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View Full Version : Caring for Your Introvert


Goronmon
04-14-2009, 12:59 PM
http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200303/rauch.htm

This article is a few years old, but I still found it fairly interesting.

Extroverts are easy for introverts to understand, because extroverts spend so much of their time working out who they are in voluble, and frequently inescapable, interaction with other people. They are as inscrutable as puppy dogs. But the street does not run both ways. Extroverts have little or no grasp of introversion. They assume that company, especially their own, is always welcome. They cannot imagine why someone would need to be alone; indeed, they often take umbrage at the suggestion. As often as I have tried to explain the matter to extroverts, I have never sensed that any of them really understood.

Gwinny
04-14-2009, 01:04 PM
I'm an introvert but I am adult enough to get by without needing special coddling. :) Still, it'd be nice not to have to hunt high and low for solitary space. Maybe sound-proofed "introvert only" booths? Heh.

Goronmon
04-14-2009, 01:09 PM
I'm an introvert but I am adult enough to get by without needing special coddling. :) Still, it'd be nice not to have to hunt high and low for solitary space. Maybe sound-proofed "introvert only" booths? Heh.Despite the title of the article, it's really mainly about how extroverts interpret what they notice when dealing with introverts.

ClannerDelta
04-14-2009, 02:13 PM
I'm an introvert but I am adult enough to get by without needing special coddling. :) Still, it'd be nice not to have to hunt high and low for solitary space. Maybe sound-proofed "introvert only" booths? Heh.

The article wasn't actually about that...

It was more about the automatic responses to certain situations accomplishing the exact opposite of what the well meaning person might have intended. Was a nice read.

Like when I get invited to a party and spend the rest of the next day kind of huddled by myself. Almost every time I have to explain to the person who took me along that I'm not angry, upset, or offended by them. That I simply need to have time alone. And that I would love to go again sometime in the future but that going out several nights in a row would most likely destroy my ability to function normally for a while.

Some people understand, some simply can't and assume that I'm just trying to brush them off "politely".

Gwinny
04-14-2009, 02:23 PM
I read it, actually! And while it's nice to give extroverts a "guide" - don't ask them what's wrong, etc - it's subtextually still a call for special provisions. Unless I'm reading too much of an agenda into his assertion that introverts are "repressed" by the extroverted.

Edit: I'm perhaps unduly sour because "Party of One: A Loner's Manifesto (http://www.amazon.com/Party-One-Manifesto-Anneli-Rufus/dp/1569245134/ref=cm_lmf_tit_5)" was, despite describing my personality to a T, one of the most pathetically self-indulgent things I've ever read.

Goronmon
04-14-2009, 02:26 PM
I read it, actually! And while it's nice to give extroverts a "guide" - don't ask them what's wrong, etc - it's subtextually still a call for special provisions. Unless I'm reading too much of an agenda into his assertion that introverts are "repressed" by the extroverted.I think the main point is that social expectations are usually based on a person being extroverted and that you can't just treat everyone's responses to social stimulus the same way. Or, to use your term, "special provisions" are already in place for extroverts.

TrackZero
04-14-2009, 02:34 PM
Well, strangely enough, I was born an extrovert and apparently changed after having my arm broken as a child. My parents both attest to the complete change in personality and behaviour. So I can't imagine it's driven by any type of genetics more than a pattern your brain learns at an early age.

Gwinny
04-14-2009, 02:47 PM
Well, I just showed it to my friend, and she quite liked it! I'm the odd one out as usual. Le sigh. :)

ClannerDelta
04-14-2009, 03:24 PM
I read it, actually! And while it's nice to give extroverts a "guide" - don't ask them what's wrong, etc - it's subtextually still a call for special provisions. Unless I'm reading too much of an agenda into his assertion that introverts are "repressed" by the extroverted.

Preconceptions aside, everyone requires special provisions. It's called courtesy. I don't leer at a woman's cleavage, I don't drool on a man's food, I don't fart in a kid's face. Ok, maybe the cleavage, but I'm only human.

More people do need to know the difference between an introvert trying to cope and someone just being a dick. The two things can be hard to tell apart. It also doesn't matter to me in the slightest. As, in the end, if they get offended... I don't care. I'd continue to spend my time alone. It's the extrovert that tends to be harmed. As they get offended by innocent things they perceive to be something else entirely.

Ancalagon
04-14-2009, 03:32 PM
Good read! Thanks for that, I may have to send it to my family members. Its funny that... I never considered other people never wanted "me" time. Sometimes, on a Friday night, all I want is a little time to myself. Watch a favourite movie again, or listen to favourite music, even watch favourite super and ultra combos again. Thats totally normal to me. I suppose thats why gaming is totally normal to me - others see it as solitary and antisocial, but to me, it has more value than watching TV (no seriously, I dont like TV).

His (brief) discussion of perceived qualities of extroverts vs introverts reminds me of an internal discussion I had a while ago. Or thought, whatever. The thought was this:

Most people, when they think of someone as domineering and controlling, would also think of that person as confident. However, I think that this is not necessarily the case, and can in fact be the reverse. Since, a confident person is at home with himself, and feels no need to control or dominate others, while a domineering and controlling person (sometimes) does so out of fear of being seen as inferior. Thus, just because a person doesnt always fight to be in control, doesnt mean they arent confident.

I think that was the gist of it anyway.

torrefaction
04-14-2009, 04:53 PM
I've never been able to figure out if I'm an extrovert or an introvert. I'll party for days straight, with people all around me, talking to people pretty often. Other times I'll isolate myself, play music, think, and play a lot of games.

I've always felt pretty happy either way. Like I'm right in between.

ClannerDelta
04-14-2009, 04:54 PM
Like I'm right in between.

I think you're just bipolar. :p

torrefaction
04-14-2009, 05:02 PM
I think you're just bipolar. :p

Apparently I'm one of these...

http://typelogic.com/entp.html

Goronmon
04-14-2009, 05:07 PM
I've never been able to figure out if I'm an extrovert or an introvert. I'll party for days straight, with people all around me, talking to people pretty often. Other times I'll isolate myself, play music, think, and play a lot of games.

I've always felt pretty happy either way. Like I'm right in between.I don't think the normal distinction is that introverts necessarily avoid social interaction, just that they have different behaviors during social interaction. In addition, it's that extravert's don't normally enjoy the concept the "alone time".

Then again, I probably wouldn't worry about it too much, as I don't think there is much if any actual scientific work to prove the existant or classification of these types, haha.

torrefaction
04-14-2009, 05:09 PM
I don't think the normal distinction is that introverts necessarily avoid social interaction, just that they have different behaviors during social interaction. In addition, it's that extravert's don't normally enjoy the concept the "alone time".

Then again, I probably wouldn't worry about it too much, as I don't think there is much if any actual scientific work to prove the existant or classification of these types, haha.

Uh....there's lots. Google around. Not of the Myers Briggs thing in particular (There's a lot of people who reject that...) but of the basic personality types there's a hell of a lot of research.

Goronmon
04-14-2009, 05:11 PM
Uh....there's lots. Google around. Not of the Myers Briggs thing in particular (There's a lot of people who reject that...) but of the basic personality types there's a hell of a lot of research.Nevermind, for some reason I thought that's what you were linking to. My bad.

torrefaction
04-14-2009, 05:14 PM
Nevermind, for some reason I thought that's what you were linking to. My bad.

Oh, I did link to a myers-briggs test. They're free and entertaining. As far as I can tell, the only test with solid scientific backing is the PAI though.

TrackZero
04-14-2009, 05:42 PM
Apparently I'm one of these...

http://typelogic.com/entp.html

Thanks for the link actually. Been a long time since I filled one of these tests out (and probably the first time I was honest with myself on my answers), got pegged as a:

http://typelogic.com/infj.html

Which really explained to me why I "shut down" and never really understood why. Nice site, good writeups (despite the 1996 "trippy" web design).

BlackPete
04-14-2009, 05:45 PM
I can safely classify myself in solid introvert territory to the point where people almost think that I'm being rude or unfriendly, no matter how many times I try to reassure them that is not the case.

I don't even think of myself as shy either; I just simply don't have anything to say unless I feel that it's interesting, insightful, or informative that people would like to know about. I go through a little mental test before saying something: Would *I* find it interesting? No? Then don't bother mentioning it.

I also don't like to talk while my thoughts are still a "work in progress"... so if someone were to ask me what am I thinking at any particular time, I'll usually just mumble instead.

Great article.

BlackPete
04-14-2009, 05:58 PM
Hmmm apparently I'm one of these: http://typelogic.com/intj.html

they will be able to tell you almost immediately whether or not they can help you, and if so, how. INTJs know what they know, and perhaps still more importantly, they know what they don't know.

So I'm Rumsfeld? :eek:

Codicier
04-14-2009, 06:01 PM
Just from reading the descriptions, I'd say I'm closest to this one: http://typelogic.com/isfj.html

Stoke
04-14-2009, 06:22 PM
I don't even think of myself as shy either; I just simply don't have anything to say unless I feel that it's interesting, insightful, or informative that people would like to know about. I go through a little mental test before saying something: Would *I* find it interesting? No? Then don't bother mentioning it.

I seem to have the opposite thing going for me, as I think my shyness stems from my introversion. I'm always pretty quiet for that same reasons you are, that inner filter is always running and if I don't find something worthy of being said I usually don't say it. However, in a social situation I know I'm supposed to be saying something so I tend to get nervous and self conscious which tends to make me avoid social situations.

Also, according to the test I'm http://typelogic.com/istj.html

LongStepMantis
04-14-2009, 06:41 PM
I'm a "walk softly and carry a big stick" kind of guy.

I'm introverted, rarely speak unless in familiar company, and have a tendency to stare blankly at people. Which may explain why more than one person I've come to know eventually told me they thought I was a serial killer at first.

quidmonkey
04-15-2009, 10:10 AM
<---- 96% Introvert