The Upside to Having Been Betrayed

Yes, you read that right. There can absolutely be a silver lining to that dark cloud we call betrayal. So, how do you move on when a friend shares your most intimate secrets with the outside world? How do you get beyond losing a promotion after being stabbed in the back by a co-worker? How do you make something positive out of a lover, partner or spouse cheating on you? The pain of being stabbed in the back or worse yet, the heart, is very real and multi-dimensional. It affects us mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually.

The world functions because we have rules- both spoken and unspoken. As we grow, we come to believe that if we play by those rules, we will be safe, happy, and fulfilled. When someone betrays us, they break those rules. Worse yet, they selfishly put their needs above ours and that impacts us on every level. The effects of betrayal are not only real and multifaceted, but they also range in intensity from mild to severe based on how close you are to your betrayer. The more you trusted and depended on the person who betrayed you, the more intense the effects. In fact, there’s a collection of symptoms so common to betrayal it’s become known as Post Betrayal Syndrome.

People who have been betrayed tend to suffer mostly from emotional symptoms such as sadness, anger, stress, rejection, fear, irritability, depression and abandonment, but they also suffer from physical and mental ailments as well. Over 60% of the women in my PhD study on betrayal (the study was about how women experience betrayal-what holds them back and what helps them heal) suffered from low energy, extreme fatigue/exhaustion and sleep disfunction. Over 50% felt overwhelmed, shocked, and unable to focus and concentrate mentally.

According to the study, betrayal shatters the way a person looks at world which is known as our worldview. Three quarters of those betrayed find it hard to move forward. Eighty percent of them are hesitant to trust again to the point where they even prevent themselves from forming deep relationships because they are fearful of being vulnerable and hurt. Most people who have been betrayed truly want to move forward, but they don’t know how.

Healing from betrayal can be scary and messy, which is why some people continue to stay stuck. The good news is that moving forward is not only possible, it’s predictable with the right strategies. My findings allowed me to discover certain processes to help you go from betrayal to transformation. You can not only rebuild your worldview, but also do it in a way to become your mental, physical, emotional and spiritual best. That’s the silver lining of the dark betrayal cloud. You can come out of it stronger, wiser, healthier and more empowered than ever before and yes, you can learn to trust again.

When you do, mentally, you’ll be able to focus on what you choose to pay attention to. Physically, you’ll feel more energetic and spirited. Emotionally, you’ll be calmer, centered, and confident. Spiritually, you’ll find the gift in the experience. Somehow, the experience that shattered your worldview will become just another story along your journey as opposed to your destination.

Have you been blindsided by a betrayal experience? Have you healed from it? We’d love to know, comment and share!

Dr. Debi

P.S. Are you suffering from Post Betrayal Syndrome? Take the quiz and find out. You don’t have to go at it alone. Let us help you.


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