The Supporter


Type two is quite uncommon and in the traditional Enneagram (has gotten very much mixed up with type seven who is a helper, a pep-talk expert and an up-lifter). We call this type the Supporter, because a two is naturally dedicated to supporting others emotionally. Her focus is basically only on intimacy and love, and on what lies in the way of it. Why are people not honest about how they feel? This is her constant question. And she will try to open your heart by noticing and pointing out the good things about you, since you seem to have forgotten how lovable you are. Not to make you feel better. What she wants is that you dare to be honest, honest about your emotions.

Being a heart type, just like types three and four, the underlying emotional atmosphere in type two is grief. A two wants you to fall in love with yourself, pure and simple. And she believes that you will, if you feel what you feel, if you let yourself grieve. She can be stubborn when it comes to focusing on peoples emotions, because she has no other focus but this. And she can hold that focus for very long without tiring. She will then discover the interesting fact that in many people fear and anger are emotions closer to the core. A two is always available for the few people she cares about, to help them get in touch with whatever lies in the way of emotional well being.

Twos are honest, caring, positive and supportive in an very objective manner (like a five, a two sees everything through an objective lens, and in her case she is objective about emotion). A two will not flatter or exaggerate. Flattery is fake, she can spot it in a second. She will, however, with loving eyes look into your eyes and state what your obvious qualities are, so that you can acknowledge them and know you are enough. Then you might dare to express your emotions freely, and the most precious emotion of all to her is the release of sadness. Then love and intimacy will flow again.

She will also point out to you the ways in which you are not being kind to yourself. Because she finds it very painful to watch people be harsh, unkind, insensitive or unjust to themselves. She notices how this keeps your heart closed, unavailable. She truly and deeply does not understand why people do not love themselves. And it bothers her. This keeps frustrating her.

Twos are obsessed with love, and only focus on the few people they truly love. This is how twos suffer. Watching the self inflicted suffering of her loved ones gives a two a pain in her heart. Twos suffer through others, and having this as their main focus can cause them a lot of frustration and sadness. Like a nine is at service with practical matters at all times, a two is constantly at emotional service.

Twos like to dig deeply into peoples emotions, love, intimacy and their relationships. And always at the core of this interest is the main topic; Love. If it is present or not present, real or not real. She is like a little scientist who wants to figure love out. Why do people make it so hard for themselves and where is the juicy love?

Her attitude is: I love myself and I want you to love yourself too. The truth is the two is not connected to love, but she has a mindset that she loves herself unconditionally. She is in reality just overlooking herself. Projecting her overlooked sadness on others. Everyone is unhappy and sad and I need to support them. Then it might be my turn and someone will hold that space and love for me. If someone else is connected to love, then the two feels very relaxed.

Love is blind

A two does not want shallow praise. That kind of feedback can actually annoy her, because she finds it objectifying. She purely and simply wants to connect in love. To her love is a feeling, not a reaction to anything, either you feel it or you do not. What she overlooks is her own disconnection with her own heart.

A two does not care if people like her or not. But if people she loves are not honest about their feelings, it hurts her a lot. She feels trustworthy and a two wrongly assumes that people who do not open up to her don’t see her as trustworthy. She can also get quite turned off if you ask her to improve herself. She does not see the point to that at all. In the world view of a two, love is blind. If it is not, it is simply not love at all. I love you as you are and you love me as I am, this is the only deal that is acceptable to a two.

A two knows right away exactly what they feel about a person, so from a two point of view, everyone else is too slow getting it. She knows who she is connected to, faster than people of other types. And she knows with whom it is a romantic connection. After a second or third meeting, she knows that she subconsciously knew the true nature of the connection straight away, from the first meeting. So twos are quicker in love and this is also painful to her. “What took you so long!” is her biggest frustration when it comes to her loved one.

“Do you want to be with me or don´t you?” is often the frustrated question when the other party is afraid of commitment and confused about what he or she feels. A two is not afraid of commitment and she adores intimacy. She does not take it to be her duty to do anything that does not feel good. A commitment is based on the strength of her feelings for the other, it is not a promise or a practical arrangement. Twos are naturally monogamous, and believes others are too. It is just how love is. It is not because of a rule or because it is right or good to be that way. It is to honor her emotions and those of the other. Intimacy and romantic love are only shared by two people, not several.

When a two sees people turn love down for practical or superficial reasons it breaks her heart. So what, if someone lives half way around the world, or there are other obstacles? If it is real love, feelings of love, there is a way! To other types she comes across as very naive when it comes to love. All she really wants is for both parts to have a clear purpose to their love, now or in the future.

Focus on the feelings of others

Type two has been called the Helper in the Enneagram literature and Naranjo has stated that twos are not really helpers, but rather manipulators through helping others. This tendency belongs to type one. Ones always look for “what can I get from others” by being seductive and special. Other numbers are helpful too. Sevens want to uplift and make people be the best version themselves. Sixes and threes are very helpful, but afraid it will be an unfair deal. Twos are more focused on emotion and emotional support, not much on practical helpfulness.

A two does not expect to be repaid in any way. She can get into her eight stress point if she feels that people use her as their personal therapist and do not in turn care for her emotionally. She feels she has listened for hours and this person does not care for her at all.

If anyone asks for practical help, a two is not deeply engaged. She will help if she feels like it. She does not feel it is her obligation. But if you are sad or have any uneasy feelings, she will be there no matter what. Emotion is always her the center of her attention.

Type two is, as we said, a heart type just like types three and four. The sadness of others gives a two a feeling of unease, and she cannot really rest. She is not bothered that way by the suffering in people in general. And it is not that she wants to end suffering as such. It is the uncovering and release of sadness she longs for. She puts her hope in opening peoples hearts and she sees this as the solution for everyone (Because for a two, it is. When a two closes her heart, she will not feel good and healthy again until she opens up fully emotionally). Then, is her hope, when everyone she cares for has regained their ability to love themselves, she can finally rest and enjoy her own life. This is her trap and her suffering, as well as her talent.

Many sevens and ones are mistaken to be this type, since both types give a lot of importance to love and both are helpers. But twos have this exclusively emotional focus.

Twos do not feel happy about helping others if there is not an emotional aspect to the problem. They also do not take notice of strangers they pass on the street, only people who are close to them or those who seek their emotional support. To a seven there are no strangers, only potential new friends. A two cares for only a few, the people she is really close to. She does not even notice strangers. Her focus is much more personal and it is not on the many.

A seven has a very playful and entertaining mind, a two does not have this tendency. Her mind is often quite still, and focused on the other. A two investigates one thing deeply, for a long time, to see if it is real. Mainly, she investigates love. A seven is often very playful and often gets too restless to dig really deeply into things. A seven likes variety and is more likely to compare and connect different theories to each other.

Another important difference between a seven and a two is that twos do not care much how they look in the eyes of others. A two lacks the very experience of care and worry about a self-image, so central in type seven. And twos do not have the tendency to “messiha-complex” (feeling the pull and responsibility to fix the world) a seven suffers from. She does not at all feel it is her job to save the world. Her focus is exclusively on the emotions of the one she loves or those who are really close. Neither ones nor sevens are specialized on emotional support. A seven, in contrast to a two, can not stand any kind of suffering in people she comes across. She feels she must be a hero or a heroine and this is how she suffers.

And, as we said, the commitment of the two is not to fight or avoid suffering in the other. What is important to her is that love flow or not in the person she loves. And if it does not, she wants to help release anything that stands in the way emotionally. Then she believes the person is quite capable of taking care of other matters. And she does not react to suffering as if it were a terrible thing that has to be put an end to. A seven, on the other hand, tends to political commitment. She sees herself as part of society. A two actually does not. Her orientation is individual and she feels like an autonomous and self reliant individual.

In addition, note that a two does not get bored with people like a seven does. Variety is not something she cares for. Boredom is not a problem for a two (lack of emotional honesty in others is), but can be very painful for a seven. A two always feels free, a seven detests any kind of imprisonment and always looks for freedom in any situation.

Type ones can also be very caring and helpful, but more out of duty. Ones have difficulties feeling and expressing their own will, while twos know what they want and express their will with ease. The supportiveness of a two is not about giving in order to receive in a simplified manner. Although it is of course true that we all, regardless of our type, tend to give that which we ourselves want and need. So a two gives caring space and support to the free expression of emotion (especially sadness), which is her own need and longing.

“How do you feel?” is the question a two always wants to ask others. It comes natural to her. And she cannot figure out why others are not that interested in how she feels. When a two is sad she is quite upset that nobody gives the same attention to her sadness, her heart as she gives others.

A two under a lot of stress will resemble an eight, for type eight is her stress point in the Enneagram. She will begin to question the intentions of the other person. Why am I listening to you complaining if you want to dislike yourself anyway? That is what the behavior of other people looks like to a two. She will finally have had enough and become angry like an eight: You are wasting your time, and mine!

The two realizes the other person may actually not be willing to let go of that which is causing their unhappiness. At this point a two looses it. She may have spent a long time supporting someone who has made no visible effort to change.

The two then cuts this person off if needed. If it is a truly deep love, emotional support can go on for long. To give up and leave someone still suffering the lack of self love breaks the heart of a two. That kind of heart break she will need support to grieve through.

When someone does really genuinely care about how she feels, a two is very touched. It can make her so grateful she cries her eyes out if she has been out of support for long. This is her only wish. In order not of feel hurt in the long run she needs to understand that others are simply not strongly focused on the emotional well being of people close to them, like she is.

Emotional support and realease

If you are a two you will be at home with emotion. That is where you feel strong and competent. And twos are braver than most in this area. They enjoy emotions and feel drawn to assisting others emotionally. Their mission is: If you open your heart like mine, we can relax in love togheter. It stresses a two out if the other is not present. The two can only focus on what lies in the way of love flowing freely, within and without.

Twos are optimistic and positive. They are like a loving, calm, sensitive and perceptive parent in relation to people near them. And twos are uplifters like sevens. The feed back of a two is positive and realistic. Twos make you feel good about yourself pointing out to you how you are ok. They try to give you hope and will point out that you are worthy of unconditional love.

If you are a two your pattern will be about feeling sorry for everyone but yourself. You can spot sadness, games, fear or emotional need in another in a second. And do you best to show that person that you are there for him or her to realease whatever is burdening them.

A two can point out the strategies of another person in such an honest objective matter that it can stress other people out. This is not the intention of the two and it makes her very sad, her intentions being quite the opposite.

A two does not try to fix things. She thinks that emotional release and loving focus heals. And that supportive focus is what she herself longs for. But since there are many sad people in the world, her turn to be in focus never comes. Also, most people are not twos, so what she gets may be advice or general encouragement, which is not what she wants.

The risk is, that focusing on others causes the two to neglect her own emotional needs. If you are a two you yourself will long for emotional support, and wonder why others do not show that focus on your emotions, like you do for others. So you need to learn to always give yourself what you are giving to others. And to grieve the fact that you are not getting what you long for very often. And understand that there are many ways to love.

Looking for true love

If you are a two you probably wondered more than once why everybody does not want to just hug and love each other. Twos are in love with the feeling of love, it is their way to contacting their depths. They do not care much for fairy tale kind of love. It has to be true, deep and real.

Intimacy is the arena where a two feels most at home. She is fascinated with love in all its expressions, and in all relationships. Especially love between two people, who are initially strangers, but who recognize love in each other, for here the power and wonder of love is especially evident.

When a two falls in love and has a loving relationship, she is very caring about the emotional reality of the other. And she likes to give her partner a lot of freedom. This has to do with the fact that real love to a two means you love freely, not because you have to, or, God forbid, because you are forced or manipulated into it. So twos are not controlling, that is a mistake in traditional Enneagram literature.

Twos like love in general. A two loves seeing people close to her love one another and she tries to wake her family up to love. As for herself, a two worries that she will not be lucky enough to get to experience true love. Or, even worse, a two can start to doubt that others dare to love at all. To ward those doubts off a two likes to remind herself of moments of true love experiences in her past, so that she can trust there will be more of it in the future.

In the two most common enneatypes, ones and sevens, there is fear related to love and relationships, so the two may have a point. Sevens fear they will be deprived of freedom and fun, ones fear that commitment will mean a lot of demands from their loved ones. And when ones and sevens do not verbalize their fear, people who are other types, can feel quite rejected. Twos especially, having their focus in life on intimate loving relationship. When a two does find one who dares give hime or herself to love, she is truly happy about it.

Depth and love of the Self

Knowing that you are a two can help you become free. Understanding your pattern will make you see how your focus on supporting others to love themselves keeps you from truly falling in love with yourself.

You will be able to see through your tendency to try and make others capable of love, and accept that you must be your own true love. You cannot count on the connection with others to give you that which you long for, even though you will always want a truly intimate loving relationship.

If you are a two the direction of integration is toward point four in the Enneagram. Your inner child aspect is four. This aspect is within you, you need only listen to it and let it guide you.

These are aspects of type four that are helpful to you:

– Inner focus. A four is also an emotional type, but her interest is more in her own emotions. Your inner four child will like you to go deeply into your own emotions and not focus on your loved ones first. This will help you become focused on yourself in a way that creates balance.

– Grief and sorrow. Fours find grief and sorrow beautiful. They like to stay in those states. Allow yourself to do that, as long as you wish for. That way you attend to your own emotional needs.

– Showing emotional needs. Show your emotional needs to others like a four does. You do not need to be there for others emotionally. It is lovely healing state for you to grieve, cry and be present with yourself first of all.

– It is ok to die. A four finds death beautiful. So do you. It is not selfish, your death is about you, not about the people who might depend on you. Just let go and be, forget your loved one/ones. Make the death meditation your treat.

– Depth. As you allow yourself to fall deeply down into yourself you will find that you are love. It is what everything is.

Twos are looking for real love, in its broadest sense. They want to see potential lovers come together, parents and children get closer, living and dead release their differences. And twos want to experience deep love themselves. When they are stuck in their pattern they may experience this focus as suffering, as a lack of love.

As a two becomes freer she will turn her attention to the real source of love which lies within. Taking care of her own emotional needs she will rediscover that she is love, everything is. From that reality she can use her gifts and help others see that they are loved, that they are loving, and that in fact love is their essence.

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