In general, a man may have casual encounters, and this could be how he has been for a long time. During these moments, he is going to share his body and perhaps his mind with a woman but he won’t share much else.

This could mean that he hasn’t been in a relationship with a woman or this might not be the case. If he has been in at least one relationship with a woman, this may have been a time when he felt deeply uncomfortable.

Two Stages

In the beginning, he might have primary experienced positive feelings but as time passed he might have primarily experienced negative feelings and felt overwhelmed. He would then have soon felt the need to keep his distance and, before long, leave the relationship.

What is clear is that being in a relationship won’t have felt right, it will have felt wrong. He may have come to the conclusion that he is someone who is simply not meant to be in a relationship.

A Current Experience

Having said that, he could currently be with a woman and be at the point where he has a strong need to pull away. Therefore, his inner experience will be a million miles away from what it was like before.

If he was able to describe what is going on for him, he could say that he feels trapped, angry, has a sense of disgust, and needs to get away. What is clear is that being close to a woman, out just physically and mentally but emotionally is not going to be very pleasurable.

Three Options

If he is aware of what is going on and feels comfortable enough to talk about it, he will be able to talk to his partner and reach out for support. But, without these two elements in place, he could just pull away and sever his ties with his partner.

Or, he could simply shut down and be physically and even mentally there but he won’t be there emotionally. If he does end up pulling away and cutting his ties with the woman, she could soon end up wondering what is going on.

Two Sides

Additionally, this could be a time when a number of emotional wounds will end up being unlooked. If so, this is likely to show that emotional wounds that relate to being rejected and abandoned, that go back to her early years, will have entered her conscious awareness.

Having this understanding will allow her to work through what has entered her awareness so that she can become a more whole and integrated human being. Also, if she has had this experience before, engaging in this work will allow her to attract a man who is emotionally available.


After pulling away and allowing himself to settle down, he could believe that the reason he felt as he did was that the woman made him feel that way. However, if he has had this experience before, he might wonder if there is far more to it.

Then again, if he has had this experience before, he could believe that this is just what women are like. If he does, he is unlikely to find it hard to come across information that validates this view.

Going Deeper

Now, if he has had this experience on a number of occasions and doesn’t believe that this is just what women are like, he could wonder what is going on. If this is what has taken place whenever a relationship has progressed and he has gotten emotionally close to a woman, it could be a sign that his early years were not very functional.

There is a strong chance that how he feels when he gets close to a woman is how he felt throughout his developmental years when he was around his mother. The inner experience that he has when he was with his mother will then be reactivated when he is with a woman.

A Closer Look

Of course, when he is with a woman, he won’t be with his mother but he will unconsciously project his mother onto the woman and old feelings will be re-experienced. So, if being emotionally close to a woman brings up feeling trapped, angry, a sense of disgust and the need to run away, among other things, it is likely to show that his mother lacked the ability to attune to his needs and used him to meet some of her adult and unmet developmental needs.

This is not to say that anything sexual took place but that she seldom if ever paid attention to his needs, feelings and wants and, thus, this would have caused him to feel smothered, trapped, uncomfortable, violated and terrified. The experiences that he had with his mother would have created an inner model of what women and intimacy are like, with the particular becoming the general.

A Perfectly Natural Outcome

Taking this into account, if the experiences that he had with his mother during a time when his sense of self and view of intimacy was being formed were anything but nurturing, it is to be expected that he wouldn’t feel comfortable with intimacy. When he gets close to a woman, his past will become his present.

When he was traumatised by his mother and deprived of the care that he needed to grow and develop in the right way, he would have experienced a lot of pain and arousal that would have been automatically repressed by his brain. To truly put the past behind him, connecting to this pain and arousal and working through it will be essential.


If a man can relate to this and he is ready to change his life, he 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, inner child and inner awareness. With over three thousand, one hundred in-depth articles highlighting human psychology and behaviour, Oliver offers hope along with his sound advice.

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