I Am Not Alone: Reflections on Being Different As an Enneagram Four

I have been watching videos about the Enneagram recently. One I watched, talked about the differences between a 5w4 (Enneagram type Five with a strong Four wing) and 4w5. One of the distinctions the YouTuber made was that Fours tend to take pride in their being different, while Fives try to hide their difference. That kind of hit a nerve with me.

I always saw myself as so uniquely different from others that it’s almost impossible to be true. Not just in the “You are unique, just like everybody else” type of sense. In fact, I always thought that I belonged to just a little too many minority groups to be real. I thought that there must not be anyone else in the entire world who could relate to my combination of minority statuses.

At the time, I was about fourteen and just identified as blind and possibly queer. Well, I know quite a lot of blind people who are part of the LGBTQ+ community now.

Then came being autistic, having dissociative identity disorder, my childfree status, etc. My fourteen-year-old self would certainly have believed no-one in the entire world would belong to all of these groups. Well, quite truthfully, I’ve met several people who belong to most if not all of these minority groups. That’s the great thing about the Internet.

About ten years ago, I read something on Tumblr that should’ve struck a chord with me, but didn’t. I read that, if you are white, but belong to a hundred minority groups, you are still white. Of course, the point was to prove that white privilege isn’t negated by other minority statuses. I at the time started writing a list of ways in which I was privileged, but didn’t realize these are also ways in which I am part of the majority. Ways in which I belong to the human mainstream.

Instead, I still focused my attention, aside from that one blog post and acknowledging when I’d reacted out of privilege in safe spaces, on ways in which I’m different from the mainstream. And still I somehow couldn’t believe there were people who genuinely belonged to at least as many minority groups as I did. I still somehow saw myself as the most special person in the world.

Isn’t that a bit grandiose, narcissistic even? In fact, feeling that only a select group of “special” people will understand me, is the only legitimate narcissistic personality disorder trait I have.

The truth is, everyone is special and everyone is unique and everyone has some parts of themselves that ar ordinary at the same time. At the core, no-one is fundamentally different from everyone else. And isn’t that a wonderful thing to realize? After all, it means that, at the core, we all have something in common which connects us to each other. That of course doesn’t mean I need to associate with all seven (eight?) billion people in the world. It just means that there will always be someone out there who can relate to me. Just like there is no-one exactly like me (God created us all individually for a reason, after all), I am not radically different from anyone else (we were all created equal, after all).

9 thoughts on “I Am Not Alone: Reflections on Being Different As an Enneagram Four

  1. Astrid, thanks for writing your reflections. I really resonated with your post, and you said it perfectly. We are all special and unique. I agree 100 percent. And there will always be people who will relate to us, and to our circumstances and that is a wonderful thing indeed!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks so much for commenting! I am so glad my post made sense to you. You know, you are one of the people who showed me with your very existence that it is possible to find like-minded individuals even when we have many things that set us apart from the crowd.

      Liked by 2 people

        1. No, not that long. We might’ve been on the Amongst_Ourselves list together for a while in 2005 or 2006. That’s the first DID list I joined. Other than that, I think early 2010, when I started coming out about my alters to my then therapist. I did know another DID’er since 2003, she in fact educated me about DID when I was still largely unaware. But I don’t think you don’t know her as she has pretty much moved on from the DID community many years ago.

          Liked by 1 person

            1. I don’t know whether she even had a system name. I don’t think she did in fact, since back in the day it wasn’t a thing yet. And as for her real name, I’m not sure I should be disclosing it on my blog. In fact, maybe I shouldn’t even have mentioned her at all, since even though no-one of my readers would likely know her from just my previous comment, if she reads my blog she might feel I invaded her privacy.

              Liked by 1 person

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