Why do we fear vulnerability? We are afraid that if someone finds out who we really are, they will reject us. While we may try to appear perfect, strong or intelligent in order to connect with others in actual fact, pretense often has the opposite effect intended. Research by Paula Niedenthal shows that we resonate too deeply with one another not to perceive inauthenticity. We even register inauthenticity in our bodies. A study by James Gross shows that when we are inauthentic and try to hide our feelings, others respond physiologically (a rise in blood pressure).