retreat into (one's) shell

(redirected from retreated into his shell)

retreat into (one's) shell

1. To retreat into one's mind or otherwise isolate oneself so as to avoid undesirable thoughts, situations, or interactions with people. After getting mugged I retreated into my shell and didn't speak to anyone for nearly a week. I'm not good around large groups of people. I usually just retreat into my shell and wait until I can be alone. Don't retreat into your shell because you don't want an argument—talk to me and let's discuss the problem!
2. To act in a reserved and/or defensive manner. The team retreated into their shells after halftime, trying to protect a slim lead. The senator retreated into his shell when reporters tried to question him about allegations of tax fraud.
See also: retreat, shell

go, retreat, withdraw, etc. into your ˈshell

become more shy and avoid talking to other people: If you ask him about his family, he goes into his shell.
See also: shell
References in periodicals archive ?
We had a big wedding and invited everyone we know but since then he's retreated into his shell and just isn't the same person.
We had a big wedding and invited everyone we know, but since then he's retreated into his shell and just isn't the same person.
Retreated into his shell JORDAN HENDERSON 5 The midfielder was strangely anonymous as Liverpool were overrun JOE ALLEN 5 Like his central midfield partner, the Welsh man couldn't get to grips with Villa ALBERTO MORENO 4 Executed an excellent last ditch tackle to deny Benteke but was otherwise dire STEVEN GERRARD 5 Had played barely half an hour in two months and it showed, game passed him by PHILIPPE COUTINHO 5 Continued FA Cup love affair with goal but too often on the periphery RAHEEM STERLING 5 Isolated when the lone striker in the first half, struggled to make impact after break
He missed those penalties but never retreated into his shell," he said.
But if the meagre crowd of 2,500 thought Pietersen was going to inject some life into the game they were soon proved otherwise as he retreated into his shell.
MATTHEW STEVENS could easily have retreated into his shell after a second World Championship final defeat in May, but the Welshman has hit the ground running this season and there is no reason to believe he will go backwards now.
He is a punchy little character but he retreated into his shell and looked a shadow of the cocky young kid we saw growing up in the shadow of Neil Jenkins at Sardis Road.
And he didn't like it one bit as he retreated into his shell.
The Sheffield youngster, son of pro lightweight Roger Sampson, retreated into his shell after sampling Phillips' power and was comfortably beaten 12-2.
As Carmack retreated into his shell, working 80-hour weeks and gradually losing contact with humanity, Romero carried on like David Lee Roth, wearing tight mesh shirts and making brash claims about id's future projects.
Traumatised Shue, whose sister, Elizabeth, is also a movie star, retreated into his shell.
Marcus Bent, who was a revelation in his first few matches in a blue shirt, seems to have retreated into his shell completely.
MORTON striker Alex Williams retreated into his shell after a 10-game goal drought left him thinking he'd never hit the target again.
Instead, Jorg suffered through a nightmare as he blew FOUR golden chances and Gazza retreated into his shell in one of his quietest games for the club.
Marcus Bent, a revelation in his first few matches in a blue shirt, seems to have retreated into his shell. Maybe he just needs a goal to perk him up a bit, but it's difficult to see him getting one at the moment as his finishing is making Tomasz Radzinski look like Jimmy Greaves.