Introvert, Extrovert, And Somewhere Inbetween

I’ve found myself researching how introverts deal with raising an extroverted child. I have no idea how that combination manages. I am not a introvert. I abhorred quiet – my office space was silent most of the day, and I would blast music so I could concentrate. Living alone, my house was quiet — I’d go out with friends after work, come home and turn on music or ring someone up to chat. I got enough quiet in half an hour before bed and a dozen quick walks (outside for the mail, across the car park at the office, etc) to be happy.

Living with another adult reduced some of the quiet times, but not enough that I minded. Having a young child, however, has almost completely eliminated quiet from my life. Relatives purchase loud toys — and laugh about it, knowing exactly how much the kid is going to adore creating cacophony. I feel bad about taking away a beloved toy (or ripping the batteries out of the damn thing), but seriously the ONLY time Anya isn’t talking … she’s got some toy blaring, or the TV is on, or there is some other assault on my ears.

She’s had a few experiences with boys at the playground who were a few years older than her, and VERY rough in their play. She hates it – to the point she’s happy to leave the playground. I’ve tried explaining to her that those boys were putting out a lot more energy than she wanted to deal with. And I feel the same way about her sometimes — I see that you are having fun, but it’s just TOO MUCH. She gets it, and then turns on one of the singing race cars.

I found a lot of articles / blogs / etc from the standpoint of an extroverted parent trying to raise an introverted child — but an adult has the capacity for abstract thought. You can be quiet for someone else. An almost four year old … not so much. My mom used to have enforced quiet – turn off the lights, fire up a few candles, and just relax. Hated it to the point that I, twenty-five years later, cannot imagine forcing such horror on our child … no matter how practical the solution might be. Unfortunately the only other solution I can see is being somewhere else for a few hours each week.

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