Welcome to the Chinese zodiac for kids and parents!
About the Sheep Child
The Sheep child is a bit of an Eeyore — prone to a pessimistic view of life and an expectation that the worst outcome will be realized. Dispelling her dark moods and demystifying her teeming fears may feel like a full-time job, but playing the Sheep’s hero is well worth the patient effort. The gentle Sheep child is a pleasure to love, protect, and coddle shamelessly. An aesthete from birth, she will be greatly affected by art, music, poetry, and the senses. Profoundly touched by beauty in all forms, she is equally moved by life’s ugliness and vicissitudes; her personality is thus characterized by great sensitivity, compassion, creativity, and generosity of perspective.
Exceedingly dependent on caregivers to provide a sense of acceptance and security, the Sheep child loves being catered to by others and often forges relationships in which she assumes a submissive role. She will attract powerful schoolyard allies in youth — there is something ineffably sweet and vulnerable about the Sheep that makes people want to shelter and protect her. In adulthood, this same quality secures powerful patrons for the artistically inclined Sheep, and she possesses a lucky knack for attracting and retaining what she wants and needs without obvious effort on her part.
The opinions of friends and family members matter greatly to the Sheep, and she will be painfully sensitive to being teased, criticized, or embarrassed. In fact, when a Sheep child experiences ridicule or rejection of some type, she may retreat into an imaginal realm of her own devising to escape feelings of hurt and bewilderment. This child requires an abundance of patient solicitude and TLC to weather the emotional experiences of growing up. The comforts of home, family, and food are essentials of security and identity.
The Sheep possesses many artistic gifts and leanings that should be fostered — your encouragement of her many creative talents will unlock her infinite potential and provide her with the key to discovering self-esteem and a bright inner flame of determination.
Extremely clannish by nature, the Sheep would do anything within her power for her family members and friends. There is no more kind, caring, or generous a soul in the zodiac than the Sheep, when she is motivated to lend aid to a loved one. Due to their hypersensitive appreciation for beauty in all forms, many Sheep excel in creative fields.
Sheep of both genders have a natural mothering quality about them that imbues their relationships with excessive, occasionally smothering, emotional coloration. As much as they enjoy being babied and adored, they in turn smother their loved ones with gentle nurturance.
The Sheep seeks out and requires stronger-willed and protective people in her life — the ultra-confident and gregarious Horse, Pig, and Tiger fit the hero bill aptly. The similarly expressive and artistically inclined Rabbit will also make a calm confidante for your Sheep child. The Sheep will experience little affinity with the Rat, who will find the Sheep’s frivolous self-indulgence irritating. The Dog, while himself an agent of goodwill in the world, will easily tire of the Sheep’s constant indecisive perch atop the fence. The Sheep will discover little common ground with the overly disciplined Ox.
While perfectly intelligent and possessing vast storehouses of creativity, the Sheep child has difficulty learning or performing under pressure. If her learning environment is overly competitive or expectations placed on her too lofty, your Sheep child will react with crippling sensitivity. Should she fail or have her efforts met with criticism or ridicule, her tendency will be to completely unplug or escape from the situation. Watch for these signs and help provide a calming, restorative balm for her strained nerves — these children may resort to inventing hard-to-pin-down ailments or spinning up elaborate untruths in order to avoid dealing squarely with school problems.
Parenting the Sheep Child
The great balancing act: Maintaining emotional equilibrium in the life of your little Sheep is of paramount importance. She will naturally seek balance in her immediate environment, which means you would do well to keep rooms in your home — especially her room — bright, uncluttered, and comfortably appointed. Sheep children dislike strict schedules, unyielding discipline, and criticism. Any attempts on your part to toughen up your Sheep child with these tactics are wasted — it is not in the Sheep’s nature to play an Ox.
Sheep without a shepherd: The Sheep child requires a massive amount of reassurance, advice, and approval in order to feel secure enough to make decisions. You would be wise not to try to make her stand on her own too frequently or early, though that may seem contrary to the standard parental contract — the Sheep is not temperamentally wired to go it all alone, and will by nature work (sometimes quite anxiously) to reach consensus, even in situations requiring a very personal, even simple, decision.