Family,  Health, Wellness, & Self Care,  Motherhood,  Personal and Spiritual Ramblings

Life Hacks for Introverts: Survival Skills for When You Just Need a Break

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I have decided to write a blog series about introverts, introversion, and help for those in introvert/extrovert relationships. I’ve touched on the issue many times, but my post “Honest Confessions of an Introverted Wife” – published nearly three years ago – continues to receive a high amount of daily traffic and frequent comments. This fact somewhat makes me cringe. It definitely was not my best piece of writing. It was meant to be a vent more than a how-to. I used a lot of hyperbole, over-exaggeration, drama, and don’t feel I painted a 100% accurate picture of my introvert-extrovert marriage. The writing I’ve done since then and the writing I have planned is my attempt to both clarify and explain as well as share helpful information with my readers.

As both a disclaimer and a caveat, I feel it necessary to share a little background with those who may be visiting this site for the first time. Those who have been long-time followers may not need this.

I’ve struggled with the best way to share this information tactfully and respectfully, yet honestly and transparently. The short version being that my family is kind of a hot mess. While we’ve done a lot to improve our hot-mess-ness over the last few years, there are some aspects of our highly complex family dynamic that I am beginning to realize may not ever be “fixed.” (This is a whole other blog post, which I will get to eventually.)

My husband is a combat veteran with a severe generalized anxiety disorder. He was away from our family for two years while serving overseas in Afghanistan. It’s also possible that he may have some undiagnosed preexisting mental health challenges that may reach back as far as his childhood. We are still trying to unravel all of this. The military gave him the structure he needed to cope with them, but then what he faced in the Army (both due to combat environment as well as abuse within the chain of command) left him considerably more “broken” than he was when he went in.

Our older son – who is now nearly 8 – is both highly extroverted and has his own set of diagnoses: ADHD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, sensory processing problems, and possibly autism. His needs are a DAILY challenge that falls hard on our shoulders and strains both our individual mental health and our marriage. He drains us both (in highly different ways) and we need “filled up” in highly different ways.

My husband and I are polar opposites: in our personalities, in our introversion/extroversion scale, in our communication styles, in our love languages, and in our needs.

So while there are many positive comments on my original introvert/extrovert vent, there are also many comments of concerns about our mental and emotional health. While these concerns may have their merit and validity, it’s not something of which we are completely unaware. At least one member of our family has been in some sort of therapy or counseling from 2009 on. Between the four of us, we’ve seen a plethora of therapists, counselors, social workers, psychologists, and more who have all poured into us in one way or another.

We’ve come a long way. We still have a long way to go. Or maybe we don’t. Maybe our little bit of crazy is here to stay and we just have to accept it. I’m not entirely sure.

Which is why we have a decal like this in our dining room:

We may not have it all together, but together, we have it all!
Get yours here!

What I have learned (the hard way) is that it’s not my responsibility to fix it all. Regardless of the needs, the diagnoses, the things that could or might help, the things we should try, and on and on – sometimes we also just need to be a family. I’ve learned to have my boundaries: to control what I can and let go of what I can’t. I’ve learned that I have to set down the burdens and play the cards we’ve been dealt.

In the midst of all of that, I have to take care of myself and do what I can with what I have. That’s what this series of posts will be about. This page will serve as a landing page for all the content for this series.

While I hope this series will be helpful for introverts in any life stage, I’m coming to this as a wife, mom, and special needs parent who also struggles with chronic fatigue. So it may be helpful for tired moms as well as introverts!

Thanks for reading,


Life Hacks for Introverts: Survival Skills for When You Just Need a Break

Life Hacks for Introverts: Survival Skills for When You Just Need a Break

Introverted mom problems: when mommy breaks just aren’t enough

Letting him be lonely

#whitespace: one word for 2014: my year-long journey into self-care, margin, doing less, decluttering, underachieving, and resting

Encouraging independent play (with children who hate being alone)

What my dying plants taught me about self care

Confessions of an introverted wife (married to an extroverted husband)

#nofilter: how to be married to an external processor

Life hacks for introverts: how to structure your day, week, and year

…and possibly more…



  • Bethadilly

    I am excited about this. I am married to the most precious man alive, who also happens to be a dyslexic/mild ADHD/and a Highly Sensitive person. I jokingly laugh to myself that while my husband is brilliant, he’s high needs (NOT special needs) but there’s no help or info for people married to high needs people. Your blog has been a huge help to me.

    • Aprille

      AWESOME!!! My husband is super high-needs and that’s okay, but draining all the same. You’re right. There’s not really a lot out there for marriages that are both strong AND trying. Ours has it’s challenges because of mental health issues (both diagnosed and possibly more) and overall emotional wellbeing, but that doesn’t mean that he’s a bad husband, abusive, or anything like that. We both have to work to make it work, but hey – we hit 10 years so we must be doing something right!!! I’m glad to have you following along!!

      • Bethadilly

        Thank you. It’s not easy. He’s also a natural forgetful person and an (endearing) scatterbrain. It’s like being married to a loveable absent minded professor that you half to stay a half step behind to put out fires, but also right next to in order to help be a buffer but you need to be quick thinking and half a step ahead in to clear the path and scout for trouble. Our marriage looks so different than we expected even though I love him dearly. I really cannot imagine having kids anytime soon, if ever, because I am responsible for so much already and am so tired by it. He tells me constantly that I’m his rock and I love him so well and I’m so patient with him & he loves and respects me for who I am and overall he’s amazing. But dear god I am just… tired.

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