Saturday, March 25, 2017

The Introvert at the Party

Tonight my husband and I went to a party. We knew a few people at the party, but most were new to us. We had a good time -- interesting conversations, good food, interesting things to drink.

As the evening went on, one woman began to dominate the conversation that I was part of. She was very animated and quite funny. But the longer the group sat around the table, the more she talked and the less she listened. She cut into other people's stories with a related anecdote of her own. It got to be both annoying and tiring for me. Why do people do this? Do they just get so wound up that they can't stop and listen to anyone else?

I know I am in introvert and I take responsibility for acting like an introvert in many social situations. So right now I'm trying to figure out how I could better interact in this kind of social gathering. What I did was get up to get something to drink, and then wander into another room and a quieter conversation for awhile. That was a good choice. But I'd also like to be part of a bigger conversation and not feel shut down.

I think I'll visit Quiet, the book about introversion and I'll keep thinking.


  1. I tend to gravitate to both ends of the spectrum, so I am always very understanding of both roles. As the dominator, it can be exciting to share experiences and find commonalities in conversation. I match energies in the room so if people are enjoying my stories and we are sharing interests than I continue in that manner because I can't help it. As an occasional introvert, I never assume that the dominator is aware of the habit but instead try to chime in with small quips and include other people. I take the dominator's story, keep the topic, and turn it to another person. I feel bad walking away from conversations because it can often be misinterpreted to be rude.

  2. Thanks for your thoughts. I agree with you - I don't think the dominators are aware of their effect on others and the person last night was highly entertaining. I am trying to move in the direction of more interaction, but an additional problem I have is that my voice is pretty soft, so an animated extrovert covers me up and no one hears me. Again, I take responsibility for being the person that I am. My goal is to find my own path to comfortable participation. I don't feel that anyone thought I was rude by leaving -- I went to get something to drink and there were other conversation groups, so I joined one.