Dear Neptune, You Are Not Allowed to Share My Guilt

“Everything on this planet is not your fault. My actions, what I do, it’s not your fault. I own them. They belong to me. You are not allowed to feel my guilt.

The Neptunian personality type is characterized by their deep empathy and a tendency to absorb the emotional pain of others, often without discerning whether it’s appropriate for them to do so. This personality trait is closely linked to the concept of guilt, which has its origins in the term ‘to pay,’ as documented in the Oxford English dictionary. In essence, this guilt stems from a feeling of obligation, as if the Neptunian is compelled to shoulder the emotional burdens of those around them. This inclination to absorb and internalize the pain of others shines a light on the darker aspects of the Pisces zodiac sign, Neptune (the ruling planet of Pisces), and the 12th house in astrology. While compassion and empathy are admirable qualities, for the Neptunian, these traits can become a double-edged sword.

One of the significant challenges faced by Neptunians is their tendency to blur the boundaries between themselves and others. They form deep emotional connections with people, often without clear distinctions, which can lead to emotional fusion. This emotional fusion can be detrimental at times, as it can result in a loss of one’s own identity and a constant struggle to differentiate their emotions from those of others. The Neptunian’s empathetic nature and their willingness to absorb the pain of others can lead to a heavy emotional burden. Over time, this burden may become overwhelming, causing emotional exhaustion and a sense of being drained. They may also find themselves in situations where they are taken advantage of or manipulated by others who recognize their vulnerability. To navigate life successfully, Neptunians must learn to establish healthy boundaries and differentiate between their own emotions and the emotions of others. While their capacity for compassion is a valuable gift, they must also prioritize self-care and self-preservation. By striking a balance between their empathetic nature and self-protection, Neptunians can harness their unique abilities for the greater good while safeguarding their own emotional well-being.

The complex interplay of feelings and responsibilities within a situation can become quite murky, especially for individuals influenced by the energy of Neptune in their astrological makeup. These Neptunian individuals often carry a deep-seated belief that they are responsible for the emotions and well-being of those around them, even when it may not be rational or realistic to do so. One striking trait of Neptune individuals is their ability to subtly manipulate emotions, often making others feel responsible for their sadness or difficulties. This can manifest as a form of emotional manipulation, where they draw on the empathy and guilt of others to maintain a sense of victimhood. It’s as if they possess a knack for making others feel accountable for their emotional state, even when the source of the problem lies within themselves.

Self-pity is a particularly potent and challenging Neptunian characteristic. Individuals influenced by Neptune may frequently engage in self-pity, dwelling on their own suffering and hardships to an extent that can be emotionally exhausting for both themselves and those around them. This intense self-focus can make it difficult for them to break free from negative thought patterns and find constructive solutions to their problems. Guilt is another heavy burden that many Neptune individuals carry. As mentioned earlier, the concept of guilt being rooted in the idea of ‘to pay’ means that they may feel obligated to pay emotionally for the suffering of others. This sense of guilt can be all-encompassing and may lead to a constant cycle of self-blame and self-sacrifice.

Martyrdom is yet another facet of the Neptunian personality. Some Neptune individuals are prone to adopting the role of the martyr, willingly sacrificing their own needs, desires, and happiness for the sake of others. While selflessness is an admirable quality, taking it to extremes can lead to a sense of martyrdom that is not healthy for the individual or those around them. Interestingly, some Neptune individuals possess the ability to transform this victim mentality and self-pity into an art form. They may use their vulnerability and emotional sensitivity to create a kind of magnetic charisma that draws people towards them. While this can be an effective way of eliciting support and empathy, it can also become a pattern of dependency and manipulation if not managed consciously.

If you identify as a Neptunian and find yourself consistently absorbing and internalizing other people’s suffering, or if you have a tendency to feel responsible for someone else’s emotions and actions, it’s crucial to heed the following advice. While your empathy and the desire to help others may come from a place of genuine care and concern, it’s important to recognize that this behavior can be detrimental to your own well-being. Feeling as though you could have done more for someone and assuming responsibility for their feelings and actions can lead to a heavy burden of guilt and self-blame. This burden can weigh you down and ultimately hinder your ability to lead a healthy and balanced life. To find greater peace in your soul and break free from the cycle of guilt and self-loss, it’s essential to work on building a stronger sense of self.

Understand that each person is a unique individual with their own agency. People make their own choices and respond to situations in ways that are influenced by their own experiences, beliefs, and values. You cannot control or be responsible for how others choose to react or feel. Establish clear boundaries between yourself and others. While empathy is a valuable trait, it’s important to protect your own emotional health. Learning to distinguish between your emotions and those of others is essential for maintaining a sense of self. Extend the same kindness and compassion to yourself that you offer to others. Acknowledge that you are not perfect and that it’s okay to prioritize your own needs and happiness. Understand that you cannot always prevent or fix the suffering of others. Perfectionism and unrealistic expectations of yourself can contribute to feelings of guilt. Embrace the idea that it’s okay not to have all the answers or solutions.

By internalizing these principles and keeping them close at hand, you can gradually release the weight of excessive guilt and regain a stronger sense of self. Remember that taking care of your own emotional well-being allows you to be more effective in supporting and helping others in a healthier and more sustainable way.

In a world where there is no separation between self and not self, one is naturally a compassionate being for there are no boundaries to prevent us from empathizing with the suffering of others. We don’t have to put ourselves in another’s shoes for we are already wearing them…It is through our Neptune placement and aspects that we identify with the victim, and through doing so we either become a victim ourselves or are propelled into pursuing the role of savior. Here we feel sorry for others, here we feel pity. We may think that we are merely being sensitive and compassionate but, in truth, our pity is as much for ourselves as for the object of concern. The Contemporary Astrologer’s Handbook