This is the reality of an introvert-introvert friendship, in all its amazing, awkward glory.
I met my introvert best friend over 12 years ago when we started working together, and it was awkward love at first sight (well, almost). We worked at a bank in the construction lending department and spent our days crammed together in a tiny room with one small window.
Things started as quietly as you can imagine for two introverts, and at the time, we had no idea it was happening. But over the next few weeks, we started to bond over our love of 90s boy bands (BSB 4EVA), old school hip hop, deep conversations, sarcastic undertones to just about everything we said, and snacks. Lots and lots of snacks. We went from being strangers to being inseparable (and kind of obnoxious about it) in no time.
We recently had dinner together, and it inspired me to write this post to commemorate some of our hilarious habits that make our quirky friendship so unique. In reality, I think these “weird” things are actually pretty common for many of us “quiet ones.”
So, here is the reality of an introvert-introvert friendship, in all its amazing, awkward glory. Can you relate?
‘Weird’ Things My Introverted Friend and I Do
1. We can’t hang out together with other people comfortably.
I don’t know what it is about bringing another person into the mix, but my friend and I have a tough time acting “normal” in front of other people. Ask ANYONE who has ever been around us for even a small amount of time, and they’ll tell you it’s true.
I feel part of the problem is, since we are so open and vulnerable with each other, we don’t feel as safe with anyone else. We’ve worked hard to cultivate a friendship in which we both feel secure, and as a result, we don’t welcome newbies with as much ease as I see others doing.
2. We’re awkward with affection from others but not each other.
When my friend and I first hugged, it could not have been more uncomfortable — many of us introverts simply don’t like having other people in our personal space. For example, I can barely handle a stranger standing close to me in line at the grocery store, but if I love you, I don’t mind it at all.
It took some time, but now there’s no such thing as personal space when my introvert best friend and I hang out: We always hug hello and goodbye, and we have no qualms about it whatsoever.
3. We don’t know what to do when we see each other unexpectedly.
My introvert best friend and I are very close, but a weird thing happens when we unexpectedly run into each other in town — we both clam up. From the way we both react, you’d think we were just old acquaintances rather than two best friends who know ALL each other’s deepest darkest secrets and insecurities.
Later, when we meet for a scheduled dinner date, we laugh and play back what was going through our heads during that sudden encounter. We’re continually mystified as to why, after so many years, we’re still so dang awkward — and we chalk it up to being two introverts who need to be mentally prepared to socialize, even with those closest to us.
4. We hate changing it up.
My friend and I get dinner together at least once a month, and we always meet at the same busy restaurant where we know we’ll be able to fade into our own little world for hours without many interruptions. We’re now familiar faces to the servers who work there, and they always stop by our table to say hello. We do our best to “fake it ‘till we make it,” but really, we’re relieved when they leave — that’s when we nose-dive into our much anticipated one-on-one conversation!
As two introverts, we love this routine, because it’s calming and less stimulating to be in a familiar, comfortable place. Any time we consider changing to a different restaurant or hang-out routine, we quickly banish that thought.
5. We overthink. A lot.
You’d think a friendship that’s lasted over a decade would be bulletproof, and we wouldn’t overthink a simple text or worry about something we said to one another, but as introverts, we do. When we finally talk about our worries, it’s almost always — actually, 100% of the time — totally off-base. We’re then wildly entertained by the vivid interpretations our overthinking brains managed to spiral us into.
Why do we do this? I think both of us being introverts, we’re constantly in our heads and always seeing many different sides to one single statement — so we sometimes tap into our insecurities and need reassurance from the other person that we’re still on the same page. I’m so grateful that my introvert best friend and I are able to talk and laugh about these things; I don’t think I’d feel comfortable admitting my overthinking to an extrovert.
6. Talking about our friendship makes us both emotional and uncomfortable.
I recently got a little misty-eyed telling her that I’d been reflecting on our friendship, and I was so grateful to have her in my life. When I became overcome with emotion, I noticed she was choking up, too. (Not that I was looking at her, heavens no! Eye contact and emotions don’t always mix when you’re an introvert. I just saw her dab her eyes with my periphs.)
So I quickly changed the subject. “But yeah, I just love you so much, and I just wanted you to know that. Ahmm, so what do you think you want for dessert?”
We both know what this friendship means to us, but to actually vocalize it? We just can’t handle it. Our eyes dart anywhere but at each other, and we awkwardly make jokes when the conversation gets too deep. Normally our server will come over (I swear they only come when your mouth is full of food or you’re having an emotional breakdown) and snap us out of our tears, but then we move on like it never happened.
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7. We can be SUPER immature together.
We’re both in our 30s, married, have mortgage payments, and all that serious stuff, but when we’re together, there are no boundaries. There’s no such thing as a topic being “off limits,” so things are always entertaining when we hang out. I can imagine that from the outside, we look like two level-headed women, but if anyone caught just a little bit of one of our conversations, they’d quickly see just how silly and inappropriate we can be.
Our time is filled with many giggles, sometimes tears, and an abundance of real talk. We see our time together as our therapy sessions — a safe space where we can lay everything on the table and leave feeling lighter and happier. Some of my biggest laughs have been shared with my introvert best friend, and it’s due to our complete trust in one another, as well as our ability to shut out the noise around us when we’re in our magical introvert bubble.
If you’re reading this, I hope you have — or one day find — a fellow introvert friend who “gets” you, too. They’re the best.