experiencing.” “What is true to what I am?”

Identity gets wrapped up in it. Fi users don’t like to shine it on for morale. They recognize that people have an entire array of emotional, subjective experience.

How do Authenticity users ask, “Do you love me?”

“Do you think I’m being real with you?” “Do you trust my motives and intent?” Intent is very important to Fi users. It is very hard for people of this type to express the amount of darkness they see as the human experience. Fi users go thru the whole array of human emotions. Most of us can imagine disturbing, horrific acts, but Authenticity users can actually understand why someone would commit such a heinous act. They can feel the motivation for such things in their hearts – even if they would never do it. Which is scary.

If you are the kind of person who can not only understand the whole array of human darkness but can also find a part of you that could imagine doing that, then intent becomes really important. Intent to stay in the light is all Fi users have.

Other types don’t get how deep this goes for Fi user. Intent and motive is all they’ve got to insure that they are not staying in that dark space.

Questioning their motive can totally shake Authenticity users up. The question laced into their interactions with loved ones is, “Are you trusting my intent and understanding that my motives are good?”

Sometimes language can break down in articulating their feelings, so Fi users will sometimes ask, “Do you have my back?” “Do you know I have good intent even if I can’t explain why something is important to me?” “Will you give me space to be me?”

The Pygmalion Project is our tendency to get into a relationship based upon polarities then try and make the other person just like us. This is profoundly offensive to an Fi user. They want to be recognized as a separate, unique individual and they need to know that those who love them will not attempt to change them into someone else.

How do Authenticity users tell others they love them?

They honor the individual and the authentic expressions of those they love. Other types might let you emote but then walk out after emotionally distancing themselves. But Fi users will hold space for you to say what you need to say, even if it is painful.

They also honor peoples alone time to process their feelings. “We might not be cool, and you walking away might be terrifying, but I know that is what you need so I am going to give you the space you need.” “I’ve got your back no matter what we are fighting over.”

They will also trust that you have their best interests at heart.

Misinterpreted as passive or self absorbed. The very opposite of the intrusiveness of Harmony. Fi users create sympathy by self referencing. It can seem like self absorption to others, but that is how they understand what you are going through. Undeveloped Fi can be passive and self absorbed. If you are projecting onto people these negative qualities, make sure that it is not a legitimate complaint.

Cluster 3: TJ (ENTJ, INTJ, ESTJ, ISTJ) – The Judging Process they all share is Extraverted Thinking (Te) or Effectiveness.

“What works?” “What is the most effective means to accomplish this goal?” This applies to love as well. Love can be vetted through thinking processes.

Love transcends type. Love transcends all models. It isn’t the provence of any Cognitive Function, type or model. How we experience love is personalized.

How do Effectiveness users ask, “Do you love me?”

“Will you handle things?” “Can I rely on you to get your job done?” “Do I have to sit here and worry that you are getting things done?”

There are certain things that create burdens on each of us, so we choose the ones that will go through life with us because we think they will help us relieve those burdens. It’s a burden for Te users to worry about the other person getting things done. “If I can’t rely on you to get things done that is a burden for me.”

“Will you make my life easier?” “Can I relax?” Te are some of the most goal oriented of all the types. They need to know that they will receive the necessary support to accomplish their goals.

Not to say they expect perfection from their spouses, but overtime on a consistent basis, are you fulfilling your obligations?

Te users don’t handle emotional terrorism or neediness. They like to set up systems and forget about them because they assume the systems will function alone. Loyalty becomes important. They set up a system that is a relationship so they can move on to other priorities. They will assume all is okay.

If you break loyalty with a Te user it can break their heart because they have expected you to work within a functioning system. Long term sustainable system.

How do Effectiveness users tell others they love them?

“I will be endlessly loyal on principle.” This doesn’t’ mean Te users will never cheat on spouses. There are various levels of health with all types. But Te loyalty isn’t based upon sex, it is based upon care.

“I will take care of you.” “I will never drop you.” “I will be endlessly loyal.” Healthy versions of this would be sexual loyalty as well.

It’s really about resource loyalty. “I will educate myself on you and learn how you operate.” “What is your daily routine?” They see their partners as a system or resource to learn about and master.

They take pride in their spouse and boast about their accomplishments. “I got the best!” “I attracted this amazing person!”

When a Te user chooses to be in love they don’t necessarily express it on a daily basis. “If anything changes you will know.” “I said I loved you once. I married you. Nothing has changed.”

They don’t suffer fools lightly, or a bad relationship for long. They will generally find an exit strategy rather than stay in something that is falling apart. If they are with someone, that means they have chosen that person. That is love. They stick with their decisions.

If they really feel connected to their spouse they might not be effusive with words of affirmation but they do get cuddly and show a squishy vulnerability that most people don’t see.

Can be misinterpreted as controlling. Distant. They aren’t always spontaneous lovers. They won’t buy surprise tickets to Paris. Te users like to know what is coming up and make plans. If romance is defined by unpredictable displays of affection, Te may appear unromantic. But they are anything but.

Cluster 4: TP (ENTP, INTP, ESTP, ISTP) – The Judging Process they all share is Introverted Thinking, or Accuracy.

Accuracy users ask, “What makes sense to me?” “What makes logical analytical sense?” Ti is thought turned inward. Resources are internal. Data and info need to be congruent.

How do Accuracy users ask, “Do you love me?”A lot of the ways they express and receive love is through competency. They hate having their competency called into question. One way they know their spouse loves them is the spouse indicates their confidence in their competency.

“Do you believe I am competent enough to figure this out?” “Are you impressed with my performance?”

The more Ti love people the more they desire their approval. They don’t care as much about people outside their circle of intimacy.

They also choose partners whose competency they value. And they value the feedback of those who they perceive as competent.

They want approval but will learn from, and value, negative feedback. They like others to refine their talents and skills.

“Can I trust that you don’t think I’m lying to you in any way?” A major part of Ti relationships is radical honesty. “If I say, ‘I love you’ it is because I love you. If I say I am pissed at you it is because I am pissed at you. But I am going to be as accurate as possible with my communication with you.”

“I will put time, effort and thought into how I craft my language with you.” Communication with intellectual integrity. Partners of Ti users have to learn that they are saying exactly what they mean. There’s no duality with them. Take them at face value. Ti users will usually not have much of a connection with anyone who tries to shine it on.

Ti users all need to know that it makes sense for you to love them. There is logical consistency in how you express love. Ti might ask “Why are you with me?” “What about this relationship makes you want to stay with me?” Relationships are not always easy for Ti. They are trying to make sense of something that doesn’t have a lot of sense around it.

How do Accuracy users tell others they love them?

“I will be rigorously honest with you. If I am not free to be honest, I lose interest in that relationship.”

The more Ti users love somebody the more they have freed up space to be honest with them. Ti learn their mate at a precision level.

Ti protects their loved ones from other people but not themselves. They like the same treatment in return. “If you’ve got stuff going on for you that is your test iterate. I’m going to support you but I’m not going to protect you.”

Misinterpreted as harsh, insensitive and cold. This can a legitimate sign of an undeveloped Accuracy user, or it can be a sign of their love. Gifts the Ti gives to their spouse: Gift of competence, and Gift of radical honesty.

Ask yourself, Is this person legitimately at a low level of development, or are you seeing them through your lens of your evaluative criteria?

Step back and hold all these styles in an objective way first. Instead of looking at everything thru your filters.

Take these ideas and start to examine yourself and your mate and see where some of these are cross wired. Can you take the lead in your relationship and start communicating love in a way that makes sense to them?

In this episode Joel and Antonia talk about how each of the Myers Briggs types say "I love you."#podcast #MBTI #relationships #love

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  • Rachel
    • Rachel
    • February 8, 2016 at 4:03 pm

    As an INTP, I thought the section on Accuracy love was pretty good. You’re totally right about looking for constructive criticism, that an important way of receiving love is to have the other person help you be a better person and more competent. People tend to assume that I will get hurt if they criticize me, partly because many people are, and partly because when they do it I start thinking about it and have some sort of expression of concentration that they think means hurt but really doesn’t. Anyhow, it quite annoys me, because it prevents lots of growth that could so easily happen if people were just open.

    I also agree that being understood is very important, and being able to get thoughts across to others. I find this quite a bit more important than competency in many ways. One of the times I most feel loved is when people find my mind interesting enough to keep talking to me for a long time, to listen to me even if I am rambling, to ask me questions and to give me new ideas or refine my existing ones. So perhaps it is a form of competency after all… that my mind is competent enough to keep them interested. Though I’m wondering if it’s also related to my Exploration function. Being boring is one of my larger insecurities, and a lot of Exploration seems to be about new and interesting and exciting connections.

    And also accurate: I have definitely asked significant others why they were with me, why they loved me. I realized afterwards that it probably looked insecure, but that wasn’t why I was asking.

  • Charis Branson
    • Charis Branson
    • February 8, 2016 at 3:54 am

    Thanks for your comment Mark! You bring up an interesting idea. “Accuracy types are the most forgiving of a confessed sin.” What sort of sin do you suppose would be unforgivable for an Accuracy user?

  • Antonia Dodge
    • Antonia Dodge
    • February 6, 2016 at 11:31 pm

    We don’t do transcripts of the podcasts. At some point there will be podcast notes. In the meantime, this podcast was based on an article we wrote here:

    Hope that helps. :)


  • JT
    • JT
    • February 6, 2016 at 7:59 pm

    Where can I find the transcript for this? Thanks!

  • C.C.
    • C.C.
    • February 6, 2016 at 6:03 pm

    I think your description of TJ’s love style is spot on, and I totally understand the point you were making with the emotional infidelity vs. abandoning the relationship entirely therefore disrupting the nuts-and-bolts of daily family life.

    I think TJs are more inclined to “work” in a relationship; i.e. they actually work for the relationship in tangible ways, that don’t base a sustainable relationship merely on emotional back-and-forth. They are expedient in organizing and effectively running a household and they understand that a strong emotional connection is necessary for a strong relationship—but they are realistic.

    As in, you can whisper sweet nothings to your soulmate all you want, but who’s gonna go to work?



    Deal with pets, children, dry cleaning, retirement savings, buying houses, cars, setting up college funds?, etc. etc.

    And not just doing these things, but doing them in a very financially smart, calculated, (hopefully) lucratively-strategic way.

    Building for the future is something a TJ does naturally, and whomever is a Partner of a TJ also benefits from this.

    We are happy to be of service, but this benefit-by-proxy is also not lost on us either.

    We want to see our Partner making equal contributions to the Partnership in other ways (that are our Partners strengths).

    We need to feel an equality, our Partner should not turn into someone we have to entirely take care of, both emotionally and financially (exactly what you guys said).

    Love is necessary, but so is resource planning. And we find throughout life, that although people are very quick to jump into “love”, sometimes they are not so good at the practical matters of life in general.

    TJs initially go into a relationship with strong emotional connections while seamlessly assuming more and more tactical responsibilities, because they’re naturally good at strategizing and building a system (and yes, for all the hopeless romantics out there, humans are a necessary part of any sociological system on Earth, including romantic pair-bond relationships, so yes, we use you as a resource, obviously).

    I think where this emotional bond/familial obligation starts to split is when the TJ starts to feel as though their Partner (and this is literally a PARTNERSHIP, LLP, type situation to a TJ) starts to drop the ball, not live up to their own duties in this system that the TJ works tirelessly for. When this happens, the first thing the TJ rips off the table is their emotional connection with their Partner. It’s not in a punishing way. It’s merely because the TJ is working endlessly to meet the resource needs of the Partnership and takes that responsibility VERY seriously, and if they feel they are “in it alone now”, they don’t think that giving of themselves emotionally is warranted anymore.

    The TJ might then feel justified in giving that emotional connection to someone else. TJs emotional connection is sustained by a shared independent, competent, resilient attitude with their Partner, and when that starts to fall apart, it is crushing for a TJ. It’s as if they feel that their strategic-resources based work in the relationship must be all their Partner needs them for, or they feel taken advantage of, so they’ll take back their emotional connection, and then it’s theirs to give to someone else.

    So I understand (and agree) with everything you guys said, and I actually appreciated you being gutsy and observant and going there. As a female INTJ, I get looks all the time from my girlfriends when I differentiate between having an emotional connection with someone (nice) and having a workable, fair dynamic in a Partnership (necessary).

    I strongly believe these are not mutually exclusive things, and the strongest relationships need a dose of reality (and honesty) about resource planning, as well as a strong emotional/sexual connection.

    However, TJs can definitely sustain one without the other, especially, as you mentioned, out of a strong sense of obligation, or until they find a good exit strategy.

    Thanks for the awesome pod-cast; keep up the somewhat controversial topics and how they relate back to different personalities. This is the stuff of real life.

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