In case you need a reminder.
OK, so, opposites attract. Whether it is your partner or a good friend or even a sibling that is an introvert, and you happen to be someone who thrives on talking, touching, and just overall being around people, your expecting or demanding that similar connection CAN give way to a nail-on-glass irritation if you are not mindful of that person’s needs. Are you the introvert? Well then, you know what to do. Send this article to that friend for a not-so-subtle hint. If they are true friends, they will stay true friends.
Not talking doesn’t mean not thinking. Or Not liking you.
Hopefully you know this, assuming you’re already dating or are friends with this person, but in case you need a reminder. It’s that thoughtful attitude that you were drawn to in the first place, anyways. So stop assuming the worst. Err on the side of benefits of the doubt.
They need their space (Duh).
They need alone time. They need together-and-you-not-talking time. They need no-TV no-music no-no-no everything except what they choose to be in their presence time. They sometimes get physically unwell if they don’t get enough of this. If you don’t feed cheese to your friend with lactose intolerant, well, don’t force yourself or your expectations on your introverted friend.
Keep Expectations Low.
Just hold it in your mind that her answer would be, “you know what, I have a lot going on that weekend, maybe next time?” You will be pleasantly surprised when it is not.
I texted to a good friend that I adore, that it is time for our “annual dinner.” She thought this was funny and complied — meaning, she prioritized me and our time. And we had a fantastic time, despite not sharing our daily lives. Do NOT nudge frequently. It’s like giving a constant glare and fake coughing to your partner who really wants to quit smoking. Not going to make anyone happy, and certainly will not result in an outcome you want.
Be ready to entertain yourself (when you’re with this person).
If this person is having a particular social weekend and you come by, as promised — he may be at an overload due to previous visitors and events. Remember, introverts get energy from being alone. Bring a book. A laptop. A sweater that you knit halfway. Your meditation cushion, meditation mat, your sound bath bowls, and your shrine with your crystals, all of them. Offer to turn your back around and let him be silent and separated for 10 minutes, while you do your whatever thing, and he just — sits in silence. If he is a true introvert, this will be a welcome respite. It is not your friend’s responsibility to entertain you, whether he is introvert, or not.
Check in with yourself about loneliness.
People can tell, surprisingly well at least in their gut, whether you actually care about them and are present with them or not. (We also make up all kinds of narratives to cover that gut feeling up, especially in romantic relationships, but that’s a topic for another day!) If you are frequently reaching out to your friend/partner out of loneliness, you’re not an extrovert who gets energy from people, you’re just lonely and cannot stand the sadness of being alone. In other words, you’re just trying to avoid the scary situation for you (avoidance of negative), as opposed to truly energizing yourself (creation of positive). And let’s be honest, someone who’s just trying to avoid loneliness can be kind of loud, kind of clingy, kind of rowdy, kind of mindless, or all of the above. Definitely not what the introvert wants (or any person, but especially the introvert). Check in with yourself before you text or make that call.
Good luck. Now, go entertain yourself. Without that introvert person. Sure, you can extend an invitation to her/him. But don’t expect anything. Have a great time regardless.