“Obama’s ambivalence and detachment could be a strength in politics and even in his personal life. It hardened him against failure, protecting him from the pain of defeat, or an absent father. But it also served to isolate him, pushing away those who could sustain him, as he strove to succeed. The price of political success seemed a certain sum of personal failure.”
Richard Wolffe – Renegade. The Making of Barack Obama (p. 123).