Tag Archives: Betrayal

The Trust Conundrum

23 Jun

One of the most painful things we can experience is betrayal. A friend turns against us, a co-worker steals our idea, a lover cheats, a family member lies to us, and the list goes on. There are unlimited ways to be betrayed, and each one is extraordinarily painful. It knocks the wind out of us. Our first response is often disbelief. We can’t believe someone we trusted could do this to us. But we can’t control what others do, and sometimes because of their choices, we may face this very difficult experience. It’s horrible whenever it happens, and it certainly changes the dynamic of the relationship involved.

Being betrayed by someone we’ve trusted can feel devastating. We may second guess ourselves. We may ask, “How could we have trusted them?” or, “How did we not see this coming?” A thousand doubts may fill our minds. But we need to remember that betrayal belongs to those who betray – not to those who trust. It is noble to trust others. It builds relationships, and bridges to those around us when we allow ourselves to trust them. If that trust is broken, it will hurt us, but we are not wrong because we trusted them. The one who betrays us is wrong for breaking that trust.

When this happens to us, we may decide not to trust anybody. Nobody. We may decide not to believe what other people say, and not to rely on anyone. We may become suspicious of everyone, and everything. But trust is the basis for friendship, and every other relationship we have. It’s counter productive to decide to never trust others. If we want interpersonal relationships with anyone, we need to trust them. We need to believe them, and that means we have to be willing to take the risk that they will betray us. Without relationships we miss an important part of being human. So we need to trust, despite the possibility that we will be hurt. Not everyone will betray us, and it’s generally worth the risk. We need to be brave enough to do it.

Today if you feel betrayed by someone you’ve trusted, it will hurt, but try to remember that your trust did not cause this. Sometimes those we’ve entrusted make decisions that hurt us. It’s not a reflection on you. If you’re suffering through a betrayal, remember that. This won’t last forever. You were noble to trust them, and you will move forward. Keep your standards, and do your best. You know more about the person who hurt you now. You’ll be more careful with them going forward. Keep going forward. Walk right on through this. You’ll be wiser because of this, and wisdom is a wonderful attribute.