The biggest unmet need of this wound is to feel safe – in the physical world and with other people.
With this wound, you have a deep seated fear of contact other human beings, and of engaging with the physical world.
There is simultaneously a desire to be connected with others, and a fear of it.
As a result of traumas from early childhood, individuals with this wound have difficulty connecting with others. Around people you often feel fearful, anxious, sensitive, or hypervigilant, until you reassure yourself that they’re safe. There are family members you still don’t feel safe to be around or think about, even as an adult. You may at some level feel it’s not safe to exist or that it’s hard to be in human body.
As an adult, you often compensate for this wound via social isolation, withdrawal, or retreat into intellectual activity or virtual worlds on the internet. All of these serve to help avoid or escape any stress, particularly of a social nature.
A person with this wound pattern will often minimize their self-expression and emotional contact with others to avoid being hurt in some way.
When this pattern is highly active, you may exhibit some of these traits:
- withdrawn into your inner world/mind, prefers isolation
- avoids stressful situations and conflict, avoids intimacy
- likes to analyze and think, seems unemotional or cold/disconnected/not present
- socially awkward or anxious; doesn’t connect with people easily; fearful, on guard
To avoid the pain of this wound, some individuals (the thinking type) disconnect from their bodies and live in their minds. They operate based on thinking, knowledge and logic, and shield themselves from feelings and emotions. These individuals tend to be more comfortable behind a computer where they can be undisturbed by others. They can be brilliant, creative thinkers but tend to use their intelligence to maintain significant emotional distance.
Other individuals (the spiritual type), having never felt welcomed in the world, manage their disconnection by spiritualizing their experience. To make sense of the pain of their lives, they often become spiritual seekers. They can be quite psychic and energetically attuned. They can also be (overly) sensitive to other people’s emotions and to their environmental (light, sound, touch, etc.)
In situations with threats or negative emotions, you may escape it by mentally “going away” or dissociating from what’s going on in the present.
This aversion to being fully present can cause the body to take on a light, lean, and elongated appearance. The physical body is often weak and sensitive, ungrounded and vulnerable. The eyes may have a vacant “nobody home” appearance.
The general withdrawal mechanism shows in a reluctance to make commitments: a job or career, an intimate relationship, or any kind of activity ‐ including physical activity. There is a constant need to escape, giving rise to a restless need to travel or move on, and a reluctance to deal with conflict head‐on. There is also a general anger at the world for “not making room for me.”
Health issues center around an underlying anxiety towards life, often without any proper external reason. Depression, lack of energy and chronic fatigue all make sense because the energy system keeps withdrawing from the physical body.
Because of your wounding experience, you have a deep craving to feel safe while being connected to other people.
Because your system didn’t form a sense of safety and connection at a crucial, formative time in your childhood, it feels like there’s a hole inside, that you have a continuous need to “fill.”
The game you’re unconsciously playing in life is this: if you can collect enough knowledge about people and the world, or enough spiritual experiences, or if you can withdraw and protect yourself enough, then you will feel safe.
But this is a never ending hamster wheel that never fills the insatiable need of the wound.
The only resolution is to heal the wound and restore an inner sense of safety, security, groundedness, and belonging. This is what the Inner Freedom Process is designed to accomplish.
Until the wound is healed, you’ll continue to attract people and situations that trigger the wound, and you’ll feel the “ouch” of this wound over and over.