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do you trust friends again after betrayal?


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Old 21st March 2019, 6:50 AM   #1
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do you trust friends again after betrayal?

Lately, I have had a lot of random chance encounters with old friends from my past....

In all cases, it's been a few years and I am pretty much over everything that happened, but I still find myself unable to trust them. I always wish I could still be friends with those people from my past, but years later, I usually find myself unable to do so.

I am happy to see them again, but it's not the same.

One girlfriend slept with my ex. So while I do enjoy seeing her from time to time, I have never introduced her to a SO again.

Anothers friend boyfriend had a crush on me and tried to sleep with me. While I still talk to my friend and enjoy her company, I avoid her boyfriend to all cost even though it's been 7 years. They are in an open relationship, so my friend kind of encouraged the whole thing.

While I do keep in touch with some people, I have never ever been close friends again with someone who betrayed me.

It's made me think a lot about forgiveness, trust and what friendship means to me...part of me thinks it's smart not to trust again, other part of me thinks it's been almost a decade and water under the bridge...and I should be able to forget and start from zero.

I am a very loyal person and struggle whenever a friendship ends. I always feel I was never truly someones friend, if I am not able to ride it out and let the friendship stay the same. It makes me feel guilty, like a bad friend and I am doing something wrong by not letting bygones be bygones.

I was wondering, how is it like for other people? Were you ever close friends again with someone who betrayed you? If you were, did you regret that decision? Do you "forgive and forget" or just forgive? Does it mean you haven't forgiven if you are unable to trust the person?

Last edited by 2much4; 21st March 2019 at 6:55 AM..
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Old 21st March 2019, 8:39 AM   #2
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Forgive & forget is not wholesale license to allow yourself to be used. While it's lovely that you can be cordial to these folks when you see them you are absolutely right to keep them at arm's length. It's not a matter of loyalty. It's a matter of boundaries.
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Old 21st March 2019, 10:49 AM   #3
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You can forgive someone without letting them back into your life.
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Old 21st March 2019, 7:24 PM   #4
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I think it depends on the personal situation of the "betrayed person" to use your term.


if they have not got many friends and so on, they are more likely to forgive/forget past indiscrepancies and continue to be friends,

but if they are strong minded people with plenty of other friends then they are likely to dump the old friends who they believe have betrayed them,


so really it depends on the self esteem of the betrayed person


Is there something in it for me- I guess that's the way many folks still look on things at the end of the day.


I have my own views on this- I have posted before on it- I believe we need to see a little more forgiveness and forgetfulness out there,


However I understand the view put forward by a lot of people about setting boundaries- and in my experience once a boundary goes up, it tends to stay that way, it is difficult to go back to the way things were previously.


I often have a discussion with a relative on this- I do say go on give this person another chance - water under the bridge, but the relative will say back- " it is not easy to forgive"
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Old 21st March 2019, 7:31 PM   #5
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Forgiving does not equal forgetting or allowing access to hurt you again.

It hurts to lose people you thought were your friends, people you felt close to. But it's one of those Seasons of Life things, not everyone is meant to be in your life forever.

Don't let your distrust keep you from developing new friendships, but my experience is that once someone has broken my trust that relationship is over. There is no going back.
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Old 21st March 2019, 9:17 PM   #6
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Forgiveness is over-rated. Someone who sleeps with your partner is not your friend, nor is someone who encourages her SO to pursue you without discussing it with you first - you can make your own decisions about your sex life without the input of that 'friend'.
It's always disappointing when we realise that someone isn't invested in a friendship the way we are, but on the upside it's an opportunity to remove negative people from your life. You can be friendly towards people you were once close to, but you don't have to forget how they behaved towards you. I'd be polite but wouldn't invite them back into my life.
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Old 21st March 2019, 10:21 PM   #7
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Forgiving can just be a cost-benefit calculation.

I calculate that thinking well and wishing the best for person X who I fell out with ... will bring more happiness in my life than not.

I can forgive without restarting the friendship. Forgive just means I don't focus on my own hurt ... I don't get stuck on negative feelings about the other person.

Forgive does not mean you trust again ... and certainly does not mean you fully trust the person. Trust is earned ... in steps .. in increments ... gradually ... over time. It can certainly aid forgiveness and trust if the other person acknowledges the betrayal. But lots of people forgive in the absence of the other person acknowledging the betrayal.

Sometimes other people grow and change ... and we can rekindle good feelings for them ... Sometimes, as we get older, we realize all the ways we weren't great people ... and for some ... that leads them to be more willing to forgive others.

Sometimes you just throw calculation to the side and say, "I want to see X. I miss X's laugh. I want to experience that laugh again." I have a friend like that that I'm thinking of calling one of these days.

BTW: I was part of a recent discussion about forgiveness that was prompted by a funeral. My view and many others ... even enemies are invited and welcome at funerals ... Sometimes that's where the forgiveness occurs--people put aside their grievances and come to the funeral. Very interesting discussion out of this.
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Old 22nd March 2019, 4:47 PM   #8
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They are good too these forums, can help bring clarity for a person on a particular issue.
learning from other people and so on


the forum has helped me realise that when there is a betrayal of trust or a serious falling out,


then the most common outcome is that eventually there will be "forgiveness" but that the friendship will not be the same again,


the offended person will keep the betrayer at arms length and will not allow them too much of their time,
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Old 27th March 2019, 7:08 AM   #9
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I love the idea of "Forgive and Forget"... and for the most part I live my life by that saying. When you forgive... you will sleep better at night, and you become a happy person.


BUT... That doesn't mean that you need to put yourself in a position to be hurt again. I have several good friends from the past, and a couple GF's who have tried to get back in touch with me after turning their back on me... or cheating on me... but I make zero effort to return that effort. With that said... if I happen to run into one of them, I would make small talk, and be friendly... but I don't have time in my life to play games, and I don't have time in my life to worry about making someone how hurt me feel better about themselves.
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Old 8th April 2019, 4:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2much4 View Post
Lately, I have had a lot of random chance encounters with old friends from my past....

In all cases, it's been a few years and I am pretty much over everything that happened, but I still find myself unable to trust them. I always wish I could still be friends with those people from my past, but years later, I usually find myself unable to do so.

I am happy to see them again, but it's not the same.

One girlfriend slept with my ex. So while I do enjoy seeing her from time to time, I have never introduced her to a SO again.

Anothers friend boyfriend had a crush on me and tried to sleep with me. While I still talk to my friend and enjoy her company, I avoid her boyfriend to all cost even though it's been 7 years. They are in an open relationship, so my friend kind of encouraged the whole thing.

While I do keep in touch with some people, I have never ever been close friends again with someone who betrayed me.

It's made me think a lot about forgiveness, trust and what friendship means to me...part of me thinks it's smart not to trust again, other part of me thinks it's been almost a decade and water under the bridge...and I should be able to forget and start from zero.

I am a very loyal person and struggle whenever a friendship ends. I always feel I was never truly someones friend, if I am not able to ride it out and let the friendship stay the same. It makes me feel guilty, like a bad friend and I am doing something wrong by not letting bygones be bygones.

I was wondering, how is it like for other people? Were you ever close friends again with someone who betrayed you? If you were, did you regret that decision? Do you "forgive and forget" or just forgive? Does it mean you haven't forgiven if you are unable to trust the person?
While I have forgiven my friends after betrayal, the damage is still done and the wound is still there. I am not going to trust them for a long long long time. For one thing, I need to heal.

And I can understand. I am a loyal person myself and my code is friend to the end. But I had to end a friendship because the "friend" was aggressively pushing me away. Nonstop false accusations, word-twisting, gaslighting etc.

One thing I realized about that "friend" was that she wasn't an honest person. Looking back on the friendship since it ended, I've uncovered tons of obvious lies, and realized that the friendship itself was a lie. It's been about a month since we last talked, and it still kinda hurts. But I know I have to move on. And I know once I do, I'll be glad that it ended and I will even wonder what I was doing with that person to begin with.

But I went off on a tangent. What I want to say is forgiveness can be freely given, but that does not mean you put yourself in the position to get hurt again. You can love and be friends from a distance.
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Old 8th April 2019, 4:15 PM   #11
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No. Once that trust has been broken, it's done. And sadly, trust is rare commodity.
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Old 11th April 2019, 12:27 AM   #12
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Yes, I forgave a friend who told her husband something about me she swore she would not. She said she was trying to help and I believe her. But aside from the humiliation and the fact she broke her word (something I take very seriously), I missed a HUGE red flag. The fact that she would betray me to help me meant she thought she knew better for me than I. It meant she was a huge control freak. Over the next few years, it was an issue. Then she let my 15 year old daughter drive a golf cart even though I said she couldn't. She even said, "It's my golf cart!" Obviously, I responded it was my child. And she never admitted she was wrong. I still love her. We still speak. But we'll nevwe be that close again nor will I trust her with anything I don't want her husband to know. My point is, making a mistake is one thing. You can and should. But behaviors that are giant red flags-like the kinky chic with the boyfriend- you can be civil without being real friends. I don't know the situation with your friend and your ex. Did you still have feelings for him? Did she know? How did you find out. If she had the guts to tell you, she might be a truer friend than you think. You need to value yourself. If you're a good friend, your friendship is something to be earned and, if betrayed, won back. If your having trouble making friends, join clubs and activities so you meet people you have things in common with. Get to know them and trust them. Stay away from people who crosses boundaries too soon or give advice on things that are none of their business. Those are control freaks and will screw up your life trying to fix it. People who laugh too hard when you make a mistake or put yourself down will never be in your corner. They're too insecure to want to see you succeed. Ask about their other friendships. Quality over quantity. A few lifelong friends are better than a circle of party girls. Find childhood friends on social media. For some reason, that's when we make the best friends. Have open discussions about values and what you think the deal breakers of a friend are. Not much different than finding a man. And like finding a man, it's not such a bad thing to reserve trust. In fact, it's a survival instinct. Good luck Sweetie. And I know you didn't ask. But I'd read up on building my self esteem. More confidence makes you a less likely target. You are a good, sweet person with a warm forgiving heart. Anyone who doesn't feel lucky to have you for a friend doesn't deserve you!
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Old 16th April 2019, 4:40 PM   #13
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No. Once a person betrays you, if you come back for more, they'll betray you worse next time, because they know they can get away with it. I made that terrible mistake years ago. My best friend in high school betrayed me when a new girl came to the school. She took up with her and told her I had a crush on some guy and that got all around the school, and meanwhile, she totally abandoned me for this shiny new girl.

Well, unfortunately, in college, she was the only person I knew in the dorm, so I took up with her. The trouble just continued.

Then about 10 years later as young adults, she did the unforgivable, and I gave myself six weeks to think rationally about it before running off a friend of 17 years, but I booted her out of my life and I have never regretted it. I told her, generously, "We are toxic to each other." Bye. Slam.
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