Beyond Fight, Flight or Freeze

“Of the three responses to threat (fight, flight, and freeze), freeze is the bystander’s response. Freezing is a self-protective reflex. But in the end it obstructs intervention in a situation of conflict or violence. As someone who instinctively prefers peace over conflict, I recognize that I have sometimes stood back, freezing in fear, rather than moving forward to play a more constructive role. I don’t want to condone a peace without justice, which ultimately only serves the powerful.” Philip Metres