The Introvert’s Foolproof Guide to Dating an Extrovert
Are you an introvert who’s dating an extrovert? Don’t let your opposite social preferences cost you your relationship by following these 12 easy tips!
Initially, when dating, there is often attraction between introverts and extroverts since each partner consistently offers what the other is missing within their life and character. The extrovert can liven up the introvert and motivate them to take action, while the introvert can calm the extrovert down when needed and act as a steady source of quiet comfort.
As the relationship progresses and the pair ends up spending more time together, they may start to get on each other’s nerves. If you’re the introverted partner, you may start to wonder what you saw in your “loudmouth” mate to begin with!
Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean that the relationship must end. For the introvert who really wants to make things work with an extroverted sweetheart, here are some tips to help you do just that without going crazy.
12 things you can do to make dating an introvert easier
For all the introverts out there who have fallen into the arms of a loving extrovert, we’re here to help you get along even better! So here are our top tips:
#1 Take some time for yourself. Remember that you don’t need to spend every minute with someone just because you’re in a relationship with them. Introverts use alone time to recharge their personal batteries. That’s why you need to make sure you’re getting enough.
Take a few hours to read a book, do an artistic project, go for a solo walk or engage in whatever solitary activity makes you feel at peace. You’ll find that you will return to your partner feeling refreshed and able to look at the relationship in a more positive light. [Read: Why giving space to each other will actually bring you closer]
#2 Accept their frequent activities with friends. Just as introverts recharge their batteries by spending time alone, extroverts recharge theirs by being with other people, especially in groups. Therefore, if your extroverted honey wants to go out with the guys or girls multiple times per week, don’t turn it into a huge issue.
An extrovert who stays home in silence too long usually begins to get depressed, and being in a relationship with someone who’s constantly glum won’t be much fun for you, anyway. That’s why you must understand that your partner needs some time to be out and about.
#3 Set up guidelines regarding phone calls and texts. Generally, introverts and extroverts differ in the way they use their cell phones. As you may know from personal experience, introverts are often slower to respond to texts, and sometimes won’t pick up a ringing phone if they’re busy or just not in the mood to talk – in fact, they may not even have the phone on at all.
On the other hand, extroverts find turning a phone off a foreign idea and they enjoy being in frequent contact with many people, including their partners. If you don’t want to be interrupted at certain times, such as during work or your fitness classes, simply tell your extroverted partner in a polite manner to avoid any misunderstandings about you “ignoring” him or her.
#4 Communicate your needs. Occasionally, as an introvert, you may shut down and stop communicating when you’re experiencing difficulties. The problem is, since extroverts would never act this way themselves, they either get totally confused by this behavior or don’t even notice that anything is amiss.
Introverts who want additional needs met must clearly express these needs out loud to an extroverted partner if they want to leave any guesswork and misunderstanding out. Speaking up may not be your forte, but staying mum will just leave you with worse relationship problems. [Read: 8 effective communication tips for a successful relationship]
#5 Be open to conversation about anything. On the flip side, introverts may be shocked by how much an extroverted partner shares with them in conversation, especially when this information relates to the extrovert’s feelings. As a private introvert, you may wonder why someone would even bring such personal things out into the open.
Make sure you don’t dismiss your partner when they bare their soul, though, or try to assuage any negative emotions by passing them food or drink. What they really want in this sort of situation is to talk and pour their hearts out. As an introvert, you may find that listening as your partner takes the floor works the best in your relationship. Of course, your input would also be very welcome in this regard. [Read: 15 interesting topics to cover in relationship conversations]
#6 Tell them to put a lid on it when necessary. There may be some situations in which an extrovert truly will talk too much, in which case they could use a little reminder of how loud or boisterous they’re becoming.
If you’re out at an event and you notice that your significant other is being so boisterous that they could be considered obnoxious and annoying, it’s fine to take them aside and ask them to scale their behavior back a couple of notches. If they’re just having a great time, though, and others seem to be enjoying their company, let them be.
#7 Interrupt them when needed. If you’re an introvert dating an extrovert, you may notice that they tend to talk on and on and on, seemingly forgetting that they’re in a two-way conversation.
It’s not part of an introvert’s natural style to interrupt, but if you can learn to do this to add more content to the conversation, your extroverted partner may even be delighted since they’d be able to enjoy a discussion or a friendly debate.
#8 Accompany them to some social events. While introverts usually prefer to attend a small amount of carefully-selected social gatherings, most extroverts enjoy all kinds of social events with various groups of people. Depending on their interests, they see these events as places to make new friends or to network for business purposes.
You could try to attend a few of these social functions with your extroverted partner, even if they leave you feeling a tad tired, as this will show your partner that you support them and are interested in what they’re doing. In turn, you can ask your partner to accompany you when you feel like having a quiet evening at home.
#9 Don’t expect them to sit still for hours at a time. Introverts are often masters at sitting still. Four-hour opera? No sweat. Three-hour lecture or film? Not a problem, either. For extroverts, however, having to sit still for prolonged time periods, especially without talking, is very tedious or even infuriating.
While it’s okay to ask your extroverted partner to accompany you to the occasional lengthy, quiet event, especially if you attend social events with them, acknowledge that they don’t enjoy these events as much as you do. [Read: Dating ideas that introverts will absolutely love]
#10 Recognize the difference between friendliness and flirting. Extroverts tend to be open and gregarious with everyone, including strangers, while introverts, although polite, show a bit more reserve. This difference between the two becomes a problem when an introvert starts to think that a friendly extroverted boyfriend or girlfriend is actually flirting with someone else.
If you’re an introvert, you should not immediately assume that this is the case, unless the extrovert is using incredibly sexual or romantic language. Remember that conversing with a variety of people is how an extrovert has fun, and he or she will still be going home with you at the end of the day. [Read: Is your partner being a little too flirty with another person?]
#11 Tell the extrovert what you want them to keep private. Many extroverts are such open books that they don’t realize that other people, particularly more introverted types, want to keep some details of their lives private. They often spill everything to their family members and close friends, without stopping to consider whether the person who gave them the information would want it to be spread around or not. Hence, if there are some details about yourself that you want your extroverted partner to keep between you two, it’s best to come right out and tell them so.
#12 Make sure you remain an equal partner. Sometimes an extrovert, just because they’re louder, unintentionally takes control of a relationship. The squeaky wheel gets the grease, so all interactions naturally come to revolve around the extrovert’s needs, and everything the couple does begins to relate to what the extrovert wants to do.
As an introvert, you must not let this happen. Communicate your needs, as discussed in Tip #4, so that you can remain an equal partner. Otherwise, you’ll begin to resent your boyfriend or girlfriend for having everything their way, and if your relationship does end, you’ll feel as if you’ve lost your personal identity and have no idea what to do next.
A relationship between an introvert and an extrovert, if handled correctly, can be mutually satisfying for the long term. If you, as in introvert, would follow the tips given above, and your partner is willing to meet you in the middle, you will in all likelihood be able to find harmony in your relationship.