The Relationship Fear of Every Enneagram Type

Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

Enneagram One – Fear of Becoming Unbalanced

Ones are idealistic and driven, striving to live a life that is in perfect alignment with their values and principles. Ones live according to their ethics with a passion, always trying to control their lives so that they won’t deviate from their rules. Finding balance is a difficult task for these types because they often take on more responsibilities than they can handle. In relationships, they worry that others will sabotage the balance they have achieved and distract them from the tasks and goals they have before them. They sometimes worry that their feelings will guide them away from their path and muddy their ability to think rationally.

Find out what each Enneagram type fears when it comes to dating and relationships. #Enneagram #Personality

Characteristics That Scare Ones Away from Potential Partners:

  • Laziness
  • Ethical ambiguity
  • Procrastination
  • Undependability
  • Emotional Neediness
  • Volatility
  • Irresponsibility
  • Dishonesty
  • Manipulative behavior

Read This Next: 7 Struggles of the Enneagram 1 Type

Enneagram Two – Fear Of Being Used

Twos are generous and warm individuals who will typically go above and beyond to take care of their loved ones. They long to be loved unconditionally, but they often feel a need to work to earn love. Being selfless, forgiving, and compassionate are all things that they strive to embody. But at the same time, they have an underlying fear that they are being taken for granted, especially in relationships where the balance of labor is uneven. They want to feel needed, but they worry that they are loved more for what they do than who they are. At healthy levels, they are sincere and passionate – expressing their feelings and needs without pretense. At unhealthy levels, they can become complaining and self-congratulatory in hopes that others will affirm them or return their acts of affection or service. Experiencing genuine love and authenticity is what Twos really crave, but being duped, used, or manipulated is what they fear.

Characteristics That Scare Twos Away from Potential Partners:

  • Aloof behavior
  • Secretiveness
  • Manipulation
  • Selfishness
  • Lateness
  • Dishonesty
  • Emotional coldness

Read This Next: 7 Struggles of the Enneagram 2 Type

Enneagram Three – Fear Of Being Humiliated

Playful and energetic, Threes bring their ambition and charisma into their relationship in an inspiring way. They are often poised and charming, with a high-spirited drive to be the “best” partner. Because Threes are so image-conscious, especially at average to unhealthy levels, they can become stressed about losing face in the relationship. With intimacy comes vulnerability, and that can be scary for a Three who always wants to be seen in the best light. They fear that as they get closer to people, their flaws will become more apparent and that their partner will see through them to their more vulnerable core.  Healthy Threes are more comfortable with intimacy and vulnerability, but they still fear being humiliated or making a poor impression on their partner or the people who perceive them as a couple.

Characteristics That Scare Threes Away from Potential Partners:

  • Brooding and negativity
  • Overly critical behavior
  • Incompetence
  • Inefficiency
  • Laziness
  • Poor motivation
  • Lack of vision
  • Volatility
  • Whining or complaining

Read This Next: 7 Struggles of the Enneagram 3 Type

Enneagram Four – Fear Of Being Unseen

For the Four, the fear of being unseen isn’t about needing constant attention. This fear revolves around being unappreciated for who they truly are. Fours are imaginative, emotional, and creative types. They often have an idealistic quality to themselves. The last thing they want in a relationship is someone who sees only the surface, or only a one-dimensional version of themselves. They worry that they’ll fall for someone who tries to change them or who is disinterested in the nuances that make them them. They don’t want to be cut off from others, but they’d rather be alone than be misunderstood or unable to be authentically themselves.

Characteristics That Scare Fours Away from Potential Partners:

  • Pushiness or bossiness
  • People who cave to peer pressure
  • Manipulative behavior
  • Coldness
  • Aloofness
  • Dishonesty
  • Emotional distance
  • Dull, narrow views

Read This Next: 7 Struggles of the Enneagram 4 Type

Enneagram Five – Fear Of Being Overwhelmed

Curious and self-contained, Fives crave a great deal of personal autonomy and freedom. Often interested in niche subjects, they strive to achieve competence and expertise in an area. Because Fives feel safer when they retreat into their mind, they often worry that relationships will make them vulnerable and exhausted. They don’t want to be intruded upon, overwhelmed by responsibilities or obligations, and held back from their interests. They want to feel that they have something important to contribute to the relationship, and they want to feel connected to people, but they don’t want to be “on” and in-demand for excessive amounts of time.

Characteristics That Scare Fives Away from Potential Partners:

  • Neediness/Clinginess
  • Emotional turbulence
  • Pushy or bossy behavior
  • Poor listening
  • Manipulative behavior
  • Dishonesty
  • People-pleasing
  • Beating around the bush

Read This Next: 7 Struggles of the Enneagram 5 Type

Enneagram Six – Fear Of Losing Their Security

For the Six, a new relationship can be scary because it forces them to confront change and adapt their life to the needs of another person. While some Sixes seek relationships for the security of another individual, others flee relationships because they want the security of autonomy. They worry that making space for another person will disrupt the security of their own independence. After all, nobody knows them better than they know themselves. Distrust and skepticism reign supreme for many Sixes, especially when they’re unhealthy. Other Sixes try not to get too excited about their relationships because they worry they’ll inevitably lose it if they do or say the wrong thing. The healthier the Six is, the more secure they are in themselves and the more grounded and confident they will be about their relationship choices.

Characteristics That Scare Sixes Away from Potential Partners:

  • Wishy-washy behavior
  • Manipulation
  • Dishonesty
  • Aloofness
  • Secretiveness
  • Undependability
  • Recklessness
  • Unsupportiveness

Read This Next: 7 Struggles of the Enneagram 6 Type

Enneagram Seven – Fear Of Being Trapped

Lively and curious, Sevens enjoy a life where they are free to be spontaneous and pursue their interests without constraints. The biggest fear of the Five is to feel trapped, and a relationship can symbolize numerous entrapments. They don’t want to lose their ability to pursue adventure, try new things, or seek happiness. Thus, a commitment can seem ominous and restrictive. The Seven needs opportunities to stretch their wings, experiment, and feel a rush of excitement. Relationships that offer a sense of exploration and fun will be enticing to the Seven. What that exploration means will vary from Seven to Seven. To some, it means being able to experiment sexually, and to others it means playing new and varied video games together or traveling around the world. For each Seven, the definition of freedom will be different.

Characteristics That Scare Sevens Away from Potential Partners:

  • Neediness/Clinginess
  • Pushy or bossy behavior
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Negativity/Brooding
  • Narrow-mindedness
  • Aversion to novelty or adventure
  • Micro-managing

Read This Next: 7 Struggles of the Enneagram 7 Type

Enneagram Eight – Fear Of Being Controlled

The core fear of the Eight is to be harmed or controlled by other people, and of course, this plays out in relationships where Eights worry they’ll be “trapped.” Being strong, independent, and self-reliant are all key desires of this type and they worry that relationships will in some ways “snip their wings” and force them to be subservient to another. They often fear being vulnerable, which is a key part of developing intimacy with another person. Having to have heart-to-heart talks about mistakes, failures, or deep feelings can feel suffocating to the Eight because it makes them feel at risk of being ensnared or manipulated. The healthier Eights are, the more they learn to be independent while being compassionate. They avoid controlling, manipulative relationships but open themselves up to people they trust and don’t feel the need to constantly be “in charge.”

Characteristics That Scare Eights Away from Potential Partners:

  • Neediness/Clinginess
  • Micro-managing
  • Dishonesty
  • Beating around the bush
  • Gossiping
  • Flattery
  • Incompetence
  • Impracticality

Read This Next: 7 Struggles of the Enneagram Eight Type

Enneagram Nine – Fear Of Disruption

More than anything, Nines crave a life that is harmonious and well-balanced. When it comes to relationships, they fear someone disrupting their world and forcing them out of their comfortable patterns. They hate conflict, chaos, and pushy or bossy behavior and relationships can be rife with these things. Because Nines want to be connected yet independent, they strive to nurture their partner while also allowing them their autonomy. A partner who doesn’t do the same for them can be overwhelming and cumbersome to them. At unhealthy levels, the Nine may dislike any relationship that makes them face their own problems or deal with unhealthy habits instead of ignoring them.

Characteristics That Scare Nines Away from Potential Partners:

  • Pushiness/Bossiness
  • Micro-managing
  • Judgmental behavior
  • Narrow-mindedness
  • Poor listening skills
  • Confrontational or combative behavior
  • Lack of empathy

Read This Next: 7 Struggles of the Enneagram Nine Type

What Are Your Thoughts?

Do your relationship fears match up with what’s listed here for your type? Remember that you will likely relate to all these fears at least a little bit, but the one for your type should be something so integral to who you are that you almost don’t even realize it.

Find out more about your personality type in our eBooks, Discovering You: Unlocking the Power of Personality Type,  The INFJ – Understanding the Mystic, and The INFP – Understanding the Dreamer. You can also connect with me via FacebookInstagram, or Twitter!


The Enneagram Made Easy by Renee Baron & Elizabeth Wagele

Personality Types – Using the Enneagram for Self-Discovery by Don Richard Riso with Russ Hudson

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Find out what each Enneagram type fears when it comes to dating and relationships. #Enneagram #Personality

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  1. Hi Susan I’ve told you this a few times .WOW you are so amazing all you know and share with us .I’m a#8 ISFP All you shared about #8 is do true Thanks for all your do 👨‍❤️‍💋‍👨🙋Beverly

  2. #8, perfect match 😁 but I do my best to be open. I had to find a partner as dominant as me but who also wants equality, like me, for the relationship to work and for me to be able to be vulnerable.

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