Characteristically, introverts tend to be quiet, reserved individuals who don’t open up much to many people. Unfortunately, this sometimes earns even the nicest individuals the reputation of being a rude person. Unless you can read the person’s mind, however, you should never accuse someone of being a jerk just because they’re not very talkative. Look deeper at each individual you meet before passing judgment, and realize:
Introverts might be rude unintentionally, but rude people are deliberately mean
Introverts might sometimes act in ways that, to an outsider, might be considered rude. But whatever the case may be, it most certainly wasn’t an attempt by the introverted individual to slight you. Maybe they rejected your invitation to lunch because they needed to get some work done alone at their desk. Maybe they didn’t return your call because they were exhausted after a day full of meetings and networking. In any case, introverts almost certainly will never go out of their way to hurt anyone.
On the other hand, rude people are blatantly rude. If they didn’t want to sit with you at lunch, they’d make it clear to you by intentionally sitting within your peripheral vision, making their presence felt. They’d pick up your call only to tell you they’re busy and will call back later – which, of course, they won’t. As a quick aside: Why are you calling this jerk, anyway?
Introverts are nervous in social situations, while rude people are simply rude
When meeting someone for the first time, you might be quick to warm up to them and have a lot to say in order to best introduce yourself. Unfortunately, introverts don’t exactly thrive on talking about themselves, so they often come off as rude upon first meeting them. But the truth is, introverts just get incredibly nervous meeting new people, and don’t exactly know what to say at all times. Don’t mistake their standoffishness as them thinking they’re too good to engage in conversation with you; it’s most likely the exact opposite.
Rude people, however, do think they’re better than most others. You’ll notice them checking their phone or watch while you’re trying to engage them in conversation, or constantly interrupting you to talk about themselves. Again, while you might perceive an introverts actions as rude, a rude person will make it crystal clear how much of a jerk they are.
Introverts don’t want to bother others, while rude people only think of themselves
Like I said before, introverts are socially anxious people who often feel uncomfortable around others. This anxiety often inhibits their ability to reach out to anyone, even their close friends, at certain times. They won’t be the ones to call someone else to make plans, for fear of bothering them. Since they enjoy having time to themselves, they let others have their space, too – sometimes they let them have too much space. But you can be assured that if you haven’t heard from your introverted friend in a while, it’s not because they’re ignoring you; they’re probably just waiting for you to contact them.
But rude people simply don’t care much about other people. They also won’t call their friends to make plans, but that’s because they found something else to do and don’t want to include you. They’ll go weeks without calling or texting someone, only to reach out when they need help moving or they want a ride to the airport. Simply put: rude people are only looking out for themselves, and only thinking about what other people can do for them.
Introverts mean well, but rude people are passive-aggressive
I’ve mentioned it before, but introverts are generally nice people who might unintentionally come off as rude at times. But even when they act rude, that doesn’t mean they are rude people. If they’re feeling overwhelmed, they might snap at you (just like anyone else might) if you bother them while they’re trying to concentrate, but they’ll most likely spend the rest of the day upset with themselves for being mean to you. Of course, they also might be too anxious to say anything to you, so their lack of apology can also be misconstrued as rudeness, as well.
Rude people are just plain mean to others, regardless of the situation. But they’ll also go out of their way to figure out different ways to hurt others. Like I said before about the person who will purposely sit alone in the cafe, but close enough to make you know they’re there, rude people spend time planning ways to make others feel uncomfortable. Premeditated, passive-aggressive moves like this are definitely not off-the-cuff mistakes that can be remedied with a simple apology (not that you should ever expect one, anyway).
Introverts keep to themselves when overwhelmed, while rude people lash out at others
Like I just said, introverts get overwhelmed easily, and they almost need to be alone when this happens. They withdraw into themselves, and do their best to lock all others out of their lives until they get back to a healthy baseline. They know when they’re in a bad mood, and will do whatever they can to make sure it doesn’t spread to anyone else.
Rude people are often miserable, and we all know that misery loves company. These people will be the ones who intentionally try to bring others down to their level when they’re in a bad mood; they truly can’t stand to see other people happy when they’re in a funk. In a sick way, rude people actually feel better about themselves when they know other people are feeling worse because of them.
Introverts enjoy alone time, while rude people thrive on attention
Introverts are content to be left alone to go about their business at their own pace, without anyone bothering them. They simply don’t seek out social situations. This isn’t to say they don’t enjoy company, but for the most part they could take it or leave it.
Rude people are all about the “Me Show.” They need to be in the spotlight at all times. They love attention, even if it’s negative attention (see the previous point). They’ll do just about anything to get noticed, even if that means hurting other people in the process.
Introverts value others, and rude people do not
Introverts certainly aren’t misanthropic. They do enjoy the company of others; they just might show it differently than their extroverted counterparts. In fact, if an introvert considers you to be a close friend, you should be honored; they often have very high standards for who they let into their circle, and they will be a true blue friend whenever you’re in need.
Rude people only care about themselves. Rude people use up colleagues, peers, friends, and family members, as long as it gets them ahead in life. And when they’re done using others, they spit them out and never make an attempt at repaying what they owe. Of course, while introverts end up surrounded by close friends throughout their lives, rude people ultimately end up completely and utterly alone.
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