Do you think you have an enneagram type 2 child? Read this blog for everything you need to know about parenting the enneagram 2 as a child!
Enneagram 2 Child Overview
The enneagram type two child is called The Helper.
Traits Of An Enneagram 2 Child…
- And Attentive
Signs Your Child Is An Enneagram 2
- They act like miniature parents, taking care of siblings from a young age
- Extremely empathetic, pick up on other’s moods easily
- Self-sacrifices for other’s
- Well-liked by adults because of their selflessness
What The Enneagram 2 Child Wants
- Core Desire: To help, be needed, and give
- Core Fear: Not being enough, being selfish, and not being needed
As an enneagram 2 child, your core desire comes from the fear that if you don’t devote yourself to helping others, you are unworthy of love. Being selfish and expressing yourself doesn’t come naturally to you.
All an enneagram 2 child wants is to serve others and be needed because then they feel like they are enough.
They often seek this core desire by taking care of chores, acting like the parent to their siblings, giving gifts, and being a listening ear.
What An Enneagram 2 Child Needs.
So what do enneagram 2 children need? First, a 2 child needs their core desire of service by helping out others without expectation of reciprocation or validation.
This could be helping out around the house, lending a hand at school, or taking care of loved ones.
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But the enneagram 2 child also needs to embrace both their wings. A type 2 child will feel ill at ease if they don’t spend time keeping their mind and space organized and achieving goals for their 3 wing.
And finally, an enneagram 2 child needs to embrace the healthy traits of their growth numbers.
Stepping into more creative expression (, embracing the enneagram 4,) and practicing healthy leadership (, taking on the enneagram 8,) is extremely important for the enneagram 2 child.
What An Enneagram 2 Child Struggles With
As a part of the shame triad, type 2 kids struggle with a lack of self and overgiving. They believe that they are only valued for their service and actions, not their thoughts and individuality.
When a type 2 feels that they aren’t wanted or accepted, they go into further selflessness to avoid being abandoned.
An Example Of This…
My dad is an enneagram 2. When he was young, he was taught from a young age that he was supposed to self sacrifice for his siblings.
When dinner would be served, he would make sure all his siblings got the parts of the meal they wanted and he would take the less favored parts.
This was praised as a child. His selflessness was seen as a good thing. But this lead to him repressing his needs as a kid and not speaking up when he needed help.
Enneagram 2 Child In Stress
Enneagram 2 children go one of two ways in stress…
- Option 1, they become aggressive and blunt. Stepping into the negative Enneagram 8 qualities. Instead of serving from a place of pure love, they help with the expectation to get approval in return. And when they don’t get that, the enneagram 2 becomes upset and represses their needs even more.
- Option 2, which is rarely talked about, is a 2 child in stress can become a martyr and play the victim, taking on the unhealthy aspects of the Enneagram 4!
Overall, the enneagram 2 child in stress believes that their only purpose is to serve people and they forgo their sense of self, repress their needs, and get burnt out.
It is good for type 2 kids to serve, since it’s their core desire. But this becomes expressed in a negative way when they go into their type 8 stress, they take on “selfish selflessness,” helping others in hopes that their selflessness will be reciprocated back at them
Signs Of A Stressed Enneagram 2…
- Over-giving to others
- Doing unimportant tasks to distract themselves
- Passive aggressive speech
- Ask them how they feel and they don’t know
- Silent treatment to “Chatty Cathy”
- Frequently asking others if you need their help
- Defensive of their thoughts and actions
- They don’t know what they want
- Repressing their feelings
- Playing the victim
- They feel like everyone else is selfish
- Hiding their personality
- Scolding friends/siblings as if they are the parent
A type 2 child goes into stress by having their childhood wound triggered. A situation happens (, or many situations) where their childhood belief of “I have to serve to be loved” is brought back to the surface and so they go into “selfless mode” to avoid being abandoned.
Enneagram 2 Child In Health
The word I like to use to summarize the enneagram 2 child in health is think. Although the type 2 child’s growth is the emotionally in tune type 4, a 2 in growth learns to not let their powerful empathic nature lead the way and see feelings through a rational lens.
A 2 in growth thinks about what they want, thinks about their opinion on things, and thinks in situations where they feel their empathy is being used. Instead of feeling conflicted over what they and everyone else are feeling, they embrace the type 4’s “it is what it is” mindset.
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Signs Of A Healthy Enneagram 2…
- Calm energy
- Learn to say “no”
- Taking care of their needs
- Speaking up for their needs
- Being creative
- Chasing their desire
- Being a friend not a parent
- In touch with what they feel
- Can express what they feel
- Embracing their quirkiness
The 2w1 child fulfills their core desire of service by doing work behind the scenes. They don’t care to be center stage, they want to serve and maintain perfection.
They take on the appearance of The Perfectionist in some aspects, meaning that they seem quieter, more organized, and disciplined. 2w1 kids care more about maintining order. They want their space to be orderly and are drawn toward spending more time by themselves.
If your child is a 2w1, it is vital that you are scheduling time for them to be alone, take care of themselves, spend time in nature, relax at home, and recharge. They prefer to work in solitude or with small groups.
Enneagram 2w3 Child
The 2w3 child fulfills their core desire of service by bringing big groups of people together and taking center stage. It is extremely important to the 2w3 child that they are seen as selfless and liked.
The 2w3 child is called “the host/hostess.” This is going to be the more extroverted wing and they take on the appearance of The Achiever in some aspects, meaning that they seem more social, chatty, and self-assured.
A 2 wing 3 child cares more about bringing people together, hosting parties, and taking on leadership roles in the community.
Nurturing An Enneagram 2 Child
So how can we nurture enneagram 2 children?
Growth for an enneagram 2 child isn’t just about becoming selfish. It’s about learning to find true individuality and live life aligned with that sense of self.
The core of a type 2 child’s growth means learning to see the world past the paradigm of “protect and serve,” and start seeing it through the lens of “live and inspire.” What do you want your life to feel like? What’s the big picture desire?
A healthy 2 child learns to recognize when they are feeling like an over-giver and say “okay, I recognize how I am serving right now because it makes me feel important. What is my creative desire? How can I express myself authentically?”
Help type 2 kids stay in touch with their creativity and realize that they don’t have to be just a helper. Ask your type 2 “are you giving to others to help them or so that they thank you?”
Parenting Checklist For The Enneagram 2 Child
- Let them help in healthy doses
- Make time for their desires
- Make them feel wanted not needed
- Help them express what they need
- Teach them to take care of their own needs
- Encourage creative expression
- Teach them to say “no” when necessary
- Set boundaries
- Help them build their self worth
- Remind them that they add value without having to help
They need to help others for their happiness. How can you give them a place to serve without needing any validation in return?
What tips or questions do you have about raising an enneagram 2 child? Comment below and let us know!
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- Enneagram 2w1 VS 2w3 Comparison: Which Wing Are You?