What is Familial Betrayal So Much More Difficult Than the Others?

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It always hurts to be betrayed, but if it’s family members who betray you, somehow it’s much worse. Betrayal is simply disloyalty to another person and usually involves an act that hurts the other person and makes them hesitant to trust you again in the future.

Often, when trust is betrayed, it’s either very difficult or impossible to get it back, but this is often what happens with familial betrayal of any type. If you’d like to learn more about betrayal between family members, keep reading.

What Is a Familial Betrayal?

Betrayal by a family member can include any family member, even a distant relative, and the act of betrayal can include everything from lying to infidelity and even stealing, dishonesty, and so much more.

It’s one thing to be taken advantage of by a stranger or someone you barely know, but it’s quite another to suffer betrayal at the hands of someone you feel that you should be able to trust all the time.

There are numerous types of family-wide betrayal, including:

  • Acts of selfishness, such as putting yourself first and spending your free time doing things that only benefit yourself, even when others are around
  • Lying of any kind, including both not telling the truth and not telling the entire truth when you relate something to someone
  • Not sticking up for someone in your family, especially if this happens when you’re in public and around people
  • Any type of emotional detachment or coldness, especially when it lasts for a very long time
  • Disrespect, including acting as if the other person is beneath you and not as good as you

In reality, there are numerous types of betrayal among family members, but keep in mind that many of them are subtle. Still, even the subtle betrayals can hurt and wreak havoc on relationships.

If any of your family members are betraying you in any way, it’s good to take a look at why they are doing this because the reasons tend to be commonplace amongst most families across the board.

What Causes Family Members to Betray Another Family Member?

As a general rule, most family-centered betrayals are the result of one of two things, which include:

1.  Needs in That Person’s Life

If a family member has betrayed you, that person may be feeling intensely lonely or even desperate. There may be something going on in their lives that is causing emotional problems to occur, and because of this, they may become withdrawn and not actually feel close to you anymore.

In other words, they have unmet needs and this can cause people to do things that they wouldn’t otherwise do.

The unfortunate thing about this scenario is that sometimes these feelings are based on a preconceived idea that may not even be true. If your spouse believes that you’re having an affair, they may decide to go out and do the same thing, but they may not realize that you’re not having an affair at all.

In any case, when a person feels that one of their needs is not being met, they tend to withdraw from certain people and may in fact hurt them eventually.

2.  Their Past Experiences

We all know that what happened to us in the past can directly affect our actions today, and this is sometimes unfortunate. If someone else has hurt and caused distrust to your family member, they can turn around and treat you the same way. It’s a version of the “kick the dog” syndrome, but this doesn’t mean that the betrayal isn’t painful for you.

In many cases, you can sit down and communicate with your spouse or family member to learn exactly what’s going on in their life and determine why they betrayed you in the first place.

The betrayal can be based on a lie, a misunderstanding, or on pure meanness, although the latter is not that common. Nevertheless, communicating with them may help you get the answers you need to make things right.

Why Does My Spouse Blame Me for Everything?

If you have a spouse who blames you for everything, it might be due to the following reasons:

  • They do not have a lot of self-confidence
  • They are very stressed at the moment
  • They are very controlling
  • They are not happy in this relationship
  • They have feelings of resentment towards you
  • They are a narcissist
  • They simply do not want to change
  • They learned the “blame game” when they were growing up
  • They are overwhelmed by responsibility
  • They have resentment towards you

Even though it’s difficult, communicating with a spouse, cousin, aunt, sibling, or even a parent that you feel has betrayed you is a smart idea because the reason for the betrayal might be minor and something that the two of you can easily fix.

The Betrayal Blame: Is Someone Always to Blame?

In some cases, no one is to blame when a betrayal has occurred because the betrayal is due to a misunderstanding or something very minor.

In some betrayals, forgiveness is impossible because the person who has done the betraying is unwilling to cooperate and won’t accept blame or responsibility for their actions. In other cases, both parties have done something “wrong” so they share the blame.

Of course, just because the blame is minimal or one-sided doesn’t mean that it’s easy to repair a relationship that has been broken due to betrayal.

You can sit down together and try to talk it out, or even go to therapy together, but in the end both sides have to work at the relationship to put it back together.


There are many reasons why a family member might betray you, including stress in their life, a feeling of being overwhelmed by life, a feeling of resentment towards you, or they may simply not want to change or improve the situation.

When a family member has betrayed you, it’s a good idea to figure out why so that the relationship has a chance at being saved.

If nothing you try works, it’s time to cut off this relationship, which might hurt in the beginning but is better for your physical and emotional health.


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