I ran across a series of Happiness Myths that Gretchen was posting in the last week. I agreed with the vast majority of them, save one. The Myth that Spending Time Alone Will Make You Feel Better.
For some of us, spending time alone is a necessity, and not having that time makes you psychotic in weird ways. Just look at me.
I won’t argue Gretchen’s main point that depressed people, sad people, need to get out around other people. It’s good for them. It got me to thinking, however, how UNhappy always being with others can make me.
Hubby switched to days almost two and a half years ago. He went to work after I did and came home before I did. Then he lost his job. I work with people all day long, seeing several hundred of them before I can escape to the office to work on other things. Did I mention I’m an introvert?
Part of my current life situation is lack of time alone. It causes such stress sometimes that I want to scream. Even when it doesn’t it’s an underlying frustration that never goes away. I’m alone in the car going to and from. That’s not healthy for me. I tried to address it with Hubby, but he doesn’t understand and didn’t see it wasn’t about him.
Some of us need alone time. I so deeply identified with a comment Sally Field made in an interview shortly after her divorce from her youngest child’s father. “I have a high need for alone time,” she said. Oh, I so completely understand!
To all the extroverts out there, please know we are not rejecting you. We’re not. Being along is as necessary to us as spending time with you. Let us go. We’ll come back shortly and be the better for it…better friends, spouses, children, parents, employees.
It is not a myth that introverts must have time on their own to reconnect, recharge. Gretchen was speaking about people in general, and I understand her point. I hope you understand mine. Being alone is a good thing for some of us. Please let us be for an hour or two now and then. Let us go without strings or hurt feelings or feeling rejected. Let us be who we are and have our time of solitude. You’ll like us much better, I promise.