What would you do if you knew you were going to be alone for the rest of your life? This is the question Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant journal, posed to his readers. He answered it with something to the … Continue reading
I’ve never been the girl who laughs openly and raucously. I don’t talk loudly so the whole crowd can hear or have any delusions about being the life of the party. I can’t fake enthusiasm. I’m not known for doling out exuberant praise. … Continue reading
I’ve found a new place to go deeper — Sacred Introvert Space. I guarantee you will feel at home there as well. Sacred Introvert’s creator, Lisa Avebury, is an introverted kindred spirit. I’ve written a piece entitled, The Intimate Introvert, for … Continue reading
If you cannot feel me through my written words Then you will never grasp me in person For my words are the architecture of my inner most parts. Secret things hung out to dry in front of you. —Scaffold … Continue reading
My mind is cottony and my body feels like slabs of brisket. My energy is flickering like a wet flame. I am pushing through my day because I have to. There is no rest time in sight. The calendar and … Continue reading
Dinner lasted four hours, going through two waitresses, countless water fill-ups and a Chapstick re-application. Even as we stood up to leave the conversation didn’t dwindle. Our ideas and perspectives flowing from our mouths and minds with the effortlessness of … Continue reading
He slips his arms around my waist and nuzzles my neck from behind. The timber of his voice and scratchiness of his unshaven face send a sensation cascading through my body. My knees go weak as I sauté at the … Continue reading
I’ve felt the euphoria of minds intertwining in the most intimate and spiritual way. I’ve felt an ineffable lightness and joy from simply having the house to myself. I’ve felt intensely content being in the same room with a lover…not … Continue reading
Alone again. I feel I’ve come full circle from January 2012 when I was newly single and aching for personal expression and independence. I had an aliveness that vibrated subcutaneously, poised to spill out from my smile. I wanted to … Continue reading
Do you want to be with me or would you rather be alone?
Many of space2live’s extroverted readers have asked this question in various forms.
How much alone time do I grant the introvert before it ceases to be a relationship?
Her space is hurting our intimacy. What about me?
We only see each other once a month because he needs his alone time. Is this normal?
Magnificent alone but interested in connecting
In My Introverted Love Creed: If We Can’t Be Magnificent and Independent Together I’m OK Alone, I wrote, It seems I’m most alive when I’m dancing on the fringe of a relationship, either almost disentangled or almost entangled.
At the time, I hadn’t experienced the kind of intimacy that makes you want to caretake and bend boundaries. There was still the possibility that the next romance would be the one where I’d fall so hard I’d want to give up some me time. I truly wanted to love with an open heart but I needed to find someone who understood and respected my need to renew and create in quiet as well as my wish to co-exist in deep companionship.
My point? Introverts desire love and connection.
Introverts can be in committed relationships if we are mindful of our energy and create meaningful connections. If we create and maintain boundaries. If we act maturely and build trust by working through hurt/disappointment/frustration with our partners rather than running at the first sign of discomfort (like when we feel confined).
Some of us will request time to ourselves but want to participate consistently in a relationship too. Some know how to show up as a partner and others primarily devote energy to themselves. Most of us will exemplify and experience both scenarios in our lifetime. Neither is a bad thing but one is a hell of a lot more conducive to deep intimacy.
Why we like space
We need it for personal clarity: We don’t want to spend all of our time alone but we do need a break from people in order to get back to ourselves. It’s necessary to spend time in our inner sanctuary of thoughts, ideas and dreams in order to reduce stimulation (introverts process information and stimuli deeply) and replenish our energy.
Want to see us glow? Give us uninterrupted blocks of time alone.
Autonomy is sexy:
I have noticed that not just with men, but with social groups I want to join, potential employers and the world at large, the energy of autonomy and self-driven movement are magnets for seriously good stuff. ~ K of Wealthy and Loved and a space2live reader
We are rewarded and revered for acting independently. It’s attractive to be confident and solid in yourself. It’s healthy to know your happiness and satisfaction do not come from the outside. There is a strength in knowing you will be OK with or without a partner.
We have a mission: Introverts are generally good at concentrating. Studies have shown that we can stare out windows the longest (great?). Many of our favorite endeavors require deep concentration — writing, research, creating art, behind the scenes organizing, internet surfing;) We tend to go deep into whatever engages us. Because information travels longer neural paths for storage and retrieval in introverts, it is very difficult to stop and start such focus. We want to continue enriching our minds and our spirits. We want to finish our creations. If we find a ’cause’ to champion, we want to see it through with minimal distractions (they pull us out of deep thinking, make our heads extra buzzy). We need time to work on meaningful projects that require our close attention and give us energy.
All of this space can feel like a distancing or a pulling away from a relationship. Sometimes it is. Sometimes it is merely self-preservation.
How to tell if your person needs an introvert recharge or just isn’t into you?
1. If they simply need breathing space, they come looking for you after a break. Their eyes are bright and they want your company. If they aren’t that into you, they ask for more time or slowly drift away.
2. If they need an introversion escape then they’ll usually retreat somewhere by themselves or with one or two close companions. If they’re not that into you, they’ll voluntarily (as opposed to work or family related) socialize in groups or at bars/ parties.
3. If they’re introverted, anywhere from a few hours to a week should be sufficient for recoup time. If they are ditching you, they can go a month without connecting with or missing you. In my opinion, the relationship is on thin ice if someone voluntarily chooses to be apart for a month.
4. Considerate introverts ask for space but also set up a next time or let you know when they’ll be available. If they aren’t truly interested, they’ll keep you guessing.
The big question: How much tolerance do you have for your partner’s absence?
Have there been times when your partner asked for too much space? Did you wonder if it was lack of interest? How did you handle it?
If you enjoyed Does Your Partner Need a Lot of Space?, then you may also like: