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Sex and the Enneagram

A Guide to Passionate Relationships for the 9 Personality Types

Published by Inner Traditions Audio
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

About The Book

Understanding your approach to dating, relationships, and sex through the lens of your Enneagram personality type

• Explains the relationship and sexual differences in the 9 Enneagram personality types for both genders

• Examines how we can create greater intimacy with our partners and what blocks our sexual enjoyment

• Looks at each type’s fantasies and investigates how our behavior in relationships alters according to how emotionally integrated or disintegrated we are

• Explores the three types of love and their countertypes; each type’s Enneagram Passions and Virtues in relation to intimacy; how to engage with each type; and whether some types make better lovers

Sex can take us from the sacred sublime to the darkest aspects of humanity. It can carry us on the wings of pure pleasure, or crush and potentially destroy us. No act in the human experience, barring the essential survival needs of food and water, can have more of an effect on us.

In Sex and the Enneagram, Ann Gadd explores relationships and sex through the lens of the Enneagram, its nine personality types, and the subtypes of the wings and Instinctual Triads. The author introduces the Enneagram system and provides a full chapter devoted to each type. She examines each type’s approach to sex, their fantasies, and levels of integration in relation to love and sex, as well as each type’s approach to issues such as pornography, sexual problems, and dating sites and whether some types make better lovers. The author explains the Enneagram Passions and Virtues of each type in relation to sex, divorce, wing influences, and gender and explains how the 27 Sub or Instinctual types and the Hornevian Triads of the Enneagram system affect our sexuality. Most importantly, Gadd looks at how we can heal ourselves sexually so we can create more fulfilling, transforming intimacy for ourselves and our partners.

Through understanding ourselves and our partners sexually, with the help of the Enneagram, Gadd hopes to bring us to deeper levels of compassion and understanding for each other. Sex then can be an expression enhancing our love for each other, rather than simply a physical act. By understanding your own and your lover’s Enneagram type, intimate giving and receiving can be an empowering process to embody our love for ourselves and others.


Chapter 1. Enneagram Type One: The Sinning Saint

The perfectionistic, repetitive (enjoys the same sex position), conservative and controlled lover, who loosens up on vacation.

You may relate to a One even if it’s not your type: if you are a Two or Three (wings), or if you are a Seven or a Four (points of Release and Stretch).

Approach to sex: Earns sex by being a “good” boy or girl.

Sexual belief: “I’m a good partner as long as I’m doing sex the correct way.”

Sexual Frustration: “No matter how hard I try to be a better person; my partner does not appreciate me sufficiently.”

Brief overview

Ones attempt to earn sex by doing the right thing or what they believe is expected of a “good” man or woman. “I’ve worked hard to support the family/clean the house and so sex is my reward.” They feel that to be “good,” natural impulses need to be controlled. There is a right and a wrong way for everything in a One’s view. (Forget 50 shades of (Mr) Grey - with Ones it’s either black or white!)

Duty is seen to be the right way to act. Pleasure is irrelevant when you’re doing things correctly. As a result, they are the type most likely to become vexed and self-righteous about the “sins” of others and adopt a moral high-ground. Enjoyment is derived not from satisfying sex so much as from the feeling that you’ve performed in the correct and expected way. Sex then can easily slip into the role of being a duty, rather than a way to pleasure oneself. Withholding pleasure takes on a noble stance. “Duty before pleasure” becomes a motto.

Their views and values surrounding sex can be inflexible. “Come on, we’re on holiday,” you may say to your One partner, “let’s just try this once.” But, if they don’t believe it’s the right thing to do, you could meet with strong and perhaps even puritanical resistance.

Ones do like to think, though, that they can do everything correctly and if their belief is that conjugal obligations are part of the package, then they will try to do the job to the best of their abilities. “Was I good enough?” they may wonder privately. They can also be highly critical of others, so may not be afraid to tell you if they felt your performance was not up to scratch.

When you mistrust your own natural bodily desires, it can create inner turmoil and as such they can seek to control desire, rather than allow themselves to flow with it. Sex then can be something to be mistrusted, rather than sensuously embraced. There can even be an authoritarian zealousness when it comes to viewing sex, resulting in the creation of rules of engagement, such as how often and how to perform.

Ones tend to be even tempered (it’s bad to show anger), so it’s unlikely they’ll be passionately flinging a glass across the room at you one moment and melting into your arms for sizzling sex the next. Although at times the anger just can’t be held in and they can explode, only to feel mortified afterward. Being Paternal love types, their love can be experienced as lukewarm and distant, in many ways, the polar opposite of a demanding Erotic type Eight.

They tend to want to take control of sexual matters and may fail to see the partner’s viewpoint, as in the case of a couple who were both virgins and belonged to a strictly religious sect. He (the Type One) believed that as the “boss” of the home, sex should only happen when he wanted it to, irrespective of his new wife’s needs or desires. Inexperienced and inept at lovemaking (yet refusing to admit it) and adhering to the believe that sex was primarily for a man’s enjoyment, he refused to accept that he was doing anything wrong when he demanded his conjugal rights and saw no need for wasting time on foreplay. It’s tragic when with a better understanding of the art of making love, the couple could both have benefitted from a deeper more caring experience.

If Ones do fall in love, however, and can let go of their need to control and regulate sex, they can become intense and passionate lovers.

The arising of Type One

Ones, as they become emotionally disintegrated, start moving away from the universal truth that “All is One” into the division of the world into opposites, believing that to be loved one must be good (not bad) and do what is right (not what is wrong). They then take this judgment into the world believing that it is up to them to “correct” others’ or their own behaviour and getting angry and resentful toward others who won’t toe the line.

Integrated Ones in Love

Integrated Ones pride themselves on having high moral standards. They want to be fair and improve themselves--many Ones dream of being someone who changes the world. They are both wise and impartial--genuinely impeccable in all ways. They value self-discipline and taking the right path but have become more accepting that their way is not necessarily THE way and so can tolerate others’ viewpoints, even if it they don’t fall in line with their own beliefs. They become accepting of themselves and their partners; flaws and all.


In allowing themselves to have fantasies (many Ones would consider this an indulgence), Ones are likely to visit parts of their imagination that their daily lives would not condone. Forbidden trysts--your best friend’s partner, a church minister, a much younger person, same sex, anything we desire, but won’t allow ourselves. Unobtainability drives desire--forbidden fruit that wants to be eaten. It’s bad, yet so exquisitely delicious.

There you are dressed correctly in your neat navy pleated skirt and tailored jacket (perfectly ironed), hair neatly cut and styled in a sensible fashion. Controlled and controlling. Yet, women (and men) who are controlled in their lives find being out of control a real turn-on. Submissive sex fantasies provide the solution and release to all that pent-up resentment and rage.

About The Author

Ann Gadd is a writer, holistic practitioner, workshop facilitator, and journalist. An avid, long-term student of the Enneagram, she offers Enneagram workshops for beginners and advanced students. The author of several books, including The Girl Who Bites Her Nails, The A-Z of Common Habits, and Finding Your Feet, Ann lives in Cape Town, South Africa.

About The Reader

Product Details

  • Publisher: Inner Traditions Audio (August 27, 2019)
  • Runtime: 10 hours and 8 minutes
  • ISBN13: 9781644110997

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Raves and Reviews

Sex and the Enneagram is an approachable presentation of the complex ways each Enneagram type may express or repress emotional openness in intimate relationships, and how deep-rooted issues of vulnerability, fear of self disclosure or shame, and lack of trust can cloud and limit our sexual selfexpression. In a warm, instructive, yet non-judgmental style, Ann also provides suggestions and reflections on ways an individual type might become more sexually, and therefore more completely, present to another in intimate connections. However, since we hold the potentials of all nine types within us, a studied consideration of each chapter in this book can collectively lead to a more abundant understanding and acceptance of the full range of our sexual lives and, in the process, to the even greater understanding that to be authentically present with another person serves to remind us, as Don Riso wrote, that we are always in the presence of the Divine.”

– Brian L. Taylor, vice president of the Enneagram Institute

“Ann masterfully helps us hold the difficult aspects of this topic by gently guiding our own inquiry into what healthy sexuality really is. Sex and the Enneagram is a meaningful accompaniment to inner work. Culturally, this book makes conversations about true sexual freedom and intimacy accessible.”

– Monika Adelfang, certified teacher and authorized training and workshop provider at the Enneagram In

“Ann Gadd, a prolific writer, counselor, and artist, infuses her visionary brilliance into this much-needed book, Sex and the Enneagram, as she describes the sexual and erotic dynamics of relationships through the lens of the Enneagram. Witty and easy to read, Gadd’s must-have book for everyone interested in love is also filled with depth and rich wisdom for people at any level of familiarity with the Enneagram.”

– Linda Carroll, psychotherapist and author of Love Cycles: The Five Essential Stages of Lasting Love

“Ann’s courage to tackle sex and sexuality from an Enneagram perspective is courageous, and it pays off. I am personally grateful for her contribution to my understanding of myself and to the body of literature on the Enneagram.”

– Lucille Greeff, Enneagram teacher

“As the title suggests, this book explores each Enneagram style in its approach to sex and sexuality. Clearly a huge amount of research has gone into Ann’s subject. She covers a wide range of topics from angles that illuminate sex and sexuality for each personality style. I discovered some gems about myself in this book, and I am now exploring what is and what is not working for me. This is a book I’ll be gifting to friends who are open to learning more about themselves in a sometimes humorous, sometimes painful way, and I believe it will open up avenues for more meaningful and empowering conversations about sex and sexuality.”

– Cherise Nortje, organizational development consultant

“Using the wisdom of the Enneagram, Ann Gadd boldly and graphically takes us into the sacred spaces of our sexuality. Her book inspires me with new possibilities and brings interesting ideas, textures, and latitude to explore in my relationship with my long-term partner.”

– Colleen Anderson, clinical psychologist (MA)

“Ann Gadd’s Sex and the Enneagram is an exciting and bold contribution to the growing body of Enneagram literature that focuses on the practical, daily application of this powerful sensemaking personality framework. Ann’s insightful and challenging style encourages us to reflect deeply on our own sexuality and to notice how personality shapes our relationship with, and experience of, sex. This book will leave readers feeling delightfully laid bare and exposed by virtue of a veritable romp through the array of human fixations and behavioral patterns that lead us to engage with sex in such diverse ways. It comes at just the right time, as we continue to learn how to talk about sex and sexual identity in communities across the world. We recommend it to all readers who are ready to elevate their awareness of self, others, and society through the lens of sex and sexuality.”

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