How to Get Over Betrayal by Family

Who would have thought you would be betrayed by your own family? These are the people you trusted, you grew up with, they’re supposed to have your back, not stab you in the back. Regardless, welcome to the real world with one hell of a wakeup call, so now you need to know how to get over betrayal by family members.

You must come to grips with the fact that betrayal by family members is quite common and has been going on for years. This is a key component of some of the greatest stories and melodramas of all time. There’s something terribly unsettling with not being able to trust your own family.

Who is better qualified to break you down and expose you for every weakness you have, or any misstep you’ve ever made but the people who know you best and have been the closest to you. Even the Bible warns of it, “your worst enemies will be the members of your own family” (Matthew 10:36) and if that wasn’t enough, try this on for size, “Even those closest to you–your parents, brothers, relatives, and friends–will betray you. They will even kill some of you” (Luke 21:16).

While you might expect to be the victim of betrayal of friends or most anyone, it never occurs to you that your family might be the ones who turn out to be the most toxic individuals, or your enemies, until it happens to you and you’re left having to deal with betrayal.

You can rack your brain and tear up your heart by trying to figure out why, so to put your mind at ease, so you can get on to the business of dealing with the betrayal by your family, one of the most common reasons you might be betrayed by family is jealousy.

If you’re in a position to enjoy life more fully and completely than your family member who feels he or she is more deserving, they might be tempted to throw a wrench into the machine to cause your potential success to fail. (You might remember this if you have siblings, as there is a constant struggle for familial support.)

A family member might want to knock you down a peg or two in an effort to even the playing field or even usurp their authority over you as if to prove you couldn’t possibly make it without them (and they will destroy you if they have to, to prove it).

Your parent, sibling, or another member of your family might just be a control freak and seek to control you and many areas of your life. Just try exerting your own independence and watch them rear their ugly heads to take notice and knock you down. Then kick you while you’re down there just to teach you a lesson.

Then there are the haters, those negative people who can’t help themselves, their first thought is to attack anyone, for no apparent reason, just to spread the hate. They are hardwired to be hatemongers and there’s nothing they can do about it.

Regardless of why you have been betrayed by your family, nothing hurts worse than being betrayed by those who are closest to you leaving heartfelt wounds and scars, and you must take steps to protect yourself from this kind of abuse.

Do not waste your energy arguing and fighting with the family who has betrayed you.

If you want to know how to get over the betrayal by family members, you have to distance yourself from the abuse. In a sense, you must disavow and relation to the members of your family who have turned against you. I don’t mean to lie to yourself, or anyone else about being related to them, but you must stop treating them like family if they have posted up to treat you as their enemy.

You must treat betraying family members just like anyone else who might abuse or betray you. You need to protect yourself from the abuse and not create opportunities for them to further abuse, trash, or attack you in any way.

When you are attacked by a member of your family, you must treat this person just as you would any other toxic person in your life.

There is life after betrayal. Bless them because they are your family, but walk away, and brush their dirt from your shoes. Don’t look back, and just keep walking.

A genuine family member would support you in all that you do and bless you as you make your own way. They want to see you become the best person you can be and enjoy the best life you could have, even help you in making it happen.

Real family loves and supports you no matter what you’re going through, in your best moments, and those less glamorous, and they love you just the way you are.

If not, you must protect yourself.

For more information, see: Family Betrayal


36 thoughts on “How to Get Over Betrayal by Family”

  1. Absolutely. My sister betrayed me and one of my children. Our last parent is ill and while our mother is alive I will be civil. After that I want that poison gone. Have told a few people what she has done to try and understand why. Why? I don’t like to think so but she sees my success as something she can never achieve because she is lazy. If she can’t achieve success she has to tear me down.

    1. May be she is upset with you with something. Betrayal happens when someone hurts someone. For eg. My brother whom I loved the most threw me put of house at 12.30 because he got married. Not only he stole my money, he mistreated me. Now, I wake up everyday wanting him to rot in hell. If I had a chance, and I will, I will do tit for tat. I will also emotionally hurt him by hurting his own family. These people should know what pain is.

    2. Sounds just like my situation. My sister, my only sibling betrayed me also, & brought our elderly mother along too. Such a tough position. Hope all works out for you.

  2. I’m crying after reading this. My whole life I tried to be the good daughter but the harder I tried the more my family beat up on me. I was the scapegoat. Every single success I had was met with name calling or criticism or beatings. Even as an adult, I was treated differently from my siblings. There was one point in my life where my sister betrayed me and my children then I found out through my father, so matter of factly, that he and my mother were also behind it. One could say I was conspired against. The worst part about this was I was just on the crux of ‘making it’ it a very competitive industry. They sabotaged me so badly that I was in financial ruin and couldn’t attend a huge presentation for one of my projects. I missed something so special to me. I had been working on it for years. But that wasn’t the end of it. Even from afar they would call people up and tell them what a rotten mother I was. My mother died recently and nobody bothered to tell me. Not that I shed a tear since I can’t imagine my worst enemy doing what she did to me throughout my childhood. But again, my siblings probably raided the house. She died without ever saying she was sorry or was proud of me or loved me. This happens to a lot with people. And since we still go by ‘honour your parents’, people don’t talk about the abuse and betrayal at the hands of their own family. This leads to self blame and a continuation of attracting sabatours. I told my doctor, I get better treatment from strangers than my own family. Knowing my history, she said she wasn’t surprised. In my case, I will probably never see any of my family again. Which, logically, I know is the right thing for me, but I still need to give up and truly mourn the dream of ever having a loving father and siblings.

    1. I know your pain all too well. I’m sorry that you are going thru this. 25 years ago my family decided to stop having contact with me because I chose to live a different life than what they had planned for me. I didn’t follow their rules. I was married and had a career and a home of my own. I was devastated and tried everything I could to communicate and ask why. I got no response for a year and then my sister called and said she missed me and we resumed our relationship. Fast forward to today. I found out yesterday that my sister, who I have trusted, has been lying to me. She has pretended to not having anything to do with my mother and two brothers. I haven’t heard from her in a week and went to her daughters Facebook page and found that my sister and family are on vacation with my brothers and mother. I’ll admit, it hurt. I now have no family. I’m not going to even accept her calls and I feel no need to explain myself. Sometimes the people whom we think are the safest aren’t. I’m 61 years old and seeing other people enjoying their families always makes me a bit sad. One thing I can advise is to take care of yourself. Know that you have purpose in this life and are loved. Surround yourself with people who genuinely care. You deserve only the best.❤️

      1. I feel for those of you who have been betrayed by family and I send you my Love. I now have no family either. Rather than accept the truth that my daughter is a self centred drug addict who cares nothing for my baby granddaughter ( I had care of her for months in last year while my daughter holidayed over the world) my mother , who is cognitively impaired, prefers to believe that I’m off my head. This is sadly supported by a sister who has always been jealous of me – a loner who cannot sustain a relationship with anyone,who at age 54 has never even had a boyfriend ( though she has trawled dating sights for decades.) I’m now having to go to court for CONTACT with that little girl I had sole care of. BTW said sister also took cognitively impaired mother to solicitor to have her will changed in her favour. It’s nort about money for me. It’s about integrity, honesty and decency. It has been extremely difficult but I now know I’m better off without them and I believe justice will prevail. Karma – what goes round comes round. The piper has to be paid. When ugliness leaves our lives there’s room for more beauty, joy and abundance to enter. Xx

      2. Just rember who betrayed you once will do it again , that’s what I experienced mysley in last few years , you done better from them plus you had an opportunity to create your own better family doesn’t base on lies

      3. Claire, that’s exactly what my sister did! She claimed she had no contact with my parents but all along she was feeding them information about me. So much so that my parents could feign having contact with me. That is how they got into the position to manipulate my sister and thus me. I tried to help every single person in my family. I let every sibling stay in my home rent free for months on end so they could save up enough to pursue their dreams. But when we needed their help, they stole everything from us. I don’t understand why. Does it make them feel important to have all our possessions? Once we had a flood and I lost a lot of my photos of my children. I was so distraught. I told my sister about it and she said ‘that’s too bad’ sort of thing. But one day I found a whole pile of MY photos at her place. I couldn’t believe it. Not only did she steal them from me, she never bothered to tell me she had them. I guess because she stole them. I don’t know why she took them but I took them back!
        I have come to believe every member of my family is suffering from some sort of personality disorder. Again, I doubt I’ll ever see any of them again.

    2. As long as we have a relationship with God, we have a family. God is so awesome, HE even allow us who have been hurt, to be family. Keep smiling! Stay encouraged and keep on trusting God! God Loves you and so do I!

    3. Short and sweet…i identify with your feelings of betrayal…and i pray nothing but goodness love and contentment comes your way.
      God bless

    4. You aren’t alone. Sounds like our childhoods were quite similar. Unfortunately the abuse continues & cuts just as deep as an adult. We still want them to love us, & wonder how anyone could love us if our own family doesn’t. It’s a tough walk.

    5. I can totally relate. My entire family has done the same thing to me including my mother and father. My father just died and left all his money to my little sister who he financially supported her entire adult life. He bought her a $20k car, new cell phone every year, rent food, college. He never even bought me a meal. Meanwhile, I’ve been on my own since the age of 17 and put myself through pharmacy school as a single mother. I’m still paying my student loans.
      My mother went behind my back telling lies about me in attempt to turn everyone that knew me against me, including husbands, best friends and even my own children. It’s devastating. Most people I know have supportive parents or at least one. I don’t tell my story to others because I’m afraid they will think that if it’s my entire family then problem isn’t them , it’s me. But my husband sees how awful they are and can’t understand the abuse either. I’ve wasted so much of my life however trying to gain the approval of my family, only to be betrayed and abused again and again. Not only that, I was made to believe I not only deserved the abuse but that it was my fault. My only regret is not getting these people out of my life 30 years ago. I’ve learned that the only approval you need is God’s. If you seek validation from people, especially abusive family members, you will be at the very least disappointed and more likely devastated.

  3. Having experienced betrayal, I truly feel for everyone who has been through a really difficult time and being betrayed by loved ones. From a vey young age if twelve I have always been there for my family always stood up for family when they needed me. After my parents died three years ago, I have been disowned and my sister and brother do not even call me. I see on the Facebook their families getting together on special occasions. Me, feeling so lonely thinking what did I do so wrong tha I don’t feel loved anymore. Recently after a year and a half, I found out that my niece who practically grew up in my lap gave birth to a girl. She is now a year and a half. Whom I trusted does not want to share here happiness as she texted me to say it’s because I did not go to her wedding. No one knows the true reason why I did not. Only god know. Feeling shut out from family is painful and depressing. I cried endlessly feeling why people hate me so much. I would never hurt others in the way my family have treated me. I am fifty now and also see other families having a good time. Loneliness kills as the same thoughts come in your head every minute of the day and despite to forget. You can’t. I sit down on my phone and pray to Jesus and ask him why am I so lonely? Only time will tell maybe god has better things in store for me. The heart ache and pain is destroying me, only the angels know how much longer I can last. I worry about my children and who will lol after them. God bless

    1. You are not alone. God bless and comfort you (all of you). It appears my story is repeated over and over above. There is something else to all of this. Honestly, the pain of betrayal by family members has pushed me closer to Jesus. I thank God for this gift. There are good people out there…after you grieve your loss…go find them and be Happy. XOXO

  4. After reading all this, all of you have a place in my heart. For we have all experienced the same thing; betrayal by family. I’m 19, and I do not talk to one single person in my family except for my mother and we’re not on good terms right now. I’ve heard from just about everyone that forgiveness is important blah blah. It’s so refreshing to see that it’s okay to feel hurt. To see others share their hurt. I was molested by my Fathers Brother (my biological uncle) when I was 14 years old. No body believed me and I’m so convinced because no one tried to help me. I ran away and never looked back a week after the abuse took place and I still don’t talk to my family. Here we are 5 years later. I was so young I never understood how to deal with the problems after the sexual abuse. I lived with my mother ever since and she tries to insist that I wanted it to happen because I didn’t do anything to stop it. As if she even understands what it’s like being touched by a man whom you trusted literally all your life. A man who held me as a baby. How sick is that? as soon as I turned 14 he sexually abuses me. And I was betrayed by literally my whole entire family. And I’m fine now. Independent and powerful. They’ll never know what it took or the things I’ve been through. I’m waiting for the day that I marry, that way I can change my disgusting last name & finally put all this trauma behind me.

    1. After 35 years of loving my family I was betrayed by all of them. My sister’s disgusting excuse for a man raped me one night when I passed out at their house. My mom and one of my sisters acted like they believed me at first but not long after they decided that I was probably exaggerating the truth and making it seem like rape when it really wasn’t. They never asked me about it again. It got totally swept under the rug. For 10 years I tried to figure out how to fix it. I cried and cried and felt so many things. Anger, sadness, grief, loss, regret for not doing things differently in the beginning. I got married a year ago and changed my name. It felt so good to actually have my own family and I have tried to let it go. I don’t know how to get over it. It still makes me so sad all of the time because I think about how things could have been. I miss all of them. I try to focus on my new life. It is a good one and I don’t want to miss out on the enjoyment of it because I’m always thinking about them. I will keep fighting and taking care of myself in the best way I can. We have to be our own best friends. No one else will do it for us. Prayers and hugs.

      1. I’m 61. I have the same kind of family as many of the people here. I’m also smart, powerful and don’t put up with evil. That got me in trouble with some powerful, vindictive people. I have been through more pain, suffering and what seemed like a never ending tidal wave of hot wet bull shit for more than 25 years. I was sent home to die in 2004. I want to share somethings with each of you: Never give up. Just go forward. Don’t look back. It sucks you in like a pig returning to its wallow, like a dog eating its vomit. Looking back soils you and keeps you stuck in the pain. Look forward. Set a goal. Keep your eyes on it and “Just move forward!” It doesn’t even matter if the goal is little. Sometimes forward progress is measured in millimeters. Sometimes in leaps and bounds.
        Just move forward!”

  5. I was always caring; almost to a fault. I loved my family and would do anything for them. Even my conniving sisters. But I soon found out that the entire family didn’t reciprocate when I needed them the most. Their response: “you’ve never done anything for us” said my parents who’s retirement home I paid for. My brother whose tuition I paid part off. My sister whose wedding I helped finance(a majority of). My brother who’s therapist I paid for(he attempted suicide). I could go one but you get the point. In doing all of this I never asked for anything in return. To this day I wonder what caused this. Was it jealousy, bitterness, etc… I cut ties with completely stopped financially assisting them. A few of them tried to visit my house to apologize but instead asked for another “favor ”. The audacity of these assholes is boyond comprehension. But in a way this is good now I’m more cynical of people.

  6. You are so brave I am sending you blessings and hugs. I have been in a similar situation life just gets better as long as you continue to heal. Distance yourself from those who do not believe your story or support you during your healing journey. Live your best life, keep moving forward, surround yourself with loving friends and people. Join a church or create a support group. I started an art healing class for survivors and it’s an amazing feeling to help other brave souls. I waisted too many years wanting a good and loving family. Instead they always wanted to pretend like nothing happened and not talk about it. I do have my own loving family now and a wonderful husband and 3 adult kids. Life is good and I wish the same for you god bless and stay strong!

  7. I dont know where I fit in this betrayal scheme.. am I the betrayed or betrayer. Though far from innocent (is anyone ever truly is?) I feel as the former. But ask the latter and s/he will come up with as many if not more reasons why s/he is the one betrayed. Its a he said she said circumstance. I dont ask for sympathy or rally support (not a people person) but since s/he is good at story telling and gaining sympathy s/he will more likely be seen as the betrayed. Lets b real.. people are tribal, and most are not interested in the details.. only enough of the juicy bits to think one way or another. So the supporting statement “i feel for you” maybe should have an attachment “assuming you are telling the truth or it as it is and not garnishing for one effect or another”. This may be humanly an impossible expectation.

  8. OMG… I can’t believe how much “family” hurts family
    My father… who told me I was his “special daughter” my whole life
    has betrayed me, by changing his will… and giving more to my brother..
    because he is a boy!! He was never chauvinistic before.. and after taking care of him,
    for over 40 years – because I love him… and being told his money was mine… don’t worry
    is amazing. He just told me last night that boys are more important!!! but he loves me so!
    thanks dad… I always knew you lied to other people. I never thought you would lie and deceive ME.
    I just found out you are narcisstic.. but this hurts SO deep. Hope you live a long miserable life -without ME…

  9. My only sister that lives in a different state, made my mother change her POA. I was the POA for 10 years. The first day she flew in my mom told her I was POA and I will be taking care of everything. The next day She made my mom change POA to her first ex husband, that lives in my state and no one told me. A man that had an affair and abused my sister and she made him POA!!!!!! I found out three weeks later when the doctor told me my mom was going into emergency surgery. During those three weeks my mom never told me either. As a matter of fact she told me to make sure I have my papers together that we did ten years ago. I argued with the doctor about it until new papers were shown to me. My mom never woke up after the surgery for me to ask her. She doesn’t understand English well and she was on drugs at hospital. Who knows if she knew what she was signing. My mom died a month ago. My ex brother in law will not give me her ashes or death certificate. I don’t talk to either one of them.

  10. For 15-20 years me and my aunt were like sisters. Looking back there was always some element of control, but I didn’t pay attention. Then, instead of becoming a successful someone, getting married, having a family etc I got a serious illness, and I didn’t have the decency to get a “normal” one and die within a year, it had to be a chronic illness. She kicked me to the curb without thinking twice, and regularly lets me know how much of a loser I am, wasting my life in bed. Refuses to know anything about my medical condition, and once asked me to get up from the wheelchair and get her a glass of water. The funny thing is that she still would want to go on holiday with me and wonders why we are not close anymore.

  11. My brother and his two sons and stepson are criminals who stole from my elderly dad and have now pilfered what was left of my inheritance. Thousands of dollars stolen from a helpless 90-year-old man with dementia. Thankfully, he never knew about the theft. He passed in October 2018, in a nursing home. My mother passed in 2010. My brother is my only sibling. I am fortunate to have a loving husband and very happy marriage, and I will move on with my life. I do not consider my brother and nephews to be my family anymore. This will haunt me for the rest of my life, though. There is nothing like being betrayed by those you should be able to trust implicitly: family. My heart breaks for everyone else on here as well. Stay strong.

  12. I grew up a humble kid, the most humble of all my four brothers. Everyone in the village,at school and whereve i went liked me, not until i finished my studies,(all my bros ran mad of drugs in their infancies and not even one of them finished school). Got a job with the help of my uncle, one single thing totally divided me from my whole family til now. I was staying at my uncle’s friend during my first month of employment when the room was raided, i was at work, coming back at the crib, everything was turned upside down and everyone was putting on that face of ‘you did this! Aziiz why?’ from that day, however much i tried to defend my self, no one accepted even my own mum,dad,all brothers,unties,uncles everyone in my former big family. i started my own path…All i want you guys to know is we live once, so don’t let others bring hell of stress to your life, remember this a family is a group of people who cannot look after themselves…

  13. This actually helped me see what my actions are the right ones I just found out that my wife and brother were having a affair for a month and a half before she and I had separated and ya I’m trying to look over this but can’t and I really don’t want to loose my brother I already lost my wife and I explained to him if this persist I’ll have no choice but to wash my hands of him and if this is what the future holds then I know now I’ll be making the right choice.

  14. My aunt told me as a child that I was not family that my dad was not my dad. She would take her kids and my cousins shopping but would not take me. I grew up thinking I didn’t deserve nice things because of who I was. This caused me to have a very sad and unhappy life. On top of that My mom died when I was 11. My dad at times treated me like an unwanted animal. I stayed in trouble. Fast forward, I asked him one day if he was my real father and he said no. My heart broke. I then announce it to my siblings and other family members and my dad told them I was a liar. Now I’m really confused. Every man I’ve ever dated and loved has hurt me ever since. I guess me thinking I wasn’t good enough had a lot to do with it. A step mother comes into the picture and treats us all like Cinderella. That story is so true about how mean step mothers are. So I began to focus on myself building my skills. I finished school with a masters in business. I started a business but still striving to make it big. I have a pain in my heart though that keeps getting bigger. Don’t know if my dad really is my dad. He’s old now and I don’t bother asking him about it. I just go on hoping that maybe my real father if he’s even real or out there, will come and rescue me and my heart. My father broke my heart but I forgave him but I don’t think I’ll be able to ever love and trust a man again. I don’t want to be by myself but I’ve isolated myself from any man or friends for fear of dying from heartbreak. Can’t take another heartbreak.

    1. I know your heart is broken. It’s possible to get a DNA test (can be done via mail) while your father is alive to determine the truth, if you’re interested. I hope you can focus on finding happiness with people that are good to you. Prayers and hugs.

  15. For people who have a strong sense of family and who grew up believing that family would always be there for them it’s not so easy to just cut off a relationship as if it belonged to a complete stranger. I don’t think this article addresses those issues.

  16. I’ve gotten to the place where I could care less. The falsehood has been exposed, and as far as I’m concerned, I’ve been done a favor.

  17. Thank you for what you have done for me!  My husband stopped filling the divorce papers after I contacted you to help me stop the divorce with my husband and now things are going much better now.  As you said, all the process concerning the divorce has been canceled and the evil woman that causes the problem in my marriage has been sent away by my husband and we are now happy together.

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