How can we best sum up the introvert/extrovert relationship in one word? The answer is BALANCE. Indeed opposites can attract with some intention.
Truly it’s all about a balance of energy, responsibilities at home and towards each other, a balance of social life versus solitude, and a balance between love and fear.
Let us look at 5 tips on how to make the introvert/extrovert relationship achieve the right balance in order to work:
1. Define your needs
You have to be much more clear than “I feel like going out” or “I’d like to stay in”. When you establish exactly what you want out of going out or chilling at home it is often possible to find an activity that can please both your needs. If the objective is to stay at your own place and your partner’s is to get to know her best friend’s new boyfriend, maybe you can satisfy both of you by having the two of them over for beers and conversation.
Communication is key in every relationship. But it is exceptionally important in an introvert/extrovert relationship. You need to talk. Open the lines of communication and talk it out in a way that works for both of you. Find the relationship spot where you can be truthful, and real with each other. If you’re an introvert, maybe even write it down beforehand Get your thoughts together. Go deep and pinpoint the key issue before you turn to say something you might regret.
Tell your partner what you need, let them tell you what they need. Keep talking, making this back and forth communication part of your life.
Take in what they say and find a way to work together even though you may want and need different things. Tell them when their music is too loud (maybe they could put headphones on?). Tell them when you need some quiet time and be understanding when they have some stuff they need from you too.
3. Make room for quality time
One-on-one time together is crucial for any relationship, but introverts and extroverts often have different views on what that romance should look like. Does snuggling up in front of a classic movie connect you to your partner? Or going for a picnic in the park? Maybe lots of gymnastic, neighbor-enraging sex? Don’t assume that the answer will be the same for both of you. Your partner may be thinking that reading your books side by side every evening is heaven, while you feel like you never do anything together. Talk about what you both need to make the time you spend together feel like a valuable revitalizing break.
4. Make common friendships
There’s a strong chance that if you’re in an introvert/extrovert relationship, one of you brought along a broad network of friends and casual acquaintances, while the other one (guess who) came equipped with only a handful of very close friends. This usually leads to a “fun” experience where the extrovert wants to go out with friends and drags the introvert along, the introvert feels outside of their comfort zone and starts avoiding future social engagements, thus failing to become friends with the extrovert’s group and making future socialization less likely.
If you can find something to do that lets both of you meet new people at the same time, (Book club? Music events?), it can be easier to form a social group in which both of you feel at ease – while, of course, still keeping your old friendships.
Or what about making a reset by moving to a new area to start your social lives on equal footing?
5. The most important component – Love
Love is the most important ingredient that overrides all of your differences, your frustrations, and those times you compromise only to find yourself somewhere loud and just wishing you could teleport back home.
Even when you’re bored to death sitting in silence while your introvert partner enjoys some alone time. Even when you get frustrated that you’re so different and start questioning whether it will work out.
It doesn’t matter, because love transcends everything. It’s easy to love the best of someone, but when you can love them at their worst, when you disagree with each other, or when they’re giving you a hard time, you know it’s the real thing.
“Actual love, as in unconditional love, doesn’t mean you love everything about the person. It means you don’t need them to be different than they are for you to be happy.” ~ Unknown