Living With a Sulphur

What’s it like to live with a Sulphur constitutional type? It’s certainly a question that comes up either directly or indirectly from patients all the time. The sulphur constitutional type (1 of 6 personality types which can be balanced by their corresponding homeopathic remedy) becomes the focus of so much attention due to the fact that they are the most radial of all the constitutional types. I use the term ‘radial’ in polar opposition to the term ‘spherical’, which is the polarity that all constitutional types are organized within. A radial force is one which pushes outward, as in the “better out than in” direction of cure we talk about with healing reactions. The spherical force is the opposite, and one which creates more of a space of containment or reserve. Every physiological process in our body is a meeting of these two forces.

Whether in the classroom, the family, or the workplace, the radial force of the sulphur constitution is very difficult not to notice. A sulphur lives directly in the “here and now”, which usually makes them very charming, or occasionally annoying to those around. A healthy sulphur is full of life, and are usually always in motion. The parents of sulphur children are usually asking for my help for developing coping strategies, and an unhealthy parent with a weak ego structure is easily buried by their vivacious child. For sulphur children, it is imperative that the parent constantly and consistently enforces appropriate boundaries around the sulphur’s world, in line with their age and stage of development. The radial force of the sulphur drives them to constantly seek out and touch all 4 corners of the world, and beyond, and will be constantly testing their parents and their limits. Slacking off on the boundaries is a grave error for the parent of a sulphur child to make.

While we’ve seen all sorts of conflicts and health challenges arise in children of every constitutional type as they engage with the “mass education” system, it is often the sulphur children that are the biggest cogs in the wheel of the system. These days, the proposed solution is usually an ADHD drug, or something similar, however this does not address the real disconnect between the needs of the student as a unique individual and the standardized curriculum. The sulphur child just happens to be the “canary in the coal mine” in this particular battle. All children have the same inner plea as do sulphurs, which is to be treated as an individual, and allowed to pursue their own interests. The sulphur child is just much more vocal about it, and the least willing to conform to external expectations.

In marriages, we have observed that each of the 6 constitutions naturally pair up in a pattern that repeats a majority of the time. Each constitutional pair is a set of a matching ‘radial’ and ‘spherical’ personality types which provide an excellent mutual point of balance. The radial sulphur constitution most frequently marries the spherical calcarea type, who are usually best suited for containing and organizing their energy and charge into more productive avenues. In return, the sulphur keeps calcarea away from their tendency towards inertia. Being a calcarea type myself, and married to a sulphur, I know this dynamic quite intimately!

As is true for every constitutional type, the knowledge that your spouse or child is a sulphur is extremely useful for understanding how to participate the relationship in a healthy way, rather than in a more reactive way to behaviours that otherwise don’t make sense.

As I mentioned, sulphurs live life in the moment, which means they live in their own sense of time rather than clock or schedule time. I used to be very frustrated by a friend of mine, before I learned about the homeopathic constitutions, and realized that he is a sulphur. Until then, I had always been so frustrated that he would always turn up late when we were meeting, as he was running on the inner time of his own world and experience. I learned that I needed to structure social meetings so that the meeting place was somewhere that I would have something to do while I waited for him to arrive.

Also, it may be good news for you to know that the healthier that a sulphur becomes through the process of Heilkunst treatment, the less “edgy” and difficult they become to deal with. Every constitutional type is actually quite a joy in a state of health, and there are no “good” or “bad” constitutions. A truer understanding of the essence of each type goes a long way in understand our self and others, and how to interact most harmoniously.

11 thoughts on “Living With a Sulphur

  1. Tess

    That’s so interesting that certain constitutions meld well romantic coupling. How do the other 4 tend to pair up? Also what is the general dynamic in a couple of 2 same constitutions? Can it make for ‘too much’ of the characteristic constitution qualities or they are easily able to understand and relate to each other due to the similarities? Sorry lots of questions-I’m fascinated by this topic! Am loving reading and learning from your blog posts everyday by the way. 🙂

  2. jkorentayer Post author

    HI Tess,

    Keep in mind that the larger principle here is of “resonance”, and the matching of constitutions is a resonance through typology, although a resonance through the individuality can override typological factors.

    Do you know all 6 of the genotypes? In your imagination, how would you pair them up?

    2 of the same constitution can be…. interesting! I rarely see it, as a matter of fact. Depending on the type, it can either produce too much conflict, or too much peace, neither of which is desirable.

  3. Tess

    I do know the genotypes. I can imagine that the more ‘outgoing’ types would do well with the more intellectual/self-contained constitutions, like maybe phosphorous and silicea, and pulsatilla and lycopodium. . . I think that it’s really common to see couples with one partner more ‘out there’ and the other more reserved.

    Yes-I guess there are many reasons why people are drawn to relationships with each other- I can see karmic connections for example could be the foundation of attraction above typology in some cases.

  4. jkorentayer Post author

    Exactly! Silicea with Phosphorous or “Spirit” with “Soul”, and Lycopodium with Pulsatilla or “Rational mind” with “Emotional mind”.

    Since you bring up ‘attraction’, I’ll probably shortly write about the difference between attraction and resonance.

  5. emma

    your article was really interesting! my homeopath diagnosed me as a sulphur and have read another article that said female sulphur types were very rare, i was wondering, how rare are they? kind regards, emma

  6. jkorentayer Post author

    HI Emma,

    Actually, female sulphurs are not rare at all – about half of sulphurs are female, and the other half are male.

    This is one of many misconceptions in traditional homeopathy, partly due to the bias of 19th century textbooks. Unfortunately, most 21st century homeopaths haven’t caught up with the times.

    There are exactly 6 healthy constitutional types, as you can read in the other blogs posts on this site, and all of them are about half and half of each gender.

  7. dr ejaz hashmi

    hi sir
    your article is interesting. as a Homeo physician, really curious about the basic theme and founding thought of your thesis. so if u u can tell me what is the basic theme, it would b lot easier to grasp your whole idea.

  8. jkorentayer Post author

    Hello Dr. Hashmi – Could you clarify for me exactly where you find the topic of this blog post to be unclear to you? I’m not sure exactly what you are asking of me.

  9. Laura

    I’m wondering can your genotype change or are you born with just one for life? If so, is there a continuum for each type? I’ve found after 11 years of marriage to whom I think may be a sulphur, my more outgoing, risk taking, adventurous side has mellowed considerably into a more sensible, flat, kind of lifeless existence which I feel I’ve subconsciously done to balance out my larger than life other marital half. I would normally relate myself to an extraverted introvert. I do have to choose wisely where to expend my energy, but feel I’ve unwittingly smothered my more outgoing tendencies to create balance. I’m hoping to better understand these dynamics in the hope of bringing my more spirited side back to life. Does that make sense at all?

  10. reception

    Hi Laura,

    The following reply was provided by practitioner, Jeff Korentayer:

    “We give both answers to your question : 1) A person is a constitution for life and 2) A person has a mix of all six genotypes as the full expression of being human. What you point out here also plays into the dynamic – that is, we counter-balance our spouse, and may express more or less extreme versions of what our natural tendency may be. The most important aspect to remember is that the genotype is an expression of who we are in health, where the main focus in Heilkunst is on identifying and removing states of disease, which does a lot more for the overall state of health.”


    – Diane Nowlan, Office Manager

  11. Louisa

    Thank you. I’ve enjoyed reading through this and will keep an eye out for future postings. Not sure I know the genotypes, but my family homeopath says I’m phosphorus through and through and that my husband is most def a tuberculinum. As are two of our children …were on quite a journey together! Blessings ?

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