How should I meet introverted women?

There can be little doubt that I am on the introverted side. I have several friends and generally meet with at least one friend per day, but I am not generally comfortable in large groups. I prefer one-on-one conversation, which allows deep exploration of emotional and intellectual topics, rather than gossip or meaningless big-group “conversation”.

So, in case I need to ward off the idea further, I am not a reclusive sociopath. I can get along with another human being just fine. I just don’t go to parties. I’m not “popular”. I don’t have seven hundred Facebook friends. I certainly do *not * see somebody that I know every time I walk on campus.

And I want my romantic partner to be at least somewhat like me in this respect. I wouldn’t want a partner who wants me to go with her to a Frat party on Friday night The point is not that I am not willing to compromise - there are many things I am willing to compromise over - but engaging in mega-social gatherings that I find awkward all of the time, no matter what, invariably is not one of them.

My idea of a good time, on a Friday night, is going to dinner with one to three friends, playing chess with one to three friends, or having a beer and a movie.

So the task - how exactly does one meet introverted women? The problem of meeting introverted people is enough - they are introverted, after all - but with women, there’s the sex divide (how does one talk to a woman!? Aahhh!!!) and the introversion factor to boot.

A few facts about me which may be relevant:

  • I am a University of Washington undergraduate.

  • I would much prefer a woman who is also in college, since I would like a woman who is intellectually engaged, intelligent, has ambition, and is going somewhere in life. I realize that some people think you can possess all these qualities without going to college, but I think we live in an era where the vast majority of the type of person that I want to meet does, in fact, go to college.

  • I look like a cross between a nerd and a hippie, though possibly more on the nerd side. I have a roundish face, long hair, pretty skinny, and wear not-particularly-stylish clothing, though I have heard that my clothing choices seem pretty good. Five foot ten.

  • There are exceptions to the “don’t like big groups” rule, but they tend to be gatherings that are particularly sedate, ie Poetry Club or something like that.

So how do I meet an interesting, intelligent woman who is not, by nature, the kind of person that meets a lot of other people (including me!)?

You sound just like me. Many people give themselves the introvert label when they are actually dying for more social interaction, but for whatever reason just don’t have the social life they want. They’re unhappy. Introverts aren’t like that.

Anyway, I’m an introvert, and I’ve met my SOs both online and face-to-face. My ex, who I was with for 4 years long-distance/online and lived with for 2 years, met me when I played an MMORPG. The guy I’m currently seeing is a co-worker.

I see the challenge in trying to meet an introvert, because it’s not like we’re out hanging at all the cool kids places. I guess if not online interactions or co-workers, your best bets are places like bookstores, or where people have to stand in line, like at banks, supermarkets, or fast food places.

I am also an introvert, with similar preferences to yours. And yet I’m happily married to an extrovert. (I gave him the excellent essay Caring for Your Introvert to help him understand me.) We make it work, mostly by both of us agreeing that it’s fine if he goes to parties and such without me, or if I go home much earlier than him when I’ve had enough. This sounds blatantly obvious, but people seem to expect that couples will always socialize together, and are surprised to see one of us without the other. My husband also had to overcome his initial sense that I was being a drag by not accompanying him, but he’s gotten over that. Don’t discard extroverts out of hand.

You could force yourself to go to big group meetings, seek out the women who’ve obviously forced themselves to go there as well, break through “the wall of who-the-fuck-are-you?” and together, the two of you will never have to force yourselves to go to those things again.

But resign yourself to the fact that you must break through “the wall of who-the-fuck-are-you?” In extroverted women it takes the form of “why should I waste my time on you?” while in introverted women it’s “do not intrude!” Develop a feeling for this distinction and you’ll spend as little time as possible in your quest.

Introverted women are clingy and possessive. Once they have a man, they want to stop looking.
This is fine if you are not wanting to look long yourself, and want a nuclear family with kids.
But just don’t go too far if you are only sort-of-attracted or you will have a big scene and you will both die at Lover’s Leap.

This would be my WAG. Say there’s a big football game some weekend: go to the library while everybody else is at the game and see who’s there.

Go to a free online personal site like OkCupid. That’s how introverts mate nowadays. I consider myself pretty introverted and I found that internet dating was the most productive way for me to meet people back when I was single. The man I wound up with is more extroverted than I am, incidentally…so sometimes opposites do attract and complement each other. We don’t go to parties all the time. He’s just a very warm, friendly guy who likes the rest of humanity more than I do. :wink:

I suspect a lot of genuine introverts would be annoyed at getting hit on while in a setting where they expect to be left alone (like a library or bookstore). Extroverts love turning everything into a social event, but genuine introverts are generally not going to warm up quickly to a random stranger even if he is a good looking charmer. On the internet, at least they’re expecting you to contact them.

If you’re religious at all, go to a worship service at the place of your preference.

If you’re not religious at all, go find a Unitarian Universalist congregation and show up there. The women always outnumber the men. There ae at least as many introverts as extroverts. The “sermons” are usually really interesting mini-lectures on sociology, ethics, history, and literature, and the music isn’t half bad.

Or, try a community college class.

Or, volunteer with a charity.

Or, find the nicest, wisest lady where you work and ask her if she has any introverted single lady friends she can hook you up with.

I like the way you think. My preferred method was always being dragged out to bars or clubs and seeing who else was sulking in the corner.

You’re on to something here. I’m a weird mix of introverted and extroverted, myself. I also spent all of undergrad going to big parties, and lived at a fraternity house for most of it. I’m at my most introverted when I’m surrounded by a few hundred people I don’t know. But most parties are full of small gatherings, they’re just going on in the middle of a much bigger one. I met all kinds of interesting people on the fringes, basements, porches, etc. of big parties.

This is not to say that you should go do something you hate on a regular basis, but there are plenty of people at big gatherings who get dragged to/force themselves to attend and wind up finding a few similarly situated people and having fun.

Back to your main question, though: I’m not sure there’s a good answer. If you’re introverted and want to meet new people, you pretty much have to do things that make you uncomfortable.


I am an introverted woman and am not sure why you say we are like this. Many women are like this, sure, both introverted and extroverted. But what’s wrong with wanting to keep someone you love? Should people just keep looking and looking and looking? Isn’t the goal to find someone to spend your life with, or at least to spend however-long with–a partner?

Just wanted to point out that there are plenty of people in college who are not intellectually engaged, intelligent, ambitious, and going somewhere in life. The school I earned my degree was known for having females attend there to get their M-R-S. I’m not trying to label women in general, that is just how it was at our school.

Back on topic. I bet you could find smaller social groups that might fit what you are looking for. Have you considered anything like a book club? Or even a club that is just small in numbers? Do you have any unique hobbies or talents that you could try to get a group of like people together? I joined a small tennis mailing list like this. There was just a flyer hanging up in one of the buildings that said “if you like playing tennis e-mail me and I’ll add you to our mailing list.” There were about ten of us on it, and whenever you wanted to play you could call around or e-mail and see if anyone else was interested.Only two to four people usually play tennis together, so that is a guaranteed small group right there, you might be able to do that with another activity, ping pong or billiards. Maybe you are a coin collector. See if the town or school has any kind of club or group to do things together. I don’t know you, but I always feel more comfortable around larger groups if we all share the same interest, than being in groups of people who having nothing in common with me.

If you live in the dorms, a more awkward and desperate tactic would be to watch for the people taking showers at 4 in the morning, and talk to them. That might be a little weird though, and it could very well end up with you being hauled away to Public Safety.

There is a difference between “introverted” and “socially awkward”. Introverted people can be engaging, witty and likeable. They just don’t like big crowds or need a certain amount of alone time. People who are socially awkward are unable to approach others or carry on a conversation. They may actually want MORE social interaction than they are getting but don’t know how to get it. And there are even some extroverts and outgoing people who just aren’t interested in hanging out with a bunch of drunken 19 year olds.

Which type of person is the OP looking for? I’m guessing the OP wants an interesting companion who enjoys smaller intimate settings as opposed to wild drunken frat parties.

Now one approach is to actually go to parties and look for the girl who doesn’t seem to be having a good time. But the problem in general with introverted or socially awkward people is that they are introverted or socially awkward. They often get intimidated or uncomfortible when you approach them until they reach a point where they trust you. And obtaining that trust can be difficult as it requires social skills which the introvert or social awkward may not have.

I always found it easier just learning to be more outgoing and extroverted.

Because they aren’t pets. If they don’t love you, you should let it go.

Dude…no. Awkward and desperate is never a good play.

Obligatory xkcd link

With no snark intended whatsoever, I don’t think you really get the introvert thing.

As an introvert, I would never join a social group. I prefer to read alone; I don’t care to discuss books with anyone other than close friends. I love football, baseball, and collegiate volleyball, but I’d never go to a sports bar to watch games or attend the games unless I was doing so with friends. I’d watch them at home.

My hobbies are crafts. At most, I’d attend a trade show and get lost in the crowd, or run down to Michael’s for supplies, or look for other crafters online. I’d likely never take a class or join a club. I once played Magic: The Gathering, but only with my close friend/then-roommate.

To give you an idea of my social life:
I once had a streak where for 3 consecutive weekends I went out, saw movies, and did some shopping. Even though I did those things alone for 2 of those weekends, I felt like I’d gone out and spent a lot of time in public that month.

I get along very well with people on a basic or professional level (this has been remarked upon consistently in my performance reviews), and I always have. However, I feel most comfortable in the company of just one or two people. I occasionally go out with a bunch of co-workers for lunch, but I don’t have the time nor inclination to do so regularly.

My entire life, I’ve consistently had one friend I felt really close, one or two others I was slightly less close to, and then there was everyone else. The specific people changed throughout my life, but the pattern has always been there. Like I said, I’ve always gotten along well with everybody, and I keep in touch with people I’ve known since preschool, but my social circle has always been small. It only grew when I started dating and had both an SO and a really close friend.

It’s very rare for me to have more than one set of plans with different groups of people on the same day. I only occasionally go out with friends on the weekends, and it’s rare for me to do so on weekdays. Most of my time is spent alone in my apartment, either online, watching DVDs, or reading. I’ve attended very few real, non-family-event parties in my life. Dinners at friends’ places are nice. I love concerts and movies and billiards halls, but I dislike bars, clubs, and anyplace crowded and noisy.

Some people’s lives are like this not by choice and they’re miserable about it. Mine’s like this by choice and I’m happy with it. While I do miss spending time with specific people, I don’t at all feel lonely or that I’m missing out on life. So I wouldn’t call myself socially awkward at all. I’m perfectly fine in social situations. I just prefer to not be around too many people for too much of my time.

Introverted women are hard to find. You gotta go shop around craft/yarn store if you’re looking for really introverted chicks. It makes sense, introverted = Ostrich with it’s head in the dirt usually, as far as the animal world is concerned.

I’d suggest dating websites as #1, other than that hit up the local craft/linen outlet. :slight_smile:

They might be homely, but hey, what the hell, right? :slight_smile:

With all do respect, you are not introverted you are an snob :slight_smile:

This is outstanding advice. Provided you’re comfortable expressing yourself through language, (and would you be posting on the Dope if you weren’t?) on these sites you can spend a great deal of time tailoring your persona to highlight your strengths and specify what you’re looking for. Conversely, you can review a large pool of candidates and thin out the ones that you don’t think would work out. Finally, as Lavender Violet also wrote, they wouldn’t be on the site if they weren’t looking to meet people, something you can’t say of the wallflower at the bar, or the cutie reading Foreign Affairs at B&N. It’s a fantastic filter.

For me, Internet dating had by far the highest success rate, easily beating friends’ recs, shared hobbyists, and people in bars. I met my SO through Internet personals and we’re still going strong five years later.

Can I clarify something?

Introvert ≠ shy or antisocial. Extrovert ≠ Life of the party.

The words introvert and extrovert generally refer to the method from which people derive their energy. Extroverts are energized by being around a lot of people. Introverts are exhausted by being around a lot of people. Introverts require alone time in order to recharge. Extroverts require social situations, with lots of people, in order to recharge and generally get really edgy with too much solo time.

It is perfectly possible to be friendly and outgoing and introverted. Because I am that person – and I bet a lot of you are, too. I am not shy. I am not reticent. I am not afraid to voice my opinion. I am not reserved. I am most certainly not clingy and needy, thankyouverymuch.

Yet, after I’ve spent the duration of a party mingling and telling hysterically funny jokes and making boatloads of new friends, I am mentally whipped. I have to go home, cut off the phone, and refuse to speak to other humans for a couple of days. I need “me” time to recover from all that friendliness. I will turn down about every 4th or 5th social invitation if I have been extra social in the past few days and am simply not feeling up for another gathering with a lot of people.

In regard to the OP, you mentioned the Poetry Club. So you’ve answered your own question. Go join it. Go hang at the library on a Friday or Saturday night when everyone else is partying. Or go to the party and then wander the perimeter. Talk to everyone who is skulking about in the dark corners (that’s always where I find my friends).

You threw in the smiley, but I do think this is a common misperception. Just because someone isn’t interested in the same things you are doesn’t mean they are snobbish.

Anyways, the main delineation between introvert and extrovert is whether you are happier alone or in a group. That’s it.

As for where to meet introverted women, well, we had a thread on this board where we discovered that most of us qualify as introverts on the Myers-Briggs. So, I’d say a good place is right here.