Gabriel granted me an interview about being an introvert. His answers are italicized.
How many people are in your immediate family?
Counting me? 5
How many of them are introverts?
Are you the introvert?
Is it difficult to dwell in a family of extroverts as an introvert?
It can be. Sometimes.
What makes it difficult?
Often times, they don't understand that I just need time alone. That I'm drained. It's not that I don't want to be with them. I just need time to myself. Need to refuel.
What steps do you take to relieve the strain?
Exercise helps. Following a hobby helps as well. Sometimes, just accepting the inevitable and hopping on stage and playing the people person for a bit helps. Just go with the flow sometimes.
What is vacation like with a family of extroverts?
*snort* Crazy. My idea of a good time, and their idea of a good time are often different things. It helps that we have the same interests for the most part. And they try to take my personality into account.
What can your family do to make vacations more enjoyable for you?
Taking into account my personality really helps. So they don't always overload me. They allow me to have time to myself.
On our recent cruise, what did you do to accommodate yourself?
Often, I would walk around the ship. I would find a quiet place, sit down, read a book. Then, I would hop back in when I felt ready to do so.
Do you think the cruise provided a good place for an introvert?
Yes, the reading area on the ship was not densely populated and it was quiet. A good place to sit down. It was good that they could go with other people and enjoy that time while I could enjoy my time alone.
Do you feel like people think there's something wrong with you because you're an introvert?
Sometimes. People try to change what they don't understand. If you don't fit in with society, most people think you don't belong in it, or that you should be changed to belong in it. They say that the nail that sticks out is the one that gets hammered down the hardest. That's true. Introverts aren't quiet because we're arrogant or snotty. In groups of friends, we often have one or two really good friends because large groups are overwhelming. And, if we're quiet, it's just because it's our nature. If we don't say much, it's because we don't want to say something or because we don't have anything to say.
What do you want extroverts and the world to know about living with introverts?
Don't always pressure an introvert to go out somewhere. It's draining for us. We need time alone. Time to relax. Time to get our thoughts in order. Being exposed to large groups of people on a regular basis can be overwhelming. It doesn't develop a good reaction. It's always better to make sure that all parties agree on something. If one person isn't enjoying, often the entire group ceases to enjoy it. It's better to invite us first, because if you merely assume we don't want to come, it can hurt our feelings, and make us feel like our opinions don't matter to you.
Is there anything else you want to say about being an introvert in an extrovert world?
Don't think my words apply to all introverts. We're all different. There's no one mold for everyone.
Thank you, Gabriel.