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Do you want help being a better parent? The enneagram can help! Here are parenting tips for Enneagram 8 parents!
If you are a parent, it will come as no surprise to you to hear that parenting is tough. When you are a parent, you look for any information that can help you out.
The enneagram is one such information source that can be a great benefit to you as a parent!
The enneagram can help you understand yourself better so that you can be a better parent.
Do You Know Your Enneagram Type?
I don’t mean that you took a fun test one day and it gave you a number. Tests as fun as they can be, are not very accurate (enneagram tests are only up to 70% accurate).
You can take a test to help you whittle your options down but then I recommend taking your top 3-5 scores and digging into the core motivations to confirm your type.
You can also check out my post on how to find your type for more info.
Once you know your enneagram type, then we can start learning how the enneagram can help you parent your children better.
Do I Need To Know My Child’s Enneagram Type?
No! You do not need to know your child’s type. In fact, I’d almost say you shouldn’t.
While kids do have their enneagram type set from a very young age (by age 3) it does not mean that you can accurate guess they type.
In fact, you can’t accurately guess ANYBODY’s type! This is because a person’s enneagram type is not determined by their actions but rather their core motivation and you can’t see core motivation.
So save the typing of your kids until they are old enough to discover their own type. Instead, let’s just focus on the one area where you can succeed… yourself!
Tips for Enneagram 8 Parents
If you are a type 8 parent, you are probably concerned with being supportive and protecting those you love, being an authority in your child’s life. Courage, passion, self-confidence, and leadership are also important traits to you.
These are important traits to you and you are probably trying to instill them in your children. – All good things!
Your Parenting Style as a Type 8
Each enneagram type has their own parenting style which is built around their enneagram type and core motivation.
As a type 8 parent, your parenting style likely includes being a major mama/papa bear (nobody messes with your child), you can sometimes be a bit “my way or the highway”, and you likely want your child to be tough so that they won’t be vulnerable (whether that’s preemptively having them take self-defense classes or having them try something they are scared to do)
What You Might Project on Your Kids as a Type 8
Each enneagram type, comes with a wounding message. The wounding message is something we actually heard or simply perceived when we were young and we’ve never been able to escape it.
For a type 8 parent, your wounding message is “It’s not okay to be vulnerable”. You’ve had this (or a form of this) rattling around in your head since childhood and it’s now a driving force for all your actions.
Because of this, it’s all too easy for your wounding message to become projected on to your kids. As you are so caught up with not being vulnerable and looking out for yourself, it overflows to your children as you may feel like if they aren’t tough, you will be vulnerable.
This is an area you will want to be extra mindful of when raising your children. Be aware of when your wounding message is taking over and try arguing back with it; reminding yourself that it IS okay if you are vulnerable and if your CHILDREN are vulnerable. Being vulnerable does not make you weak or defenseless.
Stress Triggers to Be Aware of as a Type 8
Parenting is stressful for any type but each type have particular things that are more likely to be stress triggers.
Being aware of these stress triggers allows you to either preemptively avoid them or to give yourself (and your children) grace when they do occur knowing that you might need a little extra self care.
Stress triggers for a type 8 include: unintentionally wounding your kids, when your child ignores your guidelines, having to contain your passion and energy, when others try to control you, pushing past your limits, having to be vulnerable, and when your children lie or are dishonest with you.
Parenting Growth Work for a Type 8
As a type 8 parent, you’ll want to work on not always trying to win the argument or getting everyone to agree with your view of justice and allowing yourself to listen your your children and what they believe or need (learn to harness your line to type 2).
You will want to work on pausing and examining the root of your anger. 8s are very passionate and angry is an easily accessible feeling but often times the true reason needs a bit of uncovering.
Recognize that your snowplow method (which can definitely be helpful) might not work with more reserved kids. You’ll want to work on interacting with your kids in the ways that they need.
Try letting your kids make suggestions and decisions. You won’t be letting them control you or the situation but instead you’ll be giving them the opportunity to grow and be themselves.
Other great posts to check out to help you understand your type more:
Enneagram Core Motivations
Enneagram Centers of Intelligence
The 27 Subtypes (learn how your subtype changes the hue of your type)
The Enneagram and Parenting (for all nine types!)
Helpful Enneagram Parenting Books
Knowing Me, Knowing Them: Understanding Your Parenting Personality by Discovering the Enneagram
Knowing Your Parenting Personality