The Trauma Recovery Institute - Neuroscientific Based Psychosocialsomatic Approach|

Character Defense Structure

/Character Defense Structure
Character Defense Structure 2017-12-01T12:52:27+00:00

Psychodynamic Bio Psychotherapy is another approach working with body mind. It’s similar to Bio-energetic’s, created by Wilhelm Reich and Alexander Lowen. Like Breathwork it focuses on shifting the attitudes of the mind via working with the body. Current research suggests that, the mind and body are one you can’t separate them.  The stories of our lives are held in our bodies, the shape of our bodies, muscular tensions, how we hold ourselves.


The premise of bio Psychotherapy or somatic psychotherapy is that if every human being could let their ENERGY (life force, love, sexuality and emotions) stream through their bodies as nature intended it they would be happy. Most of the time it is our conditioning prevents us from doing this.  Often as children, we couldn’t feel our hurt, anger, fear, sadness, loss etc.  The unfortunate thing about this is when we dam these feelings we also dam our aliveness, sexuality, joy, and our connection to our self and purpose in life. Along with this there is usually an attached or associated belief, such as I am not loved, I’ll be hurt if I express myself, its not safe to let myself shine etc. This is all visible in the body.


Based on the work of Wilhelm Reich there are five different body types/structures, which can help, shed light on all the different styles and shapes of bodies out there. Along with the shape of your body it can offer great insight about how energy flows or is blocked in your body, the level of energy, or lack of, and how you hold yourself (muscular tensions) and why. Along with the physical characteristics there is a consistency of character/ personality traits that go along with each body type.


There are 5 Core Energetic’s Character structures, or body types.





The earliest defense to be developed, these children supposedly felt rejected or uncomfortable with the universe from birth. They don't like being here and often "escape" through daydreaming or just spacing out. Energetically, they're very separated from their physical bodies -- often leaving their bodies energetically -- and may resent or feel hostile towards physical reality. This first structure has a difficulty in feeling grounded in the physical, material world. This results in them having difficulty with money, often having a home, material possessions and in general just relating to the rest of the world. They are often spiritual, psychic or intuitive but can’t get their material world together. They sometimes live in ashrams and they often favor being in nature rather than relating to people.





The oral character developed their defense during the period when they were totally dependent on their mother; the breastfeeding stage. At some point they are either abandoned by their parents or feel that they don't get enough physical or emotional nourishment. The belief of the oral is that they never have enough. Oral people tend to be thin and to jut out their heads. Energetically, orals to try to pull energy from other people because they believe they don't have enough of their own. This type of person has a depletion of energy, i.e. their often tired. They feel like their not enough and there’s not enough. They also have difficulty with money but for different reasons than the first structure. They lack the energy to complete tasks and to carry their life’s dreams to fruition. They often act needy in their relationships, and are prone to co- dependency and addictions.



Questions to ask



Have you ever fluctuated around being needy and then independent in your relationships?

They feel that if they ask for love and it is given, it might not be real, but if you don’t ask for it, you might not get it at all?






The psychopathic defense is developed somewhat later in childhood and reflects a belief that aggression is the only way to get what they want. Psychopathic character types tend to have lots of muscular development, particularly in their upper body -- a "jock" provides a good stereotype. Energetically, psychopaths send large arrows of energy up from their body and down onto whomever they're trying to intimidate.


These people are usually great leaders, but their blessing and curse is that they need to control others and don’t trust. Their history is that of being seduced and betrayed by one parent or put up and then put down, by either one or both parents. Their healing results in them having humility and trust, i.e. their not glorified out of proportion and their not absolute rubbish either, they have a healthy assessment of themselves.


The body shape is either thin legs or bigger chest; v shaped body in men, and commonly narrow shoulders and wider hips in women.


Questions to ask;


Do you feel like you need to be in control or control others?

Do you trust people; did you or have you ever felt betrayed?

Have you ever had bouts of thinking your really good at something and then feeling terrible a few days later?







The masochist defense is developed in an environment where the parents were domineering and gave love in a conditional way. Guilt, shame, and passive-aggressive techniques were all used by the parents to control the child. The masochist character responds by withholding their love and themselves from others. They complain and focus on the negative sides of things. They tend to carry a lot of weight around -- literally and figuratively: stored fat is seen as a sign of masochistic tendencies. Energetically, the masochist sends out tendrils of negative energy that pierce the energy field of others.


These types of people have a more grounded body structure but can get to dense in it. These types of people have a thicker set body and the energy moves down more than the other types   they have solid, stockier bodies. This structure come s from around the age of 3 where the child is controlled or suppressed, usually by the mother.  They often say yes when they want to say no as they had to do as they were told a lot.  They really value freedom.


Questions to ask;


Does your body ever feel stuck or dense?

Do you ever say yes when you mean no, or simply find it hard to say No!





The child feels that their creativity (sexuality) is rejected by the parent. They get the message early on that their unique qualities are not welcomed. They develop a rigid posture and suppress their emotions and feelings. The rigid personality is obsessed with being genuine and constantly fears that they are not. The rigid body type is reflected in a board straight posture. Although they often seem more balanced than the other character types, they are not letting out their feelings. Energetically, their energies remain hovering at the edge of their field while their core or true essence remains suppressed.


These people escaped a lot of the earlier wounding; their bodies are healthy proportioned and good resumes. Because the energy doesn’t go into the heart there are usually heart pelvis splits meaning they are often having affairs or having love in one place and sexuality in another, the healing takes place when they feel the broken heart that usually takes place with the opposite sex parent and they can have the heart and sexuality in the one place consistently.


Questions to consider.


Have you ever had affairs, or tend to have sex without love or love without sex?

Do you find it difficult to open your heart to someone and feel love?

Have you ever used “over working” to cover up how you feel?