Emotion Commotion: Betrayal

Understanding Betrayal
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Written by Kimberly Elmore

Betrayal. Just reading, seeing or hearing that word conjures up negative emotions. Perhaps betrayal is such a harsh word because it’s an emotion felt after someone you love hurts you and you don’t know why.

Betrayal. Just reading, seeing or hearing that word conjures up negative emotions. Perhaps betrayal is such a harsh word because it’s an emotion felt after someone you love hurts you and you don’t know why.

Betrayal can only happen if you love.” ~ John LeCarre

 To betray, as defined by dictionary.com, is to be unfaithful in guarding, maintaining, or fulfilling; to disappoint the hopes or expectations of; to reveal or disclose in violation of confidence; to seduce and desert.
Most people have felt betrayed. Sometimes betrayal ends relationships. Friends can betray one another by revealing a secret; lovers can betray one another by cheating and lying.

Once you feel betrayed, perhaps the hardest thing to do is come to terms with that betrayal and move forward. Do you talk to the person to better understand why they betrayed you? Do you tell them off? Do you forgive?

The first step in dealing with betrayal is to acknowledge it. Pretending it didn’t happen will not help you deal with that betrayal. You can speak with the person who betrayed you or speak with a trusted friend or counselor about the situation and how you are feeling. If you talk with the person who hurt you, you may discover that person didn’t intentionally betray you. Or, if you decide to talk to friend or counselor they may be able to advise you on how to deal with the situation.

After some time goes by, you’ll have more clarity about the situation. You’ll be better equipped to decide if you feel the friendship or relationship is worth fixing.

Can You Work to Move Past Betrayal?

If you feel the relationship or friendship is worth fixing, your loved one will have to earn your trust back. Be sure that you are truly able to work at moving past the betrayal. It will be a process, and it will not help you or the other person if you constantly remind him or her about the past betrayal.

If you feel you cannot move past the betrayal and you need to end your relationship with your friend or lover, that’s OK too. It’s up to you. Only you will know how you truly feel.

No matter what decision you make, it’s important that you learn to forgive the person who betrayed you because it only hurts you to hold onto any bitterness and hatred.

Identity Magazine is all about empowering women to get all A’s in the game of life — Accept. Appreciate. Achieve.TM Every contributor and expert answer the Identity 5 questions in keeping with our theme. As a team, we hope to inspire and motivate ourselves and inspire you to get all A’s.

What have you accepted in your life that took time, physically or mentally?

That I will never be a size 2 or 5’ (Ha!). We all come in different shapes and sizes and I try not to get caught up in the body image issues that stem from the (air brushed) women who are on the cover of magazines. I think what’s most important is to be healthy and comfortable in one’s skin.

What do you appreciate about yourself and within your life?

What I appreciate in my life is my friends. I’m very lucky that I have a close network of friends who have become family.

What is one of your most rewarding achievements in life? What goals do you still have?

At my job, my position has changed drastically from when I first started, which I credit largely to being self motivated (as well as to the professional opportunities my boss and other colleagues have provided to me). Professionally, my goal is to continue to learn and build my leadership skills.

What is your not-so-perfect way? What imperfections and quirks create your Identity?

I use a lot of detail when I talk, some of it is often not necessary to what I’m talking about. J

How would you complete the phrase “I Love My…?”

I love my…smile.

About the author

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Kimberly Elmore

Identity writer Kimberly Elmore is currently employed by Delta Dental of New Jersey in the corporate communications department as the community relations coordinator. She serves as one of our top and longest contributors.

Kimberly has been a huge part of Identity's success since the beginning of 2006. During Kimberly's college years she served as the arts & entertainment editor of her college newspaper and interned in the public relations department at the March of Dimes.

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