Introversion is a blessing in disguise. Introverts make some of the best friends, students, employees—and lovers—around! But if you want to have a flourishing relationship with one of the “quiet ones,” here are a few things you need to know:
1. Introversion does not equate to shyness.
Just because your date happens to be introverted doesn’t mean he or she is particularly shy. Outgoing introverts exist, as do shy extroverts. Shyness refers to uneasiness in the midst of social interaction, and not all introverts feel this way. They may be perfectly comfortable around big groups of people. They merely need more alone time afterwards (and we all know how tiring people can be).
2. We can go days without seeing or speaking with you.
And this doesn’t mean we love you any less. We simply cherish the moments of solitude to reflect and recuperate, which will make the time we spend with you that much sweeter.
3. But when we do choose to talk, we prefer meaningful conversation.
Small talk is the enemy. And chances are, if you’re sending one-word texts or adding absolutely nothing to the conversation, you will get ignored. Introverts prefer quality or quantity, which may be the reason why we say so little. Deep, personal conversations rev our engines. Chances are, if we decided to pursue a relationship with you, you’re totally capable of maintaining them. *high five*
4. You can’t go wrong with making plans. (No, really…make plans.)
Springing things on us out of the blue gives us anxiety. Surprises are nice every once in a while, but popping up at the front door unexpected may be a bit much. And when it comes to stepping out, we have to mentally prepare ourselves for whatever is to come.
5. On that note, socializing ALL the time is not part of our agenda.
One of the main differences between introverts and extroverts is how they obtain and conserve energy. While extroverts get their energy from the people around them (which is why they tend to function best around others), introverts use up energies from within. Constant social interaction causes us to become over-stimulated, which is when we tend to retreat to our sanctuaries of solitude. As mentioned before, we cherish the time we have to ourselves for thinking, relaxing, and simply recovering after socializing too much or too long. Don’t be too surprised when your partner wants to leave the party much sooner than you think.
6. Our loyalty is like no other.
We don’t waste time building relationships with just anyone and everyone, so consider yourself lucky. Introverts can sniff bullshit from a mile away. So long as we know that your intentions are good and your love is genuine, we’ll remain by your side for the long haul.
7. Expect to initiate in the bedroom.
Or at least be good at reading body language. We won’t always look you in the eye and shout, “I’m in heat!” But we will look you in the eye, maybe nibble on your ear, and you better know what that means in the right place at the right time (and please ask if you’re unsure, people).
8. Know your partner.
When does he or she get aggravated? How long is too long where social interaction is concerned? When does your partner start to shut down, or close out? These are things to always ask yourself, regardless of the personality trait your partner identifies with. Engaging in activities that both of you enjoy will keeps things fun and interesting. We at Club Introvert greatly appreciate that you take these things into account, trust me. (And it wouldn’t hurt to take a gander at Susan Cain’s TEDTalk video while you’re at it.)
We all fall on different points of the introversion-extroversion spectrum; no one is fully one or the other. Introverts are some of the greatest listeners, advice-givers, and nurturers around. Just like any other person in a relationship, we open up once we feel comforted, safe. And when you find yourself becoming close with one of the “quiet ones,” you’ll find that we aren’t so hard to crack after all.