5 Best Ways To Positively Overcome Ultimate Betrayal
Scenario 1: You helped your first cousin whom you grew up and played with when he fell on hard times, lost his job, got evicted, and had nowhere to go. You trusted him to stop by when you were home to grab a bite to eat when he said his money was low and let him sleep on the couch, sometimes. Yet, you caught him red-handed stealing money out of your nightstand when you came out of the bathroom one day.
Scenario 2: You supported your girlfriend and her children for over two years emotionally and financially. The kids were not biologically yours. Your girlfriend cried on your shoulders numerous times that her children’s father never did anything for his kids and cheated on her multiple times when they were together. You trusted her when she told you that she was over him and wanted nothing more to do with him aside from allowing weekly supervised visitation with his kids. Yet, she came to you one day and told you that she had a long conversation with him, he wanted to make up for his failures and lost time with his kids by marrying her and living with them as a family, she was breaking up with you, and taking you to court over unpaid bills in her name that she said you always paid.
Scenario 3: You trusted your boyfriend of three years and your best friend of over ten years. You trusted both with your life and deepest heartfelt secrets. You were there for her even in wee morning hours when she miscarried during her pregnancy. She swore that she did not want any more children due to the emotional pain of the experience and loss. You were there for your boyfriend when his brother tragically died and throughout his recovery from a bad car accident. Yet, one day, you overheard a conversation between your best friend and boyfriend that she is pregnant from him and wants to keep the baby.
Does It Look Like The Above Scenarios Embody Ultimate Betrayal?
In the biblical story, Jesus was on the receiving end of betrayal by Judas. In Greek mythology, Dolos or Dolus is the Greek god of betrayal. In history, Marcus Junius Brutus, the assasin of Julius Caesar, betrayed him, and Benedict Arnold is said to be the most famous betrayer or traitor in American history.
Betrayal is the ultimate temptation that leads to one sin after another, then another until an explosion of hate, hurt, disappointment, and doubts erupt. The word betrayal is an embodiment of so many things and offers up different impacts on the individual in question. Scientifically, betrayal is a matter that can transform into various types of hurt to suit the circumstance. It is cunning, beyond our expectations, and can yield enormous disappointments and devastations in relationships.
We live in a world where social interaction is the way to build and nurture relationships and success. With consistent relationship building and building success, conflict may arise. Interpersonal betrayal is the most common form of betrayal in our world today. It may show itself as simple offenses as dishonesty, lying, deception, infidelity, and abuse from friends, family, or business partners. It can happen in your personal or romantic relationships, and the impact of betrayal is intensified by the person or action when one has given others the benefit of the doubt. The intensity of the negative consequences leaves a dent that only forgiveness may restore.
The Emotional Consequence of Betrayal
According to Merriam Webster, betrayal is the act of doing something to someone that violates the trust and confidence the person has in you. It was further to say that betrayal is the revelation of something hidden not known to the betrayed. Some synonyms for the word are backstabbing, double-cross, disloyalty, sellout, two-timing, unfaithfulness, and many more.
Betrayal is one of those emotions we may suffer in silence because the person causing the betrayal can be one of us. The emotional consequence of betrayal is the loss of trust and constant doubt on whom to believe or trust. Betrayal causes fear and the inability to try to or open up ourselves to be vulnerable in the future.
While you may choose to wallow in rejection, you may ponder about learning the lesson that life has thrown your way and move on. If you decide to remain in that vicious cycle of emotional turmoil caused by betrayal, you may fall into the same trap again; possibly getting hurt again and again.
Betrayal may occur when someone fails to control their urge to act against others in ways that damage or destroy trust for their gain. Some folks may betray others for no other reason than because they can or other reasons. Some of the reasons for betrayal may include a lack of good character, morals, and ethics, jealousy, rivalry, power, selfishness, greed, fear, ignorance, or being inherently evil.
Experiencing ultimate betrayal may lead to emotional trauma and mental health issues. One may experience confusion, emotional distress, depression, anxiety, and other negative feelings. In romantic relationships, betrayal can especially hit hard after investing one’s trust, loyalty, time, resources, money, and love into someone who acted against someone else through lies and emotional or sexual infidelity.
Trust – The Reason for Betrayal
Trust is a delicate commodity. Blind trust is debatably even more fragile. You may feel like you can trust someone under one circumstance yet not others or feel as though folks must earn your trust over time. Sometimes, no matter how good of a man or woman you are to someone, they may betray you and that can be unsettling. There can be times where the betrayer is informing your enemy of your every word and movement. These can be particularly troublesome when a betrayer fails to display self-accountability or get help for their issues that result in betrayal.
Throughout history, it seems as though humans have normalized the act of betrayal with it losing its effectiveness as a harmful action. However, it does not just happen on its own; it is usually the result of trust. You know the physics law of every reaction is equal and opposite. That places trust and betrayal on the spectrum.
The (blind) trust you gave your business partner to make decisions on your behalf empowered him or her to betray you. It is the trust you gave your boyfriend, girlfriend, or spouse that gave them the power to use your weakness to hurt you. It is the trust you had in your girlfriend that made you tell her your innermost secret that bit you in the butt. There were never strategies or a thought-out plan to hurt you. Trust opened a door, created a path, and enabled the betrayal.
Let’s be clear. Yes, betrayal is a question of character. Humans can be cunning, and in pursuing prized possessions, the goal may be all the matters. Everything else becomes an obstacle.
In an article, how to rebuild trust after a betrayal, the author defined trust as a living entity, not an emotion, one that is not earned but learned from past mistakes (betrayal). The article says trust is a risk, but we cannot do without it. The devastating consequence of betrayal leaves you questioning if you did the right thing trusting and should trust people in the future.
As crazy as this sounds, you need trust to build anything positive in and around your life. You are poised to fail if you do not trust your talents. If you do not trust your relationship, you will not make a heart investment. If you did not buy into that business idea, you would not build a successful brand.
Some betrayals may not have started as a solid plan. Something may have triggered it. The behavior of others is not always within our control. It may be best to realize that what triggers someone to betray others is not within our control. It is wise to work on being realistic, preventive, and managing the circumstances and outcome. Finding harmony and balance to trust others takes work, but being aware of repeated patterns of behavioral and verbal consistencies and inconsistencies can help.
Lies - The Ultimate Betrayal
Sometimes, the only thing worse than a lie is the liar who refuses to come clean, get to the bottom of why they cannot stop lying, or stop the lies. Finding out that someone you trusted betrayed your trust with lies can be surprising, angering, disappointing, and devastating.
Lying can damage or destroy loyalty, trust, and jeopardize the foundation for love and personal and business relationships. Some people may decide to get past minor offenses in personal or business relationships and even sexual infidelity. However, getting past betrayal may be difficult or impossible when the betrayal involves lies and emotional cheating.
Most people probably despise being lied to, but if you ask them if they ever told even one lie in their lifetime, some people may not be honest. Their perspective may factor in the degree or severity of the lie – whether they feel it was a harmless white lie, a lie of omission, or a flat-out lie they believed would spare someone’s feelings. Regardless, when it comes to betrayal involving lies, some people may know that if you have to lie about anything, then you know or should have known that you should not have committed the action(s) involving the betrayal and lies. Someone can declare that they had compelling reasons to lie such as if telling a lie would save a loved one’s life. One could also experience regret after telling a lie, lying for other reasons, or lying for no reason.
5 Positive Ways To Overcome The Ultimate Betrayal
Now that we understand betrayal and its cause, how do you positively overcome ultimate betrayal?
Do Not Retaliate – This advice may sound crazy, but it is the first step to overcoming a betrayal, especially from a loved one. Retaliating only escalates the hurt, pain, and anger of having been betrayed. It can keep one in a vicious cycle of emotional turmoil when the goal could be to address, manage, and move forward from the betrayal in healthy ways that allow healing and deciding how to live without allowing the betrayal to damage and destroy your ability to trust again.
Transform the energy that you would invest in retaliation into understanding, embracing, and building a better you for the road ahead. Do not allow the betrayal to rob you of your self-love and self-worth, destroy the core of you who are with great and admirable traits, kill your spirit, or make you become like your betrayer(s). There is a saying: Don’t get mad, don’t get even, get ahead. However, rather than compete in comparison with your betrayers, stay aware, set up safeguards in your life that may help to prevent future betrayals, and focus on your reaching or exceeding your goals and maintaining good character. Know intuitively, even if you do not wish the worse onto others, that every dog has its day or folks may reap what they sow. It is not that you wish negativity upon them. Their negative actions may cause them to reap negativity.
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Forgive The Betrayer And Yourself - The ultimate way to overcome betrayal is forgiveness. There are no strategies, gateway, or after-thought, just simple, straightforward, old FORGIVENESS. The question is, do you have that in your arsenal? Now, some of you may be thinking, Heck No! I will NOT forgive anyone who ultimately betrayed me! I would tightly hug a porcupine a million times before I forgive them!
Okay, you have every right to feel the emotions that involve any betrayal you may have experienced. It may be healthy to vent positively and constructively so long as you bring no harm to yourself and others. Scream to the top of your lungs when you are home alone. Picture your betrayer in a clown suit. Write a nasty letter to your betrayer and read it several times before ripping it up and throwing it away. These acts may be a symbolic part of your healing to move forward from the betrayal.
We do not recommend giving any nasty letters to your betrayer. That may serve to mentally empower your betrayer and hinder the forgiveness process. A nasty letter to your betrayer may make you TEMPORARILY feel good but is probably not going to allow you to heal and move forward in the long-term. No one is perfect. We all have done things that we could have done differently. However, your self-growth and strength of forgiveness, primarily for self (and if you choose to forgive your betrayer), is what can set you apart and place you in a whole different league of character.
There is an the overwhelming and emotional dilemma with forgiving others. It can feel like weakness or setting one’s self up for repeated betrayal. We are not suggesting this. There is uplifting of self that comes with forgiveness or forgiving the offender and it takes mental strength and stamina to positively process forgiving others for betrayal.
Forgiveness does not mean accepting the reason for the betrayal or foolishly going back for more. You may never get an apology or explanation from the betrayer as to why they betrayed you. Forgiveness is a platform to empower YOU to move away from the hurt and start to build trust in yourself and others again. It can allow you to rise above the pain, disappointment, and confusion of the betrayal and not hold you as a hostage, mentally.
You are worth more than allowing the betrayer to hold you emotionally and mentally hostage and keep you from feeling fulfilled, happy, and at peace. Do not give the hurtful actions of others the power to rule over your emotions and life. These things can be a hard thing to do after being ultimately betrayed and may take time and healing. Remember that it is also okay to learn the lesson in the betrayal, forgive, let go, and heal, and move on.
Do Not Accept The Circumstances - Some people that experience betrayal knew about the betrayal but accepted it. As you step out of this betrayal, do not agree or make excuses for the situation or man or woman who betrayed you. Walking away may cause you pain and grief for a while. However, continuing to accept the betrayal may cause compounded damage in the long run if you do nothing about it. It may eat away at you, emotionally and mentally, if you accept it and pretend that nothing happened. If you sense a betrayal, speak up about it or walk away and rebuild your self-esteem and confidence by indulging in positive, constructive, and self-healing activities. Do not allow someone to guilt-trip you into thinking you are insecure, paranoid, or being illogical after they betrayed you. If someone loves or cares about you, they will not mind giving you positive, loving, and consistent reassurance to re-build trust after betrayal. They would not intentionally do things that repeatedly send out red flags. They will communicate honestly and respectfully with you. Upfront communication involves discussing various life and relationship perspectives. It can be an informative and fun journey to learn people’s outlooks on life, love, and social relationships.
Reassess The Relationship – If someone you deem a friend betrays you, it may be easier to move on. However, if the betrayal is from a spouse, a family member, or a business partner, you need to reassess your expectations in the relationship. It may not be easy, but you must ask yourself if staying is worth it. How will you interact with them if you do not leave? You must assess if you think things will or will not work out. You must be self-aware and develop, set, and maintain ground rules, boundaries, and standards and learn what or how much of their behaviors you are willing to accept or not.
In any relationship where one experiences betrayal, it is wise to walk away if the betrayal involves domestic violence and emotional and verbal abuse. Walking away shows courage, self-love, self-respect, self-worth, and self-dignity that you will not allow the betrayer to repeat the offense. Depending on the level of betrayal and if it is not irreparable, you may decide to allow the betrayer to slowly gain their trust back and consistently prove themselves over time.
Consistent transparency and clear and established ground rules for accountability from a spouse who committed betrayal are needed to rebuild trust. Allowing free use of cell phones, known whereabouts, account passwords, extending event invitations to the betrayed spouse, or other good faith ways can show that someone who betrayed someone genuinely wants to rebuild trust. These things can be a start to show their significant other that they mean business when it comes to getting a second chance to stay together.
One or both spouses may decide that this is too much to do to overcome the betrayal. This matter may be a sensitive time because betrayal can create a toxic relationship deficit where the betrayed spouse has become so emotionally damaged that they stay in the relationship yet apply constant guilt and negative pressure on the one who betrayed them. They may repeatedly and negatively remind them of the offense by throwing in their face every day or remind them that they must dig themselves out of a hole or work their way out of the doghouse. The spouse who committed the betrayal may feel like they must be perfect and can never repair the relationship to back to a healthy level.
Feelings of resentment may arise where one or both parties give up on the relationship altogether or causing the spouse who committed betrayal to repeat their offense(s). The betraying spouse may feel like their sense of freedom and autonomy within the relationship unit is shattered and irreparable. There is a fine line that must be walked by both spouses. However, it can be helpful if the betrayer willingly shows the effort needed to accept accountability if he or she values re-building trust and repairing and saving the relationship if that is the goal.
Some relationships survive betrayal. Others do not. Healing from betrayal includes honestly communicating one’s emotions, forgiveness, and letting go of self-blame, shame, or guilt. The choice to stay or leave is ultimately yours if you have been betrayed. You are the one who must live with your choices that may affect children, family, and others. Ask yourself if you feel at peace to continue to deal with someone who betrayed you or if you still have unsettled and uneasy feelings or unanswered questions.
Being betrayed by family members is another hot topic. There is a saying: We cannot choose our family. Our genetics were pre-determined. However, we can choose how we manage our relationships or if we choose to interact at all in them. There are several types of family structures that one can build if a traditional family structure is not possible. Some family structures are blended, extended, and nuclear families. If traditional family relationships are strained or damaged, one can create, build, and maintain other social or community family structures. These other family structures can foster acceptance, love, care, socialization, and a safe space for the well-being of all members with respect or consideration for shared or unique values, culture, and opinions.
Now, we admit that toxic, broken, and dysfunctional families exist where betrayal, disrespect, dark family secrets, and shunning can make it difficult or impossible to have trust and healthy family relationships. If you talk to some people, they may share with you that they are the black sheep of their family where betrayal or ostracization is the norm and they moved on from the negative and damaging effects or still struggle with them.
Realistically, dealing with betrayal from family members can feel worse for some people because they expect a family to stick together and look out for each other. Believe it or not, some family members betray and have betrayed or violated other family members yet do not take responsibility for it and pretend that the one they betrayed caused the issues.
Furthermore, they may fail to communicate any reasons for their actions and play the victim. This involves dysfunction. If you are experiencing or experienced betrayal by your family and brought it to their attention, yet they fail to own up to it, stand your ground and refuse to be gaslit, manipulated, or a victim of reverse psychology. Sometimes, you must love family members from a distance or accept that you may never have the type of healthy family relationship with them. The good news is that you can work on creating your family unit structure through blended, extended, or have other community or social involvement and not allow any negative family dynamics to destroy you. You can also work on improving your life and working on life goals.
Get Help – Seeking help is usually the last resort if you have been deeply betrayed or disappointed by people you do not expect. Whether it is a close friend, family, licensed therapist, or a psychiatrist, talk to somebody that will help you make sense of the hurt without criticizing your role in the betrayal. Be aware of sharing information with family members who have a close relationship with the family member(s) who betrayed you. They may agitate the situation with gossip and rumors among other uninvolved family members and attempt to turn them against you. Seek neutral third parties who can offer honest and objective feedback and opinions that can help you heal, manage the betrayal, and move forward rather than hinder your outlook and perspectives about yourself and life.
Stuff happens, and betrayal is one of them. Despite the hurt, pain, disappointment, and emotional turmoil, learning to trust again with honest and respectful communication, patience, established ground rules for accountability, and personal interactions is a lifeline that can help you overcome a betrayal.
Ultimate betrayal encompasses lies that can damage and destroy personal, social, and family relationships and any chance at rebuilding trust after betrayal. Learning to trust again after one’s trust is betrayed or destroyed takes accountability, time, consistency, patience, not retaliating against someone who betrayed you, forgiveness, not accepting the betrayal, re-assessing relationships, and seeking help. It will help you step out and understand why or else you may remain in emotional bondage indefinitely.