Hallowe’en is right around the corner. All the kids are really excited, right? Wrong.
Not all children are as happy about Hallowe’en as you’d think.
Some of our more lavishly celebrated children’s holidays are planned with extroverted children in mind. What about the remaining 30% who are different? 30% of all children are introverts.
Please don’t feel sorry for us. We’re not extroverts who failed to become the life of the party. Introversion is a legitimate personality type.
I’d like to take a moment to advocate for the kids like me. We’re introverts!
Now, don’t get me wrong. We love a good time and we sure love our family. It’s just that we define fun a little differently than our extroverted peers.
Let’s plan a Hallowe’en that works for introverted kids, too. Then we’ll branch out to Christmas and Easter. We’re on a crusade to raise consciousness.
Here are some of the things that can stress introverted kids and why.
• Introverts are territorial.
o Someone can’t take our seat, tug at our sweater, put our toy away, grab the book out of our hands or scoop us up unexpectedly for a big hug and kiss without ruffling our feathers. Please give us our personal space, no matter how cute we look all dolled up!
• Introverts need time alone to recharge their batteries.
o If forced into a loud, crowded, brightly lit environment full of colors, smells and new sights for too long, we may become exhausted, irritable and out of sorts whether that’s throwing a tantrum or throwing up. For us, less is more. Please limit out experiences of things like this to the absolute minimum! Your fun can be our ordeal.
• Introverts value privacy.
o The whole idea of donning strange clothes or costumes and parading around in front of people is something that brings no inherent rewards for us and can be the ultimate stressor. If we could do without the parade and even admiring others in the parade, we’d be pretty happy. (“Admiring others” take a lot of energy for an introvert … we give energy and extroverts take energy from us when we’re out and about.]
• Introverts fear failure in public and experience deep humiliation because of it.
o If we’re not prepared for our latest
”public” Hallowe’en experience, it can be very traumatic. We don’t like being thrown in to a situation for which we’re not prepared. Please don’t take us to a new event, location, or creative way of celebrating this occasion without warning. Whatever you’re doing with us for Hallowe’en, please go through it with us beforehand and if there are social requirements, give us some tips of what to say at the absolute minimum to meet parental standards so we can win!
• Introverts hate small talk and being touched by strangers.
o Does this sound like we want to go door-to-door in anybody’s neighborhood … even for candy? I mean talk about a double bind. Can’t you just give us some candy and skip the rest!
• Introverts don’t like to rush.
o If we’re rushed, we’re miserable, no matter what else is going on. If we have to endure the Hallowe’en crush, better let us amble up and down one trick ‘r’ treating block or down one aisle at the carnival rather than rushing us through six in one hour. Too much. Too fast. Too terrible.
If you’re keeping us at home – which is sounding better all the time -- please don’t make us open the door and fuss over everybody. It’s exhausting. We wouldn’t mind hanging back and watching you open the door, though. That’s fun for us! We like to watch.
Submitted by: Nancy R. Fenn *
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