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Being quiet and introverted at 19 is unacceptable?

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Applying to Uni? Let Universities come to you. Click here to get your perfect place 20-10-2014
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    Ok so im 19 nearly 20, and i absolutely hate my age, its awful i feel really old and like i should be grown up by now, im quite quiet in big groups and im very introverted, but at this age everyone expects you to be really chatty and constantly in everyones faces and the centre of attention.

    like for example last night i was out with my family and my cousins and their grandparents from the other side of the family and a few other family friends, so we were at the pub about 14 people and i only really talk to one cousin that i am close with and never really see any of the other people. and their grandad said why are you so quiet all the time, and he said it a few times, my dad interjected to say oh yeah he doesnt say much, and later their grandad looked over to me and said just taking it all in are we. but even though i did say a few things to the group and made a few jokes (forced myself to) and i was sat their smiling not with a face like a slapped arse.

    But i just feel to be quiet and shy is getting less and less acceptable the older i get, i dont particularly want to be loud and everything, i just want to be back at an age where being quiet was acceptable like 15 - 17 were my best years, people just accepted you for being quiet if thats what you were, but now everyone is like OMG hes nearly 20 and so quiet there must be something wrong with him!!

    sorry for rambling, does anyone else feel this way? / have any advice to give me?
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    I have similar issues to this sometimes which often leave me feeling as if I've missed a memo that everyone else got or something...I'm 22 and in my final year of uni. Whilst I'm relatively talkative, I feel pretty awkward one on one or in large groups of people I don't know very well. When people pick up on the fact that I'm being quiet or shy and feel the need to tell me so it makes everyhing a hundred times worse. For example, at a party not so long ago an acqaintance who's known me for a while told me I was shy. Frankly, I was being quite outgoing for me, talking to everyone and generally joining in and having fun. This completely threw me-I thought I was doing well and then this one guy's words just brought me crashing down, and made me feel like however much progress I make socially, I still have a big sticker on my forehead saying 'this one's shy' which people enjoy pointing out. As less outgoing people, I guess we're often ill-equipped to come up with a good comeback to people who just like to pick at peoples achilles heels.

    I look at friends of mine who I don't consider particularly outgoing, and yet they don't seem to have or feel these kinds of problems. However I don't really speak to people about it either-it's something I try to hide which seems to instead make it glaringly obvious. I feel like I have a beacon on my head sometimes-body language probably has a lot to do with it.

    I feel the same as you in that I feel as if I haven't reached some sort of golden 'grown-up' stage yet, and this bothers me intensely. My best advice in social situation is try to make eye contact even if you don't feel like speaking, and listen, don't drift off or look bored. If people point stuff like this out to you, don't get defensive, because once someone knows they've hit a nerve they often keep pushing it (I find this happens with everyone, people I don't like as well as people that I consider nice...I don't understand why people like to point out peoples 'faults'-if I encounter a shyer person I'm always very nice to them and try to take an interest with them without being patronising or obvious. Perhaps I'm able to empathise better than some people because I've experienced it...).

    I think the general gist of this is that society is very intolerant and when you find out that what you consider pretty normal behaviour is seen as being too shy and quiet then it can be very upsetting and disconcerting. Do what you enjoy and be with people you can trust and feel comfortable with. And also, speak to people in the real world about it because you will often find unexpected allies within your social circle.
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    (Original post by gingersnapsback)
    I have similar issues to this sometimes which often leave me feeling as if I've missed a memo that everyone else got or something...I'm 22 and in my final year of uni. Whilst I'm relatively talkative, I feel pretty awkward one on one or in large groups of people I don't know very well. When people pick up on the fact that I'm being quiet or shy and feel the need to tell me so it makes everyhing a hundred times worse. For example, at a party not so long ago an acqaintance who's known me for a while told me I was shy. Frankly, I was being quite outgoing for me, talking to everyone and generally joining in and having fun. This completely threw me-I thought I was doing well and then this one guy's words just brought me crashing down, and made me feel like however much progress I make socially, I still have a big sticker on my forehead saying 'this one's shy' which people enjoy pointing out. As less outgoing people, I guess we're often ill-equipped to come up with a good comeback to people who just like to pick at peoples achilles heels.

    I look at friends of mine who I don't consider particularly outgoing, and yet they don't seem to have or feel these kinds of problems. However I don't really speak to people about it either-it's something I try to hide which seems to instead make it glaringly obvious. I feel like I have a beacon on my head sometimes-body language probably has a lot to do with it.

    I feel the same as you in that I feel as if I haven't reached some sort of golden 'grown-up' stage yet, and this bothers me intensely. My best advice in social situation is try to make eye contact even if you don't feel like speaking, and listen, don't drift off or look bored. If people point stuff like this out to you, don't get defensive, because once someone knows they've hit a nerve they often keep pushing it (I find this happens with everyone, people I don't like as well as people that I consider nice...I don't understand why people like to point out peoples 'faults'-if I encounter a shyer person I'm always very nice to them and try to take an interest with them without being patronising or obvious. Perhaps I'm able to empathise better than some people because I've experienced it...).

    I think the general gist of this is that society is very intolerant and when you find out that what you consider pretty normal behaviour is seen as being too shy and quiet then it can be very upsetting and disconcerting. Do what you enjoy and be with people you can trust and feel comfortable with. And also, speak to people in the real world about it because you will often find unexpected allies within your social circle.
    thanks this really helped to read and know im not the only one, it just feels so weird! and i know what you mean about somebody calling you out on being quiet when your actually being more sociable than usual it really knocks the confidence.
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    anyone else have any advice?
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    Be yourself. I'm the same; one teacher thought I had Asperger's because of my refusal to take part in anything/talk to anyone! Sometimes being shy works to my advantage, as people think I'm a shy, cute, modest type, when in actual fact I'm a manipulative bitch. I say work to your strengths, and you'll pull through.

    Besides, an awful lot of people prefer the quiet people to the loud ones, as the latter sometimes tend to get a bit 'in your face'. I know this doesn't help much, but when you're trying to be loud and outgoing when you're not, people will notice. Ease yourself into social situations one step at a time, if and when you feel up to it. Not everyone's expecting you to be outgoing, after all. Just to be yourself.

    I say I'm a bitch, but that's only to those who are bitches back. You sound nice, so here's a hug: :hugs:
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    i have some good advice for you, but i'll have to post it tomorrow as i cant be arsed to write an essay on it now
    #1

    ohhh i can relate to so much of both of those posts... i'm 18... at the last family gathering this man said to my uncle "oh *anon* is very quiet isn't she"... while i was RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIM... my uncle just patted me on the head (again, i am 18) and said "yes she's always been like that"... what am i supposed to say to that!? i was also pretty please with myself that day because i'd been greeting people quite bubbly and chatty and though i was doing really well.. but that shot me right down and definitely shut me up!

    i also hate when people say "oh you're so quiet" "you're so shy"... etc. like wtf am i supposed to say back to that? it just makes you feel worse because i am so self conscious about how quiet i am it's actually ridiculous... i look at people who make friends so easily and i get so jealous... how do they do it? how do they just speak like that, i mean where do they find things to talk about to strangers? it's weird because with my friends i can talk non stop... but strangers? forget it! i hate being shy... so much...

    i am getting better though because i literally force myself to talk even if it sounds stupid... sometimes it does and it might be a bit of a cringy comment looking back but i realise i don't mind so much... someone i don't know that well was complaining to me about how someone else was so shy (they aren't they just don't like this person).. i felt bad for them but it kind of hinted they don't feel that way about me so i'mm getting better! the only way is up!
    #1

    oh to add onto my above post i think the worst thing about being shy is people thinking you're rude and disliking you for it.. or that feeling where you know your mere presence is making people awkward.. i hate times like that.
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    Loud and obnoxious people are incredibly irritating, so don't worry about it. It's better to be on this side of the fence than the other.
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    Fake confidence and it will eventually come naturally. I used to be woefully shy, and it worked for me, I think the way to do it is to just stop thinking what other people might be thinking. I suppose there's nothing wrong with being shy, but you're going to do much better in life if you can change yourself, that sounds harsh but it's true, the ability to socialise and present yourself well is vital in interviews for example. 'Be yourself' is good advice if youre happy with yourself, but if not you're just going to me miserable. Confidence is not the same as being loud and obnoxious so don't feel you need to act like that, it's possible to be both introverted yet outgoing, it's about when you speak and what you say or do. Obviously you're not alone and it's good to know that, but it won't help you overcome the problem you want to overcome, nobody can tell you how to socialise it just comes with practice. Like I said, fake it and don't worry about being judged.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    oh to add onto my above post i think the worst thing about being shy is people thinking you're rude and disliking you for it.. or that feeling where you know your mere presence is making people awkward.. i hate times like that.
    That is exactly my problem. I feel awkward, tense and nervous in social situations and I really don't like saying anything because frankly, I never know what to say...I usually don't mind it's just when I get the feeling that people think I'm stuck up or that I feel I'm too good for them when it's actually not the case at all. And then in class, I'm surrounded by the loudest people possible..talking across me and then I have nothing to say, I feel like they're just watching me, judging me and feeling like I'm rude for not joining in when really, I don't know how to contribute..
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    I'm exactly the same as you (same age too!) and have been like this all my life. There are loads of other people out there like us so don't let it get to you, it's just how some people are really. I find that I'm fine with people I'm very close to but otherwise I have trouble talking to anyone I don't know properly.
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    (Original post by SuziieB)
    That is exactly my problem. I feel awkward, tense and nervous in social situations and I really don't like saying anything because frankly, I never know what to say...I usually don't mind it's just when I get the feeling that people think I'm stuck up or that I feel I'm too good for them when it's actually not the case at all. And then in class, I'm surrounded by the loudest people possible..talking across me and then I have nothing to say, I feel like they're just watching me, judging me and feeling like I'm rude for not joining in when really, I don't know how to contribute..
    We must be twins, trust me it's harder in Uni..
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    I am the same in some ways, in social situations I try to make generic statements about the surroundings or something that has been previously said or I repeat what has been said to me in another form and continue in an agreeing fashion. Try pretending your someone else it sometimes helps.
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    (Original post by najinaji)
    Loud and obnoxious people are incredibly irritating, so don't worry about it. It's better to be on this side of the fence than the other.
    Yeah they can be sometimes, but they seem happy, engaged, and full of life, i sometimes feel like people look at me like a sedated zombie.
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    (Original post by duharvalgt)
    I am the same in some ways, in social situations I try to make generic statements about the surroundings or something that has been previously said or I repeat what has been said to me in another form and continue in an agreeing fashion. Try pretending your someone else it sometimes helps.
    oh god, yeah i do that too all the time, but im sure some people are getting wise to it, i feel like what i say can lack any real substance about anything but at least it fills silence. i feel like its all filler and no killer with me, if you know what i mean.
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    I don't understand why people feel the need to point out to me that I'm quiet. What are they trying to achieve?
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    (Original post by mistermojo)
    I'm exactly the same as you (same age too!) and have been like this all my life. There are loads of other people out there like us so don't let it get to you, it's just how some people are really. I find that I'm fine with people I'm very close to but otherwise I have trouble talking to anyone I don't know properly.
    I know i shouldnt let it get to me, but it does, especially at christmas or family things where lots of extended family members are there, like all my family are the types that constantly say jokes and are always saying something, but i would hate to be the type of person who is always cracking jokes every two seconds, it just seems so fake and attention seeker ish to me. im not saying people shouldnt joke, but god the extent that my brothers do it is beyond belief, like theyre fighting for the lime light or something.
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    Here's my opinion...opening your mouth and speaking is not hard.

    I bet some of you refer to yourself has being 'naturally shy'..excuse the french but that to me is some bull****.

    Shyness is not a being..you guys CHOOSE to be tense and nervous around social settings;

    You become extremely self conscious when you're out..wondering if people are looking at you, or thinking why arent you talking or why are you wearing those clothes...or you're afraid of saying something that the other person wont like so you become afraid to even speak whats on your mind.

    but the truth is..NOBODY IS THINKING OR WONDERING ABOUT YOUR ASS LOL..and if they are, so what? DO YOU.
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    It's late, so I'm not going to write much, but something I found useful was to remember that if you say something awkward or embarrassing you're the only one that will remember it (and you'll cringe inwardly, but you're the only one that knows that). Frankly, no one else cares too much to remember. Im not good at talking, especially in large groups, but over the years I've found you can be quiet and have just as much impact as the noisy guys with a few confident,nwell placed words. Pretty soon people will know you have something useful to say and they will listen. Lastly, being quiet or shy isn't a problem as long as you're happy with it. I'm quiet, in a job which is naturally more suited to louder people, but I'm getting on fine, have good friends and can make my mark when I need to. Most importantly I'm happy with who I am, so I don't need to worry about how other people perceive my volume or lack thereof. Having said that, don't hold back when you do have something to say.

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