The typical response to physical or emotional pain is to self protect. When you are hurt physically self protection is wisdom. Emotional pain is different. When you have been hurt emotionally with shame and rejection you have to be willing to risk to find healing. Risk by trying to love again not self protect. Reaching for and responding with love toward your spouse, children and friends will bring health and healing. Physical or emotional withdrawal can work in the short run but can be toxic in the long run. Learn to risk by loving those around you again. You have a choice.
To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable – C.S. Lewis