Incompatible Zodiac Signs in a Relationship

Published December 5, 2019
woman disinterested with date

Research shows that human beings are hard-wired to seek friendship, companionship, and to fall in love. It's also said that love is blind, and that seems to be accurate because falling in love often leads to becoming entangled in a relationship with someone who turns out to be not quite as compatible with you as they seemed in the beginning.

Astrologically Incompatible Signs

In astrological synastry, interaspects between the planets in two birth charts are the attractors and the "glue" that, for better or worse, hold a relationship together. Some interaspects are easy, while others reveal incompatibilities and create problems. Intraspects between incompatible zodiac signs in synastry do not spell doom for a relationship, but they do require awareness, work, and compromise. However, in the end, it's up to each partner to decide if the relationship is worth the effort.

Planets Quincunx One Another in Synastry

The most challenging intraspect to deal with in a relationship is the quincunx (inconjunct.) This 150° aspect links planets in two signs that have nothing in common. Each sign is in a different element (fire, earth, water, air), a different modality (cardinal, fixed, mutable), and a different polarity (positive and negative). But regardless of how different they are, when two planets that are five signs apart fall within a 1-2°orb of the quincunx, they're connected and will cause difficulties in a relationship.

Signs that quincunx each other:

  • Aries quincunxes Virgo and Scorpio
  • Taurus quincunxes Libra and Sagittarius
  • Gemini quincunxes Scorpio and Capricorn
  • Cancer quincunxes Sagittarius and Aquarius
  • Leo quincunxes Capricorn and Pisces
  • Virgo quincunxes Aries and Aquarius
  • Libra quincunxes Taurus and Pisces
  • Scorpio quincunxes Aries and Gemini
  • Sagittarius quincunxes Taurus and Cancer
  • Capricorn quincunxes Gemini and Leo
  • Aquarius quincunxes Cancer and Virgo
  • Pisces quincunxes Leo and Libra

Minor Irritation or Major Set Backs

In synastry, a quincunx between two planets is an area of misunderstanding. These can create effects that range from minor irritation to significant complications and setbacks in a relationship. However, much depends on how important or prominent the natal planets or points are in each chart.

Handling Quincunxes

There is seldom an easy solution with a quincunx because it requires continual adjustment on the part of both partners, but it's the hope of a solution that keeps the partners engaged with one another. The partners need to realize that neither is wrong, they are just different, and both must come out of their comfort zone to please the other. In short, there are huge adjustments and compromises needed to connect these two planets in a way that's satisfying for both people.

Mars and Venus Quincunx in Synastry

When the Venus of one person quincunxes their partner's Mars, the love life tends to be mutually frustrating and unromantic. As an example, the tension of a quincunx between Mars in Gemini and Venus in Scorpio can create a strong attraction. But how Venus expects to be satisfied and how Mars wants to satisfy are entirely different. What each partner finds sexually pleasurable is outside the experience of the other, and this leads to sexual misunderstandings. Additionally, Venus in Scorpio will find Mars in Gemini insensitive, while Mars in Gemini will find Venus in Scorpio suffocating and controlling.

Planets Square One Another in Synastry

Zodiac signs that are 90° apart (square) are considered incompatible because they are in different elements. The closer the square is to 90°, the stronger the aspect is, and the more it enhances the planets involved. Squares in synastry reveal challenges, but often create the sparks that keep a relationship exciting and alive.

The Challenge of Squares

With squares in synastry, there is a tendency towards misunderstanding and conflict. However, some squares in synastry are more difficult than others. It all depends on the planets, signs, and houses involved. As an example, Saturn square Moon is going to feel weighty and depressing to the Moon, while Jupiter square Moon challenges the Moon to embrace endless possibilities.

Venus Square Mars in Synastry

A square between Venus and Mars can produce friction that creates sparks, but it's more of a "teasing energy" that can generate sexual heat, jealousy, and irritation. The Venus person may see the Mars person as too forward or aggressive, while the Mars person sees the Venus person as withholding or coy. However, their attraction to one another may eventually descend into constant irritation without some understanding of what's happening.

Planets Opposite One Another in Synastry

Planets that oppose one another are 180° apart. With oppositions in their synastry, a couple will often find themselves constantly embroiled in power struggles related to the signs involved.

  • Aries opposes Libra
  • Taurus opposes Scorpio
  • Geminin opposes Sagittarius
  • Cancer opposes Capricorn
  • Leo opposes Aquarius
  • Virgo opposes Pisces

Compatibly Incompatible

Oppositions are in complementary signs; one facilitates the understanding of the other. Still, the road to that understanding will be a rocky balancing act. Couples with this intraspect can complete each other but often act like characters in a bad romantic comedy; they fight with one another, aggravate one another, and never totally agree. Still, the back and forth is exciting and keeps both coming back for more.

Husband comfort upset wife

Venus Opposite Mars in Synastry

When Venus in one chart opposes Mars in the other, the attraction will be undeniable, but there are significant differences. When a person's Venus is opposite their partners Mars, there's an instant attraction, but a rocky road ahead. As an example, Venus in Cancer needs and gives hugs, kisses, and constant support, but the partner who has Mars in Capricorn, is stoic, practical, self-sufficient and not particularly lovey-dovey. These two complement one another but express their love differently.

How can Incompatible Signs Work?

Each zodiac sign has specific traits, and if those traits don't mesh with another sign's traits, problems can arise. This holds true in romance, friendship, and business relationships. However, individuals with planets in incompatible signs can enjoy healthy and lifelong partnerships. It's just a matter of:

  • Understanding yourself and your partner's wants, needs, and behaviors.
  • Being willing to accept one another's likes, dislikes, and quirks.
  • Appreciating your partner's perspective, even if it's utterly alien to yours.

Accept the Other Person

Accept that there is no perfect partner. Don't beat yourself up about your faults and don't harass your partner for theirs. Accept yourself and your partner as you are and latch onto the positives, even if your partner doesn't exactly fit the model of how you'd like them to be.

Talk to Each Other

Communication is vital in any relationship, and the misunderstandings caused by aspects between planets in incompatible signs make it all the more important. Partners should never assume the other understands where they're coming from or blame them for failing to know when neither has been clear and honest about their wants, needs, or feelings.

Let Go of the Need to Control

You need to recognize the conflict in your relationship and understand it's not going to go away. Compromising, finding common ground, or even surrendering your position leaves you both free to enjoy the more positive aspects of your relationship.

Astrology and Relationships

Relationships are one of the top reasons people first get interested in astrology and also why clients visit astrologers. Astrologers can speak to the highest potential of a relationship and warn of the places where misunderstanding may breed. However, astrologers also understand that there's no astrological interaction between two people that's so harmonious that enough selfishness, confusion about sex, or immaturity won't turn a relationship sour. And there's no astrological interaction that's so inherently bad that enough patience, love, and devotion can't make the relationship precious to both people.

Incompatible Zodiac Signs in a Relationship