Advice Goddess Blog

Are You An Innie Or An Outie?

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Are You An Innie Or An Outie?
I just posted another Advice Goddess column -- a response to a question from a woman who's seeing a guy who...really isn't a people person:

I’ve been seeing this wonderful man for three years. I’m 29, he’s 41. Although he says he loves me immensely, and deems me the person most important to him, I mostly feel single. He never accompanies me to functions (weddings, Christmas parties, etc.). I’m independent, and love hanging solo with friends, but sometimes I’d like him to be my date to something. His response: “I just don’t do functions.” I get that. He’s an introvert. In his defense, he threw a big birthday party for me, and says I’m always welcome to invite friends to his place for drinks. Still, I feel I’m kept low-profile, and it hurts. My friends have pronounced our relationship dysfunctional. So, despite all the fun we have, I wonder if something’s very wrong and I’m compromising my needs.

--Unaccompanied

Here's an excerpt from my response:

You know those party games where people ask, if you were an animal, what would you be? Well, if your boyfriend were a party animal, he’d probably be something between a deer in headlights and roadkill.

There are people who need people and there are people who need fewer people. Or, as Bukowski put it, “No [I don’t hate people]. But, I seem to feel better when they’re not around.” The image of the introvert is negative: Norman Bates, Ted Kaczynski, Lee Harvey Oswald, and Howard Hughes with Kleenex boxes on his feet. But, for many, being introverted is merely a social preference, not a disorder. This probably goes for your boyfriend -- unless it stops him from getting to the grocery store and he starves to death, or he’s so “not a people person” that he’s compelled to get them out of the way with an ax. >>cont'd>>

The rest, including comments, is here.

And a comment for those who'd like to read me in their local paper -- please write and ask the features editor of the daily and/or the editor of the alt weekly to run my column.