Examining Character Typologies : The Passive Feminine Type
Following on in our series on Character Types, (Last month’s focus was on the Hysterical Type), we will take a brief look at another type this month : the Passive Feminine. These 2 examples of character types differ from each other in many ways, and are structured on very different energy dynamics. You may want to review the previous articles in this series to re-acquaint yourself with the general understanding of how character types work (automatic and unconscious habitual perceptions, behaviours, and reactions), and how we approach them in treatment.
The Passive Feminine is a sub-type of the general area of blockages linked to the anal stage of development. The most predominant characteristics of the passive feminine are:
- Excessively polite and compliant
- Feelings of inferiority
However, these surface characteristics are a very strong cover-up for some deeper emotions of anger and hostility. When this outer shell is penetrated (either in therapy, or in other informal life situations), a deeply rooted outburst can emerge, which may include qualities of spitefulness, or contempt. With the passive feminine, however, these underlying emotions are usually very successfully buried, and it takes a tremendous amount of therapeutic force to penetrate to this hidden depth. These patients usually suffer from a degree of exhaustion, as their energy is used up to a large degree in the maintenance of this repression of emotion. It is instructive to read some of Dr. Reich’s published cases, and how intensive and lengthy the treatment would be in order to get to the breakthrough, and then beyond.
The general therapeutic goal in breaking through this strong character defense, is to find ways of provoking the patient enough that their hatred and rage becomes mobilized, and can begin to be discharged within the therapeutic context. Within the context of Medical Heilkünst, we are very fortunate to have both homeopathic and homotonic remedies at our disposal, which are able to get at, and begin to transform this energetic core, without needing to engage for weeks and months at a time in psychological battles with the patient’s defenses. The fact that Dr. Reich meticulously documented these battles in his case studies gives us a very precise map of this territory, and we are now able to traverse it at speeds that would never have been possible for him as he pioneered these methods.
What I see unfolding with patients on the basis of their treatment, is consistent with the map the Reich laid out, but which happens on a completely sped up time frame. One very valuable remedy in passive feminine cases is the Homotonic remedy Staphysagria. I recently treated a patient with this, and before their following visit, they experienced a period of extreme exhaustion – this was their healing reaction from the remedy, which means that a particular disease layer has been destroyed, and is a sign that the body is pushing the debris out to the surface, which is experienced as a temporary worsening of their condition. After this healing reaction cleared for the patient, they came back to their next session in a state of energy and joie de vivre which I had never seen in them. This is always the type of evidence I’m looking for to verify that a given remedy has hit its target, and the patient has been able to move to an increased level of health.
- The Bowen Technique and The Physiology of Freedom
- In Defence of Anger
Heya Chickie… loving these pieces. So clear and easily digestible… have sent them on to some clients & other practitioners in the area… Panama, sounds very interesting. Are you thinking of leaving Canada? Looking forward to your next piece of the installment… Much love, H
Are very much enjoying the newsletters. Have just finished a course on womens menstruality and learnt about the different emotional challenges we have in each of the weeks of the cycle. All part of not feeling ‘bad’ about the different spaces we find ourselves in throughout the month. Do you find that your patients respond in a different way depending on this. Also interesting to see the phase of the moon and its relation to this.
Yes, there are some very good resources available, along the lines of the course you just finished, which factor in to our clinic work. The clinical challenge for us is almost never a lack of “information”, but rather in appropriately assessing each individual case to the degree necessary to know which factors are playing the most significant role for that individual, and therefore which sequence of therapeutic approaches is going to help them restore their health in the shortest time frame possible.
In other words, each person’s case (even when it shares the same medical ‘label’ as other patients), needs to be handled on its own merits. This, as you appreciate, involves assessing health and disease in multiple dimensions and layers.
Thanks for the great contributions to the conversation!