Functional Order: Fi-Ne-Si-Te
Amelia is a warm, generous and forgiving friend to Becky, willing to open up her heart and home to her when she’s in need… but once she senses her husband pulling away from her in pursuit of Becky, she becomes self-pitying and self-absorbed. As Makepeace Thackery says, all of his characters are “striving after things not worth having,” In Dobbin’s case, that’s Amelia. She accepts his friendship and gifts but offers him little in return, ignoring his feelings while asserting her own – because she’s out of touch with the way he feels about her and selfish. She prioritizes how she feels over what is sensible most of the time – insisting on staying in a town about to be overrun with French troops (and in the depths of despair) because she won’t abandon her husband, rather than escaping with her brother; turning down her father-in-law’s desire to educate her son, because it would mean separation from him. Amelia continues in this pattern until Dobbin makes her realize she needs to move past her feelings for her dead husband, and embrace the life right in front of her – and the love he has to offer her. Amelia lives most of her life in her head, and in a dream. She is out of sync with the real world, and somewhat idealistic, prone to romanticism, and naïve. She can be naïve in assuming Becky means the worst, then flip completely around and accuse her of trying to seduce her husband. She can open herself up to Dobbin and then slam the door in his face. She’s caught in a torrent of changing her mind… but also, she’s romanticizing and focusing on the past, the trait of an unhealthy Ne/Si. She’s avoiding the real world, and a new relationship, by dwelling on a dead man and what they had together, remembering him subjectively and not for who he truly was – but she admits to Becky later on that she knew it was all a lie. She just could not face the truth, so she used her intuition to change it, and deny it. She has a tendency to want to believe the best of people, which allows Becky to prey on her… and also allows her to ignore, downplay and not notice warning signs in her fiancé’s behavior.
Enneagram: 4w5 sp/so
Amelia has the classic 4 problem of focusing on what she lacks, rather than what she has, and romanticizing it until it threatens to destroy all her potential happiness. She can be melodramatic and easily hurt, using her dead husband to define her in terms of having a “tragic” life. She also clings so hard to his memory that she neglects to see Dobbin’s love for her, or appreciate it – pushing him away in favor of a corpse. Only when she LOSES him and fears he may never come back does she realize she cares – and wants him. But even though they find “happiness” at the end, Amelia finds a way to inject misery into her current situation – saying that he no longer loves her, he loves their daughter more (which may or may not be true, but she has to turn her life into a tragedy). Her 5 wing contributes to her romanticizing and withdrawal from reality.