withdraw into (one's) shell

(redirected from withdraw into our shell)

withdraw 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 withdrew 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 withdraw into my shell and wait until I can be alone. Don't withdraw 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 withdrew into their shells after half time, trying to protect a slim lead. The senator withdrew into his shell when reporters tried to question him about allegations of tax fraud.
See also: shell, withdraw

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 didn't withdraw into our shell every time they got the ball and I think you have to do that at Old Trafford.
In such situations, we tend to withdraw into our shells, yearn for the good old days, find incessant fault with the new 'top dogs', weep into our whiskies and often cut ourselves away from the mainstream.