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The Introvert and kid/family social obligations (birthdays, sleepovers, etc) - Page 2

post #21 of 67
Agree with others. As kids get older, they can take on most of the responsibilities (cleaning, hosting, food prep)

Also, keeping it to just one guest.

I'm an introvert that loves it when my oldest host friends. She does does a great deep clean of her room and often envites her baby sister to join in.
post #22 of 67

The therapy about anxiety comment makes me laugh. I'm also an introvert, but I do have social anxiety. Whie I find sleepover parties incredibly draining, I prefer them to parties outside the home, as I'm better on my own ground. If I got therapy for the anxiety, I'd probably be less likely to host sleepovers.

We haven't done many sleepover parties, but ds1 did have one (five 14 year old boys, and my dh ended up having to be out of town on business - OMFG). He's also had a couple of friends spend the night a few times. DD1 has had friends over a few times, and ds2 has had one over once. Combined with my own kids, it's quite a crowd. I know what you mean about it being difficult. I'm always wiped afterwards. I cope, because it's easier for me than a lot of other kinds of socializing (I'm even more drained by parties in public/community type venues, because there are sooooo many more people around), but it's exhausting.

 

I don't really have any tips for dealing with it. I've just toughed it out in the past, and I'm sure the second round is coming soon. DD1 wants an ice skating party for her 10th, this year...but I'm pretty sure she'll want a sleepover in the next year or two. I'm not looking forward to it.

 

Oh, and dh is even more introverted than I am, but without the anxiety issues around it. He hates having people in the house at all, even for short visits, and sleepovers are pretty much the inner circle of hell in his eyes. I don't think he'd allow them at all, if he couldn't slip off to our room and play guitar.

post #23 of 67
Thread Starter 

Thanks fellow introverts, I appreciate hearing your perspective. 

 

Storm Bride, while I feel differently than you do (parties outside the home easier for me, home-based parties easier for you) I can appreciate how it works for you. I can certainly see how many introverts would feel more comfortable in their own home.

 

Interestingly I think my dds actually have more of my personality on this. Even when they were very little they always liked going to someone else's home instead of having folks to ours. It's just in the past few years (say since dd1 has been about 9 or 10) that they have really wanted to have sleepovers. I think birthday parties aside, they would still mostly prefer to go to other's houses, although they do enjoy having friends over (more than I do). I would say they would probably come out 40/60 or 30/70 on our house vs other's houses for playdates if they got to vote. 

 

Listening to that TED Talk on introverts that I linked to upthread is partly what prompted me to start this thread. In looking for the link to the video I found the presenter's site and more info on her book. I thought she was such an engaging speaker (and an introvert) and so I checked out her book, "Quiet: The Power of Introverts In a World That Can't Stop Talking" on Amazon. In reading through the "look inside" feature on Amazon (I have it on hold at the library now) I am finding that it really resonates with me. The historical perspective on the rise of the extrovert throughout the past century is really interesting. She writes about earlier eras when people were mostly still on the farm and working with family and long-time neighbors and contrasts them to our modern era of "How To Win Friends and Influence People". She writes about the earlier times of the 1800s, etc, as being the age of character when traits like "citizenship, duty, good deeds, work, honor, etc" were emphasized in the advice manuals of the day. As people migrated to the cities and began to encounter strangers and needed to interact more with them and as the age of consumerism began to blossom (Henry Ford's Model T, etc) the era of the salesman was born and the self-help guides began to emphasize qualities like "fascination, and magnetism" and traits like charisma and charm. I hadn't really thought about the bigger cultural picture before. 

 

I'm really quite competent at social niceties—I just dislike hosting parties and being "on" anywhere wears me out. I can do it, though.

post #24 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by beanma View Post

I'm just wondering if there are any other introverts out there who are just not into having people over to their house much. 

 

ME ME ME!!!  I loathe hosting anyone, ever.  Difficult, because DH is an extrovert and DS is an extrovert x 10.  Thankfully, DD is just like mama! :-)  I like meeting up, but yeah, hosting is no fun...

post #25 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by anjelika View Post

 

ME ME ME!!!  I loathe hosting anyone, ever.  Difficult, because DH is an extrovert and DS is an extrovert x 10.  Thankfully, DD is just like mama! :-)  I like meeting up, but yeah, hosting is no fun...

 

That's ds1. He's probably the single most extroverted person I've ever met...with the possible exception of one of his best friends from his senior year of high school. I love him like crazy, and I like him a lot, and I think he's one of the neatest people I've ever known...but he can exhaust me in five minutes or less, just by telling me about his day.

post #26 of 67

I totally relate.  I love having the kids' parties at fun places that are outside our house.  (the arcade, bowling alley etc.)   For some reason I tolerate noise better at those places rather than at my house.   

post #27 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by beanma View Post
I'm just wondering if there are any other introverts out there who are just not into having people over to their house much. It's a touchy subject to talk about with my IRL friends because they think I'm saying I don't want to have them over which is not really it. I just don't like having groups over and parties stress me out. I'm more relaxed if it's a spur of the moment drop-in like, we were going to meet at the pool and now it's thunderstorming—come on over to our house (right near the pool), or just a casual one-on-one playdate. And often, I do prefer going to other people's houses I think because I'm more in control of how long the interaction lasts and when I need to leave I can. 

 

I would absolutely HATE going on a cruise! Trapped! Thousands of people! I can't get away!!! Auuuugggghhh! Give me a nice on-land beach vacation where I can take a quiet stroll down the beach and have a getaway car back at the cottage.

 

 

We rarely have people visit our home. We just usually meet up elsewhere and have a good time. I don't think there is anything wrong with us for wanting to be social in a way we can enjoy it most of the time.

We have had people stay overnight in our home and would offer shelter to someone we know in need of a place to stay but as a form of entertaining it is not really fun for us to host sleepovers/parties in our home.

post #28 of 67

Laughing at the introverts need therapy stuff lol.gif. Those extroverts are just trying to lure us out so they can suck our energy since they get energized by being in a group and we get drained by being in a group winky.gif.

 

I'd try a sleepover with just one kid and see if that's an improvement. I don't find one at a time interactions as draining as a group.

 

Hosting a group of people is incredibly draining. It's much better going to a party where you can leave when you need to. We had a ton of people here for a week over Christmas and I think my family is all a bit traumatized by it. And I'm a completely normal, not shy, introvert without social anxiety. I'm always chatting up strangers when I go out.  Ds will talk anyone's ear off but doesn't even want a birthday party. He likes to go to other people's parties, though.

post #29 of 67
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post

Laughing at the introverts need therapy stuff lol.gif. Those extroverts are just trying to lure us out so they can suck our energy since they get energized by being in a group and we get drained by being in a group winky.gif.

 

 

orngbiggrin.gif Love that!

 

I think I am a bit traumatized by Dd1's b-day and then a not quite sleepover with two girls staying for supper plus my sister coming. Once I recharge I will probably be ready to approach the idea again. I just really got it about myself that I no longer enjoy being a host. Pre-kids we used to host some super casual get-togethers and an annual New Year's shindig, but it's just all pretty stressful for me now and I think it's okay for me to not like it!

post #30 of 67

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by beanma View Post

 

Listening to that TED Talk on introverts that I linked to upthread is partly what prompted me to start this thread. In looking for the link to the video I found the presenter's site and more info on her book. I thought she was such an engaging speaker (and an introvert) and so I checked out her book, "Quiet: The Power of Introverts In a World That Can't Stop Talking" on Amazon. In reading through the "look inside" feature on Amazon (I have it on hold at the library now) I am finding that it really resonates with me. The historical perspective on the rise of the extrovert throughout the past century is really interesting. She writes about earlier eras when people were mostly still on the farm and working with family and long-time neighbors and contrasts them to our modern era of "How To Win Friends and Influence People". She writes about the earlier times of the 1800s, etc, as being the age of character when traits like "citizenship, duty, good deeds, work, honor, etc" were emphasized in the advice manuals of the day. As people migrated to the cities and began to encounter strangers and needed to interact more with them and as the age of consumerism began to blossom (Henry Ford's Model T, etc) the era of the salesman was born and the self-help guides began to emphasize qualities like "fascination, and magnetism" and traits like charisma and charm. I hadn't really thought about the bigger cultural picture before. 

 

 

 

I haven't yet read that book but my extroverted DH has. I think it helped give him some useful insight into introverts. Considering he's been married to one for 25 years,  a lot of the information shouldn't have been a surprise  eyesroll.gif but it helped his understanding. 

 

  

 

 

post #31 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post

Laughing at the introverts need therapy stuff lol.gif. Those extroverts are just trying to lure us out so they can suck our energy since they get energized by being in a group and we get drained by being in a group winky.gif.

 

 

 

biglaugh.gif

 

Oh, that's good. Extroverts as vampires or zombies. Ha! 

post #32 of 67

the part i picked up from alenushka's point - actually drove the point home - whose needs are on the table?

 

its not about introvert and extrovert. its about parent child's attitudes differing a whole 180 degrees. 

 

as an extrovert i have my own challenges too. and it IS a challenge because dd REALLY wants something i struggle with.

 

and i have sat and talked to myself. whose needs are more important at that moment. 

 

i have sucked up and done things that are very hard for me - which to someone else is nothing, but to me huge. why? because dd wanted it so bad. 

 

esp. with preteens, or should i say pretweens. it is sooo challenging for me. while i can party with dd, other things bore me to pieces. but i join here because its important to dd.

 

and so its the same with sleepovers. sleepovers are SOOOO important to dd. esp. in our life dd doesnt get much. so i make sure gets some of that. 

 

there are days where i am done with being alone. seriously done. too much alone times makes me depressed. and usually when i am at my lowest that's when dd wants to stay home and snuggle whereas i need to go out and be in a crowd. i just need sound, life, noise. that's when we work thru it. if dd is having a bad moment and really needs to be home, i struggle through it and stay home with her. but first we assess whose needs are important at the moment. and there are times when i've told dd i really NEED to get out NOW. and dd has been understanding and gone along with it. i've stayed out for a shorter time so dd could have her hibernate time. 

 

so i was answering the bigger question here. 

 

its very important in our family to do our needs assessment. because many times we find one has a strong feeling and the other doesnt really care either way. that's easy. its when we both NEED something bad we work it out. and ever since dd was a toddler she has had to put up with my needs too. just coz she was a child didnt mean she got her way always. or that her needs mattered and not mine. 

post #33 of 67
Thread Starter 

meemee, I appreciate you taking your time to craft that thoughtful response from your perspective, but I think you're reading stuff into my original post that isn't in there and you've completely missed the actual bigger question which I thought was pretty clearly stated in the thread title and the first post, that is,  HOW DO INTROVERTS DEAL WITH SOCIAL OBLIGATION. My needs and my kids' needs don't differ 180 degrees and this thread is not really about my kids—it's about me and about introverts in general. My kids are definitely not sleep-over deprived. I have reiterated that numerous times. This thread is not really about sleepovers, but about introverts and social obligations across the board and it's about me wanting to connect with other introverts.

 

The extrovert perspective that I need therapy or "something is going on" with me is kinda humorous and kinda really annoying. It's somewhat like people suggesting that you've gotta participate in team sports — you HAVE to, or you HAVE to like board games, or you HAVE to like to watch the Superbowl —the implication being that there's something wrong with you if you don't like these things. 

 

There's nothing wrong with me if I don't like sleepovers. I am not depriving my kids of an important childhood milestone. They've been there done that. That need has already been met for them numerous times. 

 

What I want to talk about is how introverts deal with social obligation, especially w/in the family dynamic. Non-introverts who say we should just get over ourselves because it's really important to get out there and socialize or that we should just do it for the kids are kinda just laying out the societal bias right there for the whole world to see.

 

I do appreciate all the responses and would love to read more—especially from introverts—about what works for you. Let's drop the idea of sleepovers and kid birthday parties since that's confusing people — how about adult gatherings. How do you deal with those? Holidays? Family visits? Dinner parties? BBQs? Block parties?


Edited by beanma - 3/6/13 at 4:15pm
post #34 of 67
We have the hardest time with family visits... Part of the problem is we live with my mother in the family home. So none of my siblings are checking to see what's good for us when they visit. Because they aren't actually visiting us. Yet they are staying in ds's room and their kids are playing with his toys. And I'm the one doing much of the cleaning.

Visits that are short are fine, 3 or 4 hours. Even 6 hours. Overnights with kids is harder. We'd like a little downtime before going to bed. I don't really have a hard time with anything that is less than all day.

If the social event is elsewhere, I'll bring knitting because it seems to be a socially acceptable thing. It isn't antisocial, like reading a book, yet doesn't make people feel they should talk to me because they think I look lonely. But I still look approachable.

Sometimes, I go off with the kids. It can be a nice break from hanging with the adults making polite conversation (when I don't know anyone well.)

It helps to not schedule things back to back. If we visit someone on Saturday, we probably want to stay home on Sunday. Not that that is always an option. But it usually is.
post #35 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by beanma View Post

I do appreciate all the responses and would love to read more—especially from introverts—about what works for you. Let's drop the idea of sleepovers and kid birthday parties since that's confusing people — how about adult gatherings. How do you deal with those? Holidays? Family visits? Dinner parties? BBQs? Block parties?

We don't go visiting people on the actual holiday anymore. We divide up visits to before and after holidays to keep things less overwhelming.  We live far enough away from our family in a small town that almost no one is willing to drive here.

 

A few times a year we are invited to large gatherings. We go for a few hours and then come home. Some people spend all weekend together and I say we can't because we have our dogs to take care of at home... which is true but I also wouldn't want to spend all day and night for 2 or 3 days with so many people. I would need at least a week to recover my energy.

 

Dh, dd and I are all somewhat introverted but not to the same degree. Sometimes one of us will have to go places or be around people more than that person would like. We try to find ways to make the experience more positive.

post #36 of 67
I arruve on the early side because it is easier to be there as the room fills than it is to enter into the chaos of a crowd. I bring knitting with me to parties and I make sure I always have a hot drink, usually coffee or tea, to drink slowly. Something about a hot drink is very relaxing and it gives me something to do while I center myself when it gets chaotic.
post #37 of 67
Quote:

Originally Posted by beanma View Post

 

 I have sort of had a personal revelation after this last one and realized that I really don't like to host them and I think it's just in my nature to not like them and wondered if there was anyone else out there who disliked them, too, not from a standpoint of being worried about your kids, but from a personal standpoint of just really not enjoying them. 

 

I don't enjoy them either and its been a couple of years since we hosted a slumber party. My younger DD has a one close friend who can spend the night over without it being a big deal (very easy kid to be around) but a whole gang of them drive me a bit batty.

 

And I'm an extrovert!

 

I need everything to stop at some point and have down time, and I just can't do that with a sleepover.

 

We know a lot of kids who don't.do.sleepovers.ever so I don't feel the least bit bad about it. Between the families we know with a special needs child who couldn't handle the house being turned upside down and the parents who just don't allow them, my DD who is social thinks she has it pretty good!  (My other DD is on the autism spectrum and just doesn't get why its fun to sleep on a floor rather than one's own bed).

 

I also don't like to have relatives stay in my house overnight.

 

And I only like to have people over to eat about every 3 months. I enjoy when I do it, but then I just don't want to again for months.

 

I prefer to see my friends in public -- meet at a restaurant and skip the whole "hosting" thing. Much nicer all around.

 

And I swear that I'm an extrovert -- I like being around people. I NEED to be around people. I just want them to go away so I can sleep.

post #38 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by rachelsmama View Post

I can relate.  I will probably never host a sleepover party unless it can be held at a hotel.  I willingly host sleepovers, but I'm very careful about who gets invited (only one), and when, and they don't happen often

 

 

Those seem to be rather popular these days.  We have a lot of hotels with amenities here, so that is part of why, but I hear about other people doing them now too.

My kids have never really had sleepovers.  My older daughter got invited to spend the night at her friend's house when she was younger, and it was stressful to her. She finally would talk in code because she didn't want to tell the girl she didn't want to spend the night.  So it's been awhile since either one has spent the night at each other's house.  My younger daughter, who is 9, has never spent the night at any friends house, nor has anyone come over here.  I would actually be fine with it, but she just doesn't have friends to invite, it seems.

 

Anyway, I can feel fairly stressed having stuff at my house, which is why when I've done birthday parties for my kids, we've generally gone somewhere else.  I was thinking maybe this would be about introverted children who didn't want to go to sleepovers. :D

post #39 of 67

Beanma, i can relate too.

in my culture of origin, sleepovers are not a regular occurence (sometimes, in some families, but only between cousins or very close friends)

but DD1 was in the US when aged 6-7-8  ... so she's much more keen that i am to have sleepovers ....

 

am resisting because i find them draining & have had health issues over the last 18 months & now DH has serious health issues too ....

2 years ago we "on impulse" swaped one kid with a friend i was visiting in another town; i left her my boy and got one of her daughters in exchange for 24 hours; they all had a good time & DD1 would like it to happen again ....

last year, she got to go and do a sleepover birthday party with a school friend ...

to me, that's more than enough .. to her, not enough ...

i see it as ALSO teaching limits ... she won't always be able to have all she wants in life, this is one of the things that i'm not comfortable with now.... too bad for her ... (i also found the "go and get therapy comment" a bit abrupt if not rude ..... i mean, there are so many different cultures on earth, with various ways to raise children .... to me, sleepovers are very culturaly marked ... you would be living in a different culture, you wouldn't be expected to do it at all ...)

post #40 of 67

I'm an introvert, I was as a kid, too, but I used to LOVE having sleepover parties for my birthday. The first time I had one, I was 7, and Mom had the entire Bluebird (like Brownies) troop over--15 girls. Even though we had the house and yard to handle it, that was a bit much, but I always wanted a sleepover party after that. I usually had 3 or 4 girls, did as much of the pre-party stuff myself as was age-appropriate, and we didn't do a whole lot of _planned_ stuff during the party. Mom always made a pot of spaghetti, and a bunch of popcorn, and we had cake.  We also had one of those SodaStream machines (yes, they were around in the 1980's!) for sodas (their syrups were healthier than store soda, at the time).  We would listen to records, go outside to play in the middle of the night (with the yard light on--we lived in the country, and didn't have neighbors close by), play Barbies--whatever we were into at that age.  I think I had a sleepover every year from 7 till 15, by my own choice.  My folks were always home, of course, and my brother would either spend the night at a friend's house (whose sister might be at our house--we were friends with a few families with sons my brother's age and daughters my age) or he would have one friend overnight, so that he wouldn't be in our hair.  We would take over the living room and try to stay up all night.  It was only one night a year, and it was a ton of fun.

 

My kids aren't to that age, yet, but, if they want to have sleepovers on their birthdays, I'll definitely make sure it happens.

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