We were invited to an event; a concert for a gospel artist that we both loved. It had been a while since we had a date, and this was the perfect chance! I got all dolled up for this night on the town with my husband.
Make up? Check
Energy? Energy? Darn!
Why is energy always MIA when I needed her most?
Truth is, energy is not very dependable for me. No matter how much I try to hype myself for an event, I seem to always be low on energy. To be honest, I am both excited and dreading this date! It's quite a conundrum. I desperately want to enjoy tonight but I just know that the loud music, the long lines, meaningless small talk, constant smiling, and massive crowds are going to leave me mentally limp once I leave the venue.
My husband opens the car door for me to get in and I can tell he’s giddy for our date. He looks in my eyes and sees a forced smile plastered all over my mouth. All of a sudden, Niagara Falls unleashes from my eyes as I bury my face in his chest and sob. I’m hoping he will ignore the tears as I mumble under my breath. “Don’t worry babe… we are gonna have a great time tonight!”
This interaction would leave any husband understandably perplexed and concerned, and any wife insecure and sad. If you and your spouse have ever felt this way, I’d like to bring clarity to what might be happening.
Three things introverted wives want their husband to know.
I discovered I was an introvert when I was about 34 years old and I wish I had learned this sooner. I think I would have had an easier time navigating life and I would not have wasted so much time trying to fit in. I also would have taught my husband three important things about being married to me.
1. We love you even when we need to be alone.
As an introvert, I regularly need time alone in order to refuel my energy stores and connect the dots in my mind. It’s just the way my brain is wired. Even though I’ve tried to train it differently, it always reverts back to its “factory settings''. The hard part is that there is no easy way to tell your soulmate, “I love you but I need to be alone right now.” It seems to come out harsh every time I try to say it sweetly.
In moments of solitude, introverts can best feel our own heart beats and hear our deepest thoughts. We can discover what our souls need most and where we need to grow and change. We can spread our wings, stretch our arms, spin around like hopeful ballerinas and fill our energy stores. We thrive with consistent short moments of quiet, like a flower needs just the right amount of water to grow.
We need you to know that our time of solitude is not a reflection of how we feel about you. You are the most important person in our lives and getting regular times of solitude will help us to love you more deeply.
2. We need you to be mindful of us.
We are often overwhelmed by an over-packed schedule. That may be hard to believe because we are also very good at sucking it up and pushing through the pain. We are loyal to the end, so if you or anyone else needs us to break our necks in order to help them out, I’m your girl! But that’s not always good for us. We know there are times that we need to say “NO”, some of us just have a really hard time finding the strength to say it. That’s why we need you to be mindful of the pace that our lives are traveling. Think of the days or weeks ahead and help us find time to rest and breathe in between appointments or events. Anticipate when we may need to rest or when we are taking on too much.
Help us protect our energy stores and times of solitude. When you can see that we are depleted, wrap us in your arms and ask us how we’re doing. Remind us that it’s ok to take a break. Knowing that you're paying attention helps us feel your care, protection and love.
3. We are still figuring ourselves out.
I used to think I was such an easy person to understand. I would be frustrated when other people had such a hard time “getting” me. Lately, I know why they had such a hard time. ‘Cause I’m having a hard time too. I’m still learning and growing into who I am. Just when I think I have myself figured out, I find another unexpected turn in my journey.
As introverted wives, we may not fully understand why some environments are more draining than others, or why we get these random impulses to step outside our comfort zones. It doesn’t make sense that we long for time with friends but dread reaching out. It's hard to keep all our thoughts bottled up in our heads but we may regret sharing those same thoughts out loud.
We appreciate our spouse’s patience. Every wife desires to be known by her life partner. She wants to be seen, understood, and cherished. As an introverted woman navigating an extroverted world, we often feel excluded and ostracized, you dear husband, can be our place of comfort, peace, and restoration. We invite you to walk with us on this journey of self-discovery.
A note to my Dear Husband,
I appreciate your patience. I know at times I can seem disconnected and distant. I know it’s hard to know exactly how to love me. I’m trying my best to be open and honest with you. I really want to be present for you and present for myself. I know that trying to understand me feels like going down a rabbit hole. I want you to know that I’m grateful you’ve chosen to stay on the journey with me.
Love, Your Introverted Wife.
Tanzy L. Chandler
Marriage Inc. Blog | Contributor