"We have to dare to be ourselves, however frightening or strange that self may prove to be." - May Sarton
It's easy to put our guard up, a wall of protection to preserve us from rejection. It's easy to act like someone else so that the real self inside of us won't be hurt by how others perceive us. However, perhaps those around us are doing the same exact thing. Maybe they are wishing to let their walls down, but haven't found the courage to do it. Perhaps we must be vulnerable ourselves and accept what comes in order to get through the closed-off exterior of another. We must learn how to value the "frightening" or "strange" sides of ourselves, to view them as strengths, not weaknesses. They are what makes us human. They are what makes us value other humans.