Tuesday, May 24, 2011

When Folks Let You Down

Sometimes I think I have been dealt more than my fair share of betrayal.

I have been cheated on by more than one partner. Ten years ago, when I made the decision to divorce my husband, my dearest friend shunned me because her religious convictions prohibited divorce; she has not spoken to me since. Some time later, another close friend betrayed a confidence to build herself up in the eyes of mutual acquaintances. I have poured my heart and soul into piano students only to have them leave my studio with no explanation. Once, a date abandoned me at a club, leaving me to walk several miles home in the middle of the night. And then there have been guys who said they wanted to be my friend but secretly wanted more; then, when faced with the reality of my feelings, they ditched the relationship altogether.

I could go on and on; occasionally, I consider abandoning trust, period. If you keep people at arm's length, they are far enough away that they can't hurt you, right? Come to think of it, I am not at all convinced that it is really better to have loved and lost.

In the long run, though, I know I would be the person most hurt by being left alone. And then the terrorists would have won.

If I am brutally honest with myself, there were warning signs in each of the above situations that I chose to ignore. So it is important that I learn from the mistakes of the past; moving forward, I must keep my eyes wide open and trust my instincts. During this exciting period of intense personal growth I am experiencing, I must not hesitate to purge toxic people and behaviors from my life; instead, I must focus on relationships and activities that will lead to personal growth and overall health.

How do you deal with betrayal? What is important to your health and growth right now?

# # #

On a happier note (pun intended), here is the recording I promised of Natalie and me playing Piazzolla's Libertango for two pianos at her student recital on Saturday. Enjoy!

20 comments:

Scarlet Pumpernickel said...

Lovely recital. It is very hard to continue to trust when someone lets you down. Personally, I try to remember the old adage, the best revenge is to live well. I'm afraid I don't tend to give second chances, usually. That way, if I get burned, at least it will be by a different fire.

Kate said...

Great music! I wish I could play like that.

It does hurt when your trust is betrayed. What do I do? I write about it!

Pam Asberry said...

Thank you for your comments, Scarlet. I think one must be very careful when doling out second chances; when it comes to certain kinds of betrayal, I think the old adage, "Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me," applies. Glad you enjoyed the music!

Pam Asberry said...

Writing is cathartic for me too, Kate. Matter of fact, I am going to try to harness some of these feelings and use them in my WIP today. Glad you liked the piano; as a teacher, I maintain that anyone can learn to play, but you do have to practice! :-) Thanks for stopping by.

EEV said...

Pam, the play was beautiful, I'm moved (and I love contemporary tango, so there you go). :)
About betrayal - I've been betrayed sometimes. I usually move along and never talk to them again. The last time it happened it was someone very close to me, the kind you can never really walk away from (AKA blood family). It's hard, but as Scarlet said, "Living well is the best revenge". It seems it's working!

Pam Asberry said...

Glad you enjoyed the tango, EEV. That was a fun piece to play. Of course, Natalie had the more difficult part, since it was her recital. But I sure enjoyed the ride! I think when you've been deep down and dirty betrayed, there is really no choice but to move on. The sad thing is, those are the people you trust the most, the ones you thought would be a part of your life forever, the ones you least expect to hurt you. But, as I said in my post, in retrospect there were red flags that I should have paid attention to. "Living well is the best revenge" was my motto after my engagement ended a couple of years ago. Maybe it's time to pull that quote out of the basement for a while!

S.M. Carrière said...

I'm very much like Scarlet. I'll be burnt by many different fires, but never twice by the same one. I don't give second chances. Some say it's a flaw. I look at it as a survival instinct.

I'm still learning to trust my instincts. If I listened to them, I probably wouldn't have gotten burnt in the first place.

I feel I've also had more than my fair share of betrayals and disappointments. I don't deal with it well at all.

It happened so often that for a while I closed up altogether. I'd have rather lived and died alone than suffer yet another one. Only after I met with my current circle did I start to open again.

All the same, it's taken me a long time to allow people in, and I'm still very rigorous about having people earn my trust. I don't give it very readily.

I don't need lots of friends. I do need good friends.

Pam Asberry said...

Yes, S.M., we MUST learn to listen to those little voices inside our heads! I cut myself absolutely no slack but make a million and one excuses for others and their abominable behavior/poor decisions. It's time to listen to our heads and not our hearts, at least when it comes to trust. I am glad you have found a circle you can open up to; you are right, we don't need many friends, we just need GOOD ones. I am so glad I know you!

Annie Oortman said...

What a wonderful post, Pam. re: trust... been there, done that. I've had a husband, a business partner, and a very close friend betray me and, yes, the tendency is to swear off trusting anyone again. However, all that does is make one bitter. I'm still willing to trust, but now I do so with my eyes open and my heart protected.

annie

Pam Asberry said...

I am sorry for your pain, Annie. I guess you could say we're sadder but wiser girls, yes? The best is yet to be. Thank you for your comments.

Laila Knight said...

I am so sorry you suffered through so much. Trust is a precious thing, easily lost, hard to regain. It's painful to be betrayed my someone you love or pledge your life to. Divorce is sometimes necessary. The purpose of a marriage is to love and grow toward a common goal with someone. It should make you happy. I'm certain that there is someone out there for you. You're a special person who obviously cares a lot. As someone who has struggled herself in the past, I can relate and wish you the best of luck.

Pam Asberry said...

Thank you so much for your kind words, Laila. In my situation, the divorce was definitely called for, and I truly expected my best friend to understand. In a way, hers was a greater betrayal than my husband's. I was married for 19 years; on the 29th of this month, I will "celebrate" the tenth anniversary of my divorce. I never imagined I would still be single after all this time; at this point, I am beginning to question whether or not there really is someone out there for me. But single or in a relationship, my goal is the same: to be the best human being I am capable of being and helping others in any way possible to do the same. Thank you for stopping by.

Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn said...

The problem with you, Pam, is that you're an amazing person and finding someone you deserve is no small feat. But I believe there is someone out their looking for you too. Maybe it's the romance writer in me, but I believe it. You should too.

Sorry you've had so much betrayal in your life. I've known the feeling and it wounds deeply. I'm glad you've chosen to live well as sweet revenge.

Recital music was fabulous! Great job all around. :)

Pam Asberry said...

Carol, I want to believe. But it's easier not to; then I won't be disappointed if it doesn't happen. In the meantime, I am trying to live my best life. Glad you enjoyed the piano music. Thank you, as always, for your encouragement and support!

Melissa Marsh said...

What a very hard piece of music to play. Beautiful work.

Oh dear. I've had my trust betrayed, too, too many times to remember. I write bad poetry and pour my heart out in my journal. And you're right to learn from your mistakes. We must just keep on living, keep on taking one day at a time, and keep on smiling.

Hugs...

Julee J. Adams said...

Thanks for sharing your music and your trials. Both make you stronger. You had your children you had to take care of and that gave you the strength to endure.

Here's wishing you romantic love in real life (the only kind of love you seem to be lacking) and that it will come along at just the right time. Please do leave your heart open to welcome it, when it comes.

Glad to have you as a friend!

Pam Asberry said...

I keep a journal too, Melissa; that definitely helps me sort through situations after the fact. Unfortunately, hindsight is always perfect. I need to learn how to better recognize the warning signs and avoid unnecessary pain. In this case, experience is definitely the best teacher. Thank you for your kind words. Who knows? You might have even inspired me to write some bad poetry. ;-)

Pam Asberry said...

Julee, I'm trying. I'm just not sure how many more times this lil' ol' heart of mine can get squashed. Just today I got an email from a former boyfriend, a guy I was really into, in response to this blog post. I was delighted and devastated to hear from him, all at the same time. Delete, delete, delete. Glad to have you as a friend, too!

Anonymous said...

The heartbreak of betrayal...yes, I have been there. A former 'friend' is seeing my ex. I trusted and confided in her about my hopes, dreams, desires for a baby and future but my relationship continued to unravel with my ex.

I put two and two together and realized she betrayed my confidences to her own advantage. Spent time pushing me out of the picture...

Sadly the signs were there. I treated her like a sister. The thought never entered my mind that my 'friend' would have any interest in my man. I never thought he would be seduced by my 'friend'. But every snake needs a charmer and my 'friend' had the gift of stroking egos. My ex needed his ego stroked regularly...shoulda seen it coming and I kick myself for being naive. I keep saying 'why me' if I have always been kind to her...

Other signs of her betrayal with my man were there too: her "damsel in distress routine" (i need my car fixed), pretending to have a stalker (so that my beau could safely escort her home) and her need to thank him by cooking for him and conveniently forgetting to make enough food for me. Or, saying 'lets go out to eat' knowing I had to work. It gave her a chance to be alone with him.

I agree with what has been previously written. Live well, move forward and forgive. There is someone better out there...

Pam Asberry said...

Wow, Anonymous. That is betrayal at its ugliest. But it sounds like your ex and your friend deserve each other. You deserve much better. We both do.