Anne Squared

Life filtered through the lens of an INTJ, Mom, and healthcare professional.

Parenting an INTJ (1)

I never planned to have children. They never made sense to me, nor did I care to spend time with them. I always thought it was because I was the one of the oldest of a litter of 8. I preferred to read or spend time with animals. Or hanging out with my dad at his clinic, watching procedures and playing in the lab.

As an adult, I had a reoccurring dream of a baby, bald and toothless, in a crib. I would go into the room to check on him and he would start talking to me as as an adult would. Complete, complex sentences. Incredible ideas came from this little guy. Unusual, but, it was a dream, right? The dreams stopped after my son was born. He was an emergency c-section, 5 weeks early. I had plenty of time off work to bond with him, to breast feed, to do all the “right” things… But both of us would fall asleep while I was nursing him, and I found using the pumps much more efficient to get the milk to feed him with bottles. And he would eat more, put on the weight he needed to gain. He liked to be held, but not too much. He preferred his “lambie”, a sheep skin he could stretch out on, pet and grasp until he fell asleep. He got into a routine very quickly, except for sleeping through the night. At six months I was still getting up to feed him and working full time. So one night I told him: If you let mom sleep tonight…it is ok if you are awake…but if you let mom sleep tonight, you can have blueberries for breakfast.

The next morning I awoke in a panic, certain harm had come to my son. He was awake and smiling. Babbling starting as I grinned. He wanted his favorite food – blueberries! So I washed a few, mushed them up well and he had blueberries for breakfast. This began a tradition that lasted for years – I got a good night’s sleep and John got blueberries for breakfast. My now 19 year old expects the ‘frig’ to be stocked with blueberries on his visits home from school – and I am happy to do so. (No requests for chips or pop!!)

Most children understand what we say at an age far younger than they can express themselves. This child was no exception but he would become extremely frustrated when he couldn’t express what he wanted to say. After plans fell through for in-home childcare, I tried a large, reputable daycare. I knew that wouldn’t work when I was told “He is fine if his back is turned to the other children, but if he sees them he cries.” John’s dad took it as a sign he was anti-social. I knew he just didn’t want to be around so many people. Before he was a year old, I knew I had a little introvert on my hands. And you don’t push an introvert to become an extrovert. You nurture the soul and let them learn in their own way. But what an adventure it would be!Image

Categories: INTJ and INTP

Tags: , , , , , ,

6 replies

  1. First, thanks for the like. 🙂
    Second, I appreciate that I can write freely without thinking how you will interpret my words, fellow INTJ.
    Third, I think it would be funny if your emotive daughter wrote a “Childing an INTJ” blog haha.
    Fourth, watch and share this vid with your child (if you haven’t already0: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3yyeJ1jaGDU
    Susan Cain’s, “The Power of Introverts.” And now I see Carrie recommended her book up above! In fact, share it with your kid’s teachers. I wish I had known this stuff earlier…would have been completely beneficial at school and work. It’s ironic…I received “most out of the box thinker” award, at my marketing agency yet never came up with good ideas in brainstorm meetings. I started to think I was slow. Cain reveals how groupthinks aren’t conducive to introverts. I would always ruminate over ideas at my desk after the brainstorm and present them to the boss a day later.
    Fifth, keep up the blogging and have a great day!

    • Thanks for stopping by, your comments and suggestions. I’ve seen the video – it’s good. I am new at blogging and still getting a feel for the direction I want to take – this will be a spoiler if I continue on the INTJ parenting theme … my son is a doing well in college, active in many leadership roles, mentoring others who need to find their way on a large state campus. My emotive daughter shares her stories freely, she just doesn’t quantify it as we do. 🙂

  2. Thanks for your comments, Carrie. Yes, we have to advocate for our children, and pushing them at a young age to become extroverted is not an answer. I will take a look at Cain’s book. Thanks! Enjoy your blog!

  3. Oh, it’s music to my ears to hear others deal with this issue. Every year I have to explain to my son’s teachers that he’s an introvert, and no matter how badly they want him to be chatty in class, it isn’t going to happen. If I hear he needs to “come out of his shell” one more time, I’ll scream. Yes, of course, he needs to learn to speak up and interact in school and work settings geared towards extroverts, but he needs time to acquire these skills. It took me decades to get comfortable with public interaction (I’m an INTJ)–I don’t expect my teen to do it in one semester.

    I loved Susan Cain’s book on introverts. Is like a bible to me, and I want my son to read it.

    Thanks for stopping by my site. I appreciate it!

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