Willow Rosenberg: INFP

Introverted Feeling (Fi): Willow is a private person with a rich internal world. She has a strong personal sense of right and wrong, which she uses to size up situations and make moral judgements about the world around her, evidenced, for example, in her disregard for Thanksgiving, saying “it’s about one culture slaughtering another” (Pangs, 4x08). Her personal feelings are deep and intense, often influencing her actions, such as attacking Veruca for her involvement with Oz out of hurt (Wild at Heart, 4x06) and going on a destructive rampage in response to Tara’s death as a way of channelling her grief (Villains, 6x20). She is easily affected by emotional situations, for instance crying alone in her room when some of her classmates were murdered (Prophecy Girl, 1x12), and often deals with her feelings privately, such as spending time alone in her room after Oz left (The Initiative, 4x07), or retreating to England in response to Tara’s death (Lessons, 7x01). She is sensitive to things that stimulate an emotional response, such as animals (The Yoko Factor, 4x20), children (All the Way, 6x06) and injustices (Pangs, 4x08) and has a tendency to take things personally, being offended, for example, by Buffy calling her “reliable” despite the comment meaning no harm (Doppelgangland, 3x16). Willow tends to rely on her feelings to guide her judgements and decisions, often speaking from an emotional standpoint. Although she values group harmony and wants everyone to get along, she is often unaware of the impact her own actions can have on other people, such as ruining Buffy’s picnic with Riley with her depressive mood (Something Blue, 4x09). Her lack of consideration for the choices of others can lead her to engage in selfish behaviour at times, such as raising Buffy from the dead against her will (Bargaining: Part 1, 6x01) and tampering with Tara’s memory despite knowing she would feel violated (All the Way, 6x06). Willow values integrity and wants to be true to herself, being visibly annoyed with others who appear to be fake or contrived: her irritation at the Wicca group she visited in college (Hush, 4x10) and her infuriation about people who “think witches are all hairy moles and rotted teeth” (All the Way, 6x06) being examples of this. She is focused on identity and self-expression, wanting others to see her the way she sees herself, for instance as the girlfriend of a musician “I haven’t been a nerd for a very long time! Hello – dating a guitarist” (Doomed, 4x11), as a lesbian “hello – gay now!” (Triangle, 5x11) or as a powerful witch. Ironically however, and in a way that is often characteristic of Fi users, Willow’s desire to be true to herself that often prompts her to hide behind the images she projects, her dream in Restless, for example, centring around the idea of her wearing a “costume” (Restless, 4x22).

Extraverted Intuition (Ne): Willow is in her element at college. As a curious person, she is energised by the atmosphere of the place, and is excited about discussing new ideas and theories. She is interested in the way things are interconnected (Lessons, 7x01) and finds it easy to draw links between different pieces of information, being able to tell that Buffy and Angel had slept together before anyone else (Innocence, 2x14) and that Xander lost his virginity to Faith (Consequences, 3x15) through an intuitive deduction. At times, the connections she makes can be obscure, such as equating demons that eat the insides of people with an Oreo cookie (Go Fish, 2x20). She has a tendency to follow tangents, making connections at the strangest of moments, and tends to jump around a lot with her speech, leaving others confused about what she’s talking about. At times, Willow can have trouble making decisions, for example being unsure about what to wear to the morgue when Joyce died (The Body, 5x16) and taking a while to choose which college she wanted to attend (Choices, 3x19). She is excited by possibilities, being energised about what magic can do (“I know a spell…”) and is open to experimentation in many areas of her life, including the exploration of her sexuality in college. She is unafraid of trying new things, taking Buffy’s advice to “seize the moment” almost immediately (Welcome to the Hellmouth, 1x01) and is always up for testing out new spells and seeing what they can do. In particular, Willow tends to become restless with Tara’s more convergent approach to witchcraft. While Tara (a Ni user) is comfortable depthing her interest within a narrow range, Willow prefers to chase the potential of spells, pushing the boundaries of what magic can achieve and taking ideas as far as they will go, at times being able to come up with solutions to problems through a creative synthesis of ideas (Triangle, 5x11). Her interests tend to be wide and varied, encompassing not only witchcraft but science (Out of My Mind, 5x04), technology (Intervention, 5x18) and computers, making her an able tutor due to her vast knowledge about several areas. Willow is often creative in her interpretation of events, enjoying playing with words (“Haha! Buff-Buff”) and concepts (“should I be watching my occipital lobe?”) in the expression of her ideas.

Introverted Sensing (Si): Despite her openness to newness and experience, Willow does have a nostalgic side. She enjoys talking about times past, such as laughing with Xander about Cordelia saying “be my deputy” (Out of Mind, Out of Sight, 1x11) and is saddened by the end of high school, telling Buffy she’s “missing everything” (Graduation Day: Part 1, 3x21). Willow often welcomes coming into contact with people from her past, being the only person to keep in contact with Cordelia after she moved to Los Angeles, and is delighted to see old classmates, such as Harmony, regardless of what their relationship was like in the past (The Harsh Light of Day, 4x03). Willow is inclined to hold onto past relics that are personally meaningful, such as keeping a photo of her and Oz on her bedside table after he left (The Initiative, 4x07), and is easily triggered by things that remind her of the past, becoming depressed when some of Oz’s music was playing at a party (The Initiative, 4x07). In times of pain or grief she has a tendency to cling to things that remind her of happier days, for instance animating a dress of Tara’s and curling up to it for comfort after she left (Wrecked, 6x10).

Extraverted Thinking (Te): Willow has strong organisational skills. Though she is usually content to sit back as a “sidekick”, she is capable of taking charge and getting the job done when necessary, being able to lead the Scoobies in Buffy’s absence (Anne, 3x01) and execute the plan to resurrect Buffy after her death (Bargaining: Part 1, 6x01). She has a need to control her external environment, often using magic as a means to manipulate and change the world around her, and can become upset and angry when she doesn’t have control of the external world. Willow tends to favour the direct route in her decision-making, and has little patience for taking the long way around, leading Tara to note that she often doesn’t “consider the options” before acting in times of distress (Tabula Rasa, 6x08). In addition, she takes pleasure in organising things, such as helping Giles organise the stock in the Magic Box (Into the Woods, 5x10) and spending the time between classes copying over her notes with “a system of different coloured pens” (Triangle, 5x11).

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