There are various types of traumas, some are overt, clearly recognizable as such and then there are hidden traumas, those that are unrecognizable to the human eye. Strangely enough, the second type is of a more invasive nature. The idea of visible abuse is recognized as unacceptable, by most, and responsibly dealt with when observed or summoned to do so. Yet the internal affects of psychological or emotional abuses are much more invasive and lasting. Withholding falls within the context of hidden trauma. There is an enormous amount of leverage to be had with knowledge, possessions, love and influence. To withhold from someone who is inferior, in position or power or influence or strength, based on a need to protect oneself or control the environment is a form of abuse. A generous approach to care giving of any sort is telling of the ability to love. Blocking someone in their ability to function or their progression is abuse.

Inevitably, this statement has to be balanced with an understanding that some people, based on their conditionings, live with a sense of entitled expectancy. This circumstance leads to a very different approach and having the emotional intelligence to define those who feel entitled as opposed to those who are genuinely recipients is an element of maturity necessary for any leader. The sensitivities needed for both male and female leaders are vast and I dare say these qualities far exceed the values associated with charisma or showmanship. Leaders can excel within the parameters of performance because people enjoy being entertained; however, the rubber meets the road in situations where authentic relating is necessary, far too often performance is valued over emotional intelligence. I do not intend to digress from the original thoughts of visible versus hidden abuses but I think it is important to clearly understand and observe leaders as a part of the discussion.

Withholding is a result of greed that has not been addressed. A leader of any worth allows for expansion particularly in the lives of those who follow. When I see this dynamic in action, I am enthralled because I know I am learning in an environment that precipitates growth and that inspires me to be a person of giving.

The fears associated with behaviors of withholding are related to insecurity. A sense of loss drives someone to want to push others aside and when that is happening, I can assure you that there is an abusive spirit at work in that circumstance. The tendencies are subtle yet dominant, especially to those who are being guided by such individuals. I find it necessary to particularly address this issue in regard to children. Children have not yet developed the skill set necessary to intelligently maneuver through the circumstances of abuse. Withholding time, protection, affection and adequate resources from a child is trauma. Children cannot speak for themselves and thus it is vital that educators, coaches, mentors, medical staff, law enforcement, government entities and religious leaders become equipped with an understanding of abuse and the proper definitions both overt and subtle.

It is also important to address the workforce in regard to abuse, I have worked in environments where necessity governed, particularly in regard to provision and every instance required assessment. I completely understand responsible delegation but at the same time, emotional intelligence helps determine the assessments through the grid of motivational factors. Individuals who have gained leadership status, be it in government, a business, a home, a church, etc, are intelligent individuals. They are not people who want to be seen or portrayed as insecure, it is detrimental to their ability to lead and maintain success. Withholding is like any other abusive tendency, it is often implemented with an explanation of perceived logic, yet again, when assessing, I emphasize the importance of motivational insight and emotional intelligence concerning the person or persons in question. These tendencies must be addressed from those of authoritarian equality.

To those who have been the recipient of such, though invisible to the human eye, I encourage you to recognize that you have a wound. A wound that is significant to your self perception and ability to thrive. Withholding is not indicative of your behavior or perhaps, with closer examination, you determine that is it, either way you have obtained a prompt toward action. If it is abusive it is indicative of the mental placement of those who govern over you or partner with you. What I would say to you, in the lack, is to maintain your self respect. You are valuable and your needs are important. If it is not abuse but appropriate allocation of resources, then you can grow through the experience and determine your directional path as a result of the truth that actually exists. Either way your progress can continue.

You may say to me, “this situation is happening within the parameters of commitment, what do I do with that?” I definitely understand and I would yet again encourage you to assess your worth and quality of life in regard to your circumstance. Determine how vocal you have been, are you expecting others to be a mind reader? If you have been vocal and there is an unwillingness to accommodate within a said relationship and the request is honorable and reasonable then I would suggest that you clearly research and define the parameters of abuse both external and internal and begin to get counsel on the psychological effects of such. I want to clearly say this process is very subjective. Some withholding is based on reputable reason, financial inability or situations of true incapacity and those do not align with the parameters of abuse. Be realistic in your assessments. Once you have a clear understanding of abuse, and how it truly affects your life, you can proceed with a better understanding and perspective of yourself and others.

I have lived most of my life, in environments that do not recognize withholding, the negative space, as abuse and as a result many emotional atrocities have been tolerated when in reality, the issues needed to be rightly defined. One persons word against another is best delineated through mediation and that needs to happen in a neutral context. Favoring in any capacity does not provide an accurate assessment directionally.

I just want us, as a community to begin to see what visibly delineates abuse, as well as, that which is invisible and to gain a proper perspective about the progress of our lives in regard to such. We often feel stuck in the traumas unseen but those are, in actuality, viable and constitute a necessary response. Learning the difference and behaving responsibly, based on a factual definition of abuse, is without question, a life skill necessary for every individual. The emotional intelligence from the research and information gained will be utilized and implemented throughout the entirety of existence.

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