Dealing with Betrayal


It is bad enough when a stranger or foe betrays you, but when it is someone you believed to be a close and trusted friend, partner, or spouse, a child it is especially hurtful. It might feel like you were taken advantage of, deceived, humiliated, despised, cheated, or stabbed in the back. Oftentimes it comes as a surprise.

That is why it is so painful. You would not expect to be hurt so badly from someone you thought you could trust. So you are left in disbelief and unbelievable pain.

Anyone who has experienced betrayal in a relationship knows how difficult it is to recover from such an experience. The person you thought you could trust and count on is no longer the person you believed them to be. So you wonder what happened.

Were you just wrong about them all along or did something change? Maybe your relationship changed and so did their loyalty to you. Maybe something in either or both of your lives has changed and they became insensitive to you. Or, maybe you both grew apart and in different directions.

There are many reasons that cause people to betray one another. Sometimes they are very deliberate and intended to hurt the other person. And sometimes they are consequences of choices that are made with no intention of doing any harm to anyone. Looking out for one’s own best interests can cause some people to disregard relationships they once valued.

They may feel the relationship is in the way or not as important anymore. Feelings change. And as feelings change so do one’s actions and choices. An individual that feels their needs are not being met in a relationship might feel that the relationship is no longer important or worth investing in.

Therefore, they might seek to get their needs met elsewhere. This changes the relationship. Eventually, it grows apart and opportunities for betrayal emerge.

Betrayal is a destructive force that leaves many ruins in its path. Betrayal changes everything. Relationships and all those affected will never be the same again. The damage done can be irreparable. Trust is lost. Wounds run deep. Anger persists. Hearts are broken. Self-protective walls are erected. Pain is long and lasting. And we wonder…. Can trust ever be restored? Do wounds ever heal? Will anger cease to exist? Can hearts be repaired? Will the self-protective walls ever come down? Does the pain ever go away?

Not only does betrayal change relationships, it changes individuals. Something happens inside of them. They might find it difficult to ever trust again. They might be more guarded and protective of themselves for fear of being vulnerable again.

They might learn to be more discerning and less naïve. Their expectations of others may change. They may reflect on their own role and responsibility in the relationship and what went wrong. They might try to understand, empathize, and forgive. They may be motivated to grow from the experience and learn more about themselves and others.

The pain of betrayal is very real and has a significant impact on the lives of all those who have experienced it. It is one of those painful life experiences that have the power to change people’s hearts and lives forever.

If you have ever been betrayed, you cannot change what has happened to you or make the pain go away. You need time to grieve and feel angry. You need time to be comforted and encouraged. You also need time to restore your faith in yourself and others. Betrayal hurts and there is no fast and easy way to heal from its effects.

It takes more than time. It takes a heart that will not harden. It takes a commitment to believe in others again. Relationships do change as a result of betrayal; but ultimately, how it changes you is what matters most.LONELINESS

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Letting Go – It’s time to Forgive


Betrayal, aggression, and just plain insensitivity: People can hurt us in a million ways, and forgiveness isn’t always easy. Whether you’ve been cut off in traffic, slighted by your mother-in-law, betrayed by a spouse, or badmouthed by a co-worker, most of us are faced with a variety of situations that we can choose to ruminate over or forgive. But forgiveness, like so many things in life, is easier said than done.forgiveness1

Forgiveness is a journey toward freedom from our past. It can be transformational, complex, is not to be taken lightly and cannot be commanded. If you are patient and open to the unfolding of forgiveness, your desire to forgive will be fulfilled.

There may be plateaus along the way where many of us are lulled into thinking the journey is complete, but you will know you have reached your destination when only love and gratitude remain in your heart for the person you have forgiven. When a hurtful past relationship has been transformed into an opportunity for personal growth and healing for which you are grateful—with or without an apology—then you know you are free.

Generally, forgiveness is a decision to let go of resentment and thoughts of revenge. The act that hurt or offended you might always remain a part of your life, but forgiveness can lessen its grip on you and help you focus on other, positive parts of your life. Forgiveness can even lead to feelings of understanding, empathy and compassion for the one who hurt you.

Forgiveness doesn’t mean that you deny the other person’s responsibility for hurting you, and it doesn’t minimize or justify the wrong. You can forgive the person without excusing the act. Forgiveness brings a kind of peace that helps you go on with life.

When you’re hurt by someone you love and trust, you might become angry, sad or confused. If you dwell on hurtful events or situations, grudges filled with resentment, vengeance and hostility can take root. If you allow negative feelings to crowd out positive feelings, you might find yourself swallowed up by your own bitterness or sense of injustice.

If you’re unforgiving, you might pay the price repeatedly by bringing anger and bitterness into every relationship and new experience. Your life might become so wrapped up in the wrong that you can’t enjoy the present. You might become depressed or anxious. You might feel that your life lacks meaning or purpose, or that you’re at odds with your spiritual beliefs. You might lose valuable and enriching connectedness with others.

Forgiveness is a commitment to a process of change. To begin, you might:

  • Consider the value of forgiveness and its importance in your life at a given time
  • Reflect on the facts of the situation, how you’ve reacted, and how this combination has affected your life, health and well-being
  • When you’re ready, actively choose to forgive the person who’s offended you
  • Move away from your role as victim and release the control and power the offending person and situation have had in your life

As you let go of grudges, you’ll no longer define your life by how you’ve been hurt. You might even find compassion and understanding.Karma