These dating problems will be familiar if you’re an introvert. And if you’re dating one, considering them might help you if you’re confused about the mixed messages they’re sending.
A couple of years ago, I had this friend who was really needy, or that’s what I thought at the time. They'd get angry if I didn’t text them every day, started giving me presents after only a few weeks of being my friend, and tried to become friends with my other friends. I sort of panicked and pushed them away. I don’t necessarily think of myself as an introvert because I switch back and forth between the two categories. But back then, I was way more introverted than I am now, and I could spend weeks without going out or talking to anyone. I simply wasn’t willing to give up my space for someone who was frankly a little scary. I don’t regret my decision at all, but I do regret the fact that I was pretty mean to a person who just wanted to be friends with me.
The same thing happens when we date someone. As introverts, we get easily overwhelmed by straightforward approaches. We need to be slowly and subtly wooed, okay? These dating problems will be familiar if you’re an introvert. And if you’re dating an introvert, considering them might help you in case you’re confused about the mixed messages they’re sending.
You have problems with texting
If you’re an introvert, your texting (and sexting) game might not be the best. The relationship might not even progress properly because, during the first few days or weeks, you don’t text them often enough because you simply don’t need to be communicating constantly with anyone. The person you’re dating might think that you’re cold, distant, uninterested, or even that you hate them. On the other hand, as an introvert you can thrive while texting because you’re great with words when you have time to prepare them, but you might confuse the person you’re dating by writing messages that are too long and convoluted. Are you sexting or writing erotica? Calm down.
You show affection in a different way
You’re definitely a romantic person, but typical romantic gestures aren’t necessarily for you. You won’t buy flowers for them, but you’ll make them the most incredible progressive rock playlist that includes 314 of your favorite songs after dating them for one week because you’re so eager to share what you love with them. You won’t smother them with kisses because you don’t love public displays of affection, but you’ll get in the mood the second you’re alone with them. Even though your ways of showing affection might be more thoughtful and unique (only for them and not the general public), not everyone will understand or appreciate it.
You don’t want go to the places they like
Maybe the person you’re dating loves loud bars and clubs, maybe they’re outdoorsy, or into extreme sports. Of course, being introverted doesn’t mean you want to spend your whole life cooped up at home, but you’re probably more selective with the places you visit. This can be a problem because it limits your options while dating.
Self-awareness is important. Before going on a date, ask yourself if you’re going to have fun, but don’t be negative. It might not be your first choice, but you should let your date show you new things. And if you really think you won’t like it, don’t go. Suggest something different. I mean it: don’t go if you’re going to be grumpy the whole time. If you really like this person, you should make an effort to let them see you appreciate what they're trying to share with you.
You don’t know how to bond with their friends and family
Extroverts have an advantage here. As an introvert, it’s not easy for you to make their friends and family like you right away because you’re not super talkative and outgoing. This might sound a little harsh, but it's like you're an acquired taste. And there’s nothing wrong with that! It just means everybody hates you at first. I’m kidding. Don’t be discouraged. Take it as a challenge and time will tell if you’re lovable once they get to know you, or if you’re just terrible and you’ll die alone.
You don’t need to spend so much time with them
Not only do you enjoy your alone time, you cherish it. The amount of time you need to spend with them and the amount of time they need to spend with you is very different. You’re probably an ambitious person, and it shows in what you do during the week: a lot of work, not so much social time. The person you’re dating won’t necessarily understand. They’ll probably judge or misunderstand your routine with questions like: Why do you work so much? Why do you sacrifice your personal life for your career? Maybe they’re right, maybe you do have a problem. But it’s more likely that it’s not really a sacrifice for you because the amount of time you spend socializing is exactly the amount of time you need.
It’s hard to find a balance between what you want and what your partner wants. But what truly kills your dating life is selfishness, not introversion. As long as you’re willing to communicate, to listen to the other person’s needs while expressing yours clearly, you'll be fine.
Images by Laurken Kendall.
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