Please note that in any post I write about being an introvert, I will never tell introverts they need to “get out of their comfort zone,” “learn to be more social,” or “learn to fit in” or any other similar BS that suggests that there is something wrong with being an introvert and that you need to buck up and get over your introverted self and try and act like an extrovert.
As an introvert, if you are looking for ways to become more like an extrovert to better fit into our (admittedly) very extroverted world, you’ve come to the wrong place, my friend. I attempt to happily be my introverted self – without shame or explanation – and make the world work for me. Not the other way around.
I am an introvert, and I sold my house to live with my partner (an extrovert) in our renovated RV, Gorditto, until we find a new house in a warmer climate. We began this journey on 2/11/2022 and have no idea how long it will take. But also, I don’t feel we need to be in a hurry. I am doing my best to navigate the experience of RVing as an introvert in a way that continues to meet my needs.
My partner and I have been together for several years and have mostly figured out how to live with each other’s -vertedness. Living in an RV together means we are mostly sticking to the same routine we had at home. He gives me plenty of space and time alone in Gorditto in the mornings while he works out and works for Instacart, he goes out to do things without me, and we go out together sometimes to do a few things together. When he’s out, I meditate, workout, write, read, do my introverted things. It works in a RV the same way it worked in a house – so far, anyway.
I am finding it challenging to be an introvert in an RV, however, mainly because of other people (right) outside my (now) tiny world. We are both over 55 years of age, so we often opt for RV parks of that specific kind. And what we are finding out is that these places are super social. Currently, we are in one such park (that is highly rated online) where the RVs are packed in like proverbial sardines, close on all sides with very few (no) privacy barriers between spaces. We found out when we arrived (we booked online) that most of the sites are, in reality, filled with mobile homes, with only a small percentage of the sites being used by actual RVs.
We are on a corner, so only have folks on two sides instead of four. However, we are also on a corner nearest the clubhouse where all the amenities are housed. That means that everyone and their literal dog come by here. And because we are right next to the clubhouse and on a crossroads, people congregate right in front of our space to and from the clubhouse (pool, hot tub, mailboxes, library, pool tables, craft room, showers, office, etc.) to talk, catch up, make plans, say hello, etc.
So, while we have a bit of breathing room on the front of our RV that is open, it is seldom empty of people. If I add the noise factor into all of this, I would need to point out the many golf carts constantly whizzing by on their way to and from that same clubhouse.
If we had a different space in this park – maybe toward the back of the place, I’m sure our experience would be different. Yesterday, my partner (the extrovert) actually said, “I tried to go to the pool and cool off and relax, but there were just too many people there. And they were all talking the whole time. This place is too noisy. There is some sort of noise going on all the time. I think I’ll book our next stay at a state park or something instead of an RV park.”
My partner’s sister sold her house and began RVing full time several years before us, and we have benefited greatly from her experience and advise. Thank you, sis-in-law! It is telling, however, that when she talks about her experiences, she mentions that her favorite part is all the wonderful people she has met along the way. When my partner hears this, he gets excited to meet those type of people. I get wary. LOL
We are aware that boon-docking is possible on BLM lands for more privacy. We know that state or county campgrounds are sometimes more aesthetically pleasing than RV parks. We have a membership in Harvest Hosts also. But we also like full hookups, so we don’t have to watch the tank levels.
We are just beginning this trip, so it will take us a while to figure out what works for us best – for his extroverted needs and my introverted ones.
I will attempt to successfully navigate this trip (however long it turns out to be) as an introvert and report on my successes and failures, to hopefully help you out too. I will also make a list of RV parks we’ve stayed at and how they measure up as far as introverted needs go.
Let me know what has worked (is working) for you as an introvert full-timing in a van or RV, especially if you are traveling with another person – and especially especially if the other person is an extrovert.