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#361 of 806 Old 10-06-2009, 06:51 AM
 
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Hello and welcome, gumboot_charlie!

itsajenism - Sorry to hear you had to go through that! How awful! I would highly recommend reading "Introvert Power: Why Your Hidden Life is Your Hidden Strength" by Laurie Helgoe Ph.D.

Given what I have heard of your background, I think you would really be able to relate to the discussions in this book by, about and for introverts. There are some other book rec's on some of the earlier parts of this thread, but this is the only I have read so far. I found it very helpful.

It sounds like your DH knows you are an introvert, but doesn't get it at all. Have you talked to him about this particular incident? I found the Introvert Power book helpful in giving me some better ways to explain how I am to people. I know it sounds like I'm really pushing this book, but in reality, I am very tired, should be in bed and don't have any other ideas.

I hope you are starting to feel better soon. BTW, I am almost 39 and I haven't "grown out of it" either. But I am finding ways to become more accepting of myself.

to you. Good luck.

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#362 of 806 Old 10-06-2009, 07:16 AM
 
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I just found a blog in Psychology Today that's about introverts. Here's a link to the one where she interviews the author of "Introvert Power."

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/...ntrovert-power

Edited to add: a link to "The Party Predicament" blog entry by Sophia Dembling.

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/...ty-predicament

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#363 of 806 Old 10-06-2009, 12:09 PM
 
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I swear I want to put this on a t-shirt, business card, poster, etc... (from the link above...thanks for posting that!)

Quote:
SD: What do you most want extroverts to know about introverts?
LH:
--When an introvert is quiet, don't assume he is depressed, snobbish or socially deficient.

--If you ask an introvert a question, WAIT until she thinks about it. Introverts think before speaking, not through speaking. If you want to get to the good stuff, you need to slow down.

--Don't assume that your fun is an introvert's fun. Parties are often BOR-ing to an introvert.

--Introverts need to withdraw to refuel. Don't take it personally.

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#364 of 806 Old 10-06-2009, 12:33 PM
 
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Originally Posted by itsajenism View Post
Forgive me if this has been covered...
Despite knowing you are an introvert, do you get down on yourself at times because of it? If you do, how do you make yourself feel better?
....
Sometimes I feel like such a young awkward child because I'm an introvert and I wonder if I will ever feel comfortable being the way that I am.

Ha. I was in this situation with my Ex who was an immense extrovert countless times!! He drained me more than anything else in life.

((((hugs)))) I know your pain.
I can't tell you how many times people have told me that they thought I was a total bitch before they got the chance to really know me. They always say that I come across as cold and snobbish...when really I'm just putting up a mask to hid the total awkwardness, turmoil, and tension inside.

As Starflower said, Introvert Power is an excellent book...for you AND your hubby to read.
Self acceptance is also key....I've calmed down inside a little with accepting that this is part of my genetic makeup and that I don't HAVE to pretend to be and extrovert. I needed to find a way to be happy being me...damn the rest of the extroverts and their overbearing chit-chat parties!!!! LMAO.

It's still hard and sometimes I relapse into feeling like I SHOULD want to gather in the street with the neighborhood and chitty-chat about everyone's buisness. I still go through those days when I feel like an alien in my own life. There are very few solitary people around here (very small community) and some days it's hard to find solitude. I feel like I kind of get lost in the world...

The only way I've found to combat this feeling is researching introversion, doing my hobbies, and finding a way to laugh about my "condition". You just gotta quit beating yourself up about being who you are and work with what ya got. Pleasing other people is WAY over rated, in my newly formed opinion!!!!

(((hugs)))

Sorry, that got longer than I really intended!!

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#365 of 806 Old 10-06-2009, 02:04 PM
 
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Now two days later, I'm still feeling crappy and worn out... and have been getting down on myself because at nearly 28 years old I haven't "grown out" of not being able to make friends easily and I haven't "grown out" of feeling uncomfortable in social situations. Sometimes I feel like such a young awkward child because I'm an introvert and I wonder if I will ever feel comfortable being the way that I am.
Yes, I feel this way a lot of the time after being in social situations with people I don't know. I am comfortable as an introvert, but that doesn't make these situations any easier, especially when everyone else gets to know each other and be comfortable with each other so quickly. It's hard not to feel left out, and it is unpleasant when your extroverted partner "abandons" you to go be the life of the party leaving you bored out of your mind.

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#366 of 806 Old 10-06-2009, 05:19 PM
 
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Originally Posted by HappilyEvrAfter View Post
Self acceptance is also key....I've calmed down inside a little with accepting that this is part of my genetic makeup and that I don't HAVE to pretend to be and extrovert. I needed to find a way to be happy being me...damn the rest of the extroverts and their overbearing chit-chat parties!!!! LMAO.
Bold is mine - I think this is a key to being more at peace as an introvert.

I thought it was cool that Psych Today had an introvert blog.

Today I was enjoying being melancholy. Yes, I do enjoy it sometimes. No, it is not the same as depression.

Some days I feel very introverted and other days I actually like to be more engaged with people. However, I never feel like meeting random strangers. I can relate to the part of the party blog where she described trying to figure out why some parties were tolerable while others were torture. Sometimes I even like getting together with friends that I know in groups of about 10 or so. (More is OK if we don't all have to be in the same space all at once.) This also only works if I am not feeling peopled out.

But put me into a group of people I don't know where I am "supposed" to be having fun? Sorry, meeting a bunch of new people at once is not my idea of fun. Mingling? Not if I can help it. I like my space.

I used to make plans for Friday nights (when I was single and kidless). But often by the time Friday night rolled around, I was already "peopled out" and didn't want to go do my plans I'd been looking forward to earlier in the week. Now I am much more careful about what I put on my calendar.

Even when I do feel like being with people, and spend time with friends by choice, I still need to have down-time afterward to keep sane.

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#367 of 806 Old 10-07-2009, 12:08 AM
 
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Today I was enjoying being melancholy. Yes, I do enjoy it sometimes. No, it is not the same as depression.
I'll second that... autumn is always my favorite time to indulge in a melancholy mood.
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#368 of 806 Old 10-07-2009, 12:35 AM
 
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I've calmed down inside a little with accepting that this is part of my genetic makeup and that I don't HAVE to pretend to be and extrovert. I needed to find a way to be happy being me...damn the rest of the extroverts and their overbearing chit-chat parties!!!! LMAO.
Ditto!! I stop trying to fit in or make friends or make a good impression. I don't need that. If I have to suffer through an event like that, I will make the minimum polite hellos and socialize as long as it's enjoyable for me, then leave. I sometimes drive separately from dh to events like this. If I can't leave, I DO MY BEST TO FIND THINGS THAT INTEREST ME... like sit back and observe the people dynamics, or if it's outside I wander around lookin at bugs or trying to find a four leaf clover, or busying myself cleaning up the dishes, or learning what the host reads about by examining their bookshelves... coffee table books can sometimes work too. I don't ignore people or avoid people in a rude way, but just get interested in other things. The distractions keep me occupied and remind me of what's interesting and important to me and what's not. It keeps me from feeling awkward.
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#369 of 806 Old 10-07-2009, 12:41 AM
 
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another question... do any of you struggle with caffeine or sugar dependence/addiction? I remember reading that introverts have much less energy than extroverts and I often feel like I need something to get me going. anybody else or is it just me?
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#370 of 806 Old 10-07-2009, 12:55 AM
 
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I'm glad I found this group. I need to read some posts on here. I have a question. Do any of you get a hard time from other people? Even my husband doesn't understand me and thinks I am a social retard or depressed and I'm not. I am on the extreme end of the introverted spectrum but I don't consider myself shy anymore. I just don't like large group situations or small talk so people think something is wrong with me all the time when I'm not chatty.

My husband thinks I have a mental problem and doesn't think being introverted explains how I am but it really does. He thinks something is wrong with my brother too who is also introverted because he can be very quiet. I actually ok with how I am now. I used to feel more uncomfortable and aviod talking to people compleley and had anxiety regarding social situations. I no longer anxious about it and am more comfortable with who I am.

My dd is also very introverted and every one blaims it on me. It isn't I talk to her and take her out in social situations. It just how she is. I can already tell my1 year old ds is not introverted and more social than her. I grew up in New Jersey where most people are on the far extroverted spectrum which was not a good fit for me. That is how most of my husbands family is.

My mind is active and I prefer to think things out. I am with the kids all day and that uses a lot of my energy so I like to be alone to process things by the end of the day.

I tend to worry about things about the future and don't really act chipper ever and can be quiet and people sometimes think it means I am depressed.

Dianna environmentally educated tree hugging mom of dd 9/06 and ds 10/08 newbie dd 9/10
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#371 of 806 Old 10-07-2009, 11:01 AM
 
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another question... do any of you struggle with caffeine or sugar dependence/addiction? I remember reading that introverts have much less energy than extroverts and I often feel like I need something to get me going. anybody else or is it just me?
When I know a chaotic event is going to happen I tend to "self medicate" with caffeine.

Generally, I try to stay away from it though because I just find it harder to re-energize afterwards if I'm hopped up on caffeine. I tend to feel better when I *let* myself be sluggish afterwards.

Quote:
My husband thinks I have a mental problem and doesn't think being introverted explains how I am but it really does.
Sigh. Yes, my ex continually told me I needed to be put on an anit-depressant because I just needed to perk up.
I can tell you they don't help because this is not a "condition". In fact, I found that anti-depressants only sank me deeper.

Starflower said it perfectly:
Quote:
Today I was enjoying being melancholy. Yes, I do enjoy it sometimes. No, it is not the same as depression.
I'm betting there is a vast majority of the population that's medicated on anti-depressants that are really just misunderstood introverts (misunderstood by themselves and providers).
My dad has called me his "melancholy baby" since forever. He said that I was always in a better mood the day after I holed my self up for a couple of hours with a book. He "let me be" and it made all the difference.

I'm not sure how to get a spouse to understand...that's hard. I just ended up divorcing mine..for several reasons, but the continaul mental stigma he put on me was a big part of it.
Not that I'm in any way recommending divorce just cause he doesn't understand!!! Just no advice....other than saying, "It's who I am...take it or leave it!"

Cheers!

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#372 of 806 Old 10-07-2009, 12:54 PM
 
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I think the introverts who have spouses who pester them about it might benefit from sharing a book like "Introvert Power" or "Introvert Advantage" with them, just so they can see that others are this way too and it's not a character flaw. Perhaps seeing it in print would help legitimize it to an extroverted spouse? I don't have any other ideas right now. I am lucky that my DH is cool with it and very understanding, but we did talk about it a lot while I was reading about it. (DH identifies border-line I/E, though I would have classified him as introvert based on observations. Guess he's more social at work. He does enjoy being with people, but he doesn't make the initiative for a social life, whereas I make the initiative, but I have to regulate it heavily so I don't get overwhelmed.)

Caffeine/sugar question:

Yes, I pretty much have to have coffee every morning. I usually have a rice milk latte with a little agave syrup in it. A few weeks ago it was mochas but I had to back off the soy due to thyroid issues (and rice mochas just aren't quite the same). So less sugar there, but still some.

I also like to have dark chocolate as a little pick me up. And I do have sugar fairly often, but not in huge quantities at a time. I would say the worst days for sugar consumption are days I feel low energy. If I sleep poorly, I usually crave sugar all day long to try to perk up and stay awake.

My DD is a sugar monkey and we are trying to find ways of cutting down the amount of sugar she eats, but she is definitely an extrovert. But she also can spend a lot of time just reading by herself, too. However, I think if this were not interspersed with people time for her, she'd get very grumpy.

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#373 of 806 Old 10-07-2009, 01:51 PM
 
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I'm addicted to chocolate and junk food.

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#374 of 806 Old 10-08-2009, 09:43 AM
 
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I'm in a very defensive and self-focused season of my life right now, so please read the following through that lens -- my efforts are usually more inclusive!

The whole burden of explanation thing troubles me. Why are introverts the ones who have to be legitimized? Why are we the ones who have to prove we're not snobs, or unkind, or disinterested? Why aren't extroverts who make more noise and take up more psychic space (in some ways) having to prove THEY're not overbearing, or bullies, or indifferent to any boundaries but their own? Why should ANY type of personality or approach be initially condemned in some fashion?

It feels like the difference between "innocent until proven guilty" and "guilty until proven innocent" -- and unilaterally at that. Very offensive.

I personally would eliminate the component of needing to legitimize something about who I am to a partner. It conveys imbalance and disrespect. A quest for understanding is one thing, and very healthy, but it has to take place within the framework of honoring one another, whether you understand or not, whether it's your way or not. But I'm pulling out of a lifetime of those around me expecting me to justify myself for their comfort, a lifetime of my efforts to do so through blindness and/or fear, and I'm overcompensating and furious now.

Down from the soap box . . .

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#375 of 806 Old 10-08-2009, 10:56 AM
 
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The whole burden of explanation thing troubles me. Why are introverts the ones who have to be legitimized? Why are we the ones who have to prove we're not snobs, or unkind, or disinterested? Why aren't extroverts who make more noise and take up more psychic space (in some ways) having to prove THEY're not overbearing, or bullies, or indifferent to any boundaries but their own? Why should ANY type of personality or approach be initially condemned in some fashion?

It feels like the difference between "innocent until proven guilty" and "guilty until proven innocent" -- and unilaterally at that. Very offensive.

I personally would eliminate the component of needing to legitimize something about who I am to a partner. It conveys imbalance and disrespect. A quest for understanding is one thing, and very healthy, but it has to take place within the framework of honoring one another, whether you understand or not, whether it's your way or not. But I'm pulling out of a lifetime of those around me expecting me to justify myself for their comfort, a lifetime of my efforts to do so through blindness and/or fear, and I'm overcompensating and furious now.

very well said!

Makes me think of what's acceptable in our culture and how people expect us to behave... certainly many introverted tendencies are considered unacceptable. It would be great if that could change, the way stereotypes slowly change by people making positive influences. It's too early in the morning for me to think back to my cultural anthropology classes though!
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#376 of 806 Old 10-08-2009, 08:31 PM
 
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I'm in a very defensive and self-focused season of my life right now, so please read the following through that lens -- my efforts are usually more inclusive!

The whole burden of explanation thing troubles me. Why are introverts the ones who have to be legitimized? Why are we the ones who have to prove we're not snobs, or unkind, or disinterested? Why aren't extroverts who make more noise and take up more psychic space (in some ways) having to prove THEY're not overbearing, or bullies, or indifferent to any boundaries but their own? Why should ANY type of personality or approach be initially condemned in some fashion?

It feels like the difference between "innocent until proven guilty" and "guilty until proven innocent" -- and unilaterally at that. Very offensive.

I personally would eliminate the component of needing to legitimize something about who I am to a partner. It conveys imbalance and disrespect. A quest for understanding is one thing, and very healthy, but it has to take place within the framework of honoring one another, whether you understand or not, whether it's your way or not. But I'm pulling out of a lifetime of those around me expecting me to justify myself for their comfort, a lifetime of my efforts to do so through blindness and/or fear, and I'm overcompensating and furious now.

Down from the soap box . . .


The first part of "Introvert Power" addresses these exact things. She says that about 50% of people are introverts and that Americans glorify extroversion. I know some people thought this book had a bit of an "us vs. them" attitude, but it didn't bother me, because, well, sometimes it does feel like us vs. them!

And as for partners....... I think we can work a lot toward better understanding with extroverted partners (they can be clueless but it's not necessarily their fault), but if a partner or family member is requiring legitimization or trying to change the nature of an introverted person, this would be a real barrier to any healthy relationship. You are right - it's all about respect.

As for justifying anything to the rest of the world? I don't care what they think. I did frame my participation at my first church board meeting by saying that I was an introvert, but that was because I felt that saying it out loud would help the group be more understanding when I was often quiet, and because it made me feel freer to stop pressuring myself to be more extroverted.

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#377 of 806 Old 10-08-2009, 08:37 PM
 
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And now for something completely different......

I know many people have favorite smilies, but I have been wondering about one of my preferences.

Given the choice between these: vs.
I will always choose this one:

I thought at first it was because I prefer blues to orange, but lately I wear a lot of oranges and reds and my little tongue sticking out smilie I'm using on my siggy right now is orange, so maybe that's not it.

And it's not like I don't like hugs or anything, but I don't like sustained hugs. I wonder if I prefer the smile because it gives the hug, makes the other "person" smile, and then lets go.

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#378 of 806 Old 10-09-2009, 12:11 AM
 
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And now for something completely different......

I know many people have favorite smilies, but I have been wondering about one of my preferences.

Given the choice between these: vs.
I will always choose this one:

I thought at first it was because I prefer blues to orange, but lately I wear a lot of oranges and reds and my little tongue sticking out smilie I'm using on my siggy right now is orange, so maybe that's not it.

And it's not like I don't like hugs or anything, but I don't like sustained hugs. I wonder if I prefer the smile because it gives the hug, makes the other "person" smile, and then lets go.
Definitely. It's a personal space thing, isn't it? There are times, many, when I'd rather have my hand held for comfort than get a hug. Especially a sustained hug. <shudders> (I looked special for that one!)

Empty-nesting SAHM to DS1 (1989), DS2 (1992), an underachieving Bernese Mountain Dog (2006-2014), and an overachieving mother (1930).  Married to DH since 1986.
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#379 of 806 Old 10-09-2009, 10:05 AM
 
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[QUOTE=Starflower;14500056]And now for something completely different......

I know many people have favorite smilies, but I have been wondering about one of my preferences.

Given the choice between these: vs.
I will always choose this one:
[QUOTE]

Yep and yep.
I'd choosed the latter too even though I really enojoy oranges and yellows.
I like hugs, just not porlonged ones....squeeze and let go.

But, if given an open choice I'd proabably choose:
It's the one I use most often.
While I wouldn't openly seek a group over solitude, I'd probably choose a group setting over a one-on-one. Mainly because I can retain my anonymity and fade into the background when I start feeling threadbare!

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#380 of 806 Old 10-09-2009, 06:28 PM
 
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The group hug one is nice for showing solidarity, too.

Plus it looks open to me in the middle so not too crowded; there is a way out.

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#381 of 806 Old 10-12-2009, 05:28 AM
 
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another question... do any of you struggle with caffeine or sugar dependence/addiction? I remember reading that introverts have much less energy than extroverts and I often feel like I need something to get me going. anybody else or is it just me?
Yo. I can't count the times I've tried to quit. If I quit coffee I find myself drinking Coke, if I quit Coke I find myself plowing through 1lb. bags of chocolate(specifically, peanut m&ms) if I cut back on the chocolate I'm back on coffee. I need them to keep going while I'm being drained by my surroundings.
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#382 of 806 Old 10-12-2009, 05:35 AM
 
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And now for something completely different......

I know many people have favorite smilies, but I have been wondering about one of my preferences.

Given the choice between these: vs.
I will always choose this one:

I thought at first it was because I prefer blues to orange, but lately I wear a lot of oranges and reds and my little tongue sticking out smilie I'm using on my siggy right now is orange, so maybe that's not it.

And it's not like I don't like hugs or anything, but I don't like sustained hugs. I wonder if I prefer the smile because it gives the hug, makes the other "person" smile, and then lets go.
I laugh because I feel the exact opposite. See with this guy the hug is all done, it's sweet, it's intimate it's easy peasy. See? There's your hug!(it's also smaller)...but with this guy there's the stress of the "approach", there's too much energy, here she is...coming in for. that. hug! rah! I'm hugging ya!....it's too extroverted
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#383 of 806 Old 10-12-2009, 06:23 AM
 
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ISFJ here. I'm married to an ENFP, so as I'm sure you can imagine, that can be difficult at times. He pretty much "gets it" now, or as much as he's able to, and doesn't make all the attempts to "fix" me that he did early in our relationship. It's taken me a long, long time to come to terms with this part of myself and stop feeling like there's something "wrong" with me, but I think I'm finally getting there. So, anyway, I thought I'd poke my head in and say hi.
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#384 of 806 Old 10-12-2009, 10:33 AM
 
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I'm a little geeky and OCD about trying to find the right smilie to fit the situation. I use this one by default and I use this one if the smilie is intended specifically to comfort a sad person.

Welcome Mary!

-Alice, SAHM to dd (2001) and ds (2004) each of whom was a homebirth.jpg, who each self-weaned at 4.5 years bfolderchild.gif, who both fambedsingle2.gif'd, who were bothcd.gif, and both: novaxnocirc.gif.   Also, gd.gif, and goorganic.jpg!

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#385 of 806 Old 10-14-2009, 09:30 PM
 
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I'm the same as Sustainer with the hug smilie situation.

Had a super bad day today. Homeschooling is not going so well for the past couple days. I'm feeling really jealous of my friends who can send their kids off to school and have some time alone. Doesn't help that my husband has been working so much. I just feel completely spent.

I have friends that want to get together. Friends I really love to be around, but I don't feel like I have the energy to deal with it. I just want to hole up in my house, but that isn't helping my mood. Tomorrow I'm going to my friend's book group. I'm not sure how many people are going to be there, or who they are, or if they actually want to talk about the book or just chit chat. I hope they want to talk about the book, or I'm going to feel like a dork.
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#386 of 806 Old 10-14-2009, 09:32 PM
 
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Oh, and yes, coffee addict here. I used to be majorly addicted to sugar, but I'm not so bad with it now. Although I'm probably worse with the coffee. I think I would die without either one.
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#387 of 806 Old 10-14-2009, 09:46 PM
 
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LucyRev - Sorry to hear that homeschooling has been frustrating lately and that your DP has been working so much. I hope you get a break soon.

And you are not a dork for wanting to discuss a book at a book discussion.

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#388 of 806 Old 10-17-2009, 11:04 PM
 
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I'm feeling very alone today. DH has been super busy with work all week so we've hardly seen him at all. DD was lonely for him so they spent the day together out and about at a museum.

Normally I would cherish a day to myself, but this morning I opened my email to news of the death of a friend. Though we were not that close and I have not seen him in many months, I run into his ex every month or so when she's out with the kids. We all met at a baby group that was very active for about 5 years. It's really sad to think about his 6 year old daughter and 3 year old son no longer having a father. I told DH about it, but we haven't yet told DD. I know she will be incredibly sad, maybe not so much because she will miss him per se, but because she will empathize with her friend. I think she will feel very vulnerable.

Today would have been better for me to be with DH and DD, but I just didn't want to deal with the crowds at the museum or with the other family they went with. Plus DD wanted it to be daddies only with her best friend and his daddy. I guess that just makes it seem all the weirder that another little friend of hers is now fatherless. Sigh.

I am a 40 year old unschooling, belly dancing, artist-mama of one almost 8 year old. I just had brain surgery and blogging.jpg about it a bit because it's just so surreal.
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#389 of 806 Old 10-18-2009, 12:29 AM
 
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Oh my gosh. That is terribly sad news. I'm so sorry.
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#390 of 806 Old 10-18-2009, 11:41 PM
 
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I'm sorry Starflower. That must be tough thinking about the family's grief and how your daughter will feel. My heart goes out to you.
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