Pulling the Lovers reversed in a tarot spread is not something to take lightly. Not only does the type of card carry a lot of weight, but the imagery can indicate a couple of very different interpretations. This is a serious card that will either point you in a new direction or confirm what your gut knew all along.
The Major Arcana and Reversed Cards
The Lovers is part of the Major Arcana, the first half of the tarot deck that deals with archetypes and universals. When these cards show up in a reading, they indicate that the issues that the position of the card deals with are important, more important than the rest of the spread. No matter what your question is, a card from the Major Arcana is like a cosmic highlighter, making that card and its position stand out.
A reversed Major Arcana card is just as important. As with other reversed cards, they aren’t necessarily bad or scary, but they are not to be ignored or brushed off as a result of incomplete shuffling. The message of a reversed Major Arcana card runs deep.
The good news is that a reversed Major Arcana card is usually clear. In the case of the Lovers reversed, though, there is the complicating factor of two competing interpretations.
The Lovers and Its Reverse
In general, the Lovers indicates deep love, sex, or intense partnership — or it indicates a choice to be made, and temptation is often part of that choice. At its most literal, the Lovers is about intense love or sex (or both) and can indicate a relationship that is literally and figuratively in the cards. That interpretation can be stretched a bit to include committed partnerships in business, friendship, and more.
Reverse that, and you have breakups, missed connections, power struggles, not being ready for a relationship, and personal fears about commitment. For example, if you’re asking about a relationship and get the Lovers reversed, a breakup could be likely, or the relationship could be happy but fizzle out — that sexy spark just isn’t there. On a more serious note, the card could indicate that there is something of an affair surrounding the relationship, so be sure you aren’t the “other” person and aren’t being cheated on. It is vital to note that if you’ve had suspicions that something funny is going on, the card might not be a concrete confirmation, but it’s worth being more cautious and keeping your eyes open for red flags.
As for the partnership side, the Lovers reversed can mean that maybe you and your partner are supposed to be on the same team but have such conflicting ideas that the partnership goes nowhere. You know how, when you try to hold two magnets together, they repel each other and make it seem like there is an invisible barrier between them? Instead of being magnets attracted to metal, you’re two magnets that just can’t attach to each other.
Where the Lovers gets confusing is that it has an entirely separate meaning of choice and decision making. So if you pull the reverse of the card, it could indicate that you have to make an unpleasant choice or that there are no good choices; maybe the best choice is the one you least want. There can also be fears around poor decisions or the idea that your choice will involve something very tempting. Maybe it’s not your partner that might be cheating on you; maybe you’re tempted to cheat on your partner or leave him or her for someone new. Think this through carefully before you make any moves.
The imagery of the card is key to figuring out what’s up. Many decks show two people, a man and a woman, along with an angel blessing the two of them (some decks leave out the angel), but others show a man looking at two women. It’s not unusual for these two women to represent very pure and very tempting personalities, which seems very old-fashioned; however, when interpreting the card, the figures can represent any gender and sexual orientation, so don’t assume that it will be a man making a choice between two specific women.
The choice could refer to something that has nothing to do with relationships, too. Maybe you’re asking about a bunch of job applications you sent in, and you get the Lovers reversed using a three-person card; that could indicate that you may end up having to make a difficult choice between two of those jobs.
Obviously, you or the reader will know what the Lovers card looks like in the deck that you use, but remember that there are other cards indicating love and choice in the deck. So, you’re not missing any potential interpretations. If you pull the Lovers reversed, pay attention to the imagery. It’s a message.
It helps to have another person looking at the cards with you. If you’ve got a pressing question, get an online tarot card reading for an impartial interpretation. Relationships and choices are integral parts of life. Get the best information for the best course of action.