Originally Posted December 23 2016
I tend to get frustrated with when Hollywood does the trope of the introvert who meets someone who stubbornly pulls them out of their shell, so that by overcoming their fear and social anxiety, they realize how much they are missing out on, and live happily ever after.
I feel there are several rather large misconceptions with this plot device… I won’t lie. Being an introvert CAN be incredibly lonely at times. That part is true. But the reason BEHIND the loneliness I find is what they get wrong.
First error in thinking is that by making an introvert be social, they will no longer be an introvert… No…. Just no… Believe me. I can be very social if I work myself up to it, but it does not stop my introvert self. Because while I do like being around other people from time to time and talking with people, I also find it to be incredibly exhausting and stressful. Especially in large groups. This isn’t founded in a fear of people, or belief that they don’t like me. It’s just the way socializing works when you’re an introvert.
Secondly is the belief that being an introvert is a sign of weakness… that you just need someone to let you into their world, or else you will continue sitting on the outside scared. Truth be told, most of the introverts I have met in life have been the stronger people, showing great insight, knowledge, or emotional intelligence. They tend to be the people who get to know you on a deeper level and are the most likely to truly understand you even better than you understand yourself
But I think the biggest misconception is the thought that a lonely introvert is looking to be a made part of the exciting popular world… This is rarely the case… if that was what was needed, the answer would be simple. We would just join your world…. that’s easy.
When an introvert says they are lonely, it is not saying we are looking for someone to pull us out of our shell to join your world…. it is saying we are looking for someone else who is comfortable in their shell with whom we can be awkward shell buddies with. We aren’t saying we want a lot of friends… but a friend who we can relate to deeply with. We are not asking to be a part of your world, but to find someone who can keep up with our world and enjoy it as much as we do.
Those who try to save introverts, your efforts and heart behind it are appreciated. But if you really do want to show you care, let the introvert be the introvert, and respect the world they live in. There are high chances that world holds more beauty than they’re willing to give up on