Know the Moon - Know Your Child

The Moon is an immediately available, obvious significator of what any child must have to feel safe, emotionally nourished and happy. The Moon by sign shows what a person’s most basic needs are and how to get them met.

For example, the Moon in any of the Earth signs, Taurus, Virgo or Capricorn, needs concrete manifestations of affection, through touch, through food, through real and tangible things as demonstrations of affection. Love is being fed, being stroked, having good things done for you.

Moon in a Water sign, Cancer, Scorpio or Pisces, gets their nourishment from shared emotions, from others' willingness to merge in deep feeling, and from opportunities that allow them to really get into feeling their emotions.

Moon in an Air sign, Gemini, Libra or Aquarius, gets their emotional nourishment from communicating, from exchanging ideas or experiences, and from having space or distance in their relationships with others. They need companionship, but not extreme closeness.

Moon in a Fire sign, Aries, Leo or Sagittarius, wants to play, to do things with other people, needs encouragement and movement, especially movement away from negative emotions. They tend to spontaneously express their feelings, often physically, and then move on immediately.

The Moon is the primary planetary influence for a child's first seven years. These are the years where the emotional foundations are laid for the rest of a person's life. If you the parent knows your child's Moon sign, you know what your child will need in their early environment and what they will respond to in order to feel safe and well cared for. In doing what you can to provide these needs in the first years of their lives, you lay the emotional foundations for their future happiness and well being.

Even after the age of seven, the Moon will still describe the emotional nature and what will always be needed for emotional equilibrium and well-being. The Moon will always need tending- though the foundational work of the first seven years of life is critical in the establishment of healthy emotional patterns throughout adulthood.

The Moon by sign is representative of a child's deeply imprinted ways of seeking nourishment and support. This is often an instinctive of the personality, more unconscious than the Sun sign, and can be ignored or overlooked, but never with any success.

We all share the same survival needs, for food, water, companionship and shelter. But the degree that each of us experiences even these basic needs differs, and the Moon can guide you to those differences. For example, Moon in Aries needs frequent new challenges and a sense of independence, whereas Moon in Cancer needs a sense of roots, of dependable traditions and family containment around them. The Moon in Aquarius is happiest being a rebel, most comfortable swimming upstream against the flow and finds home in their tribe of friends. Moon in Capricorn is emotionally reserved, serious and responsible as a child and gains comfort from consistent traditional home and family settings.

To find the Moon in your child's chart requires your child's birth date, time and place. Many popular books contain tables to approximate this, including Donna Cunningham's Moon Signs, or you can contact an astrologer or astrological computing service to calculate this for you. Because the Moon moves so swiftly, and changes sign every 2 1/2 days, it’s easy to make a mistake if you look it up yourself in the astrological ephemeris.

Following are tips on the emotional needs of each Moon sign, how each Moon responds to stress and what will help them cope, Moon environments, Moon foods, Moon moods. The Moon in a child's chart also shows how they experience their mother, which can help you know what behavior in you the parent, will be most supportive of them.

Moon in Aries

The Moon in Aries child needs to move, and tends to be fussy and irritable as an infant until they achieve some autonomy through learning to move around on their own, when they learn to crawl or walk. They are easily bored with routine and want to be busy and active all the time. They can be compulsive about staying busy, using this to stave off any emotions.

They naturally expect to be the center of attention in the family, and can profoundly resent the arrival of a sibling, who gets in the way of what they want to do. Teasing, goading siblings into reacting comes instinctively for Aries Moon child, who thrives off the energy this creates in the family setting.

Moon in Aries experiences the mother as adventurous and courageous, lively and assertive. On the flip side, mother may give the impression of being irritable or even resentful of a child's needs, so the sooner the child learns to care for themselves, the better of they are.

They tend to be quite spontaneous and uncomplicated in their emotional responses- quick to fire, quick to recover and forget. They get annoyed by the inability of others to just get on with things. Aries doesn't wallow in their feelings, as Pisces or Scorpio Moons might. They need to be physical with their emotions and may find it hard to explain why they are feeling as they are. They can get more in touch with feelings if they are being active at the same time- walking or throwing a ball.

Moon in Aries is happiest when leading or inspiring others, when being the leader of the pack. In a park or preschool or playground, it is the Moon in Aries child whose enthusiasm and vitality sparks all the other children to play at Aries' game. The Aries child should be encouraged in sport, in physical activities, and in situations where their natural enthusiasm for life stimulates and inspires others.

Moon in Taurus

The Moon in Taurus child has exquisitely attuned senses. Textures, smells, tastes are all very important means through which they experience or absorb life. They respond best to a steady, consistent, conservative home environment, where changes are introduced slowly and smoothly, in a very matter-of-fact way. Objects have a soothing, stabilizing quality to them, particularly those with engaging textures. Of all the Moon signs, this is the child that will be most appreciative of a blanket or stuffed animal.

Moon in Taurus children are collectors, having a natural ability to acquire beautiful things. They may have some trouble sharing their bounty with friends or siblings, though this is one of their greatest life lessons. As a parent you can help them, perhaps through involving them in collecting for underprivileged children, or through family tithing to churches or service organizations.

Where a Moon in Taurus person lives, the garden is often prolific, even if they are not the gardeners. They are soothed in crisis through contact with nature, with being outdoors in a tranquil setting.

Mother for the Moon in Taurus comes across as a real earth goddess, a sensible, practical, solid down-to-earth dependable force in the child's life. There is always a flip side, for Moon in Taurus, mother can also feel extremely rigid and not to be crossed for her fierce temper when aroused.

Moon in Taurus receives emotional nourishment from food, from being fed. Mealtimes are important grounding rituals for this child. They will early on enjoy being involved in the preparation of food for others, as this is a primary way of showing affection for this sign. They are uncomfortable around strong emotions and are prone to eating troubles when surrounded by stressful circumstances from which they cannot escape.

Moon in Gemini

The child with the Moon in Gemini is renown for their questions. They need to know why; they need explanations and are incessantly curious. For them, there is peace in knowing the name for something, and being able to talk to someone else about it. Emotions can be confusing to these children, who might do well with those refrigerator word magnets where they could discover the word that labels the feeling they need to identify.

Tending to be fussy as infants, they thrive on constant change and interaction, and get bored easily without plenty of stimulation. They bond with any toy with wheels- anything that helps them to move around.

Mother is usually very communicative and the early home environment exciting, though seldom in a conventional sense. Mother herself is frequently seen as a rebel, and may be more of a companion to the child than a pillar of stability. However, she is likely to do well at encouraging the child’s curiosity and independent style.

There’s plenty of mental energy in these children, they are excellent mimics and comics. They are natural and instinctively witty. Humor is often their way of dealing with emotional upsets though compulsive clowning may block them from facing issues that need attention. Confronted with emotional overload, they are likely to look for escape through wild activity or distraction through books, television or computer.

The right educational environment is critical to the emotional nourishment of this Moon sign. They need a situation that fosters creativity and experimentation, that can accommodate their restless spirit. An academic foundation is important, especially in language, communication and literature. Educational settings that encourage the pursuit of interrelationships between different subjects will suit the widely ranging mind of the young Moon in Gemini.

Moon in Cancer

The Moon in Cancer will always be profoundly marked by their early family circumstances, whether this be good or bad. The relationship with the mother will continue to influence their relationships long after mother is just a memory. Cancer Moons will either fiercely and sentimentally try to replicate their early family conditions in their own adult lives, or grow up trying to recover from the early days, dedicated to pursuing any opposite approach. In either case, their attention continues to focus upon the circumstances of the early years.

In schooling they respond best to a teacher who takes on the maternal nourishing model as these children need that safety envelope longer than other signs.

Memories are important to Moon in Cancer. Give them scrapbooks of early years. Respect their need for repetitive or recurring cycles that they can anticipate and depend upon, whether this be the annual holiday to the beach or the Christmas traditions. They don’t relocate easily. If this is necessary, make sure you respect their sentimental attachments to objects, pets, and even the old home. Here’s where photo albums can be helpful. Give the little Cancer Moon the opportunity to make memorials and embrace the strong feelings by gathering photos of the life passing. All the Water Moon signs (Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces) benefit through coping with their strong emotional reactions through expressing them through art or music.

Moon in Cancer has profound mood swings, and needs opportunities to retreat and recover from the emotions of those around them. When they do this they can appear cold and distant, however this is their way. Let them do this, they will return to the family happier. The waxing and waning of the Moon affects them more than the other signs, and may be your best clue as a parent, of how to handle this sensitive little Moon child.

Moon in Leo

The Moon in Leo child is hard to overlook. Warm and generous and definitely instinctively center stage, they crave attention, all of it. Give Moon in Leo plenty of opportunity to shine through tools and props of play acting, or even drama classes. This may make it easier for the siblings of this child, who may feel overshadowed or squeezed out if all the drama needs to happen on the home front.

The Moon in Leo child will express how they feel readily and boldly, as they dramatize their feelings. However they are excruciatingly sensitive to any loss of face, and negative emotions will not be put on public display. You will know by their dignified withdrawal that they are going through something. If this Moon sign child needs discipline, it is better to do it in a way that allows them to save face. Some other signs would tolerate public reprimands, but not Moon in Leo. Take them aside, and appeal to their strong sense of right and wrong.

Moon in Leo is comfortable in a home where emotions are tossed about in a loud and theatrical manner, with plenty of roaring and posturing and carrying on. Mother may be a real drama queen, sometimes taking up the stage with her own concerns to the neglect of the child’s well being. Moon in Leo tends to see Mother as possessing style and pride, and appreciates her ability to keep up a good image in front of others. Despite all difficulties she might encounter, Mother is a rich character in the drama of a Leo Moon’s home and family life.

Moon in Virgo

The Moon in Virgo child needs to be needed and appreciated, and gets emotional satisfaction from caring for and about others. Frequently animals are the first loves in their lives. The opportunity to learn to tend to an animal provides this child with a sense of skillful accomplishment and personal value. Moon in Virgo can speak to and understand animal behavior instinctively and from an early age.

Moon in Virgo, being an earth sign, receives a sense of emotional well-being from physical affection, from objects and tangible care. A stuffed animal (important that it be an animal that exists in nature rather than in fantasy, and preferably one that exists in their own region) will be consoling to this sensitive little one. This child’s system needs regularity and natural rhythms in their daily lives. They thrive upon a home situation that reflects the natural world through its simplicity and access to nature.

Their health is directly connected to their emotions, and in particular their digestion. They appreciate emotional support from attention to their diet and tending to their small body’s fine tuned system. Moon in Virgo can be fussy about what they eat and they usually know just what they need. Food combining affects children of this Moon sign more than most, so keep their diet very simple.

The Moon in Virgo child can be quite critical of self, and exceptionally aware of the shortcomings of others too. Mother may have been quite a perfectionist, with very high personal standards as well as being particularly efficient around the home. Moon in Virgo wants to learn from the mother, and will imitate until they get it perfect. Even the simple setting of tables or sweeping of the floor in the early years will give the child a sense of accomplishment.

As a parent, your awareness of this child’s tendency to be extremely hard on themselves can alert you to the danger of casual critical comments, which so many other children would ignore- but not Moon in Virgo. Moon in Virgo can easily lose sight of the larger picture and fixate upon small details. They love crafts projects which give them an opportunity to develop skills.

Moon in Libra

The Moon in Libra child is acutely attuned to the harmony and emotional balance in the family, especially between the parents. Instinctive peacemakers, they may throw themselves into the center of the parental dynamic from a very early age. Because they can so easily put themselves in another person’s shoes, they naturally become the counselor or mediator who disgruntled family members come to for soothing. Even as an infant there is a peaceful, calming feeling around the Moon in Libran soul.

They respond best to a refined home environment, where music and the arts are a part of daily life. Being an air sign, they want to talk, to be listened to, and want to exchange feelings with another through words and ideas. They can learn a lot about life from reading stories about other people’s journeys. A diary can provide the reflective surface for the Libran soul to try out and clarify their feelings. Often it is in speaking, or giving name to the feelings that clarity, peace and equilibrium can emerge.

They hate upheaval and turmoil and are willing to do just about anything for a peaceful home. They may choose to gloss over serious difficulties, pretending to the world that all is fine. Here is the great Libran dilemma, to balance needs of other with needs of self, and to develop good boundaries that encourage interaction, without ignoring their own best interests.

They tend to compare themselves with others, and are acutely aware of fairness, that all receive an equal share of whatever is going around. They are not solitary players, and have best friends very early in their social lives. They are instinctively graceful, love beautiful objects and easily acquire them.

Mother is seen by the Moon in Libran child as graceful, dedicated to her relationships, artistic and fair. If there is a dark side to the picture, Moon in Libra will notice where Mother compromised herself for the well-being of others.

Moon in Scorpio

The infant with Moon in Scorpio is from birth acutely aware of the emotional undercurrents in the home environment. They love to ferret out mysteries and secrets and are instinctively aware of the subtle plays occurring around them. This child learns early on how to surf the emotional waters of the family, often in order not to be hurt.

These children thrive upon crisis. They seem to need emotional highs and lows in order to develop to their full potential. This can be exhausting to a parent with a more low key or steady Moon, who can't understand why this child takes everything so deeply to heart.

This child need encouragement to release their emotions in nondestructive ways, and will need help to find alternative outlets, creative or artistic places to vent their strong feelings. In this way their feelings become an asset rather than an exhausting liability.

They are often the emotional barometers of the family, sometimes acting out the shadow or unspoken element of the family dynamic. What we call psychosomatic health problems reflects this child's intense mind-body link. If they are disturbed their whole system will respond, sometimes with serious health problems. Sometimes this is the only way the child feels they can get the intense undivided attention they need from their parent.

The Moon in Scorpio child is very territorial and needs some space in the home where they can retreat, where they feel all powerful. They tend to be particularly aware of ghosts and are prone to childhood terrors. Treat their fantasies seriously. Give them artistic or musical tools to express their passionate feelings about life. They need to know that it is OK to have strong feelings, and that they have the skills to share them with the world.

Moon in Saggitarius

The Moon in Sagittarius child, being a Fire sign, needs to be able to move around, to explore. Instinctively adventurous, they are always on the go, looking for new territory. They are lively and enthusiastic, tend to exaggerate and tell wonderful stories that don’t need to bear any resemblance to the truth. They have a love of and a natural talent in sport.

Their early home environment may have included a lot of travel, or at least an influence of other cultures. Moon in Sagittarius souls are often at home in a culture other than the one of their birth, and can relocate easily. Their restlessness may keep them moving as they are more at home on the road than with the steadiness of home life. A trip away from home and the daily rhythm nourishes and refreshes Moon in Sagittarius.

They respond well to early religious or philosophical exposure. Mother may have been religious, although best if she encouraged a wide, expansive viewpoint. She probably pondered larger issues than the other mothers on the block. Moon in Sagittarius feels at home with politics, religion and the asking of many, large questions about life.

Moon in Sagittarius can feel very hemmed in by emotional intensity. Their primary reaction may be to ignore the problem, or get away as fast as possible. They resolve problems and care for themselves by getting away and focusing upon distant horizons or the larger picture. A faith, or philosophy that they can refer to for general guidelines for morals and principles is essential.

Moon in Capricorn

The child with Moon in Capricorn can appear quite reserved and tends to be slow to warm emotionally to others. However, once a connection has been made, children born of this Moon are intensely loyal. They respond best to a home situation that is steady and predictable, and which is based upon traditional values.

The mother of a Moon in Capricorn, no matter what her own Sun or Moon sign was, no matter how she is seen to others in the family, is perceived by the child as a capable manager, serious and responsible, although not around as much as young Capricorn Moon might wish. This mother tends to discourage dependency, and many young Moon in Capricorn children are quite serious and capable for their age.

“Old when young, and young when old” is the astrologer’s phrase, reflecting the early maturity, or even tough early years that frequently accompany this sign. A strong influence of Capricorn in the chart indicates a life that tends to get better with age.

Moon in Capricorn loves projects, and is soothed by organizing their toys or their rooms, or planning an outing or holiday. They have excellent rapport with older people. An older relative, such as a grandparent can provide extra parenting and care that will make a profound difference to those early years.

Being an Earth sign, this child needs tangible demonstrations of affection. They may not find it easy to initiate cuddles, but they respond well to receiving them. Gifts tell them they are appreciated and that all is well with their world.

Moon in Aquarius

The Moon in Aquarius is emotionally unpredictable, with frequent and sudden changes in mood. They thrive in lively, constantly changing home environments, and prefer with plenty of comings and goings of family members and friends. They tolerate frequent moves in their early years, or a very unusual family blending.

This is the infant who smiles and engages with strangers at the grocery store, and the young child who takes well to preschool social life. However, they may be less happy about the discipline and conformity required of these school situations. They are rule breakers and innovators and blossom in situations that accommodate their spontaneous, unconventional way of thinking about everything. Give them toys that encourage the inventor or innovator in them.

Moon in Aquarius is very aware of the eccentric soul of their mother. The mother (sometimes both parents) are seen more as peers than as parents. The Moon in Aquarius child's irreverence can be the source of a tremendous amount of chaos in a conservative or traditional family format, but can lead to wonderful friendships as parent and child get older.

Sometimes these children are the ones who act out the suppressed wildness of other family members. Being the emotionally independent souls they are, as they grow they may prefer to spend much of their time at friend's homes. They are essentially more happy in a crowd than alone, though their unconventional approach to life may keep them searching for the group that suits them, for their special "tribe". They need to feel supported and encouraged to pursue their differentness, that is a gift. A strong humanitarian awareness comes early to these children which should be encouraged. Otherwise they may have a tendency to use their all their efforts rebelling against the status quo.

Moon in Pisces

The Moon in Pisces child, being a Water sign, is highly sensitive, imaginative, and impressionable. They do well in a home and family that appreciates the arts and enjoys playing with the imagination. Some form of spiritual direction in their early years will endure as a source of comfort for their whole lives. A sense of connection with a guardian angel can provide grounding and solace that is lacking in the material world for these children.

Moon in Pisces tends to be an emotional sponge, easily becoming waterlogged by the feelings of others around them. They need their own private place in the family home, preferably their own bedroom, where they can retreat and recover from the impressions of life they so easily collect. Without periodic withdrawal these children may resort to escape through excess, excess television or computer games, or excesses in food (or even drugs or alcohol as they grow older).

If you have a Pisces Moon child who seems disconnected from reality, they are likely to be in a state of overload. These are children who may have trouble discerning reality from fantasy, be careful about what they read and what they watch on television. Their imagination is an important part of them and needs to be nourished, with respect for their extreme impressionability. Help them with their boundary making. You may need to teach them to care for themselves by modeling boundary-making for them, or stepping in when you see your child awash and in overload.

These are children who feel for the underdog, and who literally may bring home stray animals to care for. Moon in Pisces finds comfort in tending to the wounds of others, and are instinctive healers, especially to emotional wounding. This is a wonderful trait, a precursor to their later dedication to causes and issues having to do with suffering.

As a mother and as an astrologer who has looked at many charts of parent and children, I find it fascinating to look at the diversity within each family setting. Each child in a family is likely to have a different Moon sign, and yet shares the same mother. Each child’s perceptions of the mother are colored by the filter of their Moon sign. Moon in Leo sees Mother as bold and dramatic where Moon in Virgo may see Mother as careful and meticulous. Moon in Libra sees Mother the diplomat and Moon in Scorpio sees Mother as intense and preoccupied and emotionally explosive. And yet this is the same person, this one human mother who is being so many things for so many people.

So do use the knowledge the Moon provides, this fabulous window into your own child’s deep and instinctive needs, that which they cannot easily tell you, and give them the best you can, a good start for a rich and satisfying life.

Know the Moon - Know Your Child
©2010 Gretchen Lawlor