frozen watchfulness

fro·zen watch·ful·ness

(frō'zĕn wahch'fŭl-nĕs)
A condition seen in abused infants involving hopelessness and profoundly guarded affect.

frozen watchfulness

The hopeless reproachful stare of battered children.
References in periodicals archive ?
The doctor noted that Cassidy showed signs of "frozen watchfulness" - which he described as a potential sign of abuse in young children.
They were extremely wary of people who were around...and suffered frozen watchfulness.