If someone close to you has ever broken your trust, you’ve probably felt the sting of betrayal. This pain can leave deep wounds.
Any type of betrayal can cause emotional distress, but you might experience lingering trauma when someone you depend on to respect your needs and generally help safeguard your well-being violates the trust you’ve placed in them.
Betrayal trauma typically refers to the lingering pain and turmoil experienced after:
betrayal by a parent or other childhood caregiver
betrayal by a romantic partner
When you rely on someone for basic needs as well as love and protection, you might accept a betrayal in order to ensure your own safety.
You might also find yourself accepting the possibility of future betrayals — something that can begin to degrade self-esteem, emotional well-being, and the ability to form attachments with others.