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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Sat Dec 28, 2013 3:09 pm 
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From everything I'm reading introversion is definitely an inherited trait. I'm definitely introverted, while my mom for sure and somewhat my dad were both extroverted. However, I'm adopted so can't say much about the genetics there.

It comes into play now that I have a son. My husband is even more introverted than me, and I'm definitely seeing signs of my 3 year old being introverted. He was at a party with all his daycare friends a few weeks ago, but clung to my leg in the big group while all the other kids played games. Then on Christmas Eve he hid in a side room and said it was too many people for him to be around. (about 10 extended family adults)

I really feel bad...I don't want him to suffer as I have. I think I'm kind of a half-introvert in that I can't quite get to know people who I don't already know, yet I really WANT to know those people. So I constantly feel like I want more friends but I don't know how to get them. But then, even when i do get them I need a lot of alone time. I've kind of come to grips at this point (I'm 41) that people expect you to put way more effort into relationships than I'm able to give. Like, I can call about 1 or 2 people a week. I'm totally fine with calling friends every few months. But now I understand most people want you to call them every few days and go out all the time, and I just can't do that. No way.

There is also the issue of how it affects you at work. It is difficult to get promotions when you are introverted. So I want my son to be more extroverted than me, and I try to help him...but with my limitations it is so difficult. On the one hand I want to accept him for who he is and focus on the positives (being able to be happy when alone, creative, etc) but there is a constant feeling now like I need to find people to hang out with us and model good relationships. Which is like impossible. *sigh*

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Sun Dec 29, 2013 12:10 am 
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Aubade wrote:
I think I'm kind of a half-introvert in that I can't quite get to know people who I don't already know, yet I really WANT to know those people. So I constantly feel like I want more friends but I don't know how to get them. But then, even when i do get them I need a lot of alone time. I've kind of come to grips at this point (I'm 41) that people expect you to put way more effort into relationships than I'm able to give. Like, I can call about 1 or 2 people a week. I'm totally fine with calling friends every few months. But now I understand most people want you to call them every few days and go out all the time, and I just can't do that. No way.


This is me exactly. If I had children I would feel the same, and I would put so much pressure on myself to model a more extroverted way of being. Obviously I have no useful advice-I just wanted to let you know I hear you.

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Sun Dec 29, 2013 12:51 pm 
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pixel wrote:
You know you're an introvert when instead of being pissed off, you're actually a little relieved to find out you weren't invited to a party! My former boss has a big holiday party every year, which I've been invited to for many years but have only actually attended once a couple of years ago. And when I did go I didn't stay very long because I just don't deal well with the sort of sensory overload that goes with a big party. I enjoy chatting with people that I know already for a certain amount of time and then it's like I hit a wall and stop having fun and have to get out ASAP.

This is true of me too. And when I was a teenager and there were a lot of big, sloppy (you know teenage, ugh) parties, I was always relieved when they were canceled. I'm always happy to go out on smaller gatherings (i.e., PPK meetups, movies with friends, lunches, more intimate groups of maybe eight or ten or less) and I don't mind crowds at potlucks, either--I love crowded potlucks and they're never a problem for me. But the kind of parties where people are just sitting around socializing and drinking and there are a lot of people---I don't like those kinds of gatherings. Sensory overload, really.

Nebraskalaska wrote:
How'd everyone survive Christmas? I love my in-laws, but I nearly had a nervous break from being around them too much. And despite trying, I just still don't quite understand the amount of family togetherness they all seem to like.

After spending all day with them on Christmas Eve and Christmas day I didn't have any time to myself before 5 of us piled into our small car to drive to Seattle the next morning. An hour into the drive I was ready to go home, but we spent the next two days together, never further apart than just a room away. Always talking. So much talking. Again, we get along great, but it was just too much time together.

This is probably the most drained and emotionally exhausted I have felt in a really long time. I'm going to just suit quietly and read the rest of the weekend.

I was on a cruise early in December and there was a lot of socializing for me. I really genuinely enjoyed it the whole time (although I was mostly drawn to the activities such as screenings and lectures and less interacting things--but I did play trivia and had the most fun--but trivia's my thing) and while I made an appearance at the parties, I never stayed long just went to see what was going on. But anyway, a lot of socializing and it was a blast the whole way through but as soon as I got home, I holed up in my apartment for the weekend and read and was quiet and it was awesome. I really needed it.

Aubade wrote:
But then, even when i do get (friends) I need a lot of alone time. I've kind of come to grips at this point (I'm 41) that people expect you to put way more effort into relationships than I'm able to give. Like, I can call about 1 or 2 people a week. I'm totally fine with calling friends every few months. But now I understand most people want you to call them every few days and go out all the time, and I just can't do that. No way.

I am the same way. My social needs are simply not as strong as some people's. My sister even gets mad at me when I don't "call her enough" and takes offense. No offense is ever intended. I'm happy to call her a couple of times a week, I don't need to talk to her every day or even every other day as she seems to (sometimes, but not always) expect of me. As the years go by, the friends who understand that I need more distance and alone time and take no offense (as it should be because no offense is ever intended) are the ones who I'm still friends with year in, year out, really.

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Sun Dec 29, 2013 2:19 pm 
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Aubade wrote:
From everything I'm reading introversion is definitely an inherited trait. I'm definitely introverted, while my mom for sure and somewhat my dad were both extroverted. However, I'm adopted so can't say much about the genetics there.

It comes into play now that I have a son. My husband is even more introverted than me, and I'm definitely seeing signs of my 3 year old being introverted. He was at a party with all his daycare friends a few weeks ago, but clung to my leg in the big group while all the other kids played games. Then on Christmas Eve he hid in a side room and said it was too many people for him to be around. (about 10 extended family adults)

I really feel bad...I don't want him to suffer as I have. I think I'm kind of a half-introvert in that I can't quite get to know people who I don't already know, yet I really WANT to know those people. So I constantly feel like I want more friends but I don't know how to get them. But then, even when i do get them I need a lot of alone time. I've kind of come to grips at this point (I'm 41) that people expect you to put way more effort into relationships than I'm able to give. Like, I can call about 1 or 2 people a week. I'm totally fine with calling friends every few months. But now I understand most people want you to call them every few days and go out all the time, and I just can't do that. No way.

There is also the issue of how it affects you at work. It is difficult to get promotions when you are introverted. So I want my son to be more extroverted than me, and I try to help him...but with my limitations it is so difficult. On the one hand I want to accept him for who he is and focus on the positives (being able to be happy when alone, creative, etc) but there is a constant feeling now like I need to find people to hang out with us and model good relationships. Which is like impossible. *sigh*


Aubade, I highly recommend the books of Marti Olsen Laney! In The Introvert Advantage she has a whole section about how to thrive in the workplace as an introvert! And although I haven't read The Hidden Gifts of the Introverted Child: Helping Your Child Thrive in an Extroverted World, I got it for an introverted friend of mine whose daughters teachers were complaining that she spent too much time doing things on her own at school. He found it really helpful!

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Sun Dec 29, 2013 11:43 pm 
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my sisters and brother were super popular, and my parents' house was the official party hub, so i am actually more comfortable at large parties than i am at small ones. (at least at large parties i can glom on to one or two people i know/like [or none] and be more anonymous, and nobody would notice that i'm not being entertaining, but at smaller get-togethers, i can't get away, more is expected of me. so even though there are more people at larger parties, fewer eyes are on me, because there is always someone more interesting.)

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 10:52 am 
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The past week and a bit has been a lot of interaction for me. I worked Christmas Eve, had to deal with family for Christmas, worked three more days (long shifts), then travelled three hours to visit mom, spent the night, three hours back with hubby and the dogs, and today we are going to go three hours in the opposite direction to spend the night with friends, and again tomorrow. I've not been alone for longer than a bathroom break in over a week.

Reading in the car while Mr Moon drives has given me a few recharge breaks but I'm so tired. I need a day to just not do anything.

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 1:30 pm 
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Every year at Christmas I think to myself "next year I'm just going to go away somewhere!" but I never do. We did go away to Costa Rica over Thanksgiving once and it was so nice. And I actually enjoyed Christmas more that year because I wasn't like "didn't I just do all this stuff and see all these people last month?"

We've gotten into a pattern of spending Christmas Eve dinner with my partner and immediate family (my mom and dad, sister, her husband, and their baby). This happens at my sister's house so she can put the baby to bed, but I made a lasagna to bring for dinner (bonus- none of them except my partner is vegan but they all gobble up my lasagna that is full of tofu and vegan cheese and veggies! My brother in law even asked to keep some of the leftovers!). Then Christmas Day we have dinner with my partner's immediate family (his mom and dad and sister). We always do the cooking (this is fun for us because we like coming up with fancy elaborate meals, but it's still a lot of work!) and this year we hosted for the first time since we're in our new house so we also had to clean. His family is mostly vegetarian (eat occasional fish) and love our cooking too. I am grateful not to have to deal with any food-related bullshiitake at the holidays!

It was all very nice but I still spent most of the day after Christmas being utterly exhausted and just lay around reading/dozing/eating. We got pizza delivered because we didn't want leftovers or to cook anything. I feel a little guilty because I didn't go see my extended family (my dad's side that has a separate Christmas Day gathering), but I just don't even have the energy to deal with that since it's around 30 people! Luckily my partner has a similar tolerance level for gatherings that I do, so when his sister wanted to do something on the day after Christmas he asked her if we could do it the next day instead. We've gotten a lot better at recognizing our need for quiet time and knowing not to schedule too much activity at once.


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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Sun Jan 26, 2014 10:14 pm 
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I went to a bar with my friend tonight. I never go to bars, but my friend really likes this one place and is always asking me to go with her, so tonight I agreed to go with her for one drink. When we got there, there were only about a dozen people. My friend introduced me to a group of nice old irish ladies, and then we sat down. I was thinking, "okay, this isn't so bad." I figured I could just sit with my friend and drink my shirley temple (The bartender thought I was joking when I ordered one. No shame.) and then leave. One of the regulars asked my friend about a mutual friend and they started talking. I had no stake in the conversation, so I was watching the tv. Then the guy sitting beside my friend started in. Why aren't I talking? Why aren't I smiling? I should look happy. (Apparently I should smile like an idiot while I watch a basketball game, and jump into conversations where I wouldn't have any idea what I was talking about?) My friend could tell I was getting annoyed, so she kept trying to change the conversation, but he kept going back to it, and telling me I should get out more. (He has known me for 5 minutes but apparently knows how much I go out!) My friend finally finished her drink and we went to leave, but the bartender asked her if she could drive an extremely inebriated patron home. So then I had sit in a small car with a random drunken guy who asked me approximately 5 times why I wasn't smiling, and told me that he could tell that I didn't want to talk to him. No shiitake, Sherlock. When I got out of the car, he asked if I ever smiled (Even though I had smiled at him several times in the car to get him to shut up and stop poking me). I said, "Yes, ALL THE TIME," and ran up my driveway before he could comment.

Ugh. I am done with people for the next month, at least. I'm exhausted and jittery at the same time. I'm sure my friend thought it was fun, and won't understand why I don't want to go there again.


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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2014 10:55 am 
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Oh no, that sounds absolutely horrendous. I am shaking with horror for you. People suck.

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2014 11:04 am 
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Why do open-concept offices exist? When there is so much evidence to point to reduced productivity, increased overturn, higher levels of measurable stress hormones, colleague relationships turning sour...WHY!? All I want is some goddamn walls. They don't even have to go to the ceiling. Give me a damn cubicle.

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2014 12:47 pm 
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paprikapapaya wrote:
Why do open-concept offices exist? When there is so much evidence to point to reduced productivity, increased overturn, higher levels of measurable stress hormones, colleague relationships turning sour...WHY!? All I want is some goddamn walls. They don't even have to go to the ceiling. Give me a damn cubicle.

we got this thing goin' on here where it's open plan by default, but you can opt out and head into one of the quite/private spaces stashed around if you want to be left alone. we banished one guy to "the cave" because he was too annoying to have around.

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2014 12:56 pm 
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We have that too, but I don't think it'd be okay to move all my stuff and just stay in there permanently like I'd like to!

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2014 2:47 pm 
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I backed out of an internship where I'd be working in the same room with someone, basically back to back. I felt like the walls were closing in on and smothering me. Not the only reason for leaving, but brought up a lot of anxiety!

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 Post subject: Re: The Introvert's Support Thread
PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2014 3:11 pm 
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paprikapapaya wrote:
Why do open-concept offices exist? When there is so much evidence to point to reduced productivity, increased overturn, higher levels of measurable stress hormones, colleague relationships turning sour...WHY!? All I want is some goddamn walls. They don't even have to go to the ceiling. Give me a damn cubicle.


I ask myself this EVERY DAY. We don't have walls/cubicles/partitions either. Nothing at all. It's AWFUL.

There are meeting rooms I could go into, but a) we don't have very many and people need them for actual meetings, b) all of my stuff is at my desk.

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