Introvert Game Changer

One too many fights between the sisters got me annoyed.  I had to do something or I was going to start screaming.  What was the deal??

I formed a hunch — space.  Big sister aka. introvert hated little sister messing up their room, moving and touching the big sister’s stuff and generally being annoying.  Hence the constant bickering or constant big sister yelling at little sister.

Except, I really wanted the girls to share a room — philosophically as much as physical space wise.  I wanted them to stay up and giggle, to be good friends, to share, bond . . . you know, like camp!

My own childhood memories of my sister and I in our room are great – playing dress-up, listening to music, laying in bed while mom read us a book and the occasional locking little sister  in the closet.

But, as I still am learning, this is not me.  They are not me.  I must do what is best for them and all that . . . sigh.  Big sister, my seven year old, needed her own room.  Now.  Or I would be suffering.  (We all would.)

So, I moved little sister out and across the hall.  My husband and I moved into a small little room at the end of the hall with our only television, a love seat and bookshelves lined walls.  Surprisingly, I loved it — even if I couldn’t walk around the side of my bed.

Life for big sister changed from day one.  I saw huge behavior changes.

Bed made.

Clothes put away.

Toys in baskets.

Desk clean.

Smiles.  (Gasp!)

She’d grown responsibility wings and flown!  Game change!

Gone was the bickering with little sister.  Gone was the child I worried about so much.  In her place, a new, mature young woman, acting friendly and responsible.  All I can attribute it to was a room of her own.  Incredible.

Books on introverts say it’s important for innies to have their own space . . .

I guess they are right.

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2 Comments on “Introvert Game Changer”

  1. Joana Says:

    Thank you so much for doing that for your eldest introvert daughter! Being an introvert myself and having been the eldest child with a brother 6 years my junior, I can tell you that your introvert daughter is blessing you from the bottom of her heart! She may not say it, but she is. And also, thank you for being willing to put aside your more extroverted concept of what “being a sister” is and giving her the option to demonstrate another way of being sisterly. We introverts do indeed need space – we are very territorial; we need a place to just “be.” If your daughter is anything like I was (and still am, at 52), her space is her security zone, a sanctuary. By respecting her needs, you’re teaching her that just because her needs are different doesn’t mean they aren’t valid and OK. She will not grow up to have to learn to be OK in her own skin and/or how to set boundaries for herself as protection from an overwhelming environment or intrusive others. It took me years of counseling and tears before I could do this, finally, at age 45, and I’m still learning to do this without anxiety.

  2. meltay Says:

    Joana,
    I appreciate your comments and your affirmation. It’s so helpful for me to get the insights of other introverts – thank you!


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