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  1. #11
    RETIRED CzeCze's Avatar
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    The three orientations are a little limited/limiting but this is closer to what I grew up with:

    Active child vs. Active parent
    This scenario is thought to produce Enneagram type 8.

    The child and parent experience open conflicts on a regular basis. They both have different agendas and oppose each other, thus giving rise to power struggles and explosive arguments. The Active parent is impatient and intolerant of the child's rebellious nature and tries to impose his will in an authoritarian fashion. The Active child, on the other hand, becomes aggressive, argumentative and persistent in getting his own way. The relationship becomes a sort of battlefield, which is how the child will later perceive the world around him (type 8).

    Such a childhood scenario encourages the child to develop a keen eye for spotting other people's weaknesses and a thirst for imposing their will in an overly aggressive fashion. They learn to be assertive, strong and deny their fears and feelings of intimidation. These are the traits they needed to have in order to stand up to their domineering parents and still keep their own Active inborn approach.
    Would have been nice to turn out an 8. :wistful:

    Active is not entirely accurate for me as a child but neither is neutral, and I think the definition also depends on if its being applied to how you approached your children/parents and how you approach the world (which is an important distinction I think...) I was never domineering as a child, did not fight, was very easy going, but I was also very independent and wanted to do my own thing.

    Also, I think my mom would characterize the relationship as above but I perceived it more as Neutral child vs Active parent. Maybe that's the gold formula for 7s.

    Also, I guess I lied because I'm still responding to this thread. x2

    Also, the Neutral child vs Responsive parent sounds textbook happy INTx childhood in a typical, functional home life. No wonder so many INTx's are Fives. All things being equal, aren't INTx generally Neutral in their orientation to other people and don't parents (at least in America) strive to be Responsive? x 3
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  2. #12
    Blah Orangey's Avatar
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    The 8 description fits perfectly with my experience, and in fact I still have a rather embattled relationship with my parents.
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  3. #13
    (blankpages) Xenon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Theoretically it seems to make sense, my own life just did not play out this way.
    Yeah..same here. I was also pretty much the definition of a neutral/withdrawing kid, I believe I'm 5w4 on the enneagram, and I don't know how to class my parents or family situation. Mother was probably responsive throughout my early childhood, and I was also parented largely by my maternal grandmother who lived with us, who might have been a neutral. Then my mother remarried and we left to live with her new husband, who was definitely active, mostly in a bossy/intimidating way. My mother became a lot less responsive as she dealt with the problems in our new blended family and her own mother's illness and death around the same time of the remarriage, and our relationship was never really the same.

    My dad - don't even know how to begin to classify him. My parents split when I was very young and I never lived with them, but he had a strong personality and was a strong influence on me. He read a lot of psychology books and stuff and made a point of teaching me about feelings and playing with me and pulling up a chair to listen when I started talking. At the same time, I was never really comfortable with him. I felt this pressure from him to act like his idea of a strong, well-adjusted kid since he took such pride in being such a great parent (unlike his parents, whom he often railed against to me). When I showed signs of having problems, he'd either laugh and deny it or come up with some Insightful Explanation, tell me about it, and push me to accept it. I felt kind of controlled and invisible at the same time around him, even though an outside observer might well have classed him as "responsive."

    This could well explain some people, but there are plenty of factors that can complicate it. Kids have more than one adult influence in their lives. What about siblings, particularly older ones? Grandparents, aunts, uncles, nannies, anyone who has ongoing contact? What about parents changing as a result of events in their own lives?

    I'm also surprised to see type 4s are thought to arise from active/assertive kids. I'm not that well-versed in the enneagram, but aren't 4s typically considered withdrawn, sensitive personalities? Doesn't seem to fit.

  4. #14
    Blah Orangey's Avatar
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    ^^ It explains why 4s are withdrawn and sensitive. Not that this explanation is necessarily true, but you can't really use something that's already accounted for within the theory to discredit it.
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  5. #15
    (blankpages) Xenon's Avatar
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    That's true, it's not an inconsistency within the theory. I suppose it's more inconsistent with other things I've read or observed about temperament - withdrawn kids most often become withdrawn adults; aggressive kids most often become aggressive adults. My understanding of type 4s is that they were pretty non-aggressive, often shy as kids.

  6. #16
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    I was looking at some of the other examples and just didn't really see them. For examine, the Neutral parent with Neutral kid ending up as a Three. (My Neutral INTP son has me as a Neutral parent, but he's nothing like a Three. And he wasn't ever tempted to be a Three -- because I was a Neutral parent, he felt a kinship with me rather than having to prove himself.) It's all theoretical, constructed on what seems to be sensible cause/effect chains; but it's just too simplistic and seeks to just fill the various categories rather than seemingly model what happens in real life.

    It does have some good ideas in it. Like the Ennegram in general. It's just I've found that some people do fit squarely within an Enneagram archetype, while some people don't feel like they fit in anywhere in the their 9 types.
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  7. #17
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    I had all three types of caregivers and alternated between neutral and responsive.
    Neutral and responsive had the biggest influence on me. Active used to scare the crap out of me... short-tempered folks are stressful. lol

    In all honesty, I think I incorporated 3 and 9 to connect better w/ my parents (who are 3 and 9).

  8. #18
    this is my winter song EJCC's Avatar
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    When I was a kid, I fit most of the Responsive description, although I was more Active around my peers. Both of my parents are equal parts Responsive and Active.

    I relate more to the 6 description than the 1 description.
    Responsive child vs. Responsive parent
    This scenario is thought to produce Enneagram type 6

    This child will usually establish a very close relationship with his caretaker and will tend to become dependent on the nurturing, affectionate figure that offers him support and understanding. A strong desire for harmonious relationships is created and the Responsive child will reject and feel threatened by conflicts and lack of stability. Such types will seek playmates and groups that share their values and interests and will take an 'us against the world' stance, typically towards unfamiliar people and circumstances.

    These Responsive children will prefer to play by the rules in order to keep themselves safe from any disharmony that will endanger their comforting, supportive relationships. They will be playful, endearing and loyal to their chosen groups and intimates, while at the same time remaining alert and vigilant to avoid any conflicts and hidden threats. Suspicion of other people's motives can arise as a protection from abandonment and rejection - they are in fact very afraid of losing their safe, nurturing grounds.
    This is probably why I mistyped myself as 6w7 for a while, and why 6w7 is the second type in my tritype.

    The Type 1 parenting description is actually the opposite of what I experienced as a child. My parents never explicitly pushed values onto me, and rarely had to explicitly enforce discipline on me, because I was such a good kid. But when they were disappointed in me, it made a huge impression -- firstly because I was a "Responsive" kid and therefore cared a lot about making them happy, and secondly because I had a hard time seeing their disappointment as coming from a specific Code of Good Behavior, since they never felt the need to give that to me. (Both of my parents -- INFJ 2w1 and INTP 5w6 -- were raised in situations where they felt misunderstood by their parents and decided to rebel, so I think they parented me with intent to avoid becoming their own overbearing parents.) I guess it left me a little confused and worried, because I couldn't predict what my parents would disapprove of. (Some of this is because both of my parents have always tended to repress their sadness/anger when they're around me so that I won't worry -- but that means irrational blowing up at tiny things later on, which is a tendency that I definitely got from them.) So, in order to avoid criticism as much as I could, without any guidance or structure from my "chill" parents, I ended up making my own Code of Conduct -- one that ended up being stricter than theirs!
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  9. #19
    Senior Member pinkgraffiti's Avatar
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    mmm i identify with the explanation for the 8 wing. since i had a supportive mother (accounts for the 7) and an active, obstructive father (would account for the w8)
    Quote Originally Posted by CzeCze View Post
    Wow, totally NOT me. My homelife was NOT "supportive and tolerant". That's prolly where I got the 6 wing from. Also, I think 7 is a prototypical "child" type, we're all more or less 7 (or more 7) in early childhood. I think strong instinctual 7s survive their home life to continue being 7s. I think home life would give an edge though, molding natural instincts to say an 8 rather than 6 or within the Same triad if thinking/gut etc is the strongest raw trait a child has.

    I think 6 and 8 type are thought to often result from deprived or chaotic home lives?

    In the end I think homelife has less to do with it but we do end up parenting in conscious reaction to how we ourselves were raised.

    Ok, I'm don't even have kids so I'll bow out here. :P

  10. #20
    Senior Member VagrantFarce's Avatar
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    I'm not so convinced by this stuff anymore, but only because I don't think there's any real "origin" for type-like behaviour. I think these parental relationships are just natural extensions of type - of course a 5 is going to experience a loving parent as smothering, they're a 5! Plus memory is far too under the influence of the current moment to really be relied upon anyway.
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