Betrayal Trauma

There are many forms of trauma. Diagnostically betrayal trauma does not meet criteria for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD); however, that does not negate it’s devasting effects. 

Betrayal trauma usually occurs after someone shatters your trust. This can be lying on a significant level but also infidelity. For example, maybe someone close to you lied to you throughout a period of time and you now feel you cannot trust yourself to trust others in the future. This can hinder your ability to effectively navigate future relationships. Infidelity on the hand can disrupt connecting with others and have ripple effects throughout one’s life depending on if there is a separation or divorce that follows. 

Self-doubt can permeate one’s life after betrayal occurs. This self-doubt then impacts a person’s level of self-confidence and self-esteem. Self-doubt can feel like you do not belong in your own body and second guess every decision you make. Difficulties with trusting others can push others away despite their being an authentic connection. Over time, this can lead to an individual becoming lonely and isolative. A person’s emotions and mood can become negatively impacted after betrayal or infidelity occurs. 

Betrayal and infidelity can create a situation where a person experiences grief and loss (link back to grief and loss blog please). A person can move through the stages of grief and loss at their own pace. The five stages of grief and loss include: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. As a person moves through these different stages their mood and emotions can shift rapidly. 

Depending on the severity of these shifts in emotion and mood individual therapy or support groups may be beneficial to support the person who has experienced the betrayal or infidelity. 

If you or someone you know has experienced betrayal trauma or infidelity and needs support, please do not hesitate to reach out. We offer a free 20-minute phone consultation to ensure goodness of fit.

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