15 Reasons Introverts Don’t Enjoy Large Social Gatherings

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Whether you’re an introvert or have some introverted friends, you know that a lot of introverted people aren’t huge fans of big parties or gatherings.

You might not be able to put your finger on exactly why that is, so we’ve rounded up 15 of the key reasons…

It’s worth bearing in mind that not enjoying large social events isn’t a bad thing at all! It’s always great to be mindful of what works for you and what makes you comfortable.

Learning more about your needs, likes, and dislikes is a brilliant way to embrace life—in the right way for you.

1. There’s too much small talk.

Ask any introvert what they hate most and small talk is likely to be high up on their list.

Introverts often enjoy making conversation as much as everyone else, just not when it’s forced. Small talk can feel fake, and introverts don’t get much stimulation from these types of conversations.

The pressure to find a generic topic to discuss—like the weather or the other person’s job—can make gatherings feel insufferable for introverts.

They would rather speak to close friends about topics that they find engaging or form genuine connections.

2. There’s nowhere to hide.

One of the issues with parties is that there usually isn’t anywhere private to get some respite.

Introverts get socially drained quite quickly and may need some time alone or in a quiet spot to recharge. Unfortunately, most parties don’t offer that type of space!

A lot of introverts end up feeling vulnerable or exposed in social situations, so being in a new setting where there isn’t somewhere they can easily duck out to can feel intense and unwelcome.

3. They need time to process.

Similar to the above, a lot of introverts feel like they need some space to gather their thoughts and take a breather!

If they don’t have somewhere they can relax and re-energize, they struggle to stay sociable.

Typically, compared to extroverts, introverts need a bit more time to make decisions or act on their feelings. They often prefer to have more time to think about their responses or their behavior, which can make socializing in large groups less enjoyable.

4. They’re selective about friends.

Introverts tend to stick with people they know, and most don’t actively try to make new friends.

As such, social situations don’t give them the same buzz that extroverts tend to get from meeting new people.

Being forced to spend time with a lot of people is overwhelming for most introverts.

There are often a lot of different dynamics or cliques to interact with, and it can be stressful trying to switch between groups.

Because introverts often have a small but close group of friends, being in large groups isn’t always that fun for them.

5. They get overstimulated.

Parties can be loud, sometimes very loud (just ask the neighbors!).

From music and singing to shouting and drunken brawls. The louder the room, the louder all the guests get while competing to be heard.

Large crowds, loud music, and people constantly walking past or bumping into them are all strong reasons for introverts to avoid social gatherings.

It’s often overwhelming for them because introverts get overstimulated in these kinds of scenarios. As such, they often avoid any parties or big social events.

The lack of control around their settings can be too much, and introverted people prefer to stay in scenarios where they can escape any time they need to.

6. They don’t like peer pressure.

There are often a lot of expectations at parties or large social gatherings, and introverts don’t tend to respond well to peer pressure.

Whether it’s feeling forced to dance and drink or just an ongoing pressure to stay social and meet new people, large parties aren’t ideal settings for introverted individuals.

There are certain social rules, enforced through peer pressure, that typical introverts don’t want to engage in, which can make these occasions uncomfortable or unnatural.

7. They don’t love large groups.

One of the issues with large gatherings? Lots of people!

Most introverts enjoy spending time with their chosen people and aren’t crazy about big groups. They can find it quite full on, and many worry about dividing their attention equally.

They can find it stressful to read multiple social cues at a time or get anxious about meeting the expectations of various groups at once.

They may also worry that they’re being perceived as fake because they’re trying to match the energy of each different group. Because they spend time trying to fit in or go with the flow, they tend to be very concerned about how they come across.

8. They see through the nonsense.

One of the hidden skills of introverts is the ability to read the room and sense when someone is being fake or disingenuous.

Because most introverts spend a lot of time observing others, they’re pretty good at picking up on personality traits and characteristics that indicate someone might not be well-intentioned.

As such, they can find it hard to put up with certain behaviors—they can see through them and find it frustrating that other people don’t notice. They can tell when people are lying or trying to pull the wool over other people’s eyes.

They often find it almost unbearable to deal with and can’t understand how other people either don’t see it or choose to ignore it. They don’t stand for nonsense!

9. They’re private people.

Unlike extroverts, many introverted people are private and like keeping things to themselves.

They don’t enjoy sharing much of their personal life, and social situations often prompt that. As a result, those social situations can preempt a level of anxiety.

Being unwilling to open up can make other people react negatively to introverts because they don’t understand why some people want to keep things to themselves or don’t indulge in lots of detailed, personal stories.

For those who are private, being around strangers or people they don’t know well can feel intimidating and uncomfortable.

They can’t predict what’s going to happen because they don’t have a history with the guests, and they can’t rely on their friends as they may be socializing with other people.

10. They get self-conscious.

Knowing that they aren’t the most naturally sociable individuals, a lot of introverts worry about how they’re being perceived at gatherings or events.

They’re likely aware that they aren’t always great at socializing or making small talk, which is why they get more apprehensive.

They feel like everyone can tell that they’re not naturally sociable, and that can be stressful.

Being in an environment that makes them feel highly self-conscious isn’t exactly enjoyable, so it makes sense that they would avoid large social gatherings.

11. They’re more likely to experience social anxiety.

Because they tend to avoid highly social situations, introverts often experience increased levels of social anxiety as a result.

They can find social events quite overwhelming because they’re out of their comfort zones. There are a lot of elements at play, from talking to strangers to unpredictable scenarios that they’re not mentally prepared for.

Lack of exposure to these kinds of scenarios can make them worse when they happen—which feeds into an avoidance cycle.

The less they go to social gatherings, the less they want to go to gatherings. See where this is going?

12. They don’t like surprises.

One of the issues with large social gatherings is that things aren’t always mapped out in advance.

Not knowing exactly what will happen at a social event can make it more anxiety-inducing. Worries such as how many people will be there, how much small talk is needed, and what the space will be like can add up to an unenjoyable time.

Most introverts like knowing the plan in advance, partly so they can be prepared for the social levels expected, but also so they can plan their exit!

Introverts typically ‘lose’ energy by being around other people (beyond their close, ‘safe’ friends, that is!), so preparing for a surprise takes even more of their energy. As a result, they tend to find gatherings pretty draining.

13. They don’t like being reliant on one friend.

Being at a party and only knowing one or two people can be intimidating for many, but it’s doubly stressful for introverts.

The feeling of being reliant on a close friend to keep you company at a social event isn’t great. They don’t love having to make small talk with strangers while their actual friends go to the bathroom/ get a refill/ say hi to their other friends.

Introverts may worry that their friend will resent having to stay by their side, or they may worry that their friend will abandon them in favor of other friends at the same gathering.

Either way, having to depend on a limited number of people to stay with you at social events isn’t a nice feeling, however it ends up playing out.

14. They don’t know when they can leave.

Aside from the stress of attending social events, there’s the stress of leaving them…

Not knowing what’s socially acceptable or being worried about offending people can make attending parties even more stressful for introverts.

They might be anxious about how soon they can leave, or not be confident of the etiquette at larger events. Do they need to say goodbye to the host, or can they just slip out? How long do they need to stay so that they’re not considered rude?

There are a lot of questions that come from attending social gatherings, and introverts are often not comfortable enough to ask them—which, in turn, makes the events even more anxiety-inducing.

15. They often feel misunderstood.

There are a lot of myths and misunderstandings about introverts, which can make being in social situations with strangers pretty tricky to handle.

Once people know they’re more introverted, introverts are likely to find it even harder to be sociable or find connections with people they don’t know.

They might feel as though they’re being judged unfairly, or like people have already made up their minds about them.

They worry that they’ll be patronized or looked down on simply because they don’t enjoy social events as much as other people.

This can make social gatherings or larger parties uncomfortable, so it’s no wonder a lot of introverted people go out of their way to avoid attending them!

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About The Author

Lucy is a travel and wellness writer currently based in Gili Air, a tiny Indonesian island. After over a year of traveling, she’s settled in paradise and spends her days wandering around barefoot, practicing yoga and exploring new ways to work on her wellbeing.