Life After Trust and Betrayal

Yes, there is life after trust and betrayal. Because you don’t live in a vacuum, you want to trust someone enough to establish a close relationship wherein you may share the intimate portions of your life. While relationships of all kinds are readily available, most of them are superficial at best. Yet you long to have a deeper connection with a person, someone you can be honest and open with, someone you can depend on, someone you can trust.

Trust doesn’t come easily, especially for you, if you’ve trusted before and have suffered the consequences of trusting someone who was untrustworthy or demonstrated betrayal of trust. If you trusted someone, then found out later trusting them was not in your best interest, then there is the likelihood you have been wounded by the experience.

The betrayal leaves wounds and scars which cannot be seen by outward appearance, though the emotional suffering which results from a misplaced trust can be much more painful than being bludgeoned by a gang of bloodthirsty thugs, and last much longer.

Is it any wonder you might think twice before entering that dark alley of trust again? How can you know if you can trust someone or, not?

You have a natural inclination to trust others, or not, based on the conditions under which you were raised. We learn either to trust or not trust others with the sensitive details of our life when we are young, and progress through adulthood.

Trust is a give-and-take endeavor, if you feel as though you cannot trust others, you will not likely be as open and honest as you could be, and you will live a heavily-guarded emotional life, feeling mostly disconnected and alone, but also have a sense of safety by not exposing yourself to potential betrayal.

You’re no fool. You are a keen observer of others and can decide whether someone is trustworthy in ten seconds. Every now and then, you find someone. Someone who appears to be trustworthy, someone you resonate with, someone you call friend, and you believe you can trust him or her, so after prolonged observation and data collection, you open up.

You put yourself out there, even if it is infrequently or a rare occasion because you desire this deep connection with another person, one that can only be achieved by trusting someone outside yourself who reciprocates with an equal degree of trust. This is the basis of true intimacy.

Then, before you know it, the trust is broken and you’ve been betrayed by your friend. Though, if you could consider the possibility, even if only for a moment, there is a forty percent chance the breach of trust was the result of your self-fulfilling prophecy.

You allowed yourself to question the idea of trusting anyone, therefore if you actually do trust someone, you expect to be betrayed, so the betrayal manifests itself, even if no betrayal actually took place. Not the best approach in dealing with betrayal.

It’s true, in many cases, a perceived breach of trust was actually a tragic miscommunication between people, which appeared to one or more of the participants as a breach of trust because that’s what he or she was looking for. When the red flag of mistrust was first perceived (even though it may not have actually been waived) the person who expected betrayal, points a finger and shouts, “I knew it!” Further supporting the position that no one can be trusted.

Casual relationships needn’t rely on a high level of trust and are therefore easier to maintain. Given a certain amount of time, a superficial relationship can morph into a more intimate relationship unbeknownst to the person who would otherwise be unlikely to trust. Nonetheless, trust slips in under the radar, and before you know it, someone else has trashed your trust in them, yet again. Though, in this case, there was never any expectation of trust communicated.

It is best, when communicating any sensitive information to someone, to at the very least, let them know that you are trusting him or her, as if to place a delicate crystal bauble in his or her hands with the expectation that he or she will care for it respectfully, protecting it from harm, so as not to damage it while in their possession, and have them acknowledge their commitment to you to keep it safe. It is clearly understood that you do not expect, and it would be devastating to you if he or she threw it onto the ground and crashed it into a million pieces.

Not setting the ground rules of the expectation of trusting someone with something is just not fair, for how is the person supposed to know, as we all regard different things as “sensitive information.” What might be highly sensitive to one person might only be interesting or humorous to someone else, without the proper supporting framework. After all, we can’t possibly know what’s going on inside someone else’s head.

And if you’re carrying around emotional wounds from past betrayals of trust, consider the idea of letting the anchors to those painful wounds go.

If you can allow your mind to conceive of the idea, you might be able to imagine the point of view of your transgressor. What if he or she was doing what they were doing (which encompassed the breaking of your trust) from an entirely different perspective than your vantage point, when the betrayal occurred?

If it is true, that

we are all doing the best we can with what we have

Then, there was no malicious intent of the person who conducted the breach of trust. In fact, that person had no idea (or maybe they did) that trust would be broken. What was going on in the mind and life of that person in that period of time in space left him or her with no other option but to make the decision to take the action which hurt you.

Has there ever been a time when you were falsely accused due to a misinterpretation when someone was unable to see something from your point of view?

If you were that person, had lived his or her life up until that point, and if you were under the exact same circumstances as he or she was in, in that moment… You would have done the same thing.

You could recoil in self-righteousness and say, “No, I wouldn’t.” But that is not true because had you been that person, you would have done the same thing, likely not for the reasons or with the intent which you have associated with the other person’s actions though.

Through empathetic understanding, try to imagine what was going on inside the emotional body and mind of the person you felt betrayed by. Why might they have felt like there was no other option? Be brave enough to try to compassionately imagine what it might have been like to been him or her in that moment in time. How hard might it have been?

Then, if you dare, forgive them, one by one.

You don’t have to tell them or confront them, you only have to forgive them in your own heart, and if you have the ability and the courage, to not carry a grudge and let it go.

There is hope for you, even if you believe that people cannot be trusted, that you can live to love and trust someone in a deeply connected relationship.

You have much love to give.

Private Investigations Behind the Scenes

I have a client who is a private investigator. He has seen and heard it all. Even though he’s seen, heard, documented and recorded things which are normally unheard or unseen, in many cases, he has no idea what part the data he’s collected plays in the overall scope of the situation at hand, or what’s going on inside the heads of the players.

Private investigations is a fascinating line of work, but it takes a special type of person to stay in this line of work for very long. My client does a very good job of not taking anything personally, or engaging in any hypotheses about what the data he’s collected means. His function is only to collect data and report it.

While his work is not as glamorous as what might be depicted in books, movies, and teleplays, he does have quite an array of gadgetry to assist his surveillance efforts. He has told me about some of them, and they sound quite effective. This is the kind of information that anyone who is even slightly paranoid does not want to hear. Even my mind followed the train of thought which considered if this person has tools like that, what must the government have?

His business is focused on three main target markets, insurance, family, and business. It is not uncommon for his data collection to radically change the lives of those who have either retained his services and/or those who have been the subjects of his work. Even so, he is able to keep his mind from wandering or extrapolating any information he might gather, to him it is only data.

I have always been fascinated by people’s different perspectives and points of view. What might mean one thing to one person might have a completely different meaning for someone else, and things we witness first-hand are rarely as they seem at first blush.

Though we are in different fields of work, we both find ourselves working with families in the area of relationships. As you can imagine, our perspectives on relationships vary widely, even though our work may focus on the deepest, darkest parts of a relationship in trouble, our methods are on opposite ends of the spectrum.

Regardless of the method, the key to a longstanding relationship is founded in trust; for if there is no trust, then there is no foundation on which to build a relationship that might expect any form of longevity. Most relationships today are based more on convenience, where one or both parties ask themselves, “What am I getting from this?” While they are getting what they want from the relationship, it is tolerable. If they cease to get what they want, the relationship is disposable.

My relationship work focuses on couples in love, seeking greater connection, love, and personal growth. Relationships, like this, must be founded on trust and mutual respect, not based on one partner (or both) asking “what’s in it for me?” The parties involved in the most successful relationships are asking, “What can I do for us?” Or, even better,

“How can I be the best I can be for me, and offer everything that I have for you and your best interests so that we can grow together and love each other even more?”

Wow. That’s an approach to a relationship that is empowering, uplifting, and brings a solemn tear to my eye when I am able to witness a couple engaged at that level of love.

While trust is so important in a relationship, it can wane over time. Not to worry, there is hope that trust and the love associated with it can be regained, and grow even more. With respect to my PI client, I would not suggest hiring a private investigator if there is to be any hope of rebuilding trust in a relationship.

Everyone is entitled to some form of privacy, and while I don’t know about how all investigators conduct their work, but if you’re under the type of surveillance conducted by my PI client, you have no privacy.

Every relationship needs to establish boundaries and what works for one couple may not work for the next. As much as we’d like to believe that we all could subscribe to a set of rules which apply to every relationship, it just is not practical, unless you don’t mind being socially herded like sheep.

True love honors and respects that everyone is unique and keenly individual, and in a relationship which supports the highest form of love, it is not about what you can do and what you can’t do. No, it’s about,

“What can I do for you?”

Want to know more about true love? Consider attending an Awakening to True Love Workshop near you.

You’ve Been Deceived Now What?

You’ve trusted someone… and they let you down, cheated, lied, committed a criminal act, or otherwise taken advantage of you. When you’ve been deceived, your first instinct might be to ask the question, “How could I have let this happen?”

You need to cut yourself some slack as soon as possible because the fact is that we are surrounded by manipulative people who seek out good and honest people whom they can take advantage of. They can be quite crafty and covert and the fact that they chose you is a compliment to your character and an indication of his or her lack of character.

We all tend to project our own morality onto those within proximity. For instance, if you’re an honest, trustworthy person, you tend to see others as being honest and trustworthy, while liars see others as dishonest, and fear others are always hiding something and may deserve to be taken advantage of.

You’re somewhat in a state of shock because you wouldn’t think of doing this to someone else. Ready yourself to forgive yourself for falling victim to this circumstance, it was not your fault. You are not responsible for someone else’s misdeeds.

Of course, The kind of betrayal I am referencing is the misdeed with malicious intent, you must distinguish this type of activity from an honest mistake. Sometimes someone whom you’ve trusted does something that results in your feeling betrayed, but there was a distinct lack of malice, more likely they hadn’t thought things through far enough or realized that their inattention to detail would be offensive to you.

If someone has simply made the mistake of crossing you unwittingly, cut them some slack, and prepare to forgive them.

Be aware that there are people who may be looking to take advantage of others, but do not fall into the trap of living in fear. Many people may have the tendency to exploit others, and may include personality profiles such as narcissists, sociopaths and/or psychopaths, who are well-versed in building your confidence in them and grooming others for “the take.”

Once you’ve correctly diagnosed a person as one who would lie or otherwise take advantage of you, realize they are a snake. As much as they might beg forgiveness or try to charm you otherwise, a snake is a snake, and it will only set you up to bite you, even worse the next time.

Can people change? Yes. I am in the change business and I see it every day, but you have to learn how to deal with a liar, look out for you and take care of yourself and the others whom you care about. This is your responsibility. If this snake is a repeat offender, you have to do the right thing and take the action which is best for you and yours.

In becoming aware of the existence of individuals who may not have your best interests at heart, learn early detection methods of determining when someone might be being less than honest and pay more attention to potential warning signs early on when you are getting to know someone.

In the event that you are having a twinge, a sense that someone may not be as they appear, don’t be shy about checking out the details for accuracy. If you are uncovering holes in their stories and blatant inaccuracies, there’s no need to confront them about it, just place a safe distance between yourself and this person, and don’t let down your guard around this person.

Now that you are becoming more aware of people and learning how to see people as they really are, be careful not to fall into the trap of seeing everyone as a potential threat. Not everyone is out to get you, but once victimized, it can be easy to be absorbed in perpetual victim mentality (which will only attract more predators) so avoid the temptation to do so.

Remember the good and honest, trusting person that you were before this incident and embrace that part of you even more, only being aware enough to protect yourself in the future.

Betrayal Wounds and Scars

It is not uncommon for people to struggle with issues and the aftermath of betrayal. The emotional wounds from these breaches of trust can inflict sufferers in physiological ways. The emotional pain from betrayal can be as devastating as being stabbed in the back with a knife (thereby justifying the origin of the saying).

Betrayal leaves wounds and scars that made me stronger

Have you been emotionally, “stabbed in the back,” by someone whom you have trusted?

Betrayers come in a wide variety of flavors. Some can be relatives and/or loved ones, sometimes the most intimate love-relationship that one can have with another human being. You may experience betrayal by a friend, co-worker or mentor.

Because we all have different life experiences and personalities, we all respond to betrayal in different ways. A specific betrayal may be of little effect to one person, while another may suffer exponentially; this suffering can be primarily internal, or may express itself externally, or physiologically.

When betrayal has been recognized, the emotional open wound is fresh and the pain may be great. After a while, the pain fades and the emotional scar tissue begins to form. One’s mind begins to filter all information as being potentially harmful, and you may begin to take on the attitude that, “I’m not putting myself out there again,” in a fearful effort to isolate yourself from the possibility of experiencing a similar type of pain in the future.

It is one’s natural fight-or-flight response to protect one’s self from pain and it makes perfect sense… but the cost can be enormous.

The worst thing that can happen to someone suffering from betrayal of trust, is to run the self-preservation-routine resulting in embitterment and over-protecting one’s self in an attempt to prevent anyone from being able to hurt you in such a way again.

The problem with this is; you know, in your heart, that you have so much to give. The sensitive people have special gifts and abilities that help to make the world a better place; they increase the quality of life for others (some who may be extremely less fortunate). Building protective walls around you will also result in cutting off exposure to others who need your light and influence.

The bitterness and fading pain of betrayal breeds a more cynical outlook on life and also comes at a physiological price that may lead to autoimmune deficiencies, illness and a laundry list of diseases.

If left unhealed, little by little, the light of those who illuminate our local community begins to fade and as it fades dramatically, so does the overall general outlook for us (or the world) as a whole.

Since there is no law against betraying another person (although some laws may be broken in the process of the betrayal), those who are emotionally less-equipped to care about the feelings of others run rampant throughout our society victimizing the empathetic shining stars with little regard to the negative impact their actions might have.

I was betrayed and I was hurt Im better now stronger than ive ever beenIf you are suffering from betrayal, scheduling a one-on-one session with a counselor or coach can have an immediate calming effect on your peace of mind and quality of life.

You do not have to be a victim. Instead, you can learn from this event and turn it around. In fact you may find that this event can hurl you into an empowered and optimistic future that can change the future of others and the planet in such a way to bring clarity and focus to your life.

Utilizing specialized skills, a good coach or counselor can work with you hand-in-hand to put you back in control of your emotional wellbeing. You might be surprised to discover that this episode has prepared you as a mentor to help others struggling with similar circumstances.

You can do this; without giving up on being a blessing to others, and continue to achieve your highest and best.

You can find more ways to deal with betrayal in my book: Trust Betrayal.