This is something that was in a bulletin on another website...I thought this was an interesting read b/c I've dealt with this many times before...gimme your views on it and I'll holla back with mine! :D
Where do you go after you have been betrayed by someone you trust?
Filed Under: LOVE & RELATIONSHIPS
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, 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.
I think the first time I experienced this type of betrayal came in my teens when my best friend who I confided in, shared all my fears and secrets with, decided she wanted my boyfriend. She told all my secret fears to everyone and of course to my boyfriend. I was totally devastated and I think I never really recovered from that betrayal totally because for years afterwards I was very guarded and did not trust women that I worked with especially. I did not confide in another person for many, many years.
There are many reasons that cause people to betray one another. Sometimes the acts are very deliberate and the intention is to hurt the other person. However, sometimes they are consequences of choices that are made with no intention of doing any harm to anyone. Looking out for oneís 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 oneís 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 wonderÖ.
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. Even the person that betrays another will be changed. Other people will immediately begin to distrust their motives for they know the person cannot be trusted. Most of the time other people will turn to the one that has been betrayed and comfort them so the betrayer never wins in this destructive game of betrayal either. When one is the victim of betrayal they might be more guarded and protective of themselves for fear of being vulnerable again. They might learn to be more discerning and less naÔve. 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 peopleís 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 affects. 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.
If you are trying to heal from a betrayal it will help if you:
Acknowledge your anger and then let your anger out.
In a quest to save a relationship people who have been hurt often bend over backwards to please their betrayer. Why? Because when we have been betrayed the person who hurts us has sent a clear message that on some level we donít matter to them as much as they matter to us. In a rebound state of fear of loss this often translates into the hurt party trying to earn back the other personís good opinion. It is a knee-jerk reaction and always ends in resentment. The best way to start the healing process is to acknowledge that there has been pain, betrayal and a loss of trust. Once you have let the light shine on the problem then you have a better chance of healing the wounds that are left.
After releasing the anger strive to find a means to let it go.
Once you let your feelings out you need to let the incident go. This does not mean blind forgiveness, but there is an element of forgiveness involved in this step. If the person who hurt you apologizes and you accept then you need to never rehash the incident. Doing so will only bring back your anger and keep you in emotional limbo. Donít bring it up as a weapon. Donít hold it over the other person every time you feel wronged in the future. Acknowledge that it happened, make your feelings and expectations known, and then stop focusing on what damaged the trust and set your sights on rebuilding. Youíre only human, you may slip up and throw the incident in the face of your betrayer and if you do donít beat yourself up over it, apologize and move on. While this step may seem like letting the person who hurt you get off easy in reality you are making things easier on yourself by allowing yourself to be hurt and moving past it.
Know that things can never go back to the way they once were and keep your eyes wide open to future betrayals.
The sad reality is that once trust has been damaged it canít simply go back to the way it once was, no matter how much both parties may want it to. People who do not value trust enough to respect it in the first place more often than not continue that pattern in the future. This doesnít mean that it is a waste of time trying to rebuild trust it just means that the new trust has to be different. Call it a more mature trust. While trusting a person who has hurt you isnít impossible it will never be the same kind of wide-eyed trust we give to people when we first let them in. This is not really a bad thing even though it may seem like a loss. Seeing people for who they really are rather than through rose-colored lenses can be a healthy thing. So when you decide to try to give trust a second chance just know that you will be more sensitive to the prospect of another betrayal and forgive yourself if doubt seeps in without real reason. The person who is a betrayer may find that the road ahead of them is paved with distrust also for no one will respect someone that betrays another. They will always look at the betrayer as someone they will never trust to hold a secret or a confidence again.