Hello there.

I am an ENFP female, seeking advice about my ENTP fiance. I am simply trying to better my understanding of him and the way he ticks.


When my fiance is angry, he is most defidently angry. He lashes out and explodes, espicailly when he is stressed. When he is angry, he exploded. He often uses my insecurities or knowledge of personal trauamtic experiences against me. 

After anger has passed, my fiance becomes rather remourseful and apologetic. He awknowleges that he has hurt me. Once he has apologized, he simply shuts down. He does everything he can to avoid conversations about the instance. 


My fiance is always full of energy. He reminds me of a great dane puppy. Very energetic and easy going. I, myself, am often ill. He easily becomes upset or frustrated when I do not have the same energy level. He shuts down and becomes "moody." What I mean by moody reminds me of a teenage girl having a breakdown after being told no. 


This is the kicker and probably the most frustrating for me. HE WILL NOT TALK ABOUT HIS EMOTIONS. Period. Ever. He forces himself to be so uncomfortable disucssing his thought process or emotional complex and shut down. He becomes angry, frustrated, irratable, and voidant. He commonly uses the "blue tarp" method when it comes to process information. When I am in an emotional state, he also becomes uncomforable and simply ignores the emotions that are occuring.

How do I help him open up?



 Throughout conversations during our relationship, my fiance has agreed that he has an issue with having to be control at all times. If he doesn't feel like he has control of a situation, he becomes drained. He goes into a slight panicked state as he doesn't have control of a situation. 

In social situations, my fiance must be the person to initate conversations, but after he has set up the platform that he desires, he sits back and observes. After observing, if the conversation goes off track of his intentions, he'll rejoin and get it 'back on track.'


For those who are ENTP's: Is this normal? Do you relate? What sorts of advice do you have for my fiance in finding himself and processing information/emotions? Have you had anger issues? Does anything help with the anger?

Any other personality type with experience with ENTP's: Help. I need support and I need some advice on how to deal with my ENTP partner.


Guest (not verified) says...

I can relate to how you feel, and maybe how he feels. I'm also an ENTP, and for those of who are young, we seem to struggle with anger in that way. For me, it's never a deep-seated anger, unless I perceive someone to be stupid, and then I attack them as though they are responsible for the actions of every small-minded person ever. And, when I'm just angry in someone else's company, I do tend to yell or rant, what have you. I think it could also be from stress. If there's some external factor over which he cannot assert desireable change*, whatever it is, he will absolutely be bothered by it. That's our thing, after all, changing the world!

*See "Control"

The energy thing is absolutely on the spot, and I think it's very important that as a fellow extravert, you be willing to meet his energy level in the relationship. However, that's not to say both of you don't need time alone or just to relax, and he definitely sounds like he should handle it better. I recommend finding a kind of "schedule" if this is feasable in your relationship. If nothing else, share his enthusiasm and SHARE YOUR OWN. We are energized by the energy of other people. Talk to him about a geeky interest you share, or teach him something, take him on an adventure somewhere new! You're an ENFP after all, so go on a philosophical, full-throttle adventure, whether physically or psychologically! (Please avoid opiods and drugs that block neurological receptors lol!)

And, to address the emotions, I'm able to relate, though I'm a little better about it. I will express my feelings, but I have to really sit down and put them on index cards and read them without making eye-contact. The idea of just having a comprehensible "flow-of-feelings" is probably as alien to the NT types as would be the expression of feelings using notecards to an NF. Be aware, this may cause uncomfortable derision. Try to propose a middle ground, OR don't talk about the feelings that may be small and should go away after a few days. My father and I are really close, and he is an INFJ, so I will try to use him to make my point clear. If I appear to be very irritable about something, usually a computer not working properly or interacting with really stupid people, he will attempt to make contact. Choose very carefully when you do this, (as it ties-in with the anger). Wait until he's cooled down to talk about feelings. And, if he's receptive, jump right in and enthusiastically help him with what seems to be upsetting him without mentioning feelings! Just smile and say "whatcha need?" or "Hey, do you want food?" (This always works with me xD) 

IF you truly want to discuss feelings, detach yourself from the situation. That's how we do it, after all. Remember, NTs generally are not moved by "sweetness", or stories, or whatever. I don't go through my day considering my own feelings. And if I do, generally something has broken through the firewalls and caused it. That causes a great deal of irritation because we're not built to think casually about feelings. It may work to try a kind of 'negotiating table' where both of you share feelings as detachedly as possible. However, if this is rejected by him, too dry for you, or generally not-feasable, then I would say only approach him about his feelings after-the-fact and make sure to not let it color your impression of him. 

ENTPs are crazy, cool, inventive people, and for an ENFP like yourself, that could be just perfect! But, be weary, if you do not feel like anything improves, it is best not to suffer for other people. I'm telling you this from experience. If it comes down to it, just unleash your heart to him. If he reacts negatively to that, it's his own fault. If he realizes he's been making mistakes and attempts to curb certain behaviors, then give him a shot. :) 

I wish you the best of luck! 

-Friendly neighborhood ENTP 

PS Sorry it was so long! I just love to speak my mind!

the________ says...

Sorry if any of this was expressed in the first answer, I did not have enough time to read it. Your fiance sounds identical to things that I go through. This is extremely accurate and normal. The out bursts are controllable, as long as you don't talk to him like a psych patient. My piece of advice to make the fights a little cleaner is not to poke the bear. Once you see he is riled up, it's best to revisit another time and present it from a less threatening angle. Also, do not choose this time during a "fun time" as it will immediately 180 the mood. Sleep helps me aleviate my moods the most, but the moods are just going to be around. It sucks, but extra effort (in the form of compassion & empathy) is needed to pull them out.

One of the big emotional aspects that ENTPs and I face is the inability to articulate emotions directly into words or concepts. We have such conceptual minds that we can "see" it (visualize) and feel it, but its tough to express. Most often, we will try to express what we are thinking, but upon failing to convey our own emotions clearly enough, it immediately converts into a deep frustration. I live with my biggest insecurities daily because I cannot ever communicate them well enough and the responses often received are perceived by me as insesitive because others do not understand the MASSIVE impact these things have had on me personally. We either over express or under express but usually prefer to not express at all so that we can just try to maintain the status quo, considering we enjoy not being moody and don't want to throw ourselves in that direction. For me personally, it is also a level of insecurity knowing that no one can care or understand to the fullest degree the way these things weigh on me. 

My best piece of advice would be to empathize, and not mock some of his mannerisms. It sucks, but have a short term memory on the outbursts (as long as there is effort to improve on his end), and try to dig in on what caused it more than the fact he did it. That way, you will more successfully compromise, you will find out what is upsetting him while having the best odds of getting what you want because you solved the root of his issue. Even if you can't let him get his way, he will appreciate the empathy. Another piece of my advice would be do not be afraid to push them but you always need to come from the angle that you want the best possible thing for them. That will help you avoid him going dominance on you if you can paint the picture that its best for him (even if its also best for you, beacuse that is also best for him-see debater below).

Something else that helps me avoid all of these things as a whole (it may be a personal thing and not an ENTP thing) is getting down time-like VERY quiet, VERY chill time. If I work 60-80 hours a week and go out on the weekend or travel multiple weeks in a row, it makes the odds of all of those traits 1000% more probable. I am single right now, and in this way I may be different, because on my career path I prefer to only manage my own feelings. However, even later on in a relationship I will need to demand times of pure independence. Its NOT personal, I just need my own me and my own thoughts sometimes for a few hours. I will lash out and I will get moody, so again sleep/down time is keep to balance.

For the dominance thing, just read over on "sixteen personalities dot com" (spelled out in an attempt to not get this flagged) about the ENTPs and they classify us as the debater. It will shed light on that impression you have regarding "dominance" we are just very mindful of our social interactions. Finally, for the lack of empathy he appears to have for you emotions, our emotions are not on the same wavelength as others. Going back to our struggle to express ourselves, we cannot just jump to the same emotional state that you are in. We may even feel worse than you later on by ourselves (thats usually 100% of the time as our guilt meter is ridiculous but has a slow-lasting effect to set in). Also why we say things we regret. Pairing that lack of immediate emotional comprehension with our nature to debate, we often go a malicious route in the arguement to feel like we won even though we went so low that it caused you to shut down. It takes a LONG time for us to forget things/get over them so jumping back to something that severely hurt us is a usual "go-to" to deflect conversations we don't believe are necessary or have been had multiple times.

Last thing (I hope, I've tried to cut myself off for like 30 minutes now). Its almost best to not dive into his emotions. If you want to, you can, but I would describe it as dark and be prepared for some things you may not want to hear or discuss (once brought up, these things cannot be pushed aside, they have to purely be focused on). Once the rubiks cube of emotion is uncovered, things will come out very raw and lack any form of discretion. Our minds almost have to spin everything to make our thoughts comply with the way most people think. In that way, these emotions or topics that cause emotion are only ever handled internally so that can be very insensitive to others. Another result can be that these are things that have been locked in us since the day they happened or only a parent, sibling or best friend may know. That is usually because the level of judgement that would follow is very high. Trust is the #1 thing I value in relationships and its because I want everything to to be open maybe once or twice and then never discussed again (things from my life prior to said relationship). Our past is one of the biggest struggles that hold us back and because of that we want to focus on forging a better tomorrow with the idea that we can be a new and better person every day.

To my fellow ENTP that typed the novel above-kudos, that looks like a response that I would make and I'm sorry I'm working and don't quite have the time to read it at the moment but will circle back. Like you, I planned on writing a few sentences then BOOM its a novel lol. Aaaaaand now I did manage to read it. Got sucked in...This is what happens when we reveal! We go in way too deep and then feel like its only the tip of the iceberg.

26 year old male in Ohio if that matters, this is my first anonymous blog post, but let me know if you have any more questions.

Anonymous101 (not verified) says...

I am an ENTP female, and I can agree with previous commentors that a lot of these traits apply to me as well as your fiance. I've struggled with anger issues and the need to feel in control, and I frequently still struggle with the problem of seeing people like so many puppets on a string (poke that string and watch them dance). It seems your fiance's brain works in much the same way.

The thing that stuck out to me the most in your post was this comment: "When he is angry, he exploded. He often uses my insecurities or knowledge of personal trauamtic experiences against me." I am not going to respond to every question you have, but I would caution you one thing: Do NOT make the mistake of excusing him for bad behavior on account of personality type. It's certainly possible to say something hurtful to a loved one when you're in a bad mood, but it is not acceptable to say things that intentionally strike at their deepest pains and insecurities whenever you're mad. When you truly love someone, you want to protect them, not injure them. Will you make mistakes? Yes. But if that is a pattern, it extends beyond the bounds of simple mistakes and into the category of manipulation. 

Personality is inextricably entwined with who we are, but personality type is not the ultimate factor determining our actions and reactions. Make no mistake about it, your fiance knows what he is doing, and he does have control over it. The specific issues that are bothering you may very well be issues that he will wrestle with his entire life, and that's okay. But assure yourself that he is actually, truly wrestling with them, not merely saying words of apology and allowing the actions that wound to continue.

He is still responsible for the way he treats you and other people. If you raise these concerns with him gently and lovingly and he does not respond well to you, that is a warning sign. Again, I've dealt with some of these same issues, so I get where he's coming from. Just remember...actions are choices.

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