We live in a social, outgoing culture. People who have “more fun” are those who put themselves out there and are the life of the party. The same thing goes for children; the more social they are, the more other children gravitate around them. Being social and the life of the party is not the life of an introvert. For those looking from the outside in on the life of an introvert, it may seem they are shy and possibly depressed; that is far from the case. I’m an introvert and I’m Raising an Introvert. Knowing what my child goes through is easy for me to understand, but for those who are extroverted and Raising an Introvert, it can be hard.
I shared Living Life as an Introvert last year and having this personality, I have had to learn to work through some of the struggles that come with it. Because of who I am, I can help my son work through what he struggles with. If you are extroverted and Raising an Introvert, I hope these six things will help you in helping your child.
6 Tips to Help in Raising an Introvert
1. Love and Respect Them for Who They Are: everyone is created differently and your introvert needs to feel loved and respected. Let them know you are trying to understand how they feel. Talking with them helps get their feelings out in the open. Don't be harsh, it only hinders them working through these things. Whatever you do, DO NOT TELL THEM THEY NEED TO COME OUT OF THEIR SHELL! I heard that phrase until I was married and it DOES NOTHELP the situation. Would you believe I even heard it once when my husband and I were looking for a new church? (And it wasn’t from my husband.) I heard now’s the time for you to come out of your shell and be a new person, the people there won’t know the real you. Let’s just dig that hole I want to hide in a little deeper .
Love them for who they are. Respect them for who they are.
2. Encourage Your Child: it’s hard to face large gatherings when you feel you are totally alone in the midst. Encouraging your child to face their fears not only helps them to get over that moment of fearfulness but it also helps them to know they cannot run from the hard things in life. They will face things they do not want to do in life at one point or another and now is the time for them to learn this.
Encourage them to face life’s difficulties.
3. Arrive and Leave Early: being late is not an option for me or my son. Where ever we are going, we arrive early. It is easier to wait for the crowd to arrive than it is to walk into an already full room. While all eyes are necessarily not on the door when it opens, it sure feels like it to an introvert. Early arrival helps if you need to leave early.
It’s good to arrive early and there is nothing wrong with leaving early if needed.
4. Praise Them: don’t forget to praise your child after they have made an effort to face the death march of a crowd. Let them hear how proud you are of their effort in attending the gathering or facing a difficulty they deal with.
Children need to hear praise for things they have done.
5. Allow them time: If they are content with playing by themselves or being alone, don’t force other children on them if they are not ready for it. It is possible for introverts to have good relationships with others. Allow them to seek friendships on their own creates opportunity to put themselves out there but on their terms.
Allow your child to act as a bloom and open on their own timing.
6. Teach RESPECT for others: when your child is downright rude and disrespectful to people, nip it in the bud. This quirky personality is no excuse for being rude. The slumping of the shoulders with the head down, not looking at people when they are being spoken to, that is disrespect. When a handshake is being presented and refusing to follow through with it that is disrespect. If you allow disrespect to continue, your introverted child will grow up to be one of the most disliked and avoided adults. Their co-workers will avoid them and they will more than likely be served up as the main dish at the lunch table.
Teach them to respect others so they will receive respect.
Remember, your child is not in a shell, they are not shy, and they are not weird. They are who they are and they are an introvert.
Are you Raising An Introvert?