It is hard, if not impossible to hug a porcupine. They are cold and prickly. Did you know that a porcupine’s coat of quills is their defense against predators? Do you know anyone in your life that fits this profile? There are those people who appear to be constantly on the defensive and often irritable, angry, and belligerent. These individuals are extremely difficult to get close to and difficult to understand. They walk around with a chip on their shoulder and tend to blame, project, and displace their problems onto everyone else. It can be really lonely to be a porcupine since they often alienate others and find themselves alone. Why do they push people away? It could be that their angry rejection of others is a form of control to hide their fear. They prefer to reject rather than be rejected. Or maybe they have insecurities that overwhelm them so they choose to keep people at arm’s length so that their weaknesses or flaws won’t be discovered . Porcupines want to avoid being vulnerable and have their armor up at all times. It may be that they have been hurt, abused, traumatized, or rejected badly in the past and can’t trust anyone. They may feel more secure and safe living as a porcupine. Are they consciously aware of this? Can they change their approach and remove their quills? Look for the answers next week as I give some suggestions for changing and learning ways to cope with this type of person.