For a person with Saturn retrograde in the natal chart, intimacy fears are enormous. They may have an easy time connecting with others (depending on other factors in their chart) and could be very friendly and seemingly outgoing, but if you take a closer look you will soon realize that the Saturn retrograde person gets along fabulously with strangers or ‘new’ friends but tends to shut off - castrate - those who grow to love him or her or anyone who gets close enough to notice the fine cracks in the façade the native presents to others. There is a very tender and vulnerable emotional infant lurking within the Saturn retrograde native…this may be a very small aspect of the soul, or it could be a huge part of the personality, but beneath the strongly contained ego that appears to have it all together, there is a child wanting to be loved for who he or she is… an infant wanting to be nurtured and cherished and most of all, understood and appreciated. The fear of not being good enough, not being what is expected, of being weak and vulnerable to others or worse, superseded or totally unneeded by anyone, drives the Soul with Saturn retrograde deeper and deeper into a cocoon of their own making…an isolated and lonely place to be, a stranger in the shadows watching others and wondering why he (or she) feels so horribly alone.
The Saturn retrograde individual is like a sponge that absorbs all of the energy around him (her) and intuitively knows what is going on and how to protect the self within that atmosphere…he may also take on the beliefs or thought patterns of others, especially in youth, without even being aware that these beliefs aren’t really his own but were absorbed from the family or society/culture he was raised in. There is a (karmic) distortion in the personality that allows the external world to permeate the Soul, rendering the Saturn retrograde native’s early attempts at constructing boundaries ineffective. As the ego develops, it learns to construct higher and thicker emotional walls, extremely defensive barriers, and a reserve with others that says, “Do NOT approach.” Of course those superficially involved with the native may not sense or feel any of this because the fears aren’t activated until the Saturn retro individual grows closer or more involved with a person. Let him (or her) fall in Love and Bam…the fear floods in and the walls come up. The worries that the loved one will not love the ‘true’ self can be so strong that they distance themselves or sever the relationship in order to protect the loved one…and the Self.
Ironically, if they would move toward the lover, open to the lover, and find a way to let down the barriers, they would learn that their vulnerability is endearing and that by showing the real self, they could truly be loved for who they are, warts, wounds, and all. Yet once they finally do begin to open to another, the intensity of the awakening can be such that they must withdraw and protect themselves at all cost…this is especially true upon their first initiation into a karmic love relationship. This withdrawal and denial of love is heartbreaking for both partners involved…while the Saturn retro native’s lover may suffer and feel bereft when the love is withdrawn, it may help the lover to realize that the pain is even greater for the Saturn retro individual. Why? Because their inability to cope with intimacy pushes them into isolation and their despair and loneliness cannot be easily assuaged. If the lover doesn’t also have the Saturn retro, he or she will be able to move on and see the relationship as a major learning experience…the Saturn retro native may learn a lot about him or herself as well, but the misery that will accompany this learning could last for several years as they slowly come to realize that it was their own inability to love that has created the schism and pushed love away. Those with Saturn energy moving forward in the chart have Saturn (more or less, depending on the rest of the chart) at his best…he is happily creating structure and building up necessary strengths within the personality to shine out into the world. Those with Saturn energy turned inward (retrograde) are building structures within the Self to hide that light…they do not feel safe enough within the world to truly share of the Self…they swallow their ‘children’ (their creations) and keep them in the dark. To many Saturn retro natives, to share of the Self is to risk rejection…and to lose personal power or authority. Saturn, at his worst, is a greedy, fearful, selfish little boy who hogs all the cookies and won’t share…he wants to use the cookies as a bargaining tool and thus keep all the others (the outside threats) in their place. If they do what the Saturn retro native desires, then he might - just might - offer a cookie as a reward. The Saturn retro individual may be very aware of this aspect of the self and yet be unwilling or unable to admit that the child inside needs to grow up and enter the adult world…the only way to grow up, however, to truly develop the Self and to learn about one’s true needs and desires, is through relating.
Learn a great deal more about the Saturn Retrograde and how it affects relationships in my new book, Dangerous Love, Sacred Love, with a chapter devoted to Saturn retrogrades
We all have our share of intimacy fears that develop during our childhood and difficult early relationship experiences, but for most of us, our desire to be with another - to open our Self and share our inner being with someone - is much stronger than our fears. Because our inherent drive to be with someone is so powerful, we put ourselves out there and hope for the best. Through connecting with and interacting with others romantically, we get to know ourselves and learn about our own needs and desires when it comes to relating.
Dear Dena,thank you so much for your articles. I am absolutely amazed after reading about natives with saturn in retrogade in their natal birth chart. Yes, I am one of these people and when I was reading the article I totally recognised my own life story.I never managed to have a good relationship with my dad and yes, I was locked in a difficult marriage and I met
my soulmate while I was married and he stood by me for 2 and half years waiting
for me to realise that the life I had at that time was nothing but built on
other people expectations and cultural adequacy. My soulmate, my husband makes me feel like a person who actually is worth something and I never knew I could achieve a lot in my life. I guess I was very lucky to get the gift of my soulmate who had turn my life completely around.Thank you so much for your fantastic and accurate work.
Many regards Zdena
I've been a follower of astrology for a long time and I have a few trusted on-line sources. The recent Saturn retrograde caused me to investigate further and that is when I came upon your website. It's impressive to say the least. I really appreciate how much information you have posted at no cost and the depth
of your writings. You seem to have a true gift for astrology....and communication.
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The relationship with the Father has often played a crucial role in the formation of the strong outer ego shell and the soft, gooey baby that hides inside. The Saturn retro native may have not had a strong father figure in his or her life…the Father may have been absent (in physicality, mentally, or emotionally) and the retro native had to assume a strong protective role in the family…in essence, the Saturn retro individual may have had to father the self or others (siblings or even Mother). The longing for Father may have been made stronger simply because he was not available…or the child may have felt it was his or her fault that Father was not around. In some cases, the child may have blamed the Mother for the absent Father; if so, then trouble with both parents may have left the child not only fulfilling the role of Father but Mother too! The Saturn retro individual likely presented as very mature to outsiders in their teen and early adult years, which only led to more responsibility being heaped upon the seemingly strong shoulders. There wasn’t much room for emotional development…no time for crying and whining, no time to waste on being a child. The praise for being such a strong boy (or girl) reaffirmed the native’s path as an authority figure to others, one who could stand the heat and take charge when needed. Inside, however, inside the child cried out for attention and the Saturn retro individual told it to shut up and get on with life. But the child remains inside, locked up…swallowed by the Saturn retrograde defensive energy and longing to be free, to be loved, to really grow and express the self. Coming face to face with a person who can penetrate the defenses could throw the native into a whole new world, one where the navigation equipment is broken and the ego structure begins to crumble in the light of real love. It isn’t unusual to find a Saturn retro native who married very young only to find that their partner is not truly compatible or fulfilling for their Soul. They married because it was the socially acceptable thing to do, especially if they were having sex with the partner or if the lover expected that they would marry. This is another example of the Saturn retro individual being permeated and influenced by external sources. Eventually the individual will come face to face with a karmic lover or someone who really ‘gets’ them…who understands and accepts their vulnerability and true inner being…and this can happen whether they are married or not. Imagine the intensity of the meeting and the Soul longing of the Saturn retro individual when he (she) faces the one who could be the love of a lifetime only to find that he/she is shackled in a difficult marriage and yet, to do what society expects, he/she must remain with the spouse. To deny the lover and remain with the spouse, no matter how unsuitable, is another expression of how the Saturn retro energy turns inward and destroys (or prevents) the Soul from growing and evolving. By refusing to enter into a passionate love relationship that has the power to penetrate all the ego-defenses, the Saturn retro native denies his/her own Soul’s needs.
To overcome the burdens of the Saturn retrograde in the natal chart means to enter into the inferno…to let the Self feel, to let another person in, to surrender. Let the child be born and make peace with him…let the world crumble. Once the façade has been shattered, the Saturn retro native will realize that what was once feared is truly the path forward into the light…they will no longer desire to build inner defenses, they will instead work to turn the creative power held so tightly within out into the world…to shine the internal light and not hide it. The flames of passionate love may be the only power strong enough to crack the Saturn retro façade…but if they are unaware of this heavy energy working in their lives, they may run from Love when it is upon them…they may continue to shut the child in the closet and to build a personality that will keep others out. Becoming more aware, especially of their childhood difficulties and either their idolization of the Father or their anger toward the parents in general and how it is still affecting their life, is perhaps the most important way to open themselves to others. Surrendering the defenses allows the Saturn retrograde individual to become a shining light of true authority instead of denying life, instead of denying their power to create, to form, and to shape their own world…