Beth is the most reluctant of the March sisters to see things “change.” She upholds her routine out of childhood into her illness, of playing her piano, of dressing and undressing her dolls, of lining them up, and taking care of her family. She is practical, and dedicated to “learning at home.” What she cares about most is having her family around her. Because she is not literary-inclined, she leaves writing in their newspaper to her sisters. When the others become preoccupied with their poverty in their mother’s absence, Beth maintains her habit of tending the neighboring poor family (contracting scarlet fever in the process). She becomes ill, because she spends most of her time tending the Hummel family in their illness, risking her life in the process. She is quiet about her feelings but unafraid to open up to Jo about them. Her emotions easily come to the surface… crying tears of happiness and sadness. She doesn’t like it when her sisters fight, and tries to comfort and console them, playing a mediator between Beth and Jo. When Mr. Laurence gives her a piano, Beth forces aside her extreme shyness to go and thank him in person. She is so overwhelmed, she hugs him rather than attempts to express herself. Beth always tries to be appropriate, and “proper.” She is prepared to face the truth Jo does not want to deal with, that her life is coming to an end. Her inferior Ne shows in how much she enjoys Jo’s stories of daring and adventure, even though she does not long for such a life for herself, and in her confession that unlike her sisters, she never had big dreams for her future. She is more sensible than Jo and recognizes that she is slowing down and her life is coming to an end.

Enneagram: 9w1 sp/so

Beth continues to live at home long after her sisters have grown and gone, because she’s content in her routines and with sameness. She does not like to put herself in a position where she feels uncomfortable (hating school and wanting to be home-schooled, finding it hard to approach the man next door and thank him for her piano, never pursuing a romance, etc). She lives in her routines and rituals. Any emotional upset in the house frightens and distresses her. She finds it hard to tolerate Jo and Amy’s estrangement. Only when they fall back into harmony is she happy again. Her 1 wing makes her want to do the right thing, but she doesn’t mediate or try and interfere with her sisters, simply accepting all of them for who they are.