Reichian Character Structures #4 The Dreamer

Reichian Character Types #4    Dreamer

 (aka Unwanted Child,  formerly Schizoid)


  • The basic pattern of the Dreamer is simply to escape in the face of threat.
  • Something interesting I note about the Dreamer is that, in contrast to the Oral, Endurer or Rigid subtypes, you do seem to get a lot of people strongly in this category. Generally, what I see is that the average person is a mixture of these characters, but this one our society still produces plenty of.

Appearance & Behaviour:

  • emaciated, malnourished look
  • frozen, shocked look in the eyes
  • body seems disjointed, not symmetrical, limbs thin
  • raised shoulders, fear position
  • pale skin colour common, body cold esp in extremities
  • chest and throat strongly constricted
  • feet may appear to be clawing into the earth 
  • body rigid and armoured, movement mechanical
  • may be much stronger than they look
  • tendency to escape into their own world, to get a feeling of safety / control
  • may be attracted to spiritual beliefs as escapism
  • highly intuitive, developed as a safety mechanism
  • panic attacks, shallow breathing, psychosomatic illnesses, nightmares, sleep disturbance, bursts of rage
  • self-mutilating behaviour
  • difficulty dressing appropriately and fitting in with their environment
  • spiritual or mental arrogance


  • pre-genital wounding, often from womb, sense of not being wanted
  • rejected early in life, contrast with Oral who feels abandoned. Can result from mother not giving adequate eye contact
  • Depersonalisation, dissociation.
  • Inner World – anxiety, existential angst, suicidal thoughts
  • armours the exterior to appear calm
  • frozen in a state of shock
  • sense that it’s not safe to be in the body
  • Energy flow disrupted at the joints
  • May try to compensate for this by becoming athletic but the disconnection will show up in spontaneous emotionality, such as when angry or in sex.
  • Tendency to dissociate to deal with life and perceived threatening events
  • hyper-vigilance
  • may get in abusive relationships


  • learn and practice self-love and a sense of belonging
  • feeling safe in the world, which leads to feeling safe in the body
  • playfulness
  • expand breathing and grounding, work on lower half of body
  • rebirthing
  • accept underlying anger; express anger
  • therapeutic massage to reduce armouring in muscles

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