Nina has become so fixated on becoming the Black Swan, she’s unable to sense reality and separate it from her fantasies – she trusts her hunches (even when they are driven by paranoia and neurotic behaviors) and acts on them, unable to let go of what she envisions for herself. She has to work and train harder than the other girls, to achieve similar levels of perfection and success. Nina has abstracted her idea of perfection into an unrealistic ideal she can never attain and is unable to pull back and see the reality; instead, she chases the dream. Though she is drawn to sexual expression and desire, she pulls away from it and shames herself for it, unable to find a balance between her abstract ideals and inferior Se desires. The more she is pushed to the edge, the more imbalanced, reckless, and reactive she becomes – until she finds the strength to dance her routine even though she is bleeding to death. She is careful with her feelings and tries to be appropriate to every situation, but is so people-pleasing that she finds it hard to break away from her controlling mother. She fears what others may say about her or how they will judge her lack of experience. She is desperate to make others like her and continues to perform ballet, out of a need to make her mother happy and fulfill her wishes, long after it has ceased giving her joy. She needs external affirmation. Nina is prone to believing her own insights and hunches, over-analyzing herself (and condemning even her tiniest mistakes).

Enneagram: 9w1 sp/sx

Nina is highly influenced and controlled by her mother, who browbeats her into submission, cows her into nonresistance, and forces her to act like a child—she has never asserted herself in any way, shape, or form, living in a child’s bedroom, submitting to her mother scrubbing her in the bath, and longing for adulthood. She is passive and lost in her imagination, often dreaming more than facing reality, and being intimidated by others who are more competitive than she is. Nina also needs to her need to control herself and her life, to pull away from “bad” things (deprive herself of physical pleasures and punish herself with hard work), and to perform without flaw. She is ruthless in critiquing herself, ashamed of all her mistakes, believes herself highly flawed, and tries to make everything she does “right.” As she unravels, she becomes more and more emotional and unhinged, paranoid, and neurotic.