10 Step Book Series


This is a ‘taste bite’ of my manuscript 'Life After Betrayal: A Practical Guide'

Dictionary definition of betrayal:

1. To give aid or information to an enemy of; commit treason: betray one’s country

2. To deliver into the hands of an enemy in violation of a trust or allegiance: betrayed Christ to the Romans

3. To be false or disloyal to: betrayed their cause; betray one’s better nature

4. To divulge in a breach of confidence: betray a secret

5. To make known unintentionally: her hollow laugh betrayed her contempt for the idea

6. To reveal against one’s desire or will

7. To lead astray, deceive

Betrayal comes in different guises.

The trust, the dreams and the hopes all shattered in an instant.

Different types of betrayal:

• When a partner deceives you

• When people lie to you

• When someone cheats and robs you

• When people gossip behind your back

• When children trust their parents not to hurt them

• When you are let down by someone you trusted, i.e. Parent/Friend/Boss/Husband/Wife/Child/Sibling

• When you feel humiliated by someone

• When you are betrayed by your parents

• When you are betrayed by your body

• When you are betrayed by society

When your partner betrays/deceives you.

When you are betrayed by a partner, the emotions you experience are extreme. If, and when, this happens you must not accept all the blame or think that the reason this has happened is ‘your fault.’ It does not mean that you are unworthy and unable to sustain a healthy relationship. It says more about your partner’s inability to be loyal and honest in his/her thoughts and actions. You question your intuition and perception in detecting that your relationship was heading towards a rocky path. Your question your feminine attributes and the intimacy you both shared. In short you feel a fool!

If you have been betrayed and are struggling with this feeling, you will experience the following emotions:

• Shock, disbelief and numbness

• denial (hiding away from the truth that has emerged)

• Anger and hurt

• Unhappiness and sadness

• Panic and Anxiety

• Tiredness

• Depression.

• Loss of confidence

• No self-worth

The above list is similar to that of the grieving process you experience when someone dies or abandones you.

Self Esteem

The self-esteem, self confidence and self-worth that should be, naturally, yours is, temporarily, depleted during times of betrayal. It is hard to value and love yourself when someone has betrayed you! The person/persons who have betrayed you have devalued you in the most intimate, personal way.

Self-esteem is an essential ingredient in any healthy relationship. If you respect, and like yourself, you will feel confident and able to interact with your peers. Without self-esteem you will wither away and, emotionally, disable yourself in the process. Self-esteem is a fragile emotion! At the ‘drop of a hat’ it can vanish into thin air. Self-esteem begins in childhood. The emotional and physical nurturing, and learned behaviour establishes patterns of behaviour that you adopt and take with you into adulthood.

For many people, it takes years to achieve good self-esteem. It should be allowed to build up within you and is obtained as a result of achieving some measure of personal success. This personal success gives you a feel good factor which, in turn, makes you proud of your achievement, however small that achievement might be. Even though it may take some time for you to have a good self-esteem, it can be demolished in a blink of an eye!

What does not trusting someone mean?

• It means that you have doubts as to their sincerity!

• It means you are confused regarding their issues and motives

• It means you have no confidence in their ability to keep a confidence

• It will affect how you will react to them

• It means you will not tell that person anything you are not afraid to hear back through someone else

• It stops you being spontaneous.

• You will think, twice, before you speak

• It will erode your relationship with that person

• The relationship with that person will not be meaningful

• You will be unable to grow and develop with that person

• If you have had ‘trust issues’ previously you will be even more wary

• You will be looking for double meanings and hidden agendas during conversations

• Because trust is an essential element in relationships, the relationship will lack quality and substance

The affect being humiliated has on you is:

• Lowers your self-esteem

• Reduces the pride you have in yourself.

• Made to feel inferior

• Made to feel helpless

• Knocks your ego

• Humiliation is emotional abuse

• Being bullied

• Being intimidated

• Can have long lasting effect on your psyche

When you are betrayed by your parents

Patterns of behaviour

Your patterns of behaviour are established during childhood. You adopt these patterns from those people closest to you (role models). If, however, you experienced the following in your own childhood:

• Neglect (physically and emotionally)

• Ignored

• Isolated

• Never having praise

• Abused physically

• Abused emotionally

• Were lied to

• Domestic violence

Then these difficulties, you have experienced and absorbed, have formed the foundation for your behaviour patterns and low self-esteem in adulthood.