Thursday, May 24, 2007


I've never taken the famous Myers-Briggs test but I've decided I'm an introvert. You may find this hard to believe but it's true. Maybe you should read this article I found about caring for your introvert. I Amen-ed it the whole way through, especially these quotes:

We tend to think before talking, whereas extroverts tend to think by talking,


The worst of it is that extroverts have no idea of the torment they put us through. Sometimes, as we gasp for air amid the fog of their 98-percent-content-free talk, we wonder if extroverts even bother to listen to themselves. Still, we endure stoically, because the etiquette books—written, no doubt, by extroverts—regard declining to banter as rude and gaps in conversation as awkward. We can only dream that someday, when our condition is more widely understood, when perhaps an Introverts' Rights movement has blossomed and borne fruit, it will not be impolite to say "I'm an introvert. You are a wonderful person and I like you. But now please shush."

Most people observing us casually would conclude that Paul is the introvert and I'm the extrovert. But if you analyse us by the thinking before/by talking aspect, he is definitely the extrovert. He works out every plan, sale, strategy, schedule, idea, route, and agenda by talking about it. I try to listen lovingly and patiently but sometimes I wish he could just skip the talking and tell me the conclusion.

And now his extrovert children are out of school and I am rapidly fraying at the edges. Honest, I love these sweeties with all my soul, but they. simply. will. not. stop. talking. Worse, they simply can't understand that I have only two ears, one mouth, and half a brain. I cannot simultaneously tell Amy where the rhodie fertilizer is, Emily what to sew next on her culottes, Ben to weed the hedge by the driveway, Steven to go try on this pile of shirts, and Jenny where the embroidery hoop is. Yet they all stand around and holler "MOM" and their respective questions, all at the same time, and fully expect that I am able to process all this and answer them simultaneously.

And then, of course, when their questions are answered they have to talk to each other, constantly and noisily, when I'm trying to focus on someone else. And one or two of them also feel compelled to relate their dreams in great detail as soon as they wake up, which is in the morning, when I especially long for quiet.

It looks like I'm going to have to get up very early every morning to collect myself if I'm going to make it. And I should also find a corner to retreat to now and then during the day to collect my wits, somewhere hidden and soundproof.

Quote of the Day:
Steven: Seven more degrees!
Ben: Then what?
Steven: We can go swimming.
Jenny: I don't think Mom will let us.
Steven: But maybe she'll cabbage.


  1. Thank you for the laugh! Our children will someday be parents themselves and wonder how we managed to still smile at them at bedtime! I took the famous Myer-Briggs and quite a few more til i am analyzed beyond my desire this past week at school. We are who God created us to be and I think you are the best sister- in -law inspite of your ability to listen with only two ears at once!

  2. Dorcas,
    Thank you for the link to that article. I am a serous introvert, and I am going to copy it and give it to "mama Pauline" who thinks I don't socialize enough at church, or "put myself out there" enough.
    Bravo Girl, you may have just started a revolution!

  3. Thank you, once again, for the laugh at the end of a hard day. Tis much appreciated! Blessings to you and yours. When you figure out how to get them to shush, please post. I could use some ideas myself. ;-)

  4. My suggestion to you would be...this would be an excellent time to go "bite your pillow"!! wouldnt believe how much pressure that can eliminate! :)

  5. Sing it sister! I feel your pain, as another introvert married to an extrovert. It took me a decade to realize that when he was talking about something he wanted to do, he wasn't *really* going to do it, he was just *thinking* about it (out loud, as it turns out). Oy!

    And the kids, well let's just say I hear you there too. Sometimes I feel like I'm in the middle of that song from Godspell, the one where Jesus is singing one thing and Judas is singing something totally different, and they keep speeding up...

  6. AMEN! I blogged recently about how it can be difficult to be an introvert mother in a large family. I have enjoyed my family much more now that some of my kids are older and they are in school. It gives me that quiet, down time that I crave. Summer, however, is a different story! Quite...noisy!

  7. I am an extrovert. Of my 4 children, my youngest daughter Laura, is an intovert. She HAS to have quiet time, removed from others so she can recharge. I on the other hand, am energized by people.

    It has been a challenge for someone like me to be the kind of a mother she needs me to be. I do all of the "basics" but "relating to her" has been where I have struggled.

    It was hard driving to school in silence. I, who had been up for 3 hours and had had 3 cups of coffee was eager to chat and visit. She would just sit there, quietly and not engage in conversations. I finally realized she wasn't being rude or surly, that's just her temperment. A 2 week vacation with all of us in close proximity, puts her into overload. She would go sit in the van by herself just so she could get away from all of us and recharge her batteries.

    The other 3 kids, why we're all pretty much the same! I had to really work hard so that I wouldn't short-change Laura out of quality time!

  8. I am also an introvert and I understand introverts and I watched extroverts from my privacy treated RV windows all this past weekend - but only when I was not out watching/photographing the kids on the MX race track.

    I loved the idea of an Introvert's Rights Movement, ha!

    "I'm an introvert. You are a wonderful person and I like you. But now please shush."

    lol! Great, fun post.

  9. I'm an introvert with an extrovert child who talks constantly ~ even in her sleep!! We co~slept for years & I argue gaps in my sanity are directly related to lack of peace & blessed quiet.