The Fallen

While all of the other styles are easy to find in lists of archetypes, the Fallen is strangely absent. You can find the Victim in such lists, but the Fallen, though they can become so, aren’t really victims. Fear and sorrow dominate this style. Many women and men who lose a romantic partner they adored may find it difficult to shake these emotions. More often, than people stuck in the other styles, the Fallen are inconsolable and may need a long time to come to terms with death.

At the bottom of the sorrow, fear arises. “I will never find another partner I can love.” “I will go through this every time someone I love dies.” “I will never feel normal again.” The quadrant of the Fallen lies close to the unconscious—the death wish, the devil. It can feel like hell, or at least purgatory, a bottomless pit. Not surprisingly, the dying may also be among the Fallen, especially when the fear of death is strong. Dying people who are stuck in this style may stop taking care of themselves, refuse to eat or drink, and turn away from the world too soon.

Despair can immobilize, but tears can also wash away the pain. We can rise again. Take time to cry. For some of us, it’s hard to cry alone. Crying is easier in the company of a trusted friend. Call one. If you can’t talk, write. If you can’t write, draw or paint. If you can’t draw, put on a sad song like “Shattered” by Linda Ronstadt or “Everybody Hurts,” by REM and wail. People all over the world wail and moan when they are bereaved. Don’t let the fear of being weak or embarrassed get in your way. Go full out. Sadness is one of those emotions in which the best way out is through it.

Actions, even small ones, can help us get moving. Get out of bed; get dressed; brush your teeth; comb your hair; wash your face. Marty Tousley suggests that you resist the urge to be alone. Call someone who cares. Do something you’d ordinarily enjoy. Try to get out and don’t feel guilty about it. Mourning takes time, but you don’t have to be depressed every moment of every day. It’s okay to seek relief. Ask a friend to meet you for a walk or a movie. Eat regularly, especially foods with loads of anti-oxidants, like fruits and vegetables, especially berries and food that are grounding like sweet potatoes, yams, squashes, and warm soups Join a support group. Join a support group.

Finally, try doing some small thing for someone else. Find a gift for someone who’s been there for you. Walk your dog; feed your plants. Volunteer at a soup kitchen. Taking care of someone or something else can pull you out of the darkest places. Most importantly, don’t be too hard on yourself for feeling however you feel.

Sorrow is a normal and necessary part of the process of dying and grieving. Sadness can be a source of creativity and expressiveness. Think about how many famous authors and painters suffered from depression. Use the Fallen’s closeness to the unconscious to feed the Phoenix in you as you rise from the ashes. Sorrow can make us more empathic, help us to appreciate the living all the more, and give our bodies time to heal from the shock of a great loss.

Some of the suggestions under “The Wise One” may be helpful here too. The Wise One and The Fallen can become immobilized. Remembering and surrounding yourself with things you love, especially sensory experiences, like the scent of flowers or the sound of children, can help lift the fog.