Pisces: Compassionate, or Doormat?

What is the appropriate response to infidelity? Where do you draw the line between compassion for your partner’s “weakness,” and saying, “Thank you for that blow. May I have another?”

If you choose to stay in the relationship and make it work, it is important to forgive, but not forget. Another water sign, Scorpio, never forgets — and will probably bring up past indiscretions twenty years later. But a Pisces … a Pisces can empathize with her partner’s difficulty abiding by the reality principle (meaning that Saturn may be a pain in the ass, but at least he governs commitment and discretion), and conveniently “forget” she’s been hurt, only to let herself be walked on again.

Sun-Neptune or Pisces people can be prone to self-sacrifice, taking care of a homeless musician-addict, giving him a place to sleep, money for beer, sharing a bed even though she has no idea where he spends his other nights. She’s “saving” him. “What will happen to him if I don’t provide for him? He’s so talented … if only he got his act together, he could make something of himself.”

Her idealism is notable, but as the aphorism goes, “There’s a Pisces born every minute.” Being suckered into giving cheaters a free pass … that’s not her highest calling.

So, how does Pisces draw the line between compassion and being a doormat? If it’s in your nature to make sacrifices, to give of yourself because if anyone is hungry, you too suffer, then channel this yearning into works in the public sphere, not into your intimate relationships. Is this easy? No. Obviously, if you’ve got Neptune or Pisces planets in your seventh house, sacrifices in one-on-one relationships are par for the course. But I firmly believe we have a choice in how we express our archetypal dynamics. You can’t change your Piscean nature, but with a combination of consciousness and will, you can steer your ship on the right course.

About Jeffrey Kishner

Jeffrey Kishner is founder and publisher of Sasstrology. He is a licensed mental health counselor and has been doing astrological counseling since 2001. Jeffrey has been published in print magazines including The Mountain Astrologer and Dell Horoscope, and has written online for sites including AOL, Tarot.com and StarIQ. Jeffrey has also been heavily involved in the astrology blogger community. Read his personal blog at JeffreyKishner.com.


  1. Right on! Excellent! Thanks. You must’ve read my mind, Jeffrey, bc I was going to ask you to write about this!

  2. Jeffrey Kishner says:

    It was with you in mind … so, you’re welcome. 🙂

  3. Thank you, that’s so sweet!

    Oh, one thing that I wanted to say is that, for me at least, the Pisces doormat tendency is very much related to the Piscean propensity for wishful thinking. In some confused way I think: IF I ignore my partner’s bad behavior and am compassionate that way, THEN he will change and become the great guy I wish he would be.

    Or: If I don’t see reality for what it is (my bf is a con-man, for instance), my sacrifice will make him see the error of his ways and he will become a great guy!

    Let’s be honest, there’s more than a little ego boost in believing that “my love will change him.”

  4. Thanks for the many insights I’ve gained from reading about Pisces on your blog, Jeffrey. I’m a Sag who has become involved with a Pisces for the first time ever and it’s been a very “interesting” experience.

    One of those interesting experiences is related to the issue of compassion. Being in this man’s presence makes me happy. Apparently, being in my presence drains him. I’m a pretty straightforward type (four planets in Sag), so I had always assumed that he agreed to interact with me because he also enjoyed my company. Now it seems that he was merely sacrificing his own comfort to make me happy. Although, I don’t consider myself without compassion, this seems a little beyond the pale to me. I’ve asked him to cease and desist. What do you suppose are the chances of that happening? He does have Neptune in his 7th house so that adds to my fear that he will continue to place my happiness before his own, which is not what I want.

    Here’s my real question, I guess: is it possible that his only motive for interacting with me has been compassion. (The story of our relationship is a long one – perhaps it would be better addressed in a separate question rather than in a comment.)

    At any rate, thanks again for the many insights.

  5. Jeffrey Kishner says:


    Not knowing this Pisces guy’s chart, I would not say that his only motive for being with you is out of compassion. He must get something out of being with you other than his self-inflated pride from martyring himself in the relationship. A guy’s a guy, after all.

  6. I met a Pisces man over a year ago and I felt the strangest connection to him “spirtually” and was instantly comfortable talking about anything and everything with him. BTW I’m a Virgo woman. We spend great times together (as friends)and always enjoy every minute together. We are both married to other people so we have never crossed those boundaries although I’ve felt a strong sexual attraction between us early in our relationship. What is this weird connection we have with each other. I’ve never felt this with anyone else, even my current husband who is BTW a Sag.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I am a pisces woman and I have to admit I let people walk over me. Usually I give them the benefit of the doubt a few times then if it is draining me too much I break and cannot do it anymore. But it really effects and wears me out, I’d cry for days before I can walk away from something or someone.

    And I do agree we just want to believe on face value. If someone is saying the right things and saying, trust me, and saying it over and over again, we really want to trust them. We really do, even when our hearts say not to, we just NEED to know for sure, give them the benefit of the doubt, otherwise we say ‘what if’… ‘maybe it was true’…

  8. Chiron in Pisces says:

    Pisces: Compassionate, or Doormat?

    It has been a push-me-pull-you existence as not only is the action in Pisces in my 10th, but in direct opposition to my Uranus/Pluto conjunction in my 4th.

    I’m such a compassionate doormat that when the tension builds up and it’s time to reverse roles to balance this opposition, the doormat turns into a battle-axe. I internalize this anger and unless I fall to my knees and let go and let God, those seeking further compassion wonder what the hell happened. Thankfully I vent at in the confines of my home and not on the forum. Yet I sense at times my energy is apparent nonetheless when my Pisces Chiron is provoked unjustly or not rendered due respect.

    The key to resolving this tension and keeping the scales balanced is simply this: Don’t be such a doormat! And use your discretion wisely when approached by those who would suck up your energy. Emotional vampires are lurking everywhere, ready to devour.

  9. Chiron in Pisces says:

    Oops! Typo ommission . . .”thankfully I vent at the ceiling in the confines of my home and not on the forum”

    I have to wait until my son is out of the house with his friends or busy elsewhere, and then I LET IT RIP. I don’t think a man would be able to live with me. He would go deaf.

    Unless I decided to throw out the computer, and went back to books. Oh, what a peaceful existence it was!

  10. Wow…I wish I could figure that out some times. I always give everyone the benefit of the doubt, even if I’ve been proven once or twice they were wrong. I figure they can change.

    But sometimes it does get too much and I build everything up, then I give the person or write the person a big speech or whatever about what I feel and usually I’m better. Of course that’s after I’ve cried A LOT.

    Also whoever mentioned the idealist part, that was funny. I was talking to my boyfriend one day and I was just pouring my heart out about how I feel. I said ” I’m an idealist, I think about what can be and you’re a realist, you see what it is”… =) Oh yeah he’s a CAP by the way.

  11. Us fish start out UBER trusting & naive. I had fallen for the alcoholic, the liar, the douche bag, the cheater (more than on who never owned up to it but I “just” KNEW – I try to volunteer whenever possible – thats probably the BEST out let for Pisces desire to SAVE & SERVE humanity.

    I have been in some long distance relationships ((military men – or boys disguised as men- big mistake)). friends would ask: aren’t you worried hes cheating. i already know the answer but always respond, I dont really think about it. The truth is, I know he probably is flirting with the idea of sleeping with the hot girl across the bar. Im definite has flirted: beer goggles. Not until I see him face to face can i see the TRUTH in his eyes.
    Call me simple, I just know that there is no point to worry what he’s thousands of miles away _ we are CONSENTING adults, we chose this path so why stress the POSSIBILITIES?
    if a man is going to cheat, he can do it right under your nose, it happens on a daily basis. Perhaps its less painful so far away…

    Rational people out there must think Im FROM another planet: call it NEPTUNE; reality need not exist.

    Now, if you also have venus/mars in Pisces (check the houses too) then your desire to love & be loved is twice or thrice as STRONG – its a primitive urge- its not about sex although we are very fantasy-driven-sensual people-

    We actually get a warm rush of accomplishment watching people GROW & TRANSFORM those we nurture/helped/saved . Many times we are so preoccupied with others problems we disregard our own.

  12. Well im a fish (female) and let me tell you i hate it !. The over emotion at every little thing not being able to seperate emotion from logic or make a decision and to make it even frigging worse i have mercury in pisces ! talk about double overemotional and dense lol.

    My only saving grace is aqua mars and venus and moon in sag

  13. R0GUE KN1GHT says:

    What site can i go on to a get a full chart reading?

  14. I must say..as a Pisces Sun, Mercury, Venus, North Node , Descendant, and Vertex…that I think this desccription works best wih people who have strong Neptune aspects.
    I only have a Neptune-Venus sextile, and a Neptune-Uranus-Saturn multiple conjunction, and I am not the type that forgives…in fact, I’d say forgiveness is one of the hardest things. But I am good at releasing grudges, just to save my own energy and not waste time on anger..however, in my mind, I always remember if somebody does me wrong.
    In the very rare cases that people have tried taking me for a fool, they didn’t get a second chance at that. I am all about justice, and reciprocity.
    On the other hand, I’ve met some people with Mars-Neptune squares or Moon-Neptune squares who act even more like doormats than the typical Pisces.

  15. Hi I agree with you hun. I have sun Venus mercury and moon all in Pisces I’m emotional wreck at times and I cant stand it. I’ve been a pushover and to quiet to people (my mercury and Venus) it makes me mad. I’ve had to train my emotions over the years and I think that’s down to my earthy Capricorn Mars and Virgo ascendent.

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