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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)



I wanted to write about type Four as a child and thought I could post it here too. Here it is, feel free to share your thoughts about it.

As I've written here and as many others already know, Enneagram types are more like motivations. We are different because we are motivated by different things. And motivation is something we have always had. Of course, our temperament and other biological factors affect our motivations and personality. But motivation is there before experiences. And type Four is motivated by finding love, meaning and fulfillment through self-expression and deep connection. This is true for the type Four child too. And the basic motivation will be the same the whole life --> to recognize your type it's helpful to think about your childhood too.


Common qualities
¤ is easily hurt
¤ wants to be seen as special
¤ longs for fancy clothes
¤ is introspective
¤ loves imaginative and mytholgical plays and stories
¤ is interested about art and collects lovely items
¤ is creative
¤ seems a bit sad or depressed at times
¤ finds anything regular and normal quite boring
¤ loves anything mysterious, unpredictable and enchanting
¤ are usually warm and friendly but can feel shy and lonely
¤ wonder if they really belong and fit in
¤ long for things they don't have
¤ is very sensitive and prone to feel ashamed when others are angry at them
¤ long for a deep emotional relationship with a soulmate
¤ want others to accept their feelings and listen

School
¤ introverted Fours are shy, can find it hard to be with others whole day and can be afraid of school
¤ extroverted Fours (introverted are more common though) are sociable and want to please their teachers and meet other children
¤ are sensitive and it can cause difficulties, fours can somaticize... Monday mornings can be especially hard. Also, their emotions can immobilize them (oh really)
¤ will need consolation when they have had tough experiences to be able to do their homework - if they're not in the mood, they're not in the mood and need understanding, not forcing

Manners and socializing
¤ are usually obedient and don't want to hurt others but if they're not understood, they can become offensive... If someone hurts their strong principles, they usually can't hide their resentment.
¤ have strong sympathies and antipathies towards others
¤ can become antagonistic if too jealous
¤ don't necessarily want to participate in socializing suddenly but need their time, not forcing

Eating
¤ are sensitive to lose their appetite if there are a lot of worries and troubles in the family

Emotional life
¤ respond lightly if they're being pressured to behave in a certain way
¤ are afraid of being abandoned and can be jealous, self-critical and punish themselves
¤ want to be loved and noticed
¤ can be very desperate and pessimistic
¤ want to find the meaning of their life
¤ are melancholic
¤ need to have their own time
¤ are able to be very compassionate and help those who need help
¤ tend to dramatize


Development of the type
¤ experiences of abandonment (because of divorce, death, new sibling, work, disease etc. in the family) --> the conclusion of being somehow defective and not good enough --> motivation for being special to be noticed and loved... even being sick, suffering or living at the edges will do
¤ the original experience of abandonment could be behind the sense of tragedy, loss and suffering
¤ the accessibility of the care taker could have been behind the mood swings



My sources:
Jerome Wagner, The Enneagram Spectrum of Personality Styles
Elizabeth Wagele, The Enneagram of Parenting
The Enneagram: Basic Characteristics Of The Nine Enneagram Types
 

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Yeah, I have to admit that type 4's description almost fits me perfectly for when I was a child~
 

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I myself as a child would cry all of the time. Even if my mom was yelling at my brothers and not me I'd tear up at harsh words. I also liked to sit out on this rock in our yard and have no one talk to me, except for my invisible friend.
 

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Common qualities
¤ is easily hurt - Yes, but I didn't show it often & would often experience it as anger or frustration
¤ wants to be seen as special It's more like I thought of myself that way & presented myself that way, but I also was TOLD that I was. I was always overhearing stuff like "gifted" from teachers
¤ longs for fancy clothes Not until my teens, but I loved playing dress-up as a kid
¤ is introspective Yes
¤ loves imaginative and mytholgical plays and stories Yes, but also wacky stuff too
¤ is interested about art and collects lovely items Yes to the art
¤ is creative Yes
¤ seems a bit sad or depressed at times Yes
¤ finds anything regular and normal quite boring Yes... I was obsessed with "weirdness" as a kid
¤ loves anything mysterious, unpredictable and enchanting Yes
¤ are usually warm and friendly but can feel shy and lonely Mostly just shy & lonely, was ornery otherwise & disliked the bulk of my peers
¤ wonder if they really belong and fit in Distinctly felt like I did NOT
¤ long for things they don't have Yes
¤ is very sensitive and prone to feel ashamed when others are angry at them Yes... I couldn't stand to be caught doing wrong
¤ long for a deep emotional relationship with a soulmate Yes...always had to have a "best friend"
¤ want others to accept their feelings and listen Yes...but found myself invalidated a lot

School
¤ introverted Fours are shy, can find it hard to be with others whole day and can be afraid of school Yes, but just afraid of the social part
¤ extroverted Fours (introverted are more common though) are sociable and want to please their teachers and meet other children
¤ are sensitive and it can cause difficulties, fours can somaticize... Monday mornings can be especially hard. Also, their emotions can immobilize them (oh really) Yes... I was absent a lot because sometimes I just could not cope with the idea of having to be around other kids all day
¤ will need consolation when they have had tough experiences to be able to do their homework - if they're not in the mood, they're not in the mood and need understanding, not forcing My household was relaxed & it was assumed I would do my work, and I did. if I was not in the mood, then I'd make up for my procrastination later. My parents never checked my homework once I was past age 6 or so. I suppose I got understanding then; my mom was a "nurturer".

Manners and socializing
¤ are usually obedient and don't want to hurt others but if they're not understood, they can become offensive... If someone hurts their strong principles, they usually can't hide their resentment. Yes
¤ have strong sympathies and antipathies towards others Yes, but more antipathies
¤ can become antagonistic if too jealous I don't remember being consciously "jealous", but I could be antagonistic among my family
¤ don't necessarily want to participate in socializing suddenly but need their time, not forcing Yes

Eating
¤ are sensitive to lose their appetite if there are a lot of worries and troubles in the family Yes...there was always concern over the fact that I did not eat much. My mom would defend my small appetite though. To this day I have appetite problems, especially when emotionally upset (cannot stomach food).

Emotional life
¤ respond lightly if they're being pressured to behave in a certain way I don't know what lightly means. I'd tend to resist obstinately
¤ are afraid of being abandoned and can be jealous, self-critical and punish themselves Yes to the last two; not sure about jealousy. I tended to experience it as some resentment, but not knowing against what.
¤ want to be loved and noticed By people I cared about, yes. I did not like the spotlight though. I did fantasie of recognition for talent.
¤ can be very desperate and pessimistic Yes
¤ want to find the meaning of their life Yes
¤ are melancholic Yes
¤ need to have their own time Yes
¤ are able to be very compassionate and help those who need help Yes
¤ tend to dramatize I don't recall being dramatic as a kid...but perhaps what my family called "temperamental" would fit that


Development of the type
¤ experiences of abandonment (because of divorce, death, new sibling, work, disease etc. in the family) --> the conclusion of being somehow defective and not good enough --> motivation for being special to be noticed and loved... even being sick, suffering or living at the edges will do Yes
¤ the original experience of abandonment could be behind the sense of tragedy, loss and suffering Likely
¤ the accessibility of the care taker could have been behind the mood swings - Due to the divorce & her rocky 2nd marriage, my mom could be very wrapped up in her own moods, even as she was also a "smothering mother" at times.


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Thanks to the OP for this. I've read only a few other 4 child descriptions & they did not resonate (described a dramatic, attention seeking child that sounded very extroverted to me). This one hits home.
 

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Yup this about summed me up pretty darn well. Crazy how accurate this stuff can be. Super interesting though, I haven't seen this in depth of a description pertaining to type4 childhood. Thanks!
 
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