I’m 44 years old, very happy, married, have a wonderful 2-year-old, and am a writer/actor/director in Hollywood. I’ve never had the word introvert applied to me before, and I’ve never thought to apply it to myself. But it’s me to a T.

I’m in a business of people who are very “gregarious,” as I’ve always said. But I’m not so gregarious. I’m one of those people who can talk onstage fearlessly and improv for hours, but the moment I get offstage, I have no idea how to interact with people. It used to scare the hell out of me, but by my thirties I realized that this is who I am, and I got comfortable with it. I hate chit-chat; I hate small-talk; and I hate parties, which in Hollywood makes me the odd bird out.

I’ve never been—and I mean this in a good way—labeled. But I find it incredibly comforting to know that there are other people out there like me, and quite a lot of them. I honestly had no idea. Words can’t express the joy and relief I feel knowing that I’m part of a group that shares my life experience—which is also strange for me because I have never been a joiner. And it is truly liberating.