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  1. #11
    Junior Member Melly382's Avatar
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    I am sorry for the continuous walls of text I am leaving you all to wade through, but I am eager to get as much out of this as I can since I finally gathered the courage to post!

    Regarding the Instinctual Variants, I am (of course) not sure of my dominant instinct but I feel reasonably certain at least that SX is not last for me. The reason being is the number of SX themes that I feel have been significant throughout my life. I copied and bolded some pieces of the excerpt that Luminous copied in an earlier post that I related to:

    There’s an addictive quality to it, whether or not you’re actually intimate with the person.. you want them to want you.
    "

    Sx dominants are tuned into enticement, allure; they can’t turn it off. There’s a sense they’re always penetrating into you, using some type of luring siren signal, like the way birds show off their bright feathers and sing to impress a mate.

    The Sx dominant is so deeply attuned to chemistry that they can tell whose chemistry mixes best with theirs. When this instinct is first, it can be very selective, holding out for the hottest person, some kind of Ideal Other who would attract them and allure and entice them for all eternity.

    "This can, of course, develop into a sense of intimacy very quickly- since there’s an addictive quality, wanting to get deep into every part of the lover’s psyche."

    From the Enneagram Institute:

    "The key element in Sexual types is an intense drive for stimulation and a constant awareness of the “chemistry” between themselves and others. Sexual types are immediately aware of the attraction, or lack thereof, between themselves and other people"

    "The sexual type is constantly moving toward that sense of intense stimulation and juicy energy in their relationships and in their activities."

    The relationships that I formed all throughout my life could be characterized by attempting to wring the stimulating juice out of the connection, including some of my failed attempts to connect. In the 4th grade, a new boy moved in next door and we became "boyfriend and girlfriend". Thus began a 10-year long romantic obsession with the boy next door until we eventually drifted apart mid high-school. He was not interested in me to the same extent and my attempts to spend time alone with him and delve into the meat of who he was probably seemed incredibly bizarre to him in hindsight.

    In general, my close relationships have always started off due to a strong feeling of magnetism between me and the other person. Followed by in-depth periods of self-revelation and the desire to know everything there is about the other person. Probably the best example of this is a recent off and on romantic relationship of the past 3 years. We met online through a game and he made a joke. We talked about it later and that exact moment was like a beacon that drew us together. Something about the way he made the joke signaled to me that he was a certain kind of person, and the way I responded did the same for him. Even though neither one of us are the types to really actively reach out and engage strangers, we both felt compelled to do so at the time and it kicked off an intense relationship. I would characterize the first year of the friendship as one of mutual obsession. We were constantly in contact with each other throughout the day, sharing all of the details of our lives, thoughts, childhoods, the things we liked. We would play games together in a group context, but there was always a specific awareness of each other in the large group. Everything he did and said was of extreme interest to me, even the minutiae of his day that I would normally never care about if it had come from anyone else. Meeting in person just exacerbated the strength of the connection and we would spend actual hours sitting or walking around just vibing with each other without needing to speak. Even though we were never open about the relationship, many others commented that we seemed especially connected. I recall saying to my mom at the time that he was "my person." Like I said, this relationship has been off and on but I still feel possessive of him during the times that things are "off," and I still long for the stimulation of interacting with him. Regardless of whether we're currently involved or not, I look for signs that he is drawn to or notices me in some way.

    While this was an especially strong and significant relationship in my life, I have had many connections of focused and visceral intensity with individuals over the years. Many of those have fizzled out when we seem to reach the end of the excitement and novelty. In many cases, I have been extremely drawn to certain individuals who have not been receptive to my attempts to probe beneath the surface. I've become aware of the fact that I am coming off too strong and will usually stop investing meaningfully in the person if that is the case. I have also read in several places that individuals with strong SX are typically also very focused on their attractiveness and who is receptive to that attractiveness, and this rings true for me as well. I'm not a very social person but when I am in social environments, I enjoy being on display and actively monitoring how people respond. I love the intense eye contact and attention when someone is paying attention and I can sense a rapport. I don't think I behave in any overtly "seductive" ways but there's a feeling of sending out subconscious signals that I am interested in connecting via teasing, eye contact, directed smiles, or other small things. However, there is always something inside me that tempers it and I often won't follow through with it in the end like I imagine an SX dominant person might. Even though I enjoy the preening and flirting, I always have the voice in the back of my head that is evaluating people for whether they are "safe." The significant relationship I described above was especially significant because he met my criteria for being the kind of person I would realistically invest in on top of the magnetism. If things get too intense with someone who does not, I often instinctively withdraw and start behaving a bit more cold. Cold isn't the right word. I try to de-escalate things and avoid the risk of getting too involved. This applies to friendships as well. I have a new coworker that I feel extremely drawn to at the moment, but I have been resisting the urge to jump in in order to maintain a sense of professional distance that the environment calls for haha. But the pull is still there.

    I have a lot more to say on this topic, especially in relation to activities, but I am starting to feel self-conscious about the size of the post.
    Last edited by Melly382; 10-06-2019 at 11:21 PM. Reason: Shameful spelling errors!
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  2. #12
    ˚*•̩̩͙✩•̩̩͙* ˚* Luminous's Avatar
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    No, please don't apologize! I'm so glad you are posting! You are a very welcome addition to the forum! (and your posts really aren't that long besides). I can relate to a lot of what you said in your last post. Maybe sx/sp isn't far off for you. It would add a certain kind intensity to you, as it does for me, if you are a 9.
    ✦ᏖᏒᎥᎮ ค ℓιɬɬℓɛ Ꮭıɠɧɬ ʄคŋɬคʂɬıƈ✦ -: ✦ :- ƒ O ᖇ G E ᗪ I ᑎ ƒ I ᖇ E ❋-: ✦ :-★ᴅᴏɴ'ᴛ ꜰᴇᴇᴅ ᴛʜᴇ ᴇᴇʟꜱ★
    * ・゚ ・゚ * ⊱9w1✶S✶2w1✶X✶5w6⊰ * ・゚ ・゚ *
    ✦Շђєяє คяє ๓σяє тнιηﻭѕ ιη нєανєη αη∂ єαятн Շђαη คяє ∂яєαмт σƒ ιη уσυя ρнιℓσѕσρну.✦
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  3. #13
    Junior Member Melly382's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luminous View Post
    No, please don't apologize! I'm so glad you are posting! You are a very welcome addition to the forum! (and your posts really aren't that long besides). I can relate to a lot of what you said in your last post. Maybe sx/sp isn't far off for you. It would add a certain kind intensity to you, as it does for me, if you are a 9.

    Thank you for saying that! I often feel very self-conscious when posting about myself...ironically on a "type me" forum haha. You've been so welcoming though!


    I think I am leaning slightly away from type 9 due to how I am understanding the idea of reactivity. I really do identify with the numbing out, inertia, and withdrawal of type 9 but I suspect I am far too nervous and emotionally volatile. I don't mean in terms of depth of feeling, because I realize that we all lead rich inner lives.

  4. #14
    ˚*•̩̩͙✩•̩̩͙* ˚* Luminous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Melly382 View Post
    Thank you for saying that! I often feel very self-conscious when posting about myself...ironically on a "type me" forum haha. You've been so welcoming though!


    I think I am leaning slightly away from type 9 due to how I am understanding the idea of reactivity. I really do identify with the numbing out, inertia, and withdrawal of type 9 but I suspect I am far too nervous and emotionally volatile. I don't mean in terms of depth of feeling, because I realize that we all lead rich inner lives.
    For whatever it's worth (some would say I'm not typed correctly ), I can be very nervous and volatile too. Do you think sx/sp might be a fitting stacking for you?

    The obliviousness to the collective good (Social-last) contributes to the shadowy/cloaked quality of these stackings — there’s an unintelligence about social stigma that can take people of these two stackings deep into ‘alternative’ territories. The aspect of Social that’s compelled to define people into clear roles that connect into a bigger picture is missing here. So, an upside in these two stackings is that communications can be more personal, contactful and intimate because the aura of the collective isn’t brought into one-to-one exchanges in the way it inadvertently is with those who aren’t social-last. This friend-of-the-dark quality can translate to a capacity to work, hands on (figuratively-speaking), in the muck of psyche, and linger long in a non-judgmental attitude with other people’s ugly/corrupt underbellies and issues, potentially even spilling themselves into others’ dark sides.
    source
    ✦ᏖᏒᎥᎮ ค ℓιɬɬℓɛ Ꮭıɠɧɬ ʄคŋɬคʂɬıƈ✦ -: ✦ :- ƒ O ᖇ G E ᗪ I ᑎ ƒ I ᖇ E ❋-: ✦ :-★ᴅᴏɴ'ᴛ ꜰᴇᴇᴅ ᴛʜᴇ ᴇᴇʟꜱ★
    * ・゚ ・゚ * ⊱9w1✶S✶2w1✶X✶5w6⊰ * ・゚ ・゚ *
    ✦Շђєяє คяє ๓σяє тнιηﻭѕ ιη нєανєη αη∂ єαятн Շђαη คяє ∂яєαмт σƒ ιη уσυя ρнιℓσѕσρну.✦
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  5. #15
    Junior Member Melly382's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luminous View Post
    For whatever it's worth (some would say I'm not typed correctly ), I can be very nervous and volatile too. Do you think sx/sp might be a fitting stacking for you?

    First, I loved the descriptions of the instinctual stackings from the source you linked, they're very abstract descriptions, but the words are so visceral!

    I had considered sx/sp, but I am not really sure whether I could be considered sx dominant. When sx dominant people are described, there is typically a sense of wild abandon to them that I can't really identify with. While I do gather energy by intense immersion in someone else, or an activity, I am not usually willing to take things so far in pursuit of the high to the detriment of safety or stability. Sx dominant descriptions make it sound as if all other concerns will be sacrificed at the altar of passion.

    I do feel that I will take things fairly far for the sake of the experience, maybe more so than a lot of people. For example, I have often been the person (or one of the people) who want to take a peak experience just a bit further--but only to a point! For example, I went on a long weekend canoe trip in college with a group of friends. The experience of being outdoors was freeing, I felt more alive, and I was driven to really experience the moment. So while the rest of our friends mostly held back, one other person and I could be found climbing trees to leap into the water, tipping the canoe, skinny-dipping; things that heightened the experience for us overall. But I would never do anything flat-out dangerous or disruptive to my sense of stability in life. I will get involved in relationships that others might consider unwise investments of time if I feel compelled to be involved with that person (long distance, age gap), BUT I will spend time stressing about whether that relationship is in any way derailing or harming me even while I emotionally invest myself. If it seems like it is, I will once again become reserved and cautious to de-escalate whatever situation I am in. Usually the process of putting the breaks on happens when I sense that I am going too deep and losing control. It's very easy for me to become wrapped up in a romantic connection to the exclusion of participation in the outside world because nothing else is quite so stimulating. But I have developed the ability to sense when I am losing touch with the rest of life, and actually have quite an aversion to that experience now.

    Looking at the source you posted, I think you're right that I identify more with the "synflow" stackings. Here I don't really feel drawn to the sp/sx description. Perhaps it's just the word choices that I am not drawn to. I definitely do not feel at all connected to the so/sp, and I do not feel like I am socially dynamic enough for sx/so. I often identify with sp/sx type descriptions, though.

    For the "synflow" stackings, sp/so does not fit. It's hard for me to pull any real information from the short descriptions of so/sx or sx/sp but I relate to those best.

    To be honest, the reason i've identified with sp so strongly in the past is that it is often described as withdrawn, energy-conserving, concerned with the needs of the self (safety, comfort, etc). Because I am someone that needs to withdraw and immerse myself in my own mind/interests so often to re-charge, and because I am so drained by external social concerns (office politics, maintaining friendships, networking), I identified with that.

    Would you mind sharing a little bit about how you experience emotional volatility as a type 9? I really struggle with this because 90% of type 9 descriptions heavily emphasize a lack of even awareness of their own emotional states. But I find that I am more or less constantly angry, irritable, and moody. I am almost always aware of how I feel and why I feel that way, so I can't at all identify with this idea that 9's are surprised or confused by their emotional states. The reason I am still considering 9 is because I relate to the idea of withdrawing to maintain inner peace. When I am upset by something external (frequently), my strategy is either to vent if it is safe to do so, or detach from it and distract myself until I've reached a point where I feel that I can handle whatever is happening. If I respond in the moment, I am often flustered and my response is clumsy and tactless, and leaves me feeling more vulnerable. At least in social spheres I am not inherently comfortable in.

    I also relate to the 9 feature of inertia and sloth, but in a specific sense. Most 9 descriptions seem to emphasize procrastination due to a lack of awareness of the importance or urgency of taking action compared to the drive to maintain inner peace. I've seen it said that 9's don't experience a sense of urgency and that they have this blind trust that things will all work out. That is not me in the least. I am often constantly stressing about things. My pattern looks more like keeping a running tally of important things I need to worry about --> feel overwhelmed and detach to regain a sense of inner peace/an idea of how to handle things --> make efforts to handle things.

    A current example of this is that I have needed to take my dog to the vet for some tests. They're not urgent tests but they are important. I have avoided taking her in for these tests for a few weeks now because I know it will be expensive and taking her in sets off a chain of other things I have to deal with and it just feels like so much effort. Taking her in means I have to worry about the cost, dedicating funds to this detracts from some other important things. So I will have to make adjustments in another important area, which will impact another important area. It's a lot. So right now, I am focusing on the immediate day to day things I need to handle and avoiding it. Avoiding it increases my anxiety about it, making me want to avoid it more. I feel much better once I find the willpower to jump in and deal with the mess, but it often takes me a while to get there. And while yes, I do trust that things will work out because I never completely drop the ball, I am definitely not a ball of zen internally.
    Last edited by Melly382; 10-10-2019 at 01:54 PM. Reason: Additional word vomit

  6. #16
    ˚*•̩̩͙✩•̩̩͙* ˚* Luminous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Melly382 View Post
    Would you mind sharing a little bit about how you experience emotional volatility as a type 9? I really struggle with this because 90% of type 9 descriptions heavily emphasize a lack of even awareness of their own emotional states. But I find that I am more or less constantly angry, irritable, and moody. I am almost always aware of how I feel and why I feel that way, so I can't at all identify with this idea that 9's are surprised or confused by their emotional states. The reason I am still considering 9 is because I relate to the idea of withdrawing to maintain inner peace. When I am upset by something external (frequently), my strategy is either to vent if it is safe to do so, or detach from it and distract myself until I've reached a point where I feel that I can handle whatever is happening. If I respond in the moment, I am often flustered and my response is clumsy and tactless, and leaves me feeling more vulnerable. At least in social spheres I am not inherently comfortable in.
    I apologize at taking so long to respond. I thought if I took some time to reflect on it, my answer might be more useful, but I'm not sure that's the case.

    I feel like I am "angry, irritable, and moody" quite a bit of the time. And that I am also almost always aware of what I feel and why (not all the time, of course, but generally). I mainly get confused emotionally when I experience more than one conflicting emotion, and then it is not so much the emotion that is confusing, but a course of action. I do withdraw under stress sometimes. And I also vent to those close to me, which isn't always fun for them. Acting instead of withdrawing often leads to my being uncomfortable. But it's more comfortable than not acting at all, in those scenarios. So it may be that I am choosing the least uncomfortable option, even if it's still uncomfortable.

    I'll post some quotes that I hope will help answer, with particularly important parts that I experience bolded:

    They will often experience emotions and thoughts somatically and won’t outwardly show them as much as others, but that doesn't mean they don't have intense emotions. Some 9's can sublimate anger and reactivity into sadness and be a "silent-sufferer," whereas others can attempt to find a boundary and a link to the gut centre. This idea of the silent sufferer has sometimes been misattributed to 4. Whereas 4 is the active amplification of reactions and stewing within internal states for the sake of authenticity, 9's can easily be flooded with emotions but have an internal message that says, "it's not okay for you to express this and bother anyone." 4's will not experience that internal message.
    ...
    Not all 9's will actively invite this kind of "merge" or harmony. 9's with 2 in the tritype might have a self-image of being helpful and empathetic. Whereas other 9's (ex. 954/963) might actively avoid this "merge" by avoiding others or preemptively saying "no" to people. 9's have trouble accessing their own gut impulses and anger, and they instinctively know that this muddling will happen unless they preemptively give a "no" to maintain their position. 9w8 in general can also have an easier time being tough or saying no, whereas 9w1 has more of a 1ish philosophy around the 9 connectedness.

    9’s are sensitive to being ignored, and would rather feel invited than have to assert their inclusion. They don’t have a strong enough boundary to send people away, but they fear getting too involved and having unwanted obligations. They want to connect with others, but still want to be able to slip away when needed. This bodily inertia can make 9’s unable to fully grasp a solid sense of self, like trying to find solid mass in a fog. There’s a low rumbling of anger at being pulled around by the world, and their best defence is stubbornness and passiveness. They get angry at themselves for saying yes when they didn’t want to. This leads to inner irritation and frustration at unwanted obligation. This can further lead to 9’s being “not there” enough for others who wonder how they disappeared into the fog. At the core, 9’s believe that saying no or asserting themselves is not worth it.

    9’s often dislike conflict, and can view debates and arguments, or just yelling, as a big red alert on their flow radar. They feel like no one gives them the chance to speak anyway. They naturally try to see the good in people as a way of avoiding their anger, but anger can explode from them at times. People’s shocked reactions will just reinforce that anger is bad, and they will return to a more numbed state. 9's can often find an outlet for rage in online communities or indirect actions.
    ...
    9 vs 4: Both withdrawn, both have capacity to be emotional, 4's like to be separate, 9's innately feel like there's no identity boundary between them and others, 4's are constantly cultivating who they are and presenting it to others, 9's feel like who they are can shift to different landscapes that are all "them" depending on who they're with, 4's are reactive and present their darkness, 9's feel some need to be a positive face for others and suffer on the inside, 4's are out of touch with their bodies and 9's are stuck in their bodies, 4's are more prone to hate, 9's are more prone to anger; 9's can get flooded with emotion whereas 4's will actively amplify emotions in a way that is actually less "real" than the honest reaction
    Type 9 — Enneagrammer

    Sexual Nines can resemble Type Fours, as they may feel a sense of melancholy and experience and express similar themes and feelings related to relationships. Having their center of gravity in others means they have a special sensitivity to the wishes and moods of the important people in their lives and an acute awareness of the push-pull connection and disconnection dynamics in relationships. However, while Fours are self-referencing, Sexual Nines are primarily other-referencing, and they may take on the feelings of another as opposed to having more immediate awareness of their own emotional ups and downs, as Fours do.

    Sexual Nines may also share central concerns with Type Twos in that they can lack a solid sense of self and then look to their important relationships as a way to find self-definition or a sense of identity. Twos differ from these Nines, however, in that they focus more attention on constructing an image. Twos also usually enjoy being the center of attention, while this is much less comfortable for Sexual Nines.
    [Enneagram Type 9] Sexual Nines (according to Beatrice Chestnut)

    Would you mind sharing a little bit about how you experience emotional volatility (as a type 9)?

    I think rather than try to connect it to 9, I'll just try to summarize how I experience emotional volatility. I am a very emotional person. I am my emotions. Taking them away from me would be like making a color movie black and white. I can't imagine how much more dull my life would be. I feel many emotions strongly, I suppose the most common are love, anger, care/concern/support/empathy, fear, and sadness. I can take on the emotions of those important to me, without necessarily thinking about it. I am easily affected by those people, and by people and the environment in general. It can take me a long time to get over things. When my emotions are very strong, I have a harder time holding them back, though I guess just saying that points to how I feel that most of the time I have to hold them back, that it's not okay for me to let them loose 100%. Depending on circumstance, I'm more likely to let happiness or love out at 100%, but even with those, it's often too much for other people. When I get really irritated, angry, frustrated, it usually comes out in private somehow, ranting/complaining is common, maybe crying in the shower, maybe writing some of the feelings down. I am not entirely comfortable showing those really strong emotions in public, especially the negative ones. However, if a situation arises that causes me to become angry because of some injustice or something, I will let some of it out because I just can't hold it in. Sometimes I later feel uncomfortable. Sometimes I later feel proud. It depends on how I wield it at the time. It's more comfortable for me to do something when I feel strongly about something than to look back later and feel sick and ashamed that I didn't do anything. But there are times when there's nothing I can do to change the situation and I just withdraw rather than engage in conflict that is bound to just make me feel worse. That is sometimes frustrating for other people who crave conflict.

    This might be somewhat telling: When I was younger, I had a dog who was very emotionally sensitive. So sensitive, in fact, that even though when I read the newspaper in front of him, I was careful not to verbally express my negative emotions about the articles, he would still look fearful/upset/disturbed by my mere body language. He really kept me in line because I tried really hard not to upset him. lol
    ✦ᏖᏒᎥᎮ ค ℓιɬɬℓɛ Ꮭıɠɧɬ ʄคŋɬคʂɬıƈ✦ -: ✦ :- ƒ O ᖇ G E ᗪ I ᑎ ƒ I ᖇ E ❋-: ✦ :-★ᴅᴏɴ'ᴛ ꜰᴇᴇᴅ ᴛʜᴇ ᴇᴇʟꜱ★
    * ・゚ ・゚ * ⊱9w1✶S✶2w1✶X✶5w6⊰ * ・゚ ・゚ *
    ✦Շђєяє คяє ๓σяє тнιηﻭѕ ιη нєανєη αη∂ єαятн Շђαη คяє ∂яєαмт σƒ ιη уσυя ρнιℓσѕσρну.✦
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  7. #17
    Junior Member Melly382's Avatar
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    Now it's my turn to apologize for a long response time, haha. I had to take a break because I was drowning in the rabbit whole of Enneagram theory and everything began to run together. Thank you again for your responses, they definitely continue to give me things to think about and you've been really key in helping me to view type 9 in a more well-rounded light. Also I love your new avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by Luminous View Post
    I apologize at taking so long to respond. I thought if I took some time to reflect on it, my answer might be more useful, but I'm not sure that's the case.

    I feel like I am "angry, irritable, and moody" quite a bit of the time. And that I am also almost always aware of what I feel and why (not all the time, of course, but generally). I mainly get confused emotionally when I experience more than one conflicting emotion, and then it is not so much the emotion that is confusing, but a course of action. I do withdraw under stress sometimes. And I also vent to those close to me, which isn't always fun for them. Acting instead of withdrawing often leads to my being uncomfortable. But it's more comfortable than not acting at all, in those scenarios. So it may be that I am choosing the least uncomfortable option, even if it's still uncomfortable.

    I'll post some quotes that I hope will help answer, with particularly important parts that I experience bolded:

    Type 9 — Enneagrammer

    [Enneagram Type 9] Sexual Nines (according to Beatrice Chestnut)

    Would you mind sharing a little bit about how you experience emotional volatility (as a type 9)?

    I think rather than try to connect it to 9, I'll just try to summarize how I experience emotional volatility. I am a very emotional person. I am my emotions. Taking them away from me would be like making a color movie black and white. I can't imagine how much more dull my life would be. I feel many emotions strongly, I suppose the most common are love, anger, care/concern/support/empathy, fear, and sadness. I can take on the emotions of those important to me, without necessarily thinking about it. I am easily affected by those people, and by people and the environment in general. It can take me a long time to get over things. When my emotions are very strong, I have a harder time holding them back, though I guess just saying that points to how I feel that most of the time I have to hold them back, that it's not okay for me to let them loose 100%. Depending on circumstance, I'm more likely to let happiness or love out at 100%, but even with those, it's often too much for other people. When I get really irritated, angry, frustrated, it usually comes out in private somehow, ranting/complaining is common, maybe crying in the shower, maybe writing some of the feelings down. I am not entirely comfortable showing those really strong emotions in public, especially the negative ones. However, if a situation arises that causes me to become angry because of some injustice or something, I will let some of it out because I just can't hold it in. Sometimes I later feel uncomfortable. Sometimes I later feel proud. It depends on how I wield it at the time. It's more comfortable for me to do something when I feel strongly about something than to look back later and feel sick and ashamed that I didn't do anything. But there are times when there's nothing I can do to change the situation and I just withdraw rather than engage in conflict that is bound to just make me feel worse. That is sometimes frustrating for other people who crave conflict.

    This might be somewhat telling: When I was younger, I had a dog who was very emotionally sensitive. So sensitive, in fact, that even though when I read the newspaper in front of him, I was careful not to verbally express my negative emotions about the articles, he would still look fearful/upset/disturbed by my mere body language. He really kept me in line because I tried really hard not to upset him. lol
    I relate pretty heavily to everything that you wrote there. However, I think that I am much more likely to speak out when I am upset than to keep something to myself, unless expressing my displeasure pits me against someone like a boss who could retaliate. However, I end up feeling uncomfortable by doing so more often than not, unless I feel totally justified in my anger/unhappiness. If it's a situation where asserting myself meant inconveniencing someone else or asserting my desires over their equally legitimate desires, I will often capitulate. Especially if it is someone I don't feel secure in disappointing.

    At this point I think I am just not really clear on what would really distinguish a 6 from a 9. If you still have the energy to continue with this thread, I would love to hear about some things that you feel characterize you as a type 9.

    P.s. I loved the story of your dog. I can't tell you how much I relate to that. As an adult, I've often looked back and thought about how odd it was that I was so in tune with my childhood dog's emotional state. As a kid, I used to spend many hours laying around on the floor just looking at her and watching her, savoring little interactions and watching for signs she was responding to me. My current dog is fairly anxious and incredibly responsive to the slightest indications that I am paying attention to and interacting with her. I often find that I cannot relax at home because she's sending out so many signals that she wants or needs some interaction from me. And it's not like she's being obvious about it. She can be laying on the bed but I'm aware of the way her eyes and ears flick in my direction anytime I make a noise, or i'll notice her tense up like she's going to spring up from the bed if I make a movement like I am getting up from my chair. I find myself regularly distracted by these things because I am just too sensitive to her needs and wants haha.
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  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Melly382 View Post
    Hello everyone,

    I started by responding to one of the questionnaires, but I feel like they don't touch on or help clarify my real sources of confusion in the end. So please enjoy (hah) the following wall of text in which I attempt to lay out some of the reasons for why I am considering each type! Thanks ahead of time to anyone who is willing to wade into this and provide me with feedback.

    Disclaimer: I'm sure I have many misconceptions about Enneagram types so please be patient and feel free to ask me any questions you think would help clarify things!


    Type 4:
    I've considered myself a 4 for many years now and only started to question it as an adult because I view myself as being much more practical and emotionally level than most portraits of 4 lead me to believe.
    A) In the past, I would have strongly identified with the need to believe and be seen as unique, especially as a way to preserve a sense of self-worth when I felt rejected and bullied by peers. I was practically a loner in high school from my point of view, but that was okay because I had qualities that just weren't valued by the peer groups I was rejected by. I felt disdain for others.

    B) A desire to wallow in emotional intensity, usually via intense daydreaming and fantasizing (primarily as a kid through mid-20s); I used to lay around daydreaming and spent quite a lot of time journaling about my emotions and drawing my fantasies. I enjoy melancholic/sad things and don't find it at all upsetting to consume music/stories that are steeped in it. Most of my favorite pieces of music of tinged with a sense of longing or sadness.

    C) Struggling with envy for the qualities of others that (in my mind) made them 1000 times more likeable/acceptable/attractive than myself. I've often felt like I lacked something that would enable me to participate in the world and relationships as easily as everyone else. In the past, the people I've been most envious of are often the people i've been closest to/merged with. This is mostly true of female friends (I am female). While I still experience envy, I don't feel worthless or self-hating by comparison to others as an adult.

    D) I place a lot of value in my feelings. I pay attention to and listen to how I feel for the most part. When I've done something and had to explain myself to someone else, I feel that the way I "felt" was a legitimate explanation for doing that thing regardless of whether it was right or not. And I usually allow myself to indulge in whatever emotional state occurs as long as it doesn't strike me as unhealthy.

    E) I also have a strong need to be authentically "me," and for that core of "me" to be recognized, though I feel that most people don't really have a pulse on "me." Nothing upsets me like feeling that I am fundamentally misunderstood by someone. I feel a sense of anger when I feel like I am being misrepresented in someone else's description of me. It doesn't even have to be negative to be bothersome.

    I've started to move away from considering 4 lately because I do not find myself wallowing in extreme emotional states frequently anymore, I don't struggle with envy nearly as often. Even if I do struggle with it occasionally, it's easy to avoid the emotional sting of being lesser by comparison and resenting/worshiping that other person as a result.

    Type 6:
    A) I've never been diagnosed with anything like generalized anxiety disorder, but I have noticed a pretty constant buzz of fear in the background of my life. That fear is not necessarily of anything specific, although I do find plenty of things to worry about and am often keeping a running tally of things I need to do/think about/be concerned about. I often think about something that has been on my to-do list with a sudden jolt of fear, even if taking care of that thing is 100% on schedule and it will probably all work out. I am still nervous about its existence, and its importance, and the potential threat that messing it up or forgetting it presents. Those little jolts of fear keep me motivated to handle the urgent things that I need to (but only up to a point).

    B) I identify with the fear of losing support, though I cannot figure out if what I experience is the 6's fear of losing support, or the 9's fear of separation/loss. I often worry about what I will do when I lose my mom. I think "who will love me then? Who can I rely on to be in my corner? Who else will be there to unconditionally love me and keep an eye on my well-being?" Breakups are hard for me, I often feel adrift after losing a partner, even if they are still in my life somehow. After a breakup, I know I will never have the same value that I had to that person so I can no longer rely on them to look out for me. I think I would feel very untethered to life if I didn't have the surety that someone out there is invested in me.

    C) I've also encountered the idea that 6's have a hard time making decisions or reaching conclusions that they feel confident about. I strongly identify with that. I often doubt my decisions and feel a sense of fear after making decisions because I regret being locked into something I am uncertain about. I have reached a point in my life, however, where I feel that I need to be making choices in order to get anywhere in life. I've done a lot of research and exploration to try to make choices that at least seem like safe bets or provide me with enough breathing room to escape.

    D) Testing the people in their lives--I am not necessarily slow to trust people with personal information about myself, but I am slow to trust that people are there for the long haul, that they really like me and want to be there long-term. This comes out most often in intimate relationships where I feel the need to be very honest about my flaws in order to get a sense of how the other person would react/what they think. I also do a lot of early-relationship fear-based problem forecasting, pointing out the giant differences between myself and the other person if I see them rather than waiting for them to become a problem. Coming up explanations of how these differences could lead to disappointment or conflict. I tend to give the other person ample opportunities to opt out (even though it would hurt if they did) before I will relax and begin relying on them.

    E) Preoccupation with security. I do feel that I am very much security and stability-seeking. One of the big reasons that I am going back to school is that I fear for my ability to provide for myself in the future unless I increase my earnings. I strongly desire a high-earning, secure, and stable job so that I don't have to worry about money. I also look for security in intimate relationships although I do not yet feel like i've been in a relationship where I could really fully rely on the other person.

    Type 9:
    A) The biggest reason is how often I choose to numb out stressful things. The best example of this is probably my work environment where I have been struggling to deal with incredible anger and frustration over the past year or so. I feel that my exemplary work has been overlooked by the people who matter, and that I am often forced to do the work of others because of a broken system. Now I, as well as several other coworkers, have expressed our frustration on numerous occasions in numerous ways. But things have not changed. To preserve my sanity, I have withdrawn probably to an extreme extent. I prefer to keep to myself and do my work, but avoid interacting with other people who are sources of anger/frustration for me. I tend to pop in my headphones and take frequent breaks between the BS to browse the internet/pinterest/other mindless pleasurable things that help me get through the day.

    I also tend to ignore stressful things as much as I possibly can. When I get home, I typically need extensive periods of time to zone out with tv/books/the internet/video games to recharge and decompress. That can mean that I often put off regular chores, or fail to keep on top of important things that I know won't have catastrophic consequences. Bills are often paid late because there is typically no penalty, or an acceptable penalty I can pay to preserve the peace by not thinking about it. I manage to stay mostly on top of schoolwork and other extremely important priorities/concerns (things related to my dog's health, grades, etc), but I'll avoid mentally taxing things related to goals I am pursuing (that thing I should have done early in preparation for applying to grad programs, healthcare appointments, etc) so long as they are not "urgent."

    I will also try to distract myself as much as possible from experiencing intensely negative emotions that stem from circumstances in my own life. For example, after my most recent break-up, I alternated between periods of intense crying/emotional wallowing and actively distracting myself by cleaning my apartment, grocery shopping, playing a game with a friend. Anything that served to level me out emotionally without requiring a lot of mental effort. I do not like to remain in a state of despair, pain, or self-loathing. I try to manage those emotions and keep moving forward. I do occasionally allow myself periods of wallowing, but they are not prolonged or crippling like they might have been in the past.

    B) Sloth. I feel that I have been a victim of my own sloth in the past. During college, I felt very motivated by my goals at the time and I performed to a high level. After college, I became overwhelmed by responsibility and the burden of making some important decisions in life, and I wasted quite a bit of time being completely inert in life. My days were spent working a dead-end job that required little of me while living at my parents' home and spending all of my free time on video games. I avoided making any decisions or taking any risks and just lived for the daily pleasures I could get for probably 2 years before I was given an ultimatum that kicked my life in gear again.

    C) I am uncertain whether fear or anger is the bigger fixation for me. I have a great deal of suppressed anger and resentment, but I do not feel that I am asleep to that anger. I feel that I often express that anger, though I try to express it in a way that masks the real degree of my anger unless I am pushed to the point of explosion. I have been told that I can come across as silently seething and simmering when I am angry. I usually try to reign it in at work, but I rarely have a problem with expressing it to intimates. I know that I often give the impression of being friendly, and have been told that my anger comes as an intense surprise for others as a result. One acquaintance made a point to say that she thought it was "scary" when I was angry, even without me verbally or physically expressing that anger directly.

    A random mish-mash of additional thoughts:

    I sometimes struggle to identify with Type 9 descriptions because I do not see myself as being as compliant or self-sacrificing as 9's are often described. I tend to go along until someone butts up against my hard limits or I withdraw or hold myself at a distance to avoid dealing with the expectations of others. I would say that I do look for silver linings but it's less trying to turn every specific situation into a positive situation, and moreso a deeply held belief that I will figure something out; some way of coping with or responding to a situation, and that I will persevere. I do not really struggle with conflict. At work, for example, I don't have a problem with expressing my opinion or problems that I foresee. In fact, I have done so in the past to the point where I cultivated a reputation for being a difficult and malcontent individual. At that point I started to experience fear and responded by withdrawing from my coworkers and contributing less negative feedback in order to avoid burning bridges. I am very comfortable with conflict between intimate friends and relationships. In fact, I find it very hard to let something painful or bad linger between us and often attack it even if that means there is conflict as a result. I am very patient and long-suffering with the people I love in the hopes that they will recognize this, feel safe, and offer me safety in return. If I can trust that to be the case, conflict is not an issue for me. I have also often taken stands in certain groups in the past that have led to the loss of those friendships. It was painful and uncomfortable for me, but I won't go along at all costs. In general I try to avoid ruffling feathers or offending anyone to get by. I think I present a generally friendly but reserved front to people in 90% of social situations.

    Reactivity: I am not sure I understand reactivity. I read a thread earlier where someone described reactivity as being easily affected by one's environment, and they provided some examples I really related to. I would say that I am easily emotionally affected. I am very emotionally affected by the people around me. If someone I am close to is in a bad mood, it gives me a great sense of anxiety and really throws me off. If I am around them for a prolonged period of time, i will start to feel drained and depressed by their mood. I am guilty of constantly checking in with people about perceived changes in their mood out of my own nervousness. A single thing my boss says can send me into a tailspin of doubt about whether they value me or recognize my efforts, which can leave a lasting negative impression on my day. Feeling that I said or did the wrong thing can send me into a small panic where I feel the need to immediately address the issue, apologize, or somehow gain reassurance. If something has an extremely negative emotional impact on me, I will usually try to soothe myself through distraction, talking myself down, or seeking reassurance from others. Seeking reassurance from others can come in the form of going directly to the other person involved and apologizing, or looking for some kind of sign that they aren't concerned with whatever I am stressing about. Or it can come in the form of going to someone uninvolved for a reality check or comfort.
    Hi, have you considered type 5w6? A lot of what you wrote sounded like a 5 going to 7 and then to 8. You could be trytipe 549.
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  9. #19
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    Really? I hadn't considered Type 5, partly because of that emotionality I experience. Are there any specific things that stand out to you and point to 5? Thanks for your response by the way!

  10. #20
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    "I felt disdain for others."
    Unhealty 5 often fell disdain for others.
    "I've often felt like I lacked something that would enable me to participate in the world and relationships as easily as everyone else."
    5 fell they need an area of expertise in order to be able to interact with the world so they isolate thenselves and keep studying till they can feel they know enough to do so.
    "I have noticed a pretty constant buzz of fear in the background of my life. That fear is not necessarily of anything specific, although I do find plenty of things to worry about and am often keeping a running tally of things I need to do/think about/be concerned about. I often think about something that has been on my to-do list with a sudden jolt of fear, even if taking care of that thing is 100% on schedule and it will probably all work out. I am still nervous about its existence, and its importance, and the potential threat that messing it up or forgetting it presents. Those little jolts of fear keep me motivated to handle the urgent things that I need to (but only up to a point)."
    5 also deal with constant fear especially if they have a 6 wing but unlike the 6 fear of possible treats it's fear of failure and thus incompetence.
    "I've also encountered the idea that 6's have a hard time making decisions or reaching conclusions that they feel confident about. I strongly identify with that. I often doubt my decisions and feel a sense of fear after making decisions because I regret being locked into something I am uncertain about. I have reached a point in my life, however, where I feel that I need to be making choices in order to get anywhere in life. I've done a lot of research and exploration to try to make choices that at least seem like safe bets or provide me with enough breathing room to escape."
    Doing research in order to deal with fear is 5 trait, 6 go after support instead.
    "The biggest reason is how often I choose to numb out stressful things. The best example of this is probably my work environment where I have been struggling to deal with incredible anger and frustration over the past year or so. I feel that my exemplary work has been overlooked by the people who matter, and that I am often forced to do the work of others because of a broken system. Now I, as well as several other coworkers, have expressed our frustration on numerous occasions in numerous ways. But things have not changed. To preserve my sanity, I have withdrawn probably to an extreme extent. I prefer to keep to myself and do my work, but avoid interacting with other people who are sources of anger/frustration for me. I tend to pop in my headphones and take frequent breaks between the BS to browse the internet/pinterest/other mindless pleasurable things that help me get through the day. I also tend to ignore stressful things as much as I possibly can. When I get home, I typically need extensive periods of time to zone out with tv/books/the internet/video games to recharge and decompress. That can mean that I often put off regular chores, or fail to keep on top of important things that I know won't have catastrophic consequences. Bills are often paid late because there is typically no penalty, or an acceptable penalty I can pay to preserve the peace by not thinking about it. I manage to stay mostly on top of schoolwork and other extremely important priorities/concerns (things related to my dog's health, grades, etc), but I'll avoid mentally taxing things related to goals I am pursuing (that thing I should have done early in preparation for applying to grad programs, healthcare appointments, etc) so long as they are not "urgent." I will also try to distract myself as much as possible from experiencing intensely negative emotions that stem from circumstances in my own life. For example, after my most recent break-up, I alternated between periods of intense crying/emotional wallowing and actively distracting myself by cleaning my apartment, grocery shopping, playing a game with a friend. Anything that served to level me out emotionally without requiring a lot of mental effort. I do not like to remain in a state of despair, pain, or self-loathing. I try to manage those emotions and keep moving forward. I do occasionally allow myself periods of wallowing, but they are not prolonged or crippling like they might have been in the past."
    This looks like a 5 going to 7, numbing the pain is 7 behavior 9 simply refuse to even "notice" the problem.
    "Sloth. I feel that I have been a victim of my own sloth in the past. During college, I felt very motivated by my goals at the time and I performed to a high level. After college, I became overwhelmed by responsibility and the burden of making some important decisions in life, and I wasted quite a bit of time being completely inert in life. My days were spent working a dead-end job that required little of me while living at my parents' home and spending all of my free time on video games. I avoided making any decisions or taking any risks and just lived for the daily pleasures I could get for probably 2 years before I was given an ultimatum that kicked my life in gear again."
    More 5 going to 7.
    "I am uncertain whether fear or anger is the bigger fixation for me. I have a great deal of suppressed anger and resentment, but I do not feel that I am asleep to that anger. I feel that I often express that anger, though I try to express it in a way that masks the real degree of my anger unless I am pushed to the point of explosion. I have been told that I can come across as silently seething and simmering when I am angry. I usually try to reign it in at work, but I rarely have a problem with expressing it to intimates. I know that I often give the impression of being friendly, and have been told that my anger comes as an intense surprise for others as a result. One acquaintance made a point to say that she thought it was "scary" when I was angry, even without me verbally or physically expressing that anger directly."
    5 going to 8 especially the bolded parts.
    "I would say that I do look for silver linings but it's less trying to turn every specific situation into a positive situation, and moreso a deeply held belief that I will figure something out; some way of coping with or responding to a situation, and that I will persevere."
    Deep held belief in ones own ability to figure something out is 5 trait.
    Also 5 deply fear feeling overhelmed so they save their energy A LOT.

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