In the same way that someone can more or less always wear the same outfit, they can also more or less always behave in the same way. And, as part of how they behave, they can also typically wear the same type of clothes.

They are then going to be a whole human being that has many different sides, but, based on how they usually behave, this won’t be clear. Naturally, this is going to restrict them and limit their ability to freely express themselves.

For Example

So, if they are a man, they can generally come across as assertive, certain, and unemotional. Along with this, they can generally wear tight fitting clothes that allow them to show off their physique.

On the other hand, if they are a woman, they can generally come across as easy-going, uncertain and emotional. Along with this, they can generally wear clothing that is fairly revealing and allows them to show off their physique.

A Few More

Alternatively, and regardless of what their sex is, they can generally come across as intelligent and well-informed. They might also have the tendency to dress in a manner that gives the impression that they are intelligent.

Then again, they can generally come across as easy-going, caring and selfless. As for their appearance, they might have the tendency to dress well or they might not.

The norm

Now, regardless of how they typically behave and dress, this can just be what is normal. If so, they probably won’t question why they have the inclination to behave or dress in this way.

But, if they were to think about why they are this way, they could say that this is just who they are. Therefore, they will simply be expressing themselves and there will be no other way for them to be.

Stepping Back

If, however, they were to arrive at the stage where behaving and perhaps dressing as they typically do no longer felt as comfortable, they could wonder why they are this way. They could feel restricted and unable to freely express themselves.

Still, if they were to merely imagine changing their behaviour and dressing differently, they could experience fear and anxiety. What could also cross their mind is that they will no longer be accepted.

A Closer Look

What this is likely to show is that the identity that they have created is partly a way for them to receive what they missed out on during their formative years. Then again, this is unlikely to be something that they consciously chose to create.

Instead, it was probably something that they unconsciously created and has been kept in place ever since due to what it allows them to receive. The trouble is that while it will allow them to meet certain needs, it will cause other needs to be overlooked.

Going Deeper

If they typically play the role of being overly masculine or feminine, for instance, it is likely that this will allow them to meet the same needs. Deep down, this can allow them to feel loved, accepted and as though they belong.

What this will illustrate is that a big part of them believes that this will only take place if they play a certain role. If they were to freely express themselves, then, this wouldn’t take place.

Back In Time

As an adult, of course, there will be their adult need to be loved, accepted and to feel as though they belong. Nonetheless, if they were deprived during their formative years, they won’t have learnt that this is something that can take place by themselves.

Furthermore, if they were deeply deprived throughout this stage of their life, they won’t have a sense of wholeness. Said another way, they will be empty and be looking for things that other adults are unable to provide them.

Conditional Love

Other adults, with their own needs and issues, won’t always be able to love and accept them. Moreover, another person can do this in one moment but they might not be able to do this in another.

This is why trying to meet their unmet development needs in a conditional world is going to be both exhausting and frustrating. Along with this, as it will be too late for them to meet their unmet developmental needs, not to mention that other adults won’t be their parent or parents, they will never truly be able to fill the hole that is inside them.

An Illusion

But, thanks to transference, the attention, acceptance and approval that they receive from others, by playing a role, will cause their unconscious mind will believe that they are receiving what they missed out on all those years ago. Symbolically, then, certain people will represent their mother and perhaps their father.

When it comes to what their early years were like, this may have been a time when both their mother and perhaps father were emotionally unavailable and unable to provide them with what they needed. Yet, as they were egocentric, they would have come to believe that there was something inherently wrong with them and that they would only be loved if they hid themselves and behaved in a certain way.

A continuation

The years would then have passed and the role that they play may have changed and perhaps become more adult like but it will be a role nevertheless. What they can keep in mind is that how they were treated was a reflection of what was going on for their mother and perhaps father – it was not a reflection of their worth or lovability.

Due to what they experienced, in addition to their unmet developmental needs, they are likely to carry a lot of pain. Facing and working through this pain and experiencing these unmet developmental needs is likely to take courage and patience and persistence.


If someone can relate to this can they are ready to change their life, they may need to reach out for external support. This is something that can be provided with the assistance of a therapist or healer.

Author's Bio: 

Author, transformational writer, teacher and consultant, Oliver JR Cooper, hails from England. His insightful commentary and analysis covers all aspects of human transformation, including love, partnership, self-love, self-worth, enmeshment, inner child, true self and inner awareness. With over three thousand, two hundred in-depth articles highlighting human psychology and behaviour, Oliver offers hope along with his sound advice.

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