Sunday, April 13, 2014

I: Introverts

I sometimes with there were laws about discrimination against introverts.

I don't mean merely on a social scale. Establishing boundaries in social settings is difficult but can be done. You just have to teach people how to treat you. Be patient and explain to them calmly and politely why you need space sometimes and how it doesn't mean that you dislike them or believe that they have done anything wrong. You might have to explain a lot of times before they understand but eventually most people will respect your boundaries.

I mean in the work place where it's harder to explain to people that you want to be treated differently than they want to be treated, not because either wish is wrong but because you have a different way you spend and gain energy.

You aren't trying to snub anybody when you decide to eat lunch alone. You are re-charging.

It makes you uncomfortable when they constantly ask a lot of personal questions about your life.

It makes you uncomfortable when strangers read your name tag and call you by your private, personal, first name.

It makes you uncomfortable when people touch you or lean into your personal space when they work doesn't require it.

It makes you feel hunted. It makes you feel stalked.

If people notice your discomfort at all they usually decide that it is because you are "shy" and "unsure of yourself" and decide that they will "loosen you up" and "break you out of your shell". They decide they have to change you. They decide you are wrong the way you are because you don't think the same way they do.

If that's not discrimination I don't know what is.

Sometimes I wish I could wear this comic tattooed on my forehead.


  1. I think I'm becoming more introverted the longer I work from home!

    Visiting from the A to Z Challenge signup page. Great to meet you!

    Stephanie Faris, author
    30 Days of No Gossip

  2. I love this post. I am so comfortable in my alone time and some people don't understand that. I used to work for someone who needed to have someone with here all the time. If not in front of her, then on the phone. She couldn't understand how I could sit at the library or eat dinner at a restaurant alone. When I'm alone, I get recharged.

    1. Alas, that it is so hard to explain to those who don't have the same experience.

  3. Our society is built around the "extrovert ideal," even though those extroverts are more likely to be wrong and do stupid things. We -like- them because they seem confident, but, evolutionarily speaking, it's the introverts that survive.