I’ve been thinking lots about personality types of late, as I’ve been doing some reading and learning around myself, as much out of curiosity as anything.
I know that on a Myers Briggs test, I will consistently come out as an ISFJ-T. I don’t match all the traits, as anyone who has received a birthday present from me will tell you: I may be a gift giver, but I’m not that creative with my gifts… But the overarching theme of the personality type is me to a tee! I am for sure an introvert, struggling in busy social situations, with meeting new people, with being in the spotlight. But I consider my people skills to be fairly well developed and I enjoy a handful of close relationships with a few fabulous friends.
I have a love hate relationship with social media. I love to see what family and friends, both near and far, are up to and to share in their stories. However my ISFJ personality struggles with taking things personally and online discussion and debate is not for me. I stay away from the comments sections of articles and blogs about topics that are close to my heart. I rarely enter into debate on forums.
With this backdrop, I have always found Facebook to be my preferred social medium. Generally lots of positivity, usually confined to an individual’s family, without judgement being passed on my posts or photos or shares. On my newsfeed anyway!
However, two years ago I set up an anonymous Twitter account, with the sole purpose of connecting with other adoptive parents and professionals working in adoption and fostering. I was desperate for first hand information, for opinion, to hear from those with experiences in this community.
Twitter has been a complete and utter Godsend. We would not be where we are now without the amazing people I have met online and a handful of whomI have met in real life. It is a place we have been able to be ourselves completely. To ask questions and share information. To be humbled and to be built up. When we have been so low about an aspect of our journey or parenting, we have been encouraged and challenged and inspired.
We have yet to connect with many adopters in real life who are geographically close to us, but we have an incredible online support network of parents, bloggers and professionals. Twitter has brought us to a very privileged position.
Being an encourager is something that I value highly and try to live out in my life, both online and physical. It is part of my ISFJ personality after all!
Parenting is tough enough without feeling isolated or judged by those in your world. I am blessed to be surrounded with family and friends who provide our family with great support and encouragement. Not everyone is so fortunate. I love inhabiting an online environment where encouragement is welcomed and people cheer each other’s successes and triumphs.
I would, without hesitation, recommend Twitter to other parents, both adoptive and otherwise. In my experience, it is unparalleled in its ability to facilitate connections and communication between individuals who may be feeling incredibly isolated and challenged.
Social media rightly has its detractors and needs to be used in moderation. But the knowledge that I have a wealth of online friends with the most amazing amount and type of experience fills my heart with joy on the tough days.