Removing Roadblocks To Healing After Betrayal
Today we are honored to have a guest blog post from Melody Lovvorn. Melody uncovered her husband’s betrayal in 2000, and has lived through the nightmare of having her family torn apart when her children were 6, 4, 2, and 6 months. After walking her own path of healing and wholeness, Melody and her ex-husband Tray were remarried in 2008. Along with Tray, Melody has been devoted to personally coaching and walking with others who are currently living through the pain and trauma of their partner’s betrayal. Out of her own experience, she created Life Beyond Betrayal (www.lifebeyondbetrayal.com), an online course spanning 30 days for women who have been impacted by betrayal and/or infidelity. She and Tray live in Birmingham with their 4 children who are now 20, 19, 17, and 15.
As long as I live, I will never forget that moment. The words “we need to talk”, followed by “yes it’s true” as I confronted my husband broadsided me with a pain that I had never experienced before. I had no idea how I was going to breathe in the next moment, let alone survive this.
In the days that followed, I had hoped to find help, hope, direction, understanding, and guidance, but instead encountered the reality that I was in a messy situation that very few wanted to enter.
My name is Melody Lovvorn, creator of Life Beyond Betrayal.
That was 15 years ago…My children were 5, 4, 2, and 6 months old. In that moment, I did not have the option to press pause on life in order to properly deal with what had happened to me.
While the specifics of your story might be slightly different than mine, there is nothing that prepares you for the devastation of betrayal. This relational trauma rocks you to the core, and like me, you may be wondering how you will continue to function in light of your current situation, whether you discovered the truth of the betrayal today or a number of years ago.
For the last seven years, I have had the privilege of walking with hundreds of women through these painful and difficult waters. During that time, I have discovered 3 common roadblocks that can often hinder genuine healing after betrayal.
The first roadblock that needs to be removed is the belief that you somehow caused this…that it is your fault. This happened to you, but this did not happen because of you! There is nothing that you did or didn’t do to cause it. Someone else made a decision that was outside of you, and I want you to know that it did not have anything to do with you. People from all walks of life experience betrayal so trying to find out what you did or didn’t do is a losing battle. You didn’t cause this.
The second roadblock that needs to be removed is the belief that you can cure or fix what has happened to you. Many women attempt to do this by taking responsibility for decisions that someone else has made. Trying to fix someone else’s decisions will only prevent you from moving toward your own genuine healing. Carl Jung said, “What you resist, persists.” Not only that, the pain you resist bubbles up to the surface and can affect your life in ways that are far removed from the original wound.
Unfortunately, after the discovery of betrayal, being pain-free is not an option. Escaping or avoiding the pain only prolongs it. Remember, you are not alone. There are other women on the same path through pain toward healing.
The third and final roadblock that needs to be removed is the belief that you can somehow control the circumstances around your betrayal. It’s very natural that questions will bombard us when the person we trusted the most is the source of the betrayal. An avalanche of emotions is often experienced as we begin the never-ending quest to find answers to our questions.
Be careful to choose “What” instead of “Why” questions. The following “Why” questions will never result in a satisfactory answer:
“Why did this happen to me?”
“Why didn’t I know?”
“Why wasn’t I enough?”
Instead of getting caught in the never-ending cycle of these “Why” questions, ask yourself these questions instead:
“What am I going to do now that I have discovered this betrayal?”
“What can I choose today to help determine the quality of my life in the future?”
“What can I do right now to move me in the direction of healing?”
It is completely understandable to want your situation to return to normal as quickly as possible after experiencing the pain and heartache of deception. But be sure that you do not inadvertently delay your own healing process by spending time and energy looking for shortcuts. There is no avoiding the fact that you will experience pain on whichever path you choose, but you can also prolong the pain due to shortcuts that promise but don’t deliver peace of mind.