It was a very public place. Brunch, in the middle of summer on a sunny afternoon. She was a petite, young woman with raccoon eyes formed from a pool of tears and mascara, which was now running down her face. There was such a stark contrast between her bleached platinum hair, pale skin and the rolling black streaks. "He was with me last night, and now, right now, he's with the girl he cheated on me with and is telling me it's over. Via text. He didn't even have the decency to call!" Her friends surrounded her trying to console her, "You're too good for him, babe," they reassured her. The well-intentioned friends had backed themselves into a corner. Then came the predicted protest, "If I'm too good for him, how come I'm not with him?!" she wailed.
"That's not true, what you're friends said..." She looked at me like I had a penis growing out of my forehead; I suppose it's the way almost any normal person looks at a stranger who has just overstepped her boundaries. At the time, as a new life coach, a person's cries were like what an ambulance siren is to a paramedic or the bat-signal is to Batman. No, I'm not Batman, but clearly sometimes my penetrating aura clearly needs to mind its own business. Admittedly, I was being a bit overzealous, (yes, my hero-complex, codependent-self should have been invited) but I had to help this poor woman! "You're not too good for him, you're a match for him." For the first time in the 5 minutes since she had started crying, she stopped. It got quiet. "What do you mean?" she inquired with her watery, wide eyes. "You attracted him to you because he felt familiar to you. This man is simply a mirror. He's reflecting back to you everything that you are right now. He's showing you how much you think you deserve, how you treat yourself, your relationship to the Truth, your own level of self-love and self-abandonment. You should be thanking this man because he's done you a favor. He came into your life to show you who you are in this moment in time, what you need to heal and what it is that you don't want. Now you are clear on what it is that you do want."
"You're too good for him (or her)," is such a popular quote, but it's not entirely accurate. Or helpful. We are never “too good” for anyone else. We simply choose. We all have our energetic equals. We control what we allow to come into our lives either consciously or unconsciously. The saying, "like energy attracts like energy," can be easily seen in the more obvious instances. However, there are times in life where we end up in a whole mess of pain and we can't for the life of us see how we attracted it. Think of your wounds as magnets...someone else out there has the complimentary magnet. You have unconscious beliefs and expectations, as do they - you both make an unspoken contract with each other when you enter into relationship. Therefore, they have a propensity to give you the experience you subconsciously expect. In fact, you will act in ways, unconsciously of course, to keep your fears from coming true and those behaviors will actually push the needle to make sure that you become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Interestingly enough, each relationship is different. Why does a man cheat on one woman and not another? How a person is in relationship with you will vary because they are responding TO you, reacting TO you and you to them.
I noticed a personal pattern of betrayal a long time ago. These were guys who hadn't cheated before, that were well aware of how their cheating would impact me and somehow, it happened anyway. Were they TRYING to hurt me? No. They were trying to protect me and protect themselves.
Say whaaaat? Yep. Betrayal is a protective mechanism. Let me see if I can break down this concept for you. At some point in life, there was a defining moment for you in your relationship with Truth. Something happened and you decided that it was better to not know the Truth, better to not speak the Truth, and better to not confront the situation. And so the legacy of secrets and betrayal began, in a moment. With one decision.
*I use Truth in the place of truth to denote a universal Truth, something that is undeniable and at all times the ultimate Truth, versus one that is an emotional, intellectual, or dogmatic truth that is based from the ego or a place of fear.*
For me, it was when my youngest brother drowned and I was asked by my mother to not say a word to my father about how it happened. Yes, she should have been watching us. And yet, she was not. In fact, she blamed us, asking, “Why weren’t you watching him?!” My mother, my siblings and I made a pact to not talk about the incident. He was revived, thank God, he was saved by a man who knew CPR, but the trauma around that experience lived on in my body and in my relationships. If my father had found out about what had happened, I knew that life as I knew it would be over. My parents may divorce, my family may get ripped apart, my father may have gotten custody, I could have been taken from my mother. Neither parent was fully safe or reliable to me, but this was the terror of knowing the truth, and to have to confront that at 6 years old was too much for me.
What would the real outcome have been? That's unclear. My fearful assumptions of what knowing the Truth could do kept me from wanting to know. The skirting of the Truth, the lies, the betrayal - that wasn't a one-time isolated incident in my home. If you see lying, cheating or betrayal in your home of origin, in any form, trust me, you can find it in your current relationship if you haven't healed it.
Do you fear knowing the Truth? Do you fear confrontation? What about the Truth makes you anxious? These are good questions to start exploring. How honest you are with yourself will depend on how honest people are with you. If you believe that you can't handle the truth, that you can't handle reality, the ones that love you will try to protect you from the truth as well. They will want to avoid the confrontation. They will want to avoid having the needed conversations with you because you have shown that you are not capable emotionally of handling it.
Betrayal is a hallmark of codependence. It's a silent promise that I will protect you from your pain if you will protect me from mine. We become blind to the Truth around us. I won't speak the Truth and you won't seek the Truth. I will cover my ears and eyes and make myself numb and blind to the red flags all around me.
The good news is, you can always change your relationship with Truth. When you start to realize that if you want to live a full life, an actualized life, the Truth is your closest ally. Integrity and authenticity become something you crave. Honesty becomes a true virtue. It allows you and your loved ones to make choices from a place of reality, from knowing all the facts. Sharing your Truth means you give up your right to control others. You no longer control others with your lying, or omitting of the Truth. You let go of how others will react to your Truth. You are giving the gift of freedom to yourself and others.
How are you controlling your own reality by lying to yourself? Are you afraid you aren't strong enough? We are afraid to show up fully when we feel weak. When you begin to tell yourself the Truth, you begin to build trust. You can learn to stand on your own. You become trustworthy because you have learned to lean on your own strength, to allow the Universe to show up and provide for you. You can start to exist in a place of surrender. The energy of surrender feels so different from the energy of manipulation. You begin to realize that giving another person their pain is the greatest gift you could give ever them. It gives them the gift discovering their own power and strength.
Do you have painful themes of betrayal in relationship and want to attract a fully-committed loving partnership?