Love and the introvert

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Introverts may need plenty of alone time, but we also need love, and we love our special person fiercely. I was asked a few days ago to get into how introverts handle love and possibly rejection, so this post is a start. There are so many in-depth things about introverts and love that will also need to be talked about in the coming days and weeks, so I’ll start with some general observations about how love may be different for us.

1. We think a lot. We ruminate and dwell on things, while extroverts are chit-chatting about what happened in traffic or talking over each other about the game they saw on TV. Of course we’re busy thinking of all sorts of things, but our brains are working so hard it’s a wonder we don’t smell smoke sometimes.

2. We have only so much energy to spend with other people each day, so when we have someone to love we have to choose how much time to spend with them. If we just go on and spend all of our people time with our loved one, then we end up not nurturing other relationships – friends and family. We may even find ourselves drained spending as much time with our new loved one as we want to. We want to be with them, but after an extended time we also may find we are so exhausted we can hardly talk.

3. If we are dating or married to an extrovert, they may find life boring when we don’t want to go to parties every night (or even many nights). They may decide to make it a project to “draw us out of our shell.” They may be hurt when we don’t accompany them everywhere or tell them all of our thoughts. In fact, they may report to us that their other friends and family ask them, “Is there a problem?” if we are not at every single event that is held, no matter how many of those exhausting events there are. It is so important to try to talk to our extrovert and come up with a compromise so that he/she is not bored or lonely and we are not exhausted or filled with dread of social events all the time.

4. If we are dating or married to an introvert, we may find a wonderful time of doing things together, sharing undemanding, comfortable time together. The main problem I have seen here (don’t ask me how I know this) is that since we may both avoid conflict at all costs, little things that annoy the other person will never be heard until it is a big thing. We may go on for years with another introvert and each think the other knows how they feel about things, because neither of us is going to talktalktalk about our *feelings* all the time. Once again it’s important to talk to the other introvert and try not to hurt his/her feelings, but try to make sure there are no long-term misunderstandings or resentments.

5. When we start dating someone and have to start doing things around their family and large group of friends, we may find ourselves feeling really awkward at gatherings. What can we do except sit with a self-conscious smile as they all make their inside jokes and talk about things we know nothing about? What I’ve done in the past is to start talking first to whichever person seems the most approachable, listening to them and responding appropriately. I don’t want to be an anchor around their neck though, so I move on naturally after a reasonable time and talk to another person who looks friendly. In that way there won’t be a big group consensus of, “Dave’s new girlfriend is stuck up and aloof,” since gradually I will have talked to everyone in a friendly manner. Just not all at once. 😉

What about rejection?

Rejection is awful for anyone, but for us we might think about it night and day, replaying the fatal argument or what-ifs.

Sadly, if we have neglected friendships and other relationships during the happy time with our loved one, we may now not have one intimate friend to sympathize with us.  Of course we vary in the amount we’d want to tell someone else, but as a woman I’ve always enjoyed to my sister and one other close friend.  The rest of the world may keep asking, “What’s wrong?” or telling you “Smile!” but we really don’t want those people talking about us or our lives anyway.

Since we are introverts and don’t have boundless energy for people, we are not as likely to go to activities in the evenings after work where we might find someone new.  Instead, we may go home from work each day totally spent as far as people-energy, spending the evening alone in our homes.   My suggestion here is to go out when a friend does invite you out.   Go out for a drink or dinner with friends, but take your own car so you know you will not have to stay late.   Also I have had one girlfriend try a dating service that was a really nice one, It’s Just Lunch. She met a couple of great boyfriends through them, and eventually married one. The point is to keep your mind open to meeting someone new when you are ready.

The worst thing of all is the huge hole the rejection will leave in your life. We introverts don’t have 30 close friends; we have fewer relationships and they are very deep. The loss of this person feels like a death to us, and we need to grieve. There’s no getting around that part, but time does help. So will finding someone new.

There are 16 personality types (8 of them introverts) according to the MBTI, and there are two genders. So all of the above considerations are going to be a bit different for each introvert. I would truly appreciate if anyone has anything to add to this that might help another introvert. Please leave your comment below, or you can just click “Reply” to reply to each others’ comments. I will write more related posts in the coming days.

Photo credit: CAVE CANEM

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136 Comments

  1. I found your blog via Google, and this particular post really hit close to home for me. I’ve only ever ‘dated’ three girls, and they all ended up dumping me in the end–they also all never felt as strongly as I did about them. As you said in your post, each time it feels like a death. I’m a Sophomore Philosophy major in college, along with being an ISTJ Introvert, and having a kidney condition–needless to say, I don’t go out much. I’ve recently come to the conclusion that relationships just aren’t for me. In three years I’ll be out of college and in Grad school (an online course to become a Librarian), but I just don’t see myself with anyone at this point. The possible rejection hurts too much, and so does the end of the relationship–which, undoubtedly will follow.

    I hope I’m not the only one who thinks that a quiet life with a Companion Parrot sounds nice!

    • Hi Mattheous! I totally respect what you’re saying, and a quiet life with a Companion Parrot does sound nice! On the other hand, at this point please don’t get discouraged or rule out having someone in your life if you want to later. You’re going to meet all sorts of people at college and after you get out, and I really hope you’ll meet a cool girl who deserves you! Thanks so much for your comment, and please keep coming back to Introvert Zone.

  2. Shannon Hamling on

    Much like Mattheous here I stumbled upon your blog while browsing on google for articles on Introversion. See, I’m only 17 so I want to find out as much as I can before this introvert is thrown into the “real world”. Except that often times I feel I live more in the “real world” than a preponderance of the people around me.
    This article in particular helped me with my boyfriend, I sent him the link, because he’s very much extroverted but he tries so hard to make me happy but me being me makes it hard to convey my thoughts to him. (they always just seem so alien.) He’s 20 a footbal player in high school and the girls swooning like crack addicts so by the time I met him, about a year ago, he’d had plenty of girls saying they loved him as soon as they saw him, but I didn’t, I refused. I was the quiet girl in the bowling alley, with my team, during class and the other girl threw herself at him, I was almost too shy too open my mouth, but somehow he took a liking to me. We’ve been together officially for eight months and I didn’t say ‘I love you’ until two months into it. He knows now that when I say that I love him I actually mean he’s my soul. LOVE is so limiting. Anyway thanks to this article we’ve learned a lot more about each other, or he’s learned more about me (I’m the observer.=]) So sorry I’ve wasted so much of your space I was just overwhelmingly extactic that I found your blog!
    Thanks,
    Shannon

    • Hey Shannon – that’s awesome! It’s wonderful that he was able to look past all the fawning girls to the quiet one he wanted to get to know. You’re definitely doing something right – just being yourself! I hid your email address from your second comment so you wouldn’t get thousands of weird emails. 🙂 I don’t have any specific advice. You’re a smart girl, and you’ll do great out in the “real” world!

  3. I just recently just found about myself ( better late than never) even though I knew I was different. Did some research ( I know I know thats what we do), Im a guardian. I m married to a extreme ex talking is his specialty Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha.

    • Hahaa….oh my! 🙂 It really is good to know it though, instead of thinking something’s wrong with you or with your husband. This way you know when it’s time to say – “I need some ‘me time’!”

  4. I’m a 29 yr old guy and have been an introvert for the majority of my life. I’ve been in a relationship with an amazing girl for the last 7 months and things were going really well till last night when she told me that my introversion is kind of a deal-breaker even though all my other qualities are to her liking. I found your blog while looking for ways to change my personality so I won’t lose her and felt that it was spot on with respect to my situation. I’ve only had a handful of people in my life that I’ve been close to and breaking ties is like death. Now I’ve started dreading the day she’ll leave me because I don’t talk incessantly or shy away from conversations in social settings. I work full time and am in grad school so when I’m outside those settings I’m pretty much drained. I know it’s hard to teach an old dog tricks but what’s is there any hope left for me to be less introverted? Thanks.

    • Hi Enigma – I hope lots of others will chime in with good ideas to try, but I wanted to say something fast because here it is Friday and you may see her tonight. Lots of couples manage by compromising.

      If she loves parties and you hate them, then something like deciding on a certain number or type of parties you’ll go to – and letting her go to the others with a group of friends – might work. The same goes for other activities, of course. And she could even enjoy talking on and on sometimes and let you listen.

      It all depends on if she really cares for YOU, or if she’s decided she wants a wild party boy. And that’s not you. I’d say, don’t try to change your true self, because it really wouldn’t come off as real, and you couldn’t fake it for long anyway. But be your BEST self. If you just don’t want to be bothered with an activity but it would mean a lot to her, then why not go.. then I would hope she also cares about what means a lot to you. I hope you’ll find yourself with someone who loves the real you – whether it’s her or someone else. Although I know we hope it’s her. 😉
      IntrovertZone´s last post ..Respect my introversion- please!

    • Hi Enigma,

      I definitely understand what you mean when you feel drained, and here’s something that might help. Being an introvert in a relationship with an extroverted individual, I’m usually ‘following along’ if I’m not exactly interested in the activity or event that’s about to go on. However, in order to enjoy this, I’ve found that you just have to let go of the notion that it’s boring – look for something else within that environment that excites you, and possibly, share it with the people around you. By doing this, you will at least give off the appearance that you’re enjoying your time, and none will be wiser if you’re really involved in an ‘act’ of some sort to deal with the situation in a positive manner, or if you’re actually enjoying the event. Cheers

    • Hi Enigma,

      I will be very frank with you as we are in the same age range and have similar experiences.

      First of all, don’t change. You are who you are. What most people forget in regards to introversion and extraversion is that they are personality traits. They are hardwired in your brain. It is kind of like telling a gay person to be less gay or a woman to be less feminine. It is unlikely to happen and it is pretty rude to do so.
      On the other hand, you can of course adapt, but the best way is to let people who you are and tell them about what makes you tick. Then they will understand, hopefully, why act the way you do.

      Kind of like telling someone you don’t want to go on a ferris wheel because you are scared of heights. People will understand if you explain why.
      Of course, you will always meet the person that is not willing to understand, but best choice is to surround yourself with those who do not only understand who you are, but also respect who you are.

      My wife is an extravert, and she kind of forgets now and then that I am an introvert and thinks I want to go out all the time and get a bit frustrated when I want to be left alone. Luckily she hasn’t told me my personality is a deal-breaker, but it might also has to do with the fact that I put my foot down pretty hard to let her know I don’t want to do something. It’s not that she is inconsiderate and I am a douche about it, it is more about I’m being very clear about where the line is. And explain that I really need my down-time, or else I will unwillingly be grumpy because I am tired.

      I’ve had ex-friends and ex-girlfriends that has not always been too respectful in regards to my introversion, which is why they are all ex-something now.

      I will be extremely blunt with you now. First you should find some articles that explains introversion. I could suggest a few to you, but I’ll just give you where you can start looking, so you can find the articles that explains it the way you want it, and in a way your girlfriend will hopefully understand it. Here is a good start, Introvert Zone, I have a few articles on my blog, .random[oid] and Psychology Today might also have a few good ones.

      Ask her to read the articles you have selected and sit down and talk to her. Try to make her understand that you both need to respect each other. I’m pretty sure you respect her extaversion, so it is more or less time for her to show that equal respect towards your introversion.

      If she still is not willing to work with you on this, like you should do in any relationship. Then I would actually suggest and show her that the “deal” is over between you guys. I know it sounds a bit harsh, but she has generally told you that you need to change your personality so she can like you.
      That is kind of like a guy telling another guy that is gay that he needs to stop being gay or else they can’t be friends anymore.

      I know I might be a bit strict, but I speak from experience. First she will try to change your introversion, soon it will be something else.
      I hope what I wrote made sense and that you found it helpful.

      If you have more questions for me, just ask. I don’t mind helping a brother out. 🙂
      Dr. W´s last post ..Ask the dokter

      • Lany K @keywords on

        Hi Dr. W, I am an extrovert. I printed out articles about both personalities for my introvert boyfriend after many “talks” of trying to figure out what was happening with us. In the beginning (before we dated and a month into the relationship) he called, texted and wanted to see me all the time. Gradually it tapered off. Also if we were in a room together with other people he wouldn’t approach me first. It was hurtful, he said “I don’t understand why you see that as a personal slight. If you want to talk to me then come talk to me.” So I said “I almost always want to talk to you. What bothers me is you know that but still don’t make the effort to walk across the room and at least greet me.” We had conversations where we were both explaining ourselves but not being understood. So I did some research, I found this site and others. It was like a beacon of hope for our relationship. I sent him the information with a small note that explained if we both tried to understand each others personalities, I really think we could make this work. He was offended, he thought I was trying to tell him what to do and that this is how he is and that I should accept him. I told him it’s not that I don’t accept him, in relationships people compromise. I want to know what annoys him or makes him uncomfortable so that if it’s within my power to not do it, I won’t. Long story short our relationship ended, I still have strong feelings for him and it has been several months since we broke up. I still see him a weekly because we belong to the same club. It is very difficult. . He told me that he doesn’t really think about me, kind of out of sight out of mind. Seeing him so calm and collected has me contemplating on a weekly basis to switch clubs. But I love the members so dearly. I am rambling. I’m just trying to understand introvert personality so if I find myself dating one again I am well informed. Although everyone is different, I’ll at least have a headstart. Thanks for reading.

    • Oh Enigma, I’m sorry to hear that.
      Is she willing to compromise or work out a plan on this? If not (and I know it’s easier to say this than be in the situation), she’s not worth it.
      I love introverted guys. Extroverts are charmers, but they talk about themselves too much (ahem, me) and always want to be hanging with a group (as opposed to couple time) that I get annoyed with them quickly.
      My current boyfriend is an introvert and I love him to bits- he finds me fascinating and loves hearing my crazy stories. He sees the world in ways none else i know does. He doesn’t enjoy my group times, but he’s happy for me to go alone, and i’m pretty independent so I love that I can disappear with my friends on a Friday night and come back and curl up with my boy. We’ve worked out how we can both get what we want.
      So what I wanted to say was, don’t lose hope. And don’t change to a point where you’re completely drained trying to please her. that’s the worst, because she’ll leave you anyway.
      Good luck

  5. I am sorry that she can’t see & support you for who you are. I’ve been in your place & I understand your frustrations.

    I learned that being with someone who appreciates all of me is way better than fighting against myself in a relationship that will always ask for more.

    It still all comes down to energy (& love) & how you want to use it….

    I wish you the best

    • Kaimy Figueroa on

      Kaimy

      I’m in between extrovertive and introvertive and i’m still in love with an introvert guy, you see he met me in the worst stage of my life where i wanted i hated my life. I had cheated on him three years ago and slept with his friend four years ago because i was so vulnerable and weak. But i never did these mistakes again in my life or relationship. He still keeps thinking i’m untrustworthy and recently broke up wid me and said that any other person is way better than me, that noone else in this world will the things that i did. .He has lied to me before and even intentionally cheated for revenge. Sometimes i think he hates me. I have known him for four years. He is the love of my life but treats me badly and always thinks i’m attacking him. I work and study and planned to have a future with him. I have recently started to research on introvertive and extrovertive in order to understand him and communicate with him more. I don’t know what to do, i’m meant to leave him alone but i cant’t, i don’t want to lose him. This

      • The two of you have a lot to overcome. Infidelity/cheating destroys trust in relationships. The trust between the two of you can only be restored by the test of time. First you must both agree that you are still willing to be committed to and love each other. This would be the starting point for fixing it. If either one of you does not agree to this, sorry to say it is basically over. If both agree then you can rebuild the trust in the relationship. It may take years but if the two of you really love each other it will be more than worth it. You also need to both stop cheating. Every time you do makes the possibility of the two of you ever being happy less and less likely. Stop cheating!

  6. I was interested to read your view on relationships and I am glad I found this article on your blog. Actually your whole blog is very interesting to read. Anyway, it is notable that you say as introverts you need space from the person you love no matter how much you want to be with them, and constant interaction with them drains you. I find that to be true about myself also when I am in a relationship. Yet, what I have noticed that in general this particular need to get away from your significant other for some time is more pronounced in men v. women.
    Elaine@Commitment Advice´s last post ..Why Men Who Seem To Avoid Some Women Chase Others

  7. I just found this site this week also while I was firs looking up how to have conversations, then the owner/writer of another mentioned introverts which brought me here. I appreciate the sense of validation for my experience and the feeling of encouragement and possibility.

    There’s a few things that resonated with me
    -Feeling the hardship of losing a friendship/connection that meant something to you
    -The challenges of seeming boring to friends, partners, people you just want to connect more with to maybe be friends, and trying to do things to keep the extravert around
    -Integrating yourself into an unfamiliar group (like your significant other’s friends or family). I myself got introduced to an online game where you team together with others against another team. And then both trying to get into one of the existing clans AND also having to learn and develop and get skilled, well all that has made for a really draining and further separating experience.

    Though to get back on topic with this article, connecting with your loved ones, whether family, best friends, or a partner. I find it hard to use verbal communication in order to connect. It may be both my introverted tendencies along with not growing up in any communicative environment, talking/dialogging to connect is daunting. I know people can choose to stay committed to each other regardless of the amount of communication, but at the same time we want loving exchange, right?

  8. Hi, I have just recently starting dating an introvert. I am an extrovert. I can say, I have never felt so much love and deep feelings from someone. I truly love most of the personality traits that come with loving an introvert. I do want to mention though, that because extroverts are more “popular” we don’t have it any easier. I spend most of my time trying to sort out the introverts wants and needs. I don’t mind for the most part, but sometimes it would be nice to be understood as an extrovert and have the introvert worry about what my needs are.
    I’m just sayin…

    • Finally someone has said what Im feeling. I’ve known my I fo 15 years and after a long absence have reconnected. I love him so very much, and I know he Loves me. He somehow managed to ask me to move in with him after 3 weeks since our first reacquaintance. He asked me to move in and I have, and ever since all I feel is ignored. I’m definitely extroverted, and thought this would be great. I can see myself marrying him one day. I just don’t understand, why ask me to live with him, just so he could ignore me all the time? He shows his love everyday by doing really nice things for me. Then why do I still feel so alone? I need the verbals, I need the physicals, “just knowing” isn’t enough for me. I’m reading every website and blog etc about how to be with HIM, why doesn’t he feel the need to do the same? Why do I have to figure this out, meanwhile he’s not expected to meet me half way?

  9. Hi,
    This is a great article and has helped me identify this guy,( who has come to be very special to me) as being an introvert and with whom I have been spending a lot of time with the past 6 months or so. What i still do not understand is whether he feels something for me or am i just a friend to him? He has a long time girlfriend but we spend a major part of the weekdays talking to each other or chatting to each other. And he always tries to be here for me as far as possible. The nights when we do not talk is when his girlfriend is at his place and he has specifically requested that I do not call or talk to him during this time unless i have some big problem.

    I am very very confused about him given that he says that I am special to him and he comes to talk to me when i tried avoiding him or withdrawing from him. He believes that a guy and a girl cannot be just friend or even just best friends. He never lets any of his emotion show. He always notices if someone touches me whenever we are in the same room and comments on it when we are alone together. He barely misses anything with respect to what i wear or make up or something. I know he isn’t well when i try to avoid him or talk less to him given that i have feelings for him ( and he knows about it) and he has a girlfriend.

    I will really want to understand what he is feeling on this. I think we can have something great together but at the same time if he is happy with his gf whom i think he loves, i would just try to move on. Somebody help me understand my special introvert…I want him to be happy, even if away from me or i have to stay as just a friend but at least i will know where i stand. He refuses to answer whenever i ask about this…

    • Yash Bhargava on

      Hi Shakti

      I might not be a very enlightened soul on the subject, but I would suggest you to discuss this issue with him openly and frankly. Ask this very question to him – “Do you have feelings for me, or are you just a good friend to me?” Because the kind of intimacy he shows towards you means that he treats you like one treats someone he/she loves. At the same time, he has a girlfriend; which kind of raises questions over his integrity as a man. I would suggest you ask him the same, without being rude. It will be helpful for both of you (rather all three of you) in the long run.

      Wishing you the best and hoping it turns out all well 🙂
      Take care.

  10. Thank you for the blog. It really helps. I have been struggling to understand my boyfriend. I have never have relationship with an introvert before so it has been very confusing for me. I do love him very much and deep down I believe he does too. So I’m willing to know and understand him better.

    • Read your comments on the blog about introverts — I , too , have never had a relationship w/ this type of person and it’s a different experience. We have told each other we love each other , are there for each other but it is a struggle sometimes. This blog is a help with some of it

  11. Hello, I am both autistic and definately introverted. I am 17 now and have never officially dated anyone. Recently I was rejected by the only girl I have ever actually had feelings for, she has tons of friends. And has gone out with more guys and girls than I have friends. She is always saying she loves her friends and things like that, but when I said I loved her she really knew I meant it, and she said I was making her uncomfortable. Everyone said these things don’t last long, and that I would get over it, but even after months I havn’t and they just seem to get mad. It makes me believe they really havn’t been through this, or they would understand. I lack the will to try and even deal with people again much less go out with someone, even now that would feel like betrayal. This really is like death.

    • Alex – I’m so sorry that happened to you! And I’m sorry that those people around you don’t understand how devastating the whole experience has been for you. It’s easy for others to say, “Oh, you’ll get over it,” but I know that for us introverts these things tend to hit harder. For one thing, it’s because we think about things a lot more. For another, it’s because we’re not busy with 400 of our “friends” all the time like the extroverted people might be.

      But – please believe me when I tell you that things will get better. When you’re with this group, try to pretend you’ve forgotten about this then you can move on and talk to these same people – just be sure to talk about other things. And yes, an extrovert may say she “loves” friends, but she could tell that you were serious. So try to keep things light for a while, have fun with people and hopefully a girl who is thoughtful and sensitive will come your way SOON.

  12. Heyy…i just found this blog and i think its really great…i’ve been an intovert since forever…its not the choice i made…but somehow i turned that way…my parents thought i was scared of talking to strangers…but frankly i just didn’t want to. They were always concerned abt me as i always had a very limited friends circle!
    Last year i had a girl in my life…she was an extrovert…but somehow it clicked…we became close and started dating…but it was not the same after…and finally we broke up…its been a few months now but m still crushed with the break up…i asked her and she said that she loves me but cant be with me…we wre opposites in personality terms and from what i infer….she just got bored of waiting for me to open up completely…right now i’m totally clueless…i do talk to her sometimes…but i never talk abt the relationship with the fear that we will lose even the thin string we have left in our friendship…as i said ”i’m clueless right now”

  13. I am an extrovert in love with an introvert. As an extrovert I have always been surrounded by extroverts all of my life and then I met a wonderful guy that I thought there was something wrong with him. He was too quiet! for an extrovert that is a deal breaker. I never even heard of introverts. We dated a couple of times, and there was something about him that attracted me so much but the quiet thing I couldn’t handle. I thought to myself, I don’t want to loose an awesome guy because he is quiet, how stupid does that sound. I talked to my sister and she told me; he is an introvert. I was like what is that, she explained how introverts thought process is different, how they love or express their feelings differently. She gave me a book about introverts and I began to read and read, he fit every single characteristic of introverts. His job, his hobby, his few friendships, etc… Of course my friends would all comment how quiet he is, asking if he is bored, if he is a snob… At first I would make up excuses but then it started to irritate me the fact that they didn’t understand an introvert. I decided to listen to my gut and heart instead of my friends. My family is very accepting of him and they understand introverts. I’ve got to tell you that if you are in a introvert/extrovert relationship, the extrovert needs an eye opener like this book was for me. It helped me so much to understand the introvert world. This made the difference choosing to stay with my boyfriend. I love my introvert man and we have been together for 3 yrs. I’m hoping he’ll pop the question soon, but I know you can not pressure the introvert, they will do it at their own time. So, the lesson here is… educate your extrovert. Is not that we can’t love introverts, is that we don’t know how. And if that person is now aware of how introverts function and still doesn’t accept it, then they don’t deserve you.

        • Thank you so much for suggesting the book – and thank you to your advice, and everyone’s advice on this blog, especially the author of this article. I went searching for information on introvert/extrovert love because I am in much the same situation as all of the extroverts who have commented on this page. I am deeply in love with an introvert. We just “clicked” when we met. Being an extrovert all of my life (with anxiety issues tied in) his calmness is soothing to me, and at the beginning he was very intriguing. Introvert men have this way of looking at you that make you feel like you’re the only woman in the world.

          However, we’ve been together now for almost 2 years, moved in after 6 months, and I am having a lot of issues understanding him. I feel so much more educated now after reading this article and the comments! It explains so much – like how he comes home from work and goes straight to the computer sometimes, just anwering me with a grunt. My main issues of late have been that I will be in a great, happy, bubbly mood and I want him to give back to me the same energy. Instead, I get a quiet nod, possibly a slight smile. That instantly deflates me, and makes me feel like I’m acting immaturely, or stupid. That I’m annoying him, with my loudness.

          He tells me that he loves me for who I am, and would never want me to change. So then i feel awful, because when I get upset that he isn’t being responsive the translating meaning is that I want HIM to change. But the qualities that I love about him are all a part of his introversion.

          Dinorah, thank you so very much for putting the name of the book down. I’ve already read “Men are from MARS, Women are from Venus,” as well as “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff in Love” but neither seem to apply to introverts. I’m going to pick that book up ASAP, and try to learn to adjust to his personality. I love him too much to lose him, and right now it’s not healthy for either of us to keep going on as we do.

          But one comment…why does it seem that it is only the extrovert (in this case, the woman) that has to make all the changes and do all the reading? Why can’t he read up on being an extrovert??

          • It seems that when extroverts and introverts get together it is usually the extrovert who does most of the adjusting. It is that way in my marriage to an introvert. I think it might be because the world seems to be more adjusted to and oriented more toward extroverts. Just seems to be part of what has to happen. I know it doesn’t seem fair and perhaps it is not, but when you want to stay with an introvert it seems this is one of the things we must accept. As you already know introverts are absolutely wonderful people. It seems that in their thought processes it is not unacceptable for them to shut down on you at times. It also seems that they do not mean anything by it and they do still love you. I know, as an extrovert it takes some time to get used to this. Introverts just don’t seem to have the same flexibility to adjust as we do. I have discovered that I am now a more quiet and tolerable person do to the adjustments I have made for my introvert and surely she is appreciative as introverts are misunderstood quite a bit.

            • I think you’re right – I need to get rid of any resentment that I have to change (which I think will just poison things in the end) and accept it. I can almost look at it as I am so adaptable, go me! He does shut down on me at times, but understanding that he does so not out of spite, but because he’s uncomfortable helps me alot – the last thing I want is for him to be uncomfortable.

              He’s definitely worth it – I had a stroke last year (on my 35th birthday) and he was wonderful. We had only been together for about 8 or 9 months at this point – and he has been such a great help. He visited me every day in the hospital (in a different city) and came to rehab appointments with me, to see how he could best help me out. Most men would have run screaming, but he stayed and continues to stay and support me.

              He has the patience of a saint. 🙂

              I just ordered a book called The Introvert and Extrovert in Love: Making It Work When Opposites Attract and I’m really looking forward to diving into it. 🙂

  14. Wife of introvert on

    Hi all,

    I’m not sure how long ago this blog was posted but I’ve just discovered this site and its been such a great discovery. I admire Dinorah’s comment – she’s been much more intelligent and understanding to her man than I have been (being I suppose extrovert myself!). I wanted to write primarily for some of the people above who have found their introverted personality a ‘deal breaker’ and explain the opposite perspective (for some of us extros). I’m married to the best man in the whole world, for nearly 4 years now, and its taken me until recently to get anywhere close to understanding him.

    Before now I’ve just been showing him love in the best ways I can (sometimes right/wrong) and never knowing what effect or otherwise it has had on his life – am I making life better for you or not? I just stick it out in the marriage because I adore him, but never quite sure if there’s a future for us or not, ‘cos I have no idea how I’m doing (if I get abuse from intro’s for being so dense, its completely deserved haha!)

    My main issue as a woman has always, always been – ‘how much does he love me?’. And constantly not feeling trusting/secure of this lovely man, because I simply didn’t have the faintest clue what was going on inside his heart/mind. Now, for background, my husband is not in any way complicated, deceitful, etc etc or vaguely worthy of my mistrust, and I think my lack of trust has hurt him terribly at different times (thankfully learnt not to do that last coupla years). So where does it go wrong? Probably because I’m so used to an extrovert family giving me feedback (eg, you hurt me when you did this, or I love you (a million times a day)) and its been crazy going into an environment where I’ve got no verbal feedback for my actions/words but just this quiet, not-sure-if-he’s-mad-or-just-quiet, what-the-heck-is-he-sitting-there-thinking, kinda content looking guy on the sofa next to me. It’s like going into a relative emotional vacuum. And all this time if I’d had more brains to do my research (like Dinorah) I’d have learnt earlier what that quietness means – not ‘the silent treatment’ but rather he’s just content – he’s just FINE – leave the poor bloke alone!!
    Plus, I’d have had sense to look at the signs that he DOES show, that he loves me – those actions rather than those words (of which there are plenty in my marriage) (now I realise it doesn’t all have to be verbal!).

    But what help can I offer you people who’s women/men are fed up with the quietness? Well I can honestly tell you we extro partners (or something like that?!) not trying to be difficult, but its SO HARD having the constant self-confidence to know the other person is enthralled with you despite never saying a word about it. You crave some display of what the intro really feels about you – those heartfelt questions like ‘what does this relationship mean to you?’ ‘why did you choose me?’ ‘are you happy with me?’ etc etc. Not talking about constant gushy emotional conversations, just a little ‘risking yourself’ and making those deeper parts of yourself plain and vulnerable to us. A little comment, be it written/spoken/lyrics of a wellknown song or poem or whatever, can tide us over for AAAAGES, so that when we see you sitting there in your silent solitude, we have the strength/confidence in ourselves to believe, ‘its not me, its just him being quiet’.

    I don’t know if thats any help to anyone, sorry its a bit long. With best wishes and prayers for your relationships.

    • thanks, reading both Dinorah’s and your post has provided insight as the why the spotty relationship between my introverted love interest has been so hard. we’ve gone in and out of this for the last 4+ years. right now I have the silent treatment going on and I can’t tell if I’ve been dropped for good or it’s just a reflective time for him, which makes me crazy. I never know if he’ll just walk away without a word – meanwhile it becomes more of a pronounced one-sided interaction until I am tired of it and back off. what’s more funny is that my dad was an “I” to my mom’s strong E and a previous boss was also an “I” and I find myself with the stronger E tendency in my adult years…only today do I realize I’ve had these experiences in my past that should have taught me something if I only really paid attention. reading a lot of these posts somehow gives me hope and if this particular relationship doesn’t pan out, at least now I know it’s because the differences may have been too much.

    • Wife of an Introvert,

      First off I would like to say thank you for that great post. As an introvert married to an extrovert, I have often heard my wife express herself in the same fashion as you have. I love her deeply and now better understand where she is coming from after having read your post. Although I cannot and will not change who I am (In this particular area), some of her past concerns have now replayed in my mind and my goal is to make her feel more secure and loved.
      Herm´s last post ..Introvert has tried everything but has no friends

  15. I found your site after some searching…wondering why I was so different from msot other people. your info helps a lot!
    As for rejection…that hole is deep and hurts like hell doesn’t it? I’m dealing with one now 🙁

  16. My husband is an extrovert and I’ve introverted. He is always wanting me to attend parties and hang out with his friends, whom he affectionately says are “our friends” even though I avoid socialisation with them at nearly all costs. Recently he brought it up again and I think I will show him this blog. It mirrors everything I feel and the social pressure.

  17. Hi and Happy Christmas
    I just ran into your blog while searching 4 more information about introverted people and hopefully found the best one fast. Thanks G.
    My story is the same. A guy (in this story I am the Guy), meets a wonderful, well-educated girl and as time goes by the beats of his heart gets faster and faster. At first, I tried my best to prove my all considerations and passion by asking around“ok honey how are you feeling these days?” or asking about her family to keep her happy, as we are both in university at the same field of study and both are far from our families. Having this in mind that “I should be cautious, not to disturb her by sounding like a busybody guy.”
    But after a while she explained to me that she is an introverted and you don’t know how to act with an introverted. It was a bit hard to abide by but I knew that I should start over. Putting a pile of psychological books on desk and starting to read.
    Now, the situation is getting better and better. But there is a big question that I could not find its answer even in your great article. The question is “How should I know that how an introverted girl is feeling about me?” I can’t get through the point whether I am in her league or not.
    Thanks a million guys
    Wish you the bests
    Happy Christmas

  18. Just found out about introverts– and I have been dating one for four years ( off and on, it seems.. ) I knew nothing about it , went thru a lot of emotional heartbreak ( does she care , cancelling dates at the last minute claiming exhaustion from work ( 10 hr days )

  19. I am in a relationship with an introvert that has been going on nearly 6 months now. I’ve been doing a lot of research lately to become a better mate for him. Why? Because I have never loved anyone so much as I love him. Not my ex husband, not anyone.

    I know I drive my man crazy, and it hurts me so much when I do. I am 51 years old and sometimes feel like a stupid child. This site is a real eye opener for me. The best I’ve found as of yet. Since I am both an extrovert and a caregiver, I think I am a “double whammy” to my man. I know he loves me as his actions speak volumes. I am trying to learn to take care of him less, so to speak. I am so used to waiting on people, hand and foot, that I drive him insane and he sometimes snaps at me. I know he means no harm, it is me who is invading his space, after all. And I cry too much when I mess up, which also drives him nuts. (Menopause certainly ain’t helping THAT situation at all, lol)

    There are many things I want to learn here. I also want to share and ask questions…in time. Thanks so much.

  20. Pingback: Notes on Relationships | Introversion 2.0

  21. My name is Mark! I have been with my girlfriend for 15 or 16 years. I have just found out what a extrovert and a introvert is. I am 47 years young. She has 4 boys and I have two. My ex threw me out after 7 years and broke my heart and tore my boys away from me. I found my girlfriend and the kids grew up. I got them every other weekend.Through the years two of her kids moved out. Mine out and on their own. Her youngest boy is 17 and the next is 22. and will live with us forever. She has moved her daughter in law in with her 4 year old son. They will live with us for ever. Her parents live with us during the summer I finally figured out she has to have as many people in her life as possible. I want to be alone! I love her now and falling out fast. It will never change. Her kids are spoiled rotten and I was raised on nothing. It is so hard and getting harder everyday. I can’t talk to her anymore! When I say it reached 60 degrees already. She then says I can’t figure who this girl on this movie is. She treats me like a little usless boy. I admit I have had 8 grand mal seizures from epilepsy. My brain is not the same as it was. I think and feel like I am still the same person. I don’t deserve this silent treatment. I just want to know if you think I should leave this relationship? Another thing is she ask’s me a question and I give her an answer and she tells me I am wrong instantly. She is always trying todegrade me so I feel lower about myself. I’m sorry for going on for so long and so much. Please HELP me and let me know what you think? Please? Please? Please?

  22. I’ve known for years – even prior to marriage – that I am married to an introvert. He’s a great guy with a big heart and an amazing mind. He is probably the smartest person I know. I love him to bits and wouldn’t trade him in, ever.

    Of course, having said that, you know that I’m going to post about an issue. He works in a very stressful job. He’s good at it, but there is a LOT of stress. This means that when he comes home, he either wants to talk about what may have stressed him about work, or he wants to just relax and watch TV. (Or play a video game or futz around on the internet.) Then on the weekends, he needs both days to recharge. Those are all understandable for an introvert. I’m borderline (based on MBTI) extrovert/introvert so, I don’t care that we aren’t running about doing things every weekend. We go to hockey games some weekends, we occasionally go to a movie or dinner. We have a “camping house” that we go to sometimes when the weather is good. Those things are at a level that I think are comfortable for both of us.

    The issue is that his need to recharge, and his stress level during the week leave me NO time to talk to him if there’s something that’s bothering me that has to do with us. I asked him once how and/or when I should approach him when there’s something I need to talk about. The answer was, essentially, to know when he’s stressed or had a hard day. As well, he has told me that he feels trapped by his job and that he needs the weekends to be as low-key as possible and that “those” conversations make him feel trapped at home today. While I appreciate his honesty, it leaves me with a question. When CAN I talk to him? The weekends need to be low-key, the workweeks are stressful. What time does this leave me? He’s taking a couple of extra days off this week and while he’ll be more rested, I feel like I can’t bring up anything – even to tell him about this very thing – because it will ruin his time off.

    Any suggestions as to what I can do? I can’t stand the idea of upsetting him or having him feel bad about himself. What I’ve been doing currently is to suck up my feelings and not say anything about… well, much of anything. I’m making an effort to talk even less and to not seek his physical or emotional attention. I want him to come to me if he wants to, not because I’ve begged for him. (Hey! A girl has to have SOME dignity!)

  23. @Kelly, appeal to his prefered method of communicating…email him. Yes you two live in the same house, yes it would be better to deal with things face to face and get them over with…but those extra conversations take even more energy away from him and cause him even more stress, on top of the stress that he is trying to recover from on the weekends. Ask him if emailing him will be ideal? *shrugs* just an idea…hopefully it works. or some kind of communcation book that you both would write in.

    • First, sorry it took me some time to get back here. Lots going on at work.

      @kgm – I don’t think I said his preferred method of communication is email. I have tried that method a couple of times simply to be ignored. I wanted to give him time to process what I said. I can only assume that he processed it and found nothing worth commenting upon. Were I to say that to him, he would likely say that with all the work things he has on his mind, he simply forgot. Um, yeah, that feels good – NOT.

      I really feel like I’m stuck amongst a rock, a hard place, a brick wall and black hole.

      • Kelley! Try to sit down and watch a good movie with him. During the commercial breaks or whenever their is a not so good part. Just ask him if their is anything in life he would like to talk about. I am a introvert about 90%. If he starts talking just listen to him and reply when nessisary. Slowly but surly ask him what he wants out of life. He has to do his part because this is life and time is going by. I think he will start coming out of his shell. I would! Us introverts are much eaiser to talk to when the other initiates the conversation. I know work is hard and stressful. But this is part of life. When you walk out of the door at work, leave all the weight behind you because it will be no different when you get their the next day. All must have their perogatives. I wish and hope all the best for you and good luck. I hope he starts to communicate with you. Life is short and if he does not communicate with you at all in the next year or so, you need to start contemplating your relationship.

        • “Just ask him if their is anything in life he would like to talk about. ” Why? So he can look at me in his puzzled way and say, “No, not especially,” and leave no conversational opening.
          “When you walk out of the door at work, leave all the weight behind you because it will be no different when you get their the next day.” Which would be great if he could learn how to do that. Hasn’t happened yet, and with his specific work situation, I doubt that it will. Unless his boss quits, which is highly unlikely.

          My real dilemma is that I have NO IDEA when to have a conversation with him about something that is bothering me in our relationship. I don’t want him to be at home and feel trapped, and yet, I feel like I’m trapping all kinds of feelings inside me. And when he asks, “Are you okay?” I lie and say yes because I know what the conversation will bring if I say otherwise. Tears and feeling misunderstood on my part, and defensiveness and feeling trapped on his. Who would want to do that to someone that they love? Certainly not me.

          • Kelly – why do you lie to him? Why do women constantly lie to men by saying things are “fine” when they ARE NOT? He started the conversation that you’re so desperate to have, and you shut it off!

            Your feelings and needs are just as important as his. He needs to step out of his comfort zone and talk to you, just as you sometimes will have to get out of your comfort zone to acommodate him. You are doing all the acommodating in this relationship, and that isn’t fair to you.

            It’s great that you want to find just the right time to talk with him about the relationship. That shows empathy on your part. Try getting away for a long weekend and have a light converation about your relationship. I don’t know you at all, but I’d be willing to bet he loves you very much and has no issues with the relationship. You two probably speak different love languages. Try to notice the things he DOES for you. That’s how introverts show love. Going to work every day and taking care of his responsibilities with the family/house is his way of telling you he loves you.

            You seem a bit insecure. You need to get to the route of why you need so much reassurance that you are loved. A good counselor might help.

            • I say “fine” even when it’s not because I do not want to be the one that makes him feel trapped by an emotional conversation. The idea of doing that to him ever again leaves me cold. Because not only is there no good time to tell him things, there’s no good way to say it either. His defensiveness is painful for me. It’s like seeing a beloved animal in a trap. I guess I just have to give up on being able to say what I want to.

              And while we do speak different love languages, I also don’t understand why I’m always the one who has to figure what things mean. Why can’t he ALSO learn to speak my love language?

        • BhsquaredBmscounseling on

          Sorry pushed the wrong button. I am learning that introverts have no problem ignoring someone if they don’t want to comment on somethin. Not what most would consider a social norm. Seems as though an introvert does not think this is rude. In my case I am learning to accept it as I don’t think it is something that an extreme introvert can change about themselves.

  24. Kelly, I understand that completely. It is really hard for me, too. We have rare moments when we talk about us, and those times are good, really good. And he DOES prefer email, of course we live almost 800 miles apart, for now. Given the choice between a phone call and email, he’ll take email nearly every time. It used to hurt my feelings a bit, but now I understand it. He needs time to decompress from whatever the day threw at him.
    When we’re together, he has made an effort, lately, to go out and do little things with me. For him, a trip to the store is HUGE. Things like that show me he truly loves me. He would never go walk around a craft store for an hour if he didn’t love me. It’s somewhat overwhelming for him.

    There are challenges, and we are both making strides in making this work. He is worth the little concessions I make. Love is all about give and take anyway.

    • Thanks, Karen. Part of my issue is that I don’t want him to do things JUST because I want to. I want him to do stuff because he has decided that it would be fun or interesting or whatever. I work really hard to give him a break for almost everything social. Most things I just tell him, “If you don’t want to, you don’t have to. I would enjoy your company but I’m not going to make a fuss if you don’t go.” I want him to be comfortable doing things and to want to do them. Not fake it for my sake. (Please know that I don’t think your guy is faking it! That’s just how I feel for myself and my situation!)

  25. John@keywords on

    Found your board to be very useful. I am an extrovert deeply in love with and introvert. I am learning so much. I felt it is necessary to love my introvert in the way they need to be loved.

    • Guess who drove over 800 miles to see me? Things are great. We’ve been really talking about us, and that we make a great team. We are in it for the long haul and I couldn’t be happier. He has been opening up to me more and more and we have developed a strong and deep bond. We laugh and cry together. We are completely honest with each other, good or bad. And we work through things together now more than ever.

      I am eternally grateful for all the help I have found online. And for finding my true love, at long last.

        • Thank you BH. Although it has been an adjustment with many tears along the way, I have never felt so loved in my life. I am so grateful to have this man in my life.

  26. Hello,
    I have been seeing a self-professed introvert for almost a year and I sometimes wonder if he is just saying he is an introvert to avoid activities (going to the movies, dinner) with me in public because I walk with a cane. I also think he uses it as an excuse to fool around with other women. I am very confused and a bit lost because I too feel like an introvert, but I feel the need for his company. I want to tell him how I feel, but I am afraid of him telling me that it’s not serious for him. Help.

  27. Such a great place! Keep working it out. I am a Myers Briggs extrovert and introverts are such great and different people. I fell in love with and introvert and am very glad I have taken the time to get to know here and understand her, rather than just reject her when I didn’t quite undersand her behavior

  28. My I hunny ended up staying for 2 weeks on this last visit. It was a great 2 weeks. I got him outta the house twice, once for a concert and once to spend the day walking around an historic cemetery. Talk about opposite ends of the spectrum! I should add that i didn’t pressure him, as I’ve learned better. I simply put the idea out there and let him know if he was interested, great. If not, still great.

    Our relationship gets stronger by the day. I believe it could have all ended had I not done my research and started to learn how to love him. Being an E, I too crave hearing the reassurance of him saying I love you, and all the other things us E women feel we need to hear. Every day I understand and see more that his actions say he loves me. The little things he does to make sure I’m safe and happy. I have a sometimes debilitating disease and yet still think I can get around like a 20 year old. He is frequently telling me to slow down, relax, don’t overdo it, things like that. And he has done some work on my house to make me safer. To me, that speaks love far more than hearing those 3 words.

    I am still learning and guess I always will be. We both are. We make concessions for each other have gotten really good at compromise and meeting in the middle. I know not to push him and in return he responds and opens up to me more than he used to. This site has been a huge help to me, and I appreciate you all so very much. Please keep it coming and everyone hang in there. Just do your research and be the best mate you can.

  29. Courageouslyme on

    You know I have always known how I am about things. Just never understoon why. But the only reason I only wanted to know why was because others kept trying to change me and always asking why I am the way I am. But it wasn’t until this past week when my brother and I were talking about how much I hate family gatherings. He said to me “Do you know your an introvert? When you were a kid I remember people thought you were moody and always brooding. But you weren’t. You just wanted to be along and preferred to go read a book than sit and chit chat.” That hit me like a tonne of bricks. He made me do this quiz which suggested I was wickedly an introvert. This may sound weird but my life started to make sense and I am more comfortable. I began to read and read. Thus I found this site and this blog on lover. The biggest thing I discovered is that I always get romantically involved with extroverts and it never turns out. They have been fantastic men and in the beginning it was fabulous but then I started to tire out and feel smothered. Now I realize it was because I tried to be an extrovert with them and I so am not. That I eventually became overwhelmed with them and myself. Then when I started to pull back they did not understand! They took it as rejection. Now recently, I had become involved with a fellow introvert. After discovering that I am an introvert I now understand why our relationship worked. We always had this quiet understanding about each other. We just got each other. I just now can not understand his sudden withdrawal. But the point is thank you for this site.

  30. Courageouslyme,

    Good that you have made this discovery about yourself. I would suggest that an introvert can make it with an extrovert and they can be a nice complement to one another. What it really take is a level of understanding from both of what it means to be an extrovert or an introvert. So just let it flow! When the right one comes along it won’t matter if they are introverted or extroverted. I am an extrovert in a wonderful relationship with an introvert.

  31. hi kelly,

    i really, really understant what you are saying, since i’m an extrovert
    married to an introvert.and to tell the truth, i’m not in good terms with him right now.
    After only dating him for 1 year, and married for 1 and half years.
    The fact is, we got married when i was working with a horrible boss who kept harassing, attcking my characters and degrading me. But, when i told my husband , he didnt like comfor or consoled me.he just listened.i do not know, maybe i was dissappointed by my expectations. Eventually, i quit from my job after discussing with him and continued my master.because my former boss really drive me crazy to the extent i was thinking of seeing a psychiatrist.but he didnt understand.i have to resort to calling my frineds to express myself.i even taught him how to respond verbally instead of hugging me.i need comforting words. And then come another issues like, u know,tired from work, dont want to go out during weekends,family events are just tiresome,a walk in the park is burdensome.

    i’m at loss now.i canno tlak to him. We are not doing things together.but, i bet, he must be thinking he has done all he can for me.he’s the perfect husband. All my wishes are granted but still.and now my grades in my previous exams are not really excellent.and i dont want to tell him coz i just know what’d his response.no response!

    • Bmscounseling on

      I have been spending time learning how introverts and I am also married to one. I believe it is unrealistic for to want them to change their personalities. Just like I would not like my introvert to change my extroverted personality. Truly introverts live in a different kind of world. This means you have a decision to make. Hope things work out for you in a way that is healthy and good for both of you.

    • Hi Lynn,

      It seems like you’re facing more than just a typical introvert/extrovert conflict, which is more about energy and socialization levels, but you’d otherwise have a lot of intellectual and emotional compatibility. Now’s probably not the time in your relationship to look at the other incompatibilities you’re facing, since it seems from what I’m reading, that you’re still dealing with the confidence issues your rotten boss gave you. You should take care of yourself first, and talk to a therapist or a psychiatrist if you need to, so that you can clear your mind and heart. Tell your husband, without judgment, that you need to seek help and that your grades are suffering because you’re still hurting. My guess is from what you’ve said above that he’ll quietly support you, as you said he did when you quit your job and went back to school. Resenting him for not being everything you needed isn’t fair to either you or him; I’m guessing the hurt you’re dealing with is more than one person can ease.

      If you’re interested, or can hear this now, I’m thinking the heart of your conflict with him lies in the last paragraph of the article, where the MBTI (Myers Briggs Type Indicator) is discussed. Your post reads a lot like it comes from the language of personal values and emotions, while your husband is more detached and logical, or the classic Feeling/Thinking conflict.

      Introverted thinking types are detached, and don’t speak “reassurance” well (just from the description, I’m pegging him as an IxTP). On the other hand, we’re very cuddly (yours truly is INTP), will listen to anything without judgment, and will support you wholeheartedly in any practical moves you make to ease your suffering. We’re great emotional sponges 😉 We can learn to speak the language, and adjust given time, pointers and experience, but it takes time, and we’ll never speak it as fluently as you might desire. Also, it probably seems insulting to have to teach us, but the world of emotions is pretty alien and frightening to some of us. And draining. Socializing is already energy-sucking, but emotional situations are even more so.

      My guess is your husband is more aware than you think of the problems in your relationship, but he doesn’t know how to bring them up in a way that won’t hurt you more. Talk to him, but just tell him the problem without the emotional baggage that comes with it. Be honest. He might not know your grades are falling or fully understand the stress your under, and he might resent you if you keep that hidden. And get yourself some help! You shouldn’t be suffering still from some idiot’s emotional abuse!

      Just a random note: if you want to get out more, see if you can hook your husband’s intellectual curiosity. Suggest maybe a museum exhibit on something that’s dear to you, or a conference or gathering on one of his hobbies or areas of interest. Or if you want to take a walk, maybe you can do it in a quieter place. JMHO, walks for me are a great way to process my thoughts and feelings. There’s something about the rhythm of the footsteps, and my introverted husband and I have rambling conversations that go on nonstop when we walk. As for family gatherings and functions, yeah, I find them “tiresome” too, but he needs to just suck it up. Tell him that 😉

      Well, that was long. Anyway, I hope you feel better! You don’t deserve to be dragging around this much pain. I wish you luck, love and happiness!

  32. Hi lizzy,

    🙂 thanks for the great advice! really strike a chord with me when doing some self-reflection.talking about being a grateful wife who has a caring husband(in his own way, that is) . except for the communication part. we had another long discussion last nite on how to resolve this often-cropped up issues. (again).hope our new resolutions will really work this time around.

    yes, you are right when you mentioned i have to settle my own issues first. i was deeply hurt by my former boss till i completely lost my self-esteem, and this coming from one who was an achiever and a ‘retired’ mountain climber.did i mention that i was actually promoted by my ceo, and not my former boss, when i resigned:(

    at least, you told me what my husband might going through from an introvert’s perspective. you are right when you mention on the MBTI personality. i dont remember our exact type but he is ‘the scientist’ while i’m ‘the giver’. yes, on paper i’m an introvert but on the people-side.talking about introvert-extrovert continuum. i still can remember example for my type ie lady diana or mother theresa.

    btw, are you a counsellor?:) i really can relate with your words.

    • Nah, not a counselor, unless you count the three therapy sessions I attended back in the early days of my marriage when I was trying to cope with my MIL’s “rush to closeness” in the course of invalidating me as a woman because I’m logical 😉 I’ve just been where you are, struggling with confidence and self-esteem after experiencing emotional abuse when I was growing up. I’m still struggling with it to some extent, and probably will the rest of my life. It gets a lot better with time, though, and if I’d been smarter (and a lot less arrogant) when I was younger, I probably would have been a lot better off getting help.

      I’m really sorry your boss put you through that! I’m shocked too that your company didn’t do anything to help you out, especially when they obviously valued your contributions.

      Interesting too about your mentioned MBTI profiles. I couldn’t remember, with all the various theoretically-assigned names which one “The Scientist” and “The Giver” are, so after taking a little look-see, it turns out your husband is an INTJ, and you’re ENFJ. When you’re feeling better, you might want to take a look into the “cognitive functions” aspect of the theory. It explains a lot more about why you might be having communication issues.

      Your primary (most favored) function is Extraverted Feeling (Fe), which involves a lot of readily expressed external emotions, while his tertiary function is Introverted Feeling (Fi), which involves a more inward direction of expressing emotion. I’ve been trying to get my brain around Fi, but it baffles me (my inferior function is Fe). I’m not sure how you’d go about reconciling inward vs. outward expression of emotion, TBH, but it might give you a few clues about why your emotional communication seems so difficult. Your best bet might be to try to connect through your auxiliary and his primary Introverted Intuition. Later, that is 😉

      Right now, be selfish. Be so selfish it makes you sick. Get the help you need, and tell your husband you need him there with you when you get help. If he isn’t willing to go along, go by yourself. It’s good you’re discussing the communication issue with him, because right now, he’s probably on the sidelines, wishing he could help you better and in the ways you need. It’s really painful, as I know from experience, to watch someone going through emotional hell when you don’t know how to help them in the ways they need– agonizing, in fact.

      I have my fingers crossed for both of you! And I hope too in the long run this makes you both stronger in love.

  33. wow, it really feels good to ‘talk’ to people and have a really ‘quality input’:)

    lizzy,

    thanks for the info on MBTI analysis. i thought i’m an Ixxx for MBTI but it’s an Exxx.at least i remember the personality. nevermind, now I really have to revisit the in-depth descriptions of me and my husband’s. at least, i’m making efforts for our relationship rather than citing clash of personalities or irreconcilable differences:)

    on my former job, the fact that i keep mentioning it to other people meaning i’m not really over it. now, i dont really care about ambitions, positions etc. i just want to feel good about myself and happy.

    nad u take care too! make our struggle worth for the true happiness that we deserve;)

    and my thanks to bmscounseling for the insight.true, we can’t change them. just our wish to have them open up or respond to us, and only then we can really connect with them. but you know…

    • Glad to hear this forum is helpful for you. It has been a good find for me as well. FYI the Myers Briggs is probably the most respected personal inventory in the professional world. I have taken it several times myself. A very helpful tool for our life’s journey

      • I agree this forum is very helpful as i have messaged my long term man/ex to talk to me even if he don’t want to get back with me.He owes me an explanation. If i had known before we would have been engaged by now. Thanks alot for this site. Take care.

        • kaimy,

          I just read your post on another blog entry, and yikes! TBH, I’d cut the cord. Totally. Just sever it. He’s not worth your pain or your time. And does it really matter *why* he did what he did? Finding out is only going to keep you holding on.

    • I’m just glad I can help even a little. The funny thing about the MBTI is that I keep seeing little hints here and there in the realms of psychology, biology and cognitive science (my current obsession) that seem to show a lot of real-world backup for the instrument and its underlying theory. Introversion vs. extroversion seems to actually be a real physiological difference in the way individuals’ bodies handle dopamine. “The Introvert Advantage,” a book I’ve seen mentioned around this site talks about it more detail and I think Susan Cain’s book “Quiet” mentions it too. The introvert/extrovert dimension of personality seems to be a continuum, and most people are clustered somewhere in the middle, so you might actually be an “ambivert.” I’m actually the “extrovert” in my marriage, which is hilarious, considering I go nuts if I don’t have time alone.

      I don’t think you’re facing any major irreconcilable differences, honestly. You’re just in a rough spot, and that highlights the early-marriage jitters and adjustments that everyone has to make when their whole living arrangements and lifestyles change. Mine sent me off into ridiculous agonizing over being the “family coordinator” and “family historian” after reading too many “how to be married” books.

      You do have some communications differences that you’ll both need to accommodate, but nothing’s insurmountable. You’ll both make adjustments, and you’ll finally reach a happy compromise once you’ve both gotten to know and understand each other better. JMHO, you really don’t “know” someone until you’ve married them, and live beside them day by day, and you really don’t know your relationship self either. From what you’ve written, I can feel the love you have for him in your words, and the love he has for you in his actions.

      I think you’ll both be fine. Probably better than fine, since you’re both willing to work at your differences!

  34. I feel so grateful for finding this blog,this information helped me a lot,thank you so much!But I have a question there..When introvert is falling in love with someone,what are the signs?How did you extraverts figure out that your introvert special one has feelings for you?Thanks in advance!

    • Introverts are a bit cautious and delayed in telling someone they love them. They will tell you and mine has done so. Extroverts are probably tell you too much. So, again a good complement when an introvert falls in love with an extrovert. Also look for ways that your introvert wil show you love, as opposed to telling you

    • So true – and I say that as an extrovert! I’m learning more and more about how my BF’s brain works, how introverts and extroverts are hardwired to be the way they are, so upbringing etc. doesn’t have that much to do with the core personality. That in itself helps us understand one another! And I just picked up a book called “The Introvert and Extrovert in Love’ and it’s such a great tool for me! I am laughing out loud as scenarios the authors (an introvert and extrovert couple together for 40 years or so) describe I can totally relate to.

      Now, I just hope that my introvert BF is as interested in learning about ME, an extrovert, as I am about him. 🙂

  35. I have been keeping up with this blog for awhile now, and posted a few times. Also been doing loads of research on introverts so I can be a good partner for my man. We are so different, and so alike. I have had my moments when I wondered if things would work out. I am so happy to say that we are still going strong at 11 months! I’ve never been happier nor felt so loved.

    We understand each other very well. We have both seen each other’s best and worst. I am grateful that we complement each other very well. And we talk things out. Not just problems between us, but each other’s problems. We work through everything together and it looks like we will get through whatever life slings at us.

    Both of us are going through some really tough times individually right now. What pulls us through is knowing we have each other’s backs. We support each other no matter what. I have never had that before, nor has he. We have talked more and know more about each other in a year than my ex and I did in 15 years. And I am eternally grateful this man is in my life and my heart.

    We are proof that it can work. Patience, talking and learning are the keys. And total honesty. Without that, you have nothing.

  36. Love doesn’t see who is introvert or who is extrovert. It just happens but what happens when love happens between an introvert and an extrovert person, that’s the question. Well I think it doesn’t matter when love is there. because love gives the confidence to introvert partner to express his/her feelings to extrovert one. I must say
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  37. This Has Helped Me So Much.
    I Have Been Dating My Introvert Boyfriend For 2 Years and We Never Even Thought Of Him As Being An Introvert Until Last Night. I Was Just Wondering If Any Introverts Could Help Me Out With Sexuality. I Understand That They Tend To Think A Lot, But Is A Lack Of Intimacy Another Quality Of Introverts? But I, As An Extrovert, Has Found This Very Helpful For Our Relationship.

  38. I have recently discovered that I am a total introvert. I never really understood what that was, but have looked it up recently. I am in my late 30’s, female, divorced and a mom. I’m looking it up now because I don’t see how introverts can maintain a relationship. My boyfriend just left me tonight because I have treated him so bad and the reason I treated him bad was because he moved in and almost immediately became the enemy…because he would not give me my space! I NEED alone time and I told him that before he came here….but the moment he moved in, he couldn’t ever get enough of me. The moment he left, I was so relieved, and he was hurting so bad. I just feel evil. I am tired of breaking people’s hearts and I refuse to do this to anyone anymore. They obviously think they can change my mind. Me growing old alone really doesn’t scare me…yet anyway. My friends all need relationships, they seem to be scared to be alone for 5 minutes and they just don’t know where I’m coming from at all. I feel like the meanest person in the world right now

  39. Thanks for the tag. I always tried to act like an extrovert. But i’m getting failed at all times. Can’t help. I always feel some of my close family members and also my friends don’t like me as i don’t chit-chat with them regularly. They are with me always but not that closer. I like to make friends but don’t know how to treat them. I think too much and end up talking a very little. Should I change my behavior If yes, then how to??? Do you have answers…. Plz do reply. In writing this i haven’t thought at all. Coz after reading the above these questions came out deeply..

  40. Hi Sandesh, I was the commenter right before you. No, I wouldn’t say you need to change who you are. I’m just now figuring out what makes me tick by knowing what an introvert is, and that will help guide me through my future friendships/relationships. Others in your life should know why you are the way you are so they do not take things personally. But, there is nothing wrong with us, we are just different than the majority and that’s okay. Going forward, I will know how to explain why I need alone time and with all I have going on, I know now is not a good time to have a boyfriend, so I’m going to retire dating mostly until I get through school. I noticed some comments from extroverts that say if an extro and an intro are together, it’s only fair to compromise and that’s true, but I know now that when I meet someone, if they can actually make me feel deep enough to compromise, then we’re good…but it should flow and if it doesn’t, the relationship/friendship may not be right. This is my spin anyway. I’ve always felt social anxiety and kinda like a weirdo, but now that I know what it is, I feel much better and it feels more comfortable to be me now. Good luck! In an extrovert’s world, we kinda need it. lol

  41. Magnificent website. Lots of useful information here. I’m sending it to several pals ans also sharing in delicious. And obviously, thank you for your sweat!
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  42. Michelle@keywords on

    Found this blog while looking for good jobs for introverts. I am an introvert and have been basically happily married for the past 5 years to a fairly extroverted man. He says he’s introverted with bursts of extroversion! He traveled a lot with his job — which was perfect for me — but 2-1/2 years ago he lost his job and is now working at home. I love the man, but HE IS ALWAYS AT HOME! We have a very small house and I never feel like I have any space or time to be by myself. Sometimes I’ve actually just told him I had to do errands so I could get in my car and just GO somewhere to be by myself. Is this totally weird?? Does anyone have any suggestions?

  43. No, that’s not weird at all. I know my guy needs his alone time, so when I visit him, I sometimes just go out for a couple of hours so he can decompress. Maybe you need to talk to him abut introverts and show him a few websites about it. That’s how I learned to be a good mate for my man. Hey, I’m as extrovert as they get, and I need down time, too. Everyone needs that.

    On that note, he and I have been together 15 months now. I’m believe he may move out here in a year or so. We’ll see how that goes. We are happy, though, and love each other very much. This site helped me so much in understanding how to be a good mate.

  44. I am an introvert by nature. I never used to take interest in girls(not that I didn’t feel attracted to them) mainly because most of them were haughty and arrogant.
    A strange thing has occurred to me over the past 1.5 years.
    I joined a company and went for training. A girl was also there in my group. I never showed any interest in her. She spoke to me quite a few times and I answered only what she asked. Once she started searching for me in an apartment whereas I was just in the next room.Whenever I meet her, she says hi to me or smiles for quite a long time. The last time I saw her, she smiled and i started looking downwards. But she kept on smiling. Eventually i went away due to embarassment. I admit that it was one of the happiest days in my life and i forgot all my failures for 2-3 days.
    She is very beautiful. She is also successful in her career. I am not successful in my career although I have very good credentials. Does she like me? I find it extremely unlikely that such a girl could like me and i am afraid that i may be going mad due to over analysis in my mind.
    I just want her to be happy. I feel guilty because i never tried to communicate with her because of my INTROVERTED nature and my bad circumstances in life.Should I write a GOODBYE Letter to her on leaving the company?

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