An open letter to everyone from the introverted, and sensitive

To the bullies….

You have judged us, hurt us, ostracised us.

You convinced us there is something wrong with us by your word and deeds.

You took away our dignity, our self respect. You told us we were not fit to live in the same world as you.

You left us feeling worthless, powerless, and also perhaps meaningless.

You f*cking a**holes took away everything that was important in life. You’re purveyors of fear. But here’s the thing, I see through your lies, your falsehoods.

You think that just because we don’t rise to your taunts that somehow makes us powerless?

What I am doing now, is to find that passion, that success and happiness that you sucked out of me. It’s not just the writing, not the meet ups. Not facing by own fears and obstacles in the search for happiness.

It’s also a fist of defiance! One that I will connect to your face if you try that shit on me again.

To the other people who kept me small…..

It’s not just bullies, it’s everyone who thinks that we are flawed and needs correcting. Governments, doctors, scientists, parents, colleagues, so called friends, teachers and strangers.

You’re not like the bullies, but in your own way you are far worse. You’re way of demeaning is more subtle, more sinister.

You condemned us as flawed, anti-social, even mentally ill based on your own twisted reasoning.

Preaching perfection, and idealism that we can never match up to.

Your way is the ‘Tyranny of the Majority‘. The notion that because an idea is popular, that makes it the truth, and those who don’t conform should be made to do so.

Why don’t you play with the others? Why don’t you talk more?

Why? Because we like what goes on inside our own heads that’s why! It’s fascinating in here I tell you, fascinating!

If you could see what I see, know what I know and understand as I do, you would be awe struck.

Were not shy, we are highly sensitive. We have probably noticed things you have not. Thought deeply where you did not. Because of this we may have answers you haven’t thought of, or dismissed.

Such keen insight and depth of receptiveness can make us feel jittery, ragged with emotions.

If this all seems like boasting your right. Because I am tired of being dragged down into doubt, fear and mediocrity by a**holes like you lot. Worse still my own mind tries to sabotage me.

I no longer have to put up with your crap. I see that now.

Maybe I am being to harsh on you. Your own ignorance makes you blind to the flaws in your thinking and beliefs. Meaning you treat us this way because you don’t know any better.

But still it’s hard to accept your behaviour when you ram it down our throats. Thinking that we are flawed and convincing us of the same.

To everyone including those I have mentioned…

Don’t judge us too fast.

We may not want to talk, because we want to think first. But get us onto a subject we feel passionately about and we can talk your ear off.

You may think we are geeky, nerdy. But that’s just a pejorative way of saying that we delve deeply into life, not just skim over the surface.

The banality of existence bores us. We don’t really care who won X factor, or which celebrities are fighting it out on Twitter. The trivial distractions of life are not what we want to talk about.

We want to know truths, whatever that might be. We want the answers to the big questions. We love ideas and want to turn them over in our minds and connect them together.

We want to express ourselves, yes we really do? It’s just that we’re afraid of what you might say because of these attitudes I have already mentioned.

We have so much going on inside that keeping it all in becomes a struggle.

But know this, we are not like you in many ways. That doesn’t mean we are flawed. Nor does that mean there is nothing we can talk about.

We like tranquility, rest, peace and quiet. Come and find us in those places, just don’t make too much noise, or you will ruin it.

Instead of thinking of us as shy, timid, weak, or inhibited. Think of us as discreet, self controlled, contemplative, perceptive, understanding. Yes, there are many words you can use to describe us that are not about our weaknesses, but our strengths.

Think of us as ‘Orchids‘. That is unlike you ‘Dandelions’ we are more sensitive to the environment. Noises, sights, ideas, even our own internal sensations like hunger can leave us feeling overwhelmed.

Being an introvert is difficult in a world that makes so much noise and moves so fast, then condemns us for being different.

Yes we are different than you. Introversion does have value in this world, although we ourselves may not feel that way.

Yes we struggle just like you, doubt, fear, worry, these are things we know very well. But these behaviours can be a way of concealing out strengths.

So if you’re not an introvert, and you haven’t met one of us.

Come up and say hello. Just remember it may take a little time for us to feel comfortable around you, and don’t be surprised if we need to leave early. We can get so over stimulated that we need to take a rest. But become a friend to us, and we will be friends for life, because we really do know how rare they can be.

‘Don’t walk behind me; I may not lead. Don’t walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.’ – Albert Camus

I write this in behalf of all of us who notice too much, think too much, and feel too much.

Richard Collison

Image Credit/123rf : Ray Hussey

2 thoughts on “An open letter to everyone from the introverted, and sensitive”

  1. Humiliated for just being different – nearly deaf, small in stature, slightly deformed (depending on the observing judgmental ‘eye’) – but still very human, feel the pain of being ostracized from people, mocked for being deaf, body-shamed, even in medical offices, and never understanding ‘why’. Was even laughed at by a psychiatrist for being overly paranoid, for not being able to trust people – (hmm, wonder why?). I don’t want for much (materialistically). I’ve always been a ‘why’ and ‘how’ type of thinker, genuinely curious as to how and why things are the way they are, how they came to be, especially people, why and how certain people are the way they are. It (sometimes) helps to understand their origins to make sense of people’s attitudes, and their disdain/disrespect for others for no apparent reason, other than just to be mean, or to make themselves feel better about themselves. Sick.

    Meanwhile, over the years (I’m 50 now), I’ve gradually withdrawn to a borderline suicidal unhealthy little ‘corner’ of my own on this seemingly evil planet, and am finally seeking out others who have experienced the same, and more importantly, to learn how they deal with and cope with these oftentimes debilitating obstacles, in order to gain their self-esteem and self-respect back; to learn to live again, to think healthy about themselves, and to begin to contribute to help others once again (which, after all, isn’t that what living is much about?) I’m an analytical mind, but have been living among self-serving, dumbed-down people who sabotage others just for personal entertainment. They interpret a ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ as weakness and/or sarcasm – (my brain/mind is having difficultly grasping the connection). Please educate me as to what/how I can better cope with this nonsense, and re-find myself in this chaos. I miss being around people, but have learned the hard way that being lonely among the wrong people is better than being alone. I’m dying inside, and am wondering is there are any true ‘good’ people left on this planet – y’know, those who lift another’s spirit, encourage another, challenge another, and not for personal gain or ‘game’.

    My apologies this is so long-winded, it’s been building for many years. The breaking point came last Monday when a nurse seemingly sabotaged my MRI, simply because I panicked at being told to undress before being ‘clamped in’ and placed into a tube for 40 min. Now my doctor won’t redo the referral for the MRI, and, well, it’s a bit of a mess. The symptoms are getting worse (chronic migraine, constant change in vision, deafness, pressure/numbness/tingling across circumference of head, loss of memory/amnesia-like symptoms, sporadic anger outbursts, and voice has become raspy for last couple months).

    Positive encouragement can go a long way, as long as it’s sincere. I live with my ex-husband, but, well, let’s just say he’s one of those ‘self-serving’ type of people, and a bit abusive, which isn’t helping by any means. I’m trying not to just ‘give up’, I sometimes feel as if I’ve conquered something (what, not sure) by just facing yet one more day. So…. any ideas, can anyone point me in the ‘right’ direction for sound advice, encouragement, or at this point, to meet others who have/are experiencing something similar, as this would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you for your time.

    • Hi Jacki
      There’s no need to apologise for the length of your comment.
      I’m not sure if anything I can say will help you. You sound like you have had a tough time of it, even more so than myself.

      My own particular journey from anxiety, desolation and loneliness has been a long one. Part of it was by myself, partly with a therapist. It’s taken over fifteen years, (I’m 46 now).

      My biggest regrets perhaps are not seeking help sooner. I didn’t go to see a psychiatrist, and I had a bad experience with a counsellor when I was eighteen. The therapy I ended up in years later was a mind-body therapy. But the most important aspect of therapy was that I could express myself without fear. Through talking, body language and behaviour.
      Expressing oneself I have learned is a big part of it. I learned to honour my feelings, thoughts and my body as a part of me. Not to reject them or be ashamed of who and what I am. Thoughts, in particular, can be a problem. But we often get them from others.

      I was angry, at myself, at others. Ashamed to be who I am. I have learned that society does that to people, not just us two, but all of us. Giving us impossible standards for us to meet.
      It sounds like the people who surround you are not supportive compassionate types. Do what you can to get away from them their toxicity, as it will infect your mind. Society can be like that toxic, (but it can also be a source of joy). The quest for perfection is a myth that has a lot to answer for. So my advice here is to become more aware of how the world affects you.

      Another regret was I wished I had taken action sooner. I’ve read a lot of books and whilst they have helped shift my thinking, they didn’t change my life. Taking action is not a choice if you want to change. You reaching out here is the kind of thing that you need to do.

      As for your symptoms, I can only say to go and see another doctor, one that’s more sympathetic. I don’t know where you live or your situation so I don’t know if that’s feasible. The symptoms you describe are probably due to stress, but you I think you know that already.

      I have a lot to say about my journey. But I can’t cover everything here.
      Perhaps I should write more, this blog was invented to be for people like us.
      If I may so bold as to suggest you subscribe and I’ll write some more, you have given me more of an incentive to write. Not everything I write will be obviously relevant but I do want to get my ideas out there. Yet my writing is competing with my other interest, making art (which is another step on my journey).

      I know you might not think of possible, but things can get better.

      Thank you for taking the time to write to me.
      I hope that what little I wrote here is a small ray of light.

      I’ll wrap up for now because I don’t want to prattle, but try this song I from my youth.


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