To whom it may concern:
This letter is written to you if you ever wonder why some people are so quiet. I want to tell you why this is.
I promise that I won’t be rude to you, I won’t shame you, I won’t expect you to feel bad for not knowing why we are so quiet.
What I will ask of you, is that you take a bit of time to really hear the answer. Because when you understand why we are so quiet, we will make so much more sense to you and you might even like us better.
But before we go further, there is one thing that I request you to stop doing. You need to quit asking that question: “Why are you so quiet?”
I’m guessing that the question comes from concern and is well intended, you are not trying to hurt our feelings.
However, what happens for us when this question is asked, it becomes some variation of: “What’s wrong with you?”…”You can’t belong if you don’t talk more.”…”You are weird for not talking”. And then the next thing that happens, is that once we are feeling bad about being quiet, it actually shuts us down more.
It is even more difficult to speak once we are asked that.
Now, this might seem a bit overdramatic to you. You might wonder how that question can evoke such a response.
Well, we have been asked this question consistently since the time we became verbal. So you may have just asked it once, but we have already heard it a thousand times, and that is what is really difficult. We have heard this from teachers, friends, parents, siblings, partners, peers, doctors, dentists…you get the picture. It just never really stops.
Now let’s get back to the question: “Why are you so quiet?” We are quiet because we are introverts. We do best one on one or in a group no larger than three or four people. The more going on, the harder it is for us to focus.
We can follow along with the conversation easily but when we have something to say, by the time we are ready to say it, the conversation has moved on and then we feel a bit silly asking everyone to come back to a point that was made a few minutes ago.
Another thing that is true about us, is that when we are around people all day, or at a large social gathering, our energy is drained quickly and we need time alone (or at least some time where we are not talking) to refuel.
If you are married to us, you might be frustrated when we get home from work and we don’t talk about our day.
If you are dating us, you might wonder if we like you because we are slow to open up.
If you are friends with us, you might wonder why we don’t want to get together as much as you do.
Please know that it isn’t because we don’t like you.
If you are in our lifes, it means we like you very much. We can be kinda of picky who we hang out with.
We hope that this information has helped you understand us a bit better.