Introverts tend to be very perceptive people, and they may pick up on things that you are doing (unintentionally) that bother them. The downside to being perceptive like this is that sometimes introverted people bottle up their feelings until they explode on someone else when the pressure becomes too great for them to contain any longer (sometimes with dramatic consequences).
Although introverts would prefer to talk through their feelings instead of bottling them up, sometimes it’s easier said than done for an introvert.
So how do you deal with hurting an introverted person? in this article, I’ll walk you through some steps on what to do when you hurt an introvert.
Here are 8 steps on handling hurting an introvert’s feelings
Make sure they know that you value their feelings
Each individual is different, but most introverts don’t like talking about their feelings until they have built enough trust in the person they are speaking with. Therefore, if you’ve hurt an introverted person it would probably benefit both of you if you let them know that you care about how they feel instead of brushing their emotional distress off as unimportant.
give them time to cool off
Many introverts are on the “hot-tempered” side. When an introvert is angry or hurt, they don’t want to deal with it right away. They prefer to sit by themselves and process their emotions for a while before dealing with someone else about them (unless it’s important that they speak up right away). Therefore, if you’ve hurt an introvert in some way give them time to cool off before trying to make things better between you two.
You may think that if you let time pass, then your friend will just get even angrier at you – this is usually not the case unless your relationship with that person is already tenuous. Introverts feel uncomfortable around other people when they are very emotional and sometimes they even feel ill or physically weak as a result of their intense emotions. Therefore, they prefer to be alone and process the way they are feeling before interacting with others. This is why waiting before you try to make things better between you two (if at all) can help keep your introvert friend from becoming even more hurt than they already are.
Don’t talk about the issue while they are hurt
When an introverted person gets hurt there can often be “escalation” of anger or sadness because of pent up emotion building in them until they finally burst like a volcano spewing forth their inner turmoil on anyone around them. This does not mean that you have to hide from them when they are upset, but it does mean that you need to be aware of how they are feeling if their emotions escalate.
This is because introverts are very emotional people and therefore may deal with their emotions in the same way that we would deal with a fever (by taking steps to cool off). Therefore, if your introvert friend seems like they could erupt at any moment, it may be best for you to leave them alone or avoid talking about whatever it was that hurt them, but avoid it JUST for the time being.
Don’t completely avoid the issue, address it when they cool off
If you hurt an introvert and they have the time to go off by themselves in order to process their feelings, then you should also give them the space they need. However, when they are ready and not too emotional about what is bothering them – address it with them directly. The best approach would be (if your relationship is close enough) to tell them that you are sorry for whatever it was that hurt them. This will let them know that you care about their feelings and don’t intentionally want to hurt them
Don’t use sarcasm
Introverts understand everything on a literal level when they’re hurt and feeling vulnerable so sarcasm may confuse them and hurt them even more. Even if they don’t get your sarcastic jokes in an attempt to lighten things up between the two of you, introverts are also very sensitive to tone of voice. Therefore, if you are in a joking mood be sure to make it clear that you were attempting to express yourself ironically by using an appropriately light-hearted voice.
Make them feel wanted
Introverts can often feel like they’re being ignored or not needed by others because their more extroverted counterparts tend to take the center stage (i.e.: the “alpha male” dominates conversations). If you’re aware you’ve hurt your introvert’s feelings by ignoring them or making them feel unwanted, you better fix this misunderstanding by voicing the opposite impression.
Try making your introvert feel wanted by inviting them to do things with you more often, giving them positive feedback about what they’re doing in life, and always acknowledging their presence when they walk into a room or when you’re with others
If they have something to say after being hurt, you listen and don’t interrupt them
Sometimes introverts prefer to be alone when they’re feeling hurt or give you the silent treatment – that’s completely fine. If your introvert friend feels comfortable with you, he/she may initiate an interaction later on after having time to process their feelings. listen to what they have to say (without interrupting them) and be sure to let him/her finish what they have to say before you respond.
of course, you shouldn’t be passive just to make them feel better, explain your actions if you feel the need to..the important thing is to make them feel like you’re totally involved and want to make amends for making them feel hurt.
lastly, let them know they have your support
Introverts are very sensitive to conflict which is why they may withdraw from people after being hurt by them. However, an introvert who feels that they have lost the support of a friend might feel so down they become depressed. Therefore, if you know that you’ve hurt your introvert’s feelings make every effort to show them that you’re supporting them in whatever endeavor they desire.
The introvert is a complicated creature with intricate emotional needs. While they may seem like the type of person who doesn’t care about anything, this couldn’t be farther from the truth. If you’ve done something wrong to an introvert, you may be surprised to find out how much it hurts them.
I hope this article helps you learn how to deal with hurting an introvert, and gives you more insight into an introvert’s feelings. any comments or feedback are always welcome!