Like their symbol, the crab; Cancerians are the hard outer shell insulating a soft core of sensitivity. As a water sign, Cancerians are emotional haemophiliacs; acutely conscious, receptive and sensitive to rejection. A part of the Cancer’s defence mechanism is to withdraw into their shell, eschew all romantic sentiment and repress all expression of feeling. The security needs of Cancer are powerful and they must feel safe before they go outside. If Cancer feels insecure and vulnerable, their innate reflex will be to toughen their shell.
Those born under Cancer have an inherent need for reassurance and appreciation, and will open up once they feel their sense of security. The Moon instils its best qualities on those born under her sign, but also leaves a legacy of hypersensitivity, hypervigilence and emotional volatility. As the first Water sign, Cancer symbolizes the first sign of feeling; it is too frequent however, for the river to spills it’s banks.
There is a hidden and deep vulnerability amongst Cancerians, and although they are warm and disarming in company its common for them to remain very secretive about their private lives. They will typically take a long time in consideration before entering a new relationship and are endowed with a considerable depth of emotions and emotional intensity. Before a Cancer starts opening up they will first be forced to respond to their inner monologue; ‘is it safe?’, ‘will you get hurt?’, ‘what if what happened last time happens again…?’ It is said the Cancer carries its home on its back, and usually this pertains to feeling emotionally safe, but they also dread the prospect of getting hurt.
The Cancerian archetype represents one of attachment, and it can be extremely challenging for these individuals to let go of relationships. Once a relationship has finished this can impart fear and personality complexes on a Cancerian - they can become phobic of opening up again and tighten the lockets of ribcage around their hearts. They are unlikely to completely leave a relationship until they have found another one to replace it. Many times, these individuals are very afraid of being exposed, and resist being the help and not the helper. Cancer needs high levels of emotional trust, binding attachment and a sense of familiarity before they will come out of their shell. It takes considerable time for them to feel stable, loved and appreciated-and they want to be absolutely sure they are safe before they risk a dangerous exposure. The promise of enduring love to the point of madness and the allure of arts, imagination and prophetic dreams, the home of Cancer, is known to be one of the keys to the padlocked heart.