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  1. #1
    Senior Member FallaciaSonata's Avatar
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    Post Introverted Children (SJs in particular)

    Greetings.

    I have been looking into my own past and trying to eke out the most dominant traits I had as a toddler, child, and younger teenager. I'm mostly curious as to how quickly, or rather, in what fashion, my personality developed.

    I've been asking questions, mostly to Mom and Dad, and I've been pouring over articles --- seeking information on introverted children. Mostly I'm finding "useless" information, such as "there's a difference between introversion and shyness", "your kid is not diseased", etc, etc. Not really "useless", but not "helpful" either.

    So I've decided to probe the brains of the willing Introverted SJs on here, hopefully with the prospect of gaining new insight. The rest of the Introverts are more than welcome to chime in, as well, but I'll only be able to relate to your Introversion.

    I know I fall very far to the Introverted side on the I/E continuum, but I'm curious to see how others fare --- I know there are some people out there I view as being extroverted, but perhaps they're just less introverted than I. Do you know what I mean?

    Anyway....I'll skip to the point of the thread, and start asking the questions.


    - As a child, do you recall preferred activities? And if you don't recall them, do you know what you did from a parent's perspective?

    (I spent a vast amount of time alone in my bedroom, playing with Legos, video games, books, action figures, and wooden weapons my grandpa custom-cut just for me. I definitely did all of the "classic introvert" things as a kid.)

    - How many of the "classic introvert" descriptions did you adhere to as a kid? Those include but are not limited to, "Avoidance of strangers", "silent in public, talking at home(sometimes)", "Fewer interests, more adept in each one", etc, etc.

    (I developed extremely good reading skills at a very young age. This is probably because....that's practically all I did. When in parties, or other social gatherings, I clung to Mom for all I was worth. People weren't my thing. I was very quiet in public, but I'm told I would never cease to explain the intricate details of my latest Lego invention to my Mom whilst she was en route to the bathroom.....)

    - How quickly did your ISxJ-ness develop? If not quickly, in which way? What do you think of the assumption that most kids are naturally SJ-ish?

    (I was pretty darn organized as a kid, had my Legos sorted by color and size, had my games neatly stacked (not in alphabetical order just yet), always made my bed, etc.)

    - When you hit teenager-hood, (That's definitely not a word....) did you continue to adhere to the same general personality traits or did they change much? Another way to look at that would be: Did your childhood personality expand, or did you experiment and change, becoming something different?

    (I didn't change at all. As I aged, I gained three things: Intelligence, arrogance, and a greater need for solitude. Oh, and now I started alphabetizing stuff in addition to making it neatly stacked/lined up. )



    I suppose that's enough questions for one opening thread. Looking forward to feedback.

    Thanks guys.
    Last edited by FallaciaSonata; 09-15-2009 at 09:28 PM. Reason: Grammatical error. My bad.

    Always remember to flank your enemies. History won't remember how dramatic your failed frontal assault looked. - Dragon Age: Origins

  2. #2
    Senior Member Lambchop's Avatar
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    - As a child, do you recall preferred activities? And if you don't recall them, do you know what you did from a parent's perspective?

    I can answer these from my perspective, as well as the parental perspective -- as I have two kids (one "I" and one "E" and there are huge differences)
    I spent A LOT of time reading - I was a huge bookworm. Probably because we didn't have a tv until I was 10 or so too. My "I" son likes to listen to music and draw/paint.

    - How many of the "classic introvert" descriptions did you adhere to as a kid? Those include but are not limited to, "Avoidance of strangers", "silent in public, talking at home(sometimes)", "Fewer interests, more adept in each one", etc, etc.

    I was extremely shy and introverted as a kid. I used to hide behind my younger sister! My "I" child has always been very shy too. He and I both hate/hated being the center of attention.

    I'm told I would never cease to explain the intricate details of my latest Lego invention to my Mom whilst she was en route to the bathroom.....) - HAHA! My "I" son is also quite the chatterbox when we are alone!

    [B] - How quickly did your ISxJ-ness develop? If not quickly, in which way? What do you think of the assumption that most kids are naturally SJ-ish? [B]

    I'm not sure how early my SJish developed, but I suffered from mild OCD as a child until early adulthood (when I started meds.) I would count out syllables of words on my fingers until they came out even and count how many steps I took and things like that. I would get anxiety over things being out of order and was a FREAK about the clothes I wore.

    - When you hit teenager-hood, (That's definitely not a word....) did you continue to adhere to the same general personality traits or did they change much? Another way to look at that would be: Did your childhood personality expand, or did you experiment and change, becoming something different?

    I think I became even more introverted as a teenager. My friends thinned out to the close ones that I trusted. I had a weird childhood though..so I had a pretty low self esteem that got worse during all the uncertainties and hormonal changes in "teenager-hood."

    With regard to my "I' son versus my "E" son - it was almost obvious from birth, it seems. My "E' son very much loved being the center of attention and talking to strangers as a baby/toddler/child. Everybody was his friend and he was invited to parties starting with daycare and it never stopped! Mr. Social Butterfly!

    My "I" son was totally the opposite. If it wasn't for his older "E" brother, I'm not sure how he would have survived! He has very quiet and shy and always hid behind me or his brother. He has a few, very close friends. He told me the other day that he likes to "think" in the bath tub. He listens to music a lot or plays his guitar.

    Interesting thread Sonata, my friend!

  3. #3
    Let's make this showy! raz's Avatar
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    Let's see...

    I can't remember Kindergarten.

    In first grade, I remember knowing who everyone in my class was, but I wasn't exceptionally close to anybody. I just paid attention to classwork and when I was out of school, I just followed my parents around. Things started becoming routine, and at that time, the only thing I can remember that gave me exceptional happiness was playing Sonic on a Sega Genesis. It was at that time that my ESFJ mother told me and my ESFP brother that we shouldn't be playing it too much, and I started getting the impression that doing something you enjoy too much was the wrong thing to do.

    In second grade, I became good friends with 2 girls that sat behind me in my class. Looking back, I bet they were xSFP and ISFJ. One of them, we exchanged phone numbers and talked on the phone at times. When I was at home, I made friends with one kid down the street and played with him a lot. Outside of that, I'd go riding my bike alone a lot.

    Third grade, it was basically a rehash of the same thing. I'd either run errands with my family, watch Power Rangers, play with toys or ride my bike around seeing how far I could explore without getting lost. I don't recall having any close friends.

    In 4th/5th, I spent that grade half in one school, and half in a school in another state. That was when I started getting to know the other kids in my classes, and while I wasn't making any very close friends, the other kids just in general respected me and that was it. There was a group of 3-4 kids that always hung out together, and I wanted to belong to them, so I tried hovering around them, but they just didn't care much for me. I didn't know how to make friends.

    In 6th, I started socializing a bit more, forming more superficial relationships. I started befriending more introverts. An INFP girl was fun to talk to, an ISTP guy became a fun person to hang out with in school, and I met an INTJ that quickly became my best friend. I was like, at LAST, another kid that's admirable and not obsessed with subjects I find trivial? He was a computer programming geek. He got me into computer games and basically jumpstarted my interest in computers.

    In middle school, I was basically just the kid that was generally respected and knew stuff. Like I said, I made 2-3 close friends. Introverts were MUCH easier to get along with. I was desperate for depth in friendships. I can go into more later. I've got to get to class, heh.


  4. #4
    Senior Member FallaciaSonata's Avatar
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    Very interesting.

    I think I became even more introverted as a teenager.
    That's exactly what I was talking about, there. As I got older, I didn't really develop other....functions, should I say, or something to that effect. It was like....the ones I already had (Si, Te, Fi) got a lot stronger. Especially Si/Te. It wasn't until a couple of years ago that my Ne started really advancing. Now I use it more than Fi, probably.

    Some of my friends have this 'thing', where they think they have to "get me out of my shell". Perhaps I should send 'em a few articles. ; )

    In first grade, I remember knowing who everyone in my class was, but I wasn't exceptionally close to anybody. I just paid attention to classwork and when I was out of school, I just followed my parents around. Things started becoming routine, and at that time, the only thing I can remember that gave me exceptional happiness was playing Sonic on a Sega Genesis. It was at that time that my ESFJ mother told me and my ESFP brother that we shouldn't be playing it too much, and I started getting the impression that doing something you enjoy too much was the wrong thing to do.
    Now that, I can relate to very much so. I knew the names of all the kids in my kindergarten class, (I've been homeschooled since first grade, so nothing beyond that in those terms.) but I only "hung out" with two of them. This kid named Travis who was always getting into trouble, and there was this other girl who was kind of a leech --- even bothered to tell everyone on our bus ride to school that she liked me. Now, that was embarrassing for me. lol....

    And the other things, too. I did my work well, got good "grades", followed Mom and Dad around, etc.... In addition, I spent as much time as I could playing video games, too. Going from Sonic-styled games (Well, I did Crash Bandicoot since we had a PlayStation and not a Sega Genesis, but it has a similar concept.) and that evolved into RPGs, like Final Fantasy VII. Mom also told me I should "do other stuff too" and imposed a strict one hour a day policy. Now that was just sick. I didn't even do anything bad. But hey, I turned out all right.
    (In hindsight, I don't think I would have had the self-discipline required to limit myself back then that I have now. Now I play when I feel like it, for however long, but the catch is I'm usually at work or church or college or....well, you know. I barely have time to sit down. lol)



    I've only gotten two responses, and I do hope for more, but I'd like to derail my own thread now. Heh.

    What are your views on homeschooling in general, and do you think it affects personality in any significant way? There are a lot of people that assume I have zero social skills and am a total wack job, but that's because they only see the extremist homeschoolers on WifeSwap and the like.

    Any thoughts on that?

    Always remember to flank your enemies. History won't remember how dramatic your failed frontal assault looked. - Dragon Age: Origins

  5. #5
    Senior Member NewEra's Avatar
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    Good thread, first of all.

    Quote Originally Posted by FallaciaSonata View Post
    - As a child, do you recall preferred activities? And if you don't recall them, do you know what you did from a parent's perspective?
    As a kid, I too would love to play with Legos and video games. I would read a lot too, and play with action figures (but the plastic kind). I would also just love to be with other family members. I loved hanging around them. I didn't share the same friendliness with people I didn't know.

    Quote Originally Posted by FallaciaSonata View Post
    - How many of the "classic introvert" descriptions did you adhere to as a kid? Those include but are not limited to, "Avoidance of strangers", "silent in public, talking at home(sometimes)", "Fewer interests, more adept in each one", etc, etc.
    Yeah I was a great reader too, at around age 8 and 9, I used to try and read fast and understand what I read well, it was pretty impressive for an 8-year old kid.

    Like I mentioned earlier, I wouldn't like meeting new people (strangers). Don't know why, it just didn't appeal to me.


    Quote Originally Posted by FallaciaSonata View Post
    - How quickly did your ISxJ-ness develop? If not quickly, in which way? What do you think of the assumption that most kids are naturally SJ-ish?
    It started a bit after I turned 10 years old. Became more organized, more introverted and quiet, structured, calm, everything more ISTJ like. Ever since then (except for about a year), I have behaved as an ISTJ.

    I disagree with the assumption that kids are naturally SJ-ish. They have their own personalities, and if anything, SJ is the last personality for a typical kid. They seem to me more like ENFPs.

    Quote Originally Posted by FallaciaSonata View Post
    - When you hit teenager-hood, (That's definitely not a word....) did you continue to adhere to the same general personality traits or did they change much? Another way to look at that would be: Did your childhood personality expand, or did you experiment and change, becoming something different?
    The same general personality traits, they didn't really change. The big change was when I turned 10 years old. So basically, as a teenager, I stayed ISTJ, even more ISTJ than I was before. I used to categorize and order things in my past (yeah, true SiTe in action).

  6. #6
    No moss growing on me Giggly's Avatar
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    I was an extroverted child so I don't know how much insight about introverted children I can give but here goes....


    - As a child, do you recall preferred activities? And if you don't recall them, do you know what you did from a parent's perspective?

    As a child, I was never interested in the classic introverted activities. My preferred activities were playing with my friends/siblings (spent most of my time doing that) or practicing my dance routines. I was always part of competitive dance troupes/teams and cheerleading from a young age. In high school, I spent a lot of my free time socializing. lol. It never really felt all that natural for me though to socialize a lot, even though I was doing it because I wanted to do it and it had it's fun moments.

    - How many of the "classic introvert" descriptions did you adhere to as a kid? Those include but are not limited to, "Avoidance of strangers", "silent in public, talking at home(sometimes)", "Fewer interests, more adept in each one", etc, etc.

    Hmm. Well, I don't think I avoided strangers but I certainly didn't go out of my way to be around them. I was very quiet in public but if someone talked to me first I'd talk to them. I was definitely shy and quiet, but I talked a lot around my closest friends. Not really so much around my family though. Now that I'm older I still talk a lot with my closest friends and more with my family than I used to when I was a kid. I feel more interested in talking to strangers now too, for some reason.


    - How quickly did your ISxJ-ness develop? If not quickly, in which way? What do you think of the assumption that most kids are naturally SJ-ish?

    - When you hit teenager-hood, (That's definitely not a word....) did you continue to adhere to the same general personality traits or did they change much? Another way to look at that would be: Did your childhood personality expand, or did you experiment and change, becoming something different?


    I believe that I was ESFP when I was a child, and I have morphed into ISFJ/P. I think the J was always there but I think I didn't see a need for it in my childhood. As time went on I also developed a much greater need for alone/quiet time.

    I don't know if that helps but those are my answers. I'm actually really curious about introverted children myself. They seem so fascinating.

  7. #7
    Senior Member NewEra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Giggly View Post
    I believe that I was ESFP when I was a child, and I have morphed into ISFJ/P. I think the J was always there but I think I didn't see a need for it in my childhood. As time went on I also developed a much greater need for alone/quiet time.
    Yeah, the exact same was true of me, except as a kid, I was ESTP, and I morphed into ISTJ. As a kid, I was a constant trouble-maker, and was hyper-active. I calmed down all of a sudden at age 10, and have been like that ever since. At the time, people were stunned at the sudden behavior change.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Lambchop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Giggly View Post
    I was an extroverted child so I don't know how much insight about introverted children I can give but here goes....


    - As a child, do you recall preferred activities? And if you don't recall them, do you know what you did from a parent's perspective?

    As a child, I was never interested in the classic introverted activities. My preferred activities were playing with my friends/siblings (spent most of my time doing that) or practicing my dance routines. I was always part of competitive dance troupes/teams and cheerleading from a young age. In high school, I spent a lot of my free time socializing. lol. It never really felt all that natural for me though to socialize a lot, even though I was doing it because I wanted to do it and it had it's fun moments.

    - How many of the "classic introvert" descriptions did you adhere to as a kid? Those include but are not limited to, "Avoidance of strangers", "silent in public, talking at home(sometimes)", "Fewer interests, more adept in each one", etc, etc.

    Hmm. Well, I don't think I avoided strangers but I certainly didn't go out of my way to be around them. I was very quiet in public but if someone talked to me first I'd talk to them. I was definitely shy and quiet, but I talked a lot around my closest friends. Not really so much around my family though. Now that I'm older I still talk a lot with my closest friends and more with my family than I used to when I was a kid. I feel more interested in talking to strangers now too, for some reason.


    - How quickly did your ISxJ-ness develop? If not quickly, in which way? What do you think of the assumption that most kids are naturally SJ-ish?

    - When you hit teenager-hood, (That's definitely not a word....) did you continue to adhere to the same general personality traits or did they change much? Another way to look at that would be: Did your childhood personality expand, or did you experiment and change, becoming something different?


    I believe that I was ESFP when I was a child, and I have morphed into ISFJ/P. I think the J was always there but I think I didn't see a need for it in my childhood. As time went on I also developed a much greater need for alone/quiet time.

    I don't know if that helps but those are my answers. I'm actually really curious about introverted children myself. They seem so fascinating.

    That's so interesting on the morphing, Giggly! Let's hear more about that. How did that happen? Can children morph?

    My husband and I were talking last night about how we feel like my older son is starting to morph...the older that he gets. And I wondered if that was even possible?

  9. #9
    No moss growing on me Giggly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lambchop View Post
    That's so interesting on the morphing, Giggly! Let's hear more about that. How did that happen? Can children morph?

    My husband and I were talking last night about how we feel like my older son is starting to morph...the older that he gets. And I wondered if that was even possible?
    I don't know... with the I/E thing, I just realized and accepted that what I did as a child was draining and kind of unfulfilling. As I got older I just started really paying attention to and acknowledging some of my inner needs more. As for how the J came out, I'm not sure. I'm still learning. I'm still finding myself. lol

  10. #10
    Senior Member Lambchop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Giggly View Post
    I don't know... with the I/E thing, I just realized and accepted that what I did as a child was draining and kind of unfulfilling. As I got older I just started really paying attention to and acknowledging some of my inner needs more. As for how the J came out, I'm not sure. I'm still learning. I'm still finding myself. lol
    I love that you're still finding yourself. That's super interesting...

    I felt like I was becoming more extroverted about 2 years ago. I even threw my husband a big 30th birthday party (and I HATE hosting). I started trusting people more in our social circle (which unfortunately included my husband's sister), etc. This was a time when I wasn't weighted down with work, school, my kids were with their dad, etc. Then summer was over and I started the random chaos that can be my life and reined myself back in physically (not going to social events) because I was so stressed out. Someone misunderstood me (I'm not naming names...my husband's sister - ESFP), took everything I had confided and trusted in her and twisted it around, betrayed confidences, tried to interfere in my relationship with my husband...and I took a GIANT step backwards into introversion. I'm even less trusting and introverted now than I was before everything happened. Too bad...most people find me pretty fun when I'm being extroverted.

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