Enneagram and Marriage

I have been married for 11 years, 12 in August. Writing that makes me feel so old! And sometimes, it seems like it has just flown by. I discovered a few years ago that I am an enneagram 9, and after reading many books on the subject, I deduced that my husband is an 8.

Jeremy is truly one of a kind. I love him so much, but wow, we are certainly different. He finds it easy to start hard conversations. I run from them at ALL costs. Jeremy is very decisive and can come across as aggressive. I am always trying to make people happy. In fact, making others happy is probably the biggest thing I focus on in a given day. Jeremy doesn’t really care what other people think of him. He has his opinions and ideas, he is very confident in them, and if you don’t like them, well, that’s your problem.

I think 8’s as an enneagram can often be perceived the wrong way. 8’s are definitely confident, aggressive, dominating, and often cannot see that others are sometimes hurt by their abrupt nature. However, 8’s have a fiercely loyal side. I have often been very surprised at things that Jeremy will stand up for me on. 8’s have the highest energy level on the enneagram, so 8’s can easily figure out how to do a project and get it done quickly and efficiently. 8’s want things to be done correctly, but also in a timely fashion. We have a very old Victorian home we are remodeling while living in it, and Jeremy has done an excellent job keeping up with all the work it requires. I always stand amazed at how much he is able to get done.

With all this said, 8’s and 9’s are very different people. Jeremy has the highest level of energy on the enneagram, and I have the lowest. We often disagree on what we should be doing. Jeremy has no problem stating his thought and opinions, and I really struggle with knowing what I truly want. Jeremy can make quick decisions, and it takes me a long time to make a decision.

I write all this to say: knowing the enneagram has helped me so much in my marriage. 8’s are not trusting people, so sometimes I can understand Jeremy is putting up a wall around new people to avoid betrayal. It is so much easier now to see that when Jeremy is doing something, I do not always have to be doing the same thing. It’s easier for me to see that Jeremy wants things done, and it helps motivate me to follow through, just for the simple reason that he likes things done. I have learned that it really stresses me out to be in any type of meeting with him, so I avoid sitting in on meetings. When we are in conflict, it is so much easier now to see that I am viewing things in a peacemaking way, and he is viewing things in a problem solving way. No way is right or wrong, they are just different.

The enneagram has drastically changed how I view my marriage. It has allowed me to give grace in times that I have often gotten so frustrated before. I hope that you might find the freedom I have found in viewing your spouse through the lens of the enneagram.



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