You may not immediately guess this if we’ve just met, but I would consider myself an extrovert. Nothing excites me more than being around people, whether I know them or not. I often come home after a book launch (as I did tonight) or a casual hangout after work feeling energized and happy.
That being said, I have also had those nights where I absolutely do not want to do anything but read. I’m sure you’ve been there: you’re in the middle of an engrossing book, building up to the climactic scene, and dreading the moment someone comes around and pulls you away. Perhaps this is when readers are labelled “anti-social.”
But I prefer to see this desire to be alone as a good thing. Call it “independence,” if you will. For an extrovert who is living with someone more introverted, I think my love of reading helps create a better balance at home. I’ve often mused that the reason why I became a reader in the first place was because I wanted someone to hang out with. Since it took a while before my younger sister could actively play with me, I turned to books for entertainment instead. Now, this love of reading is paying off again, as it helps me become more independent at home, giving me something wildly exciting (seriously) to do while keeping to myself. Of course, that’s not to say that I don’t hang out with anyone at home, just that being a reader helps me give my roommate some alone time.
What do you think? Are readers often wrongly labeled as “anti-social”? Does reading help you give the people around you space (or help you create alone time for yourself)? I want to know!