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Betrayal and its aftermath


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Betrayal and its aftermathEverybody knew about Jasmine and Ravi. Though some people believed there might be more to it than meets the eye, the rest accepted that it was a beautiful, platonic friendship between a very lovely woman and a smart, intelligent man.

Jasmine was about ten years older to Ravi but his experience and understanding of life was infinitely greater than hers. So she depended upon him for most problems that she could not sort out on her own. One of her major problems concerned her husband. A chronic womaniser, he was also a very stingy man who showered his lovers with expensive gifts but refused to look after his wife.  It was Ravi who helped Jasmine get a job in his office and become a financially independent woman. “Don’t walk out of the marriage,” he advised. “Just make yourself a stronger person in every way.”

On Jasmine’s birthday he bought her a small gift with a card in which he wrote, “Learn to catch the wind in your sails. Learn to hear that unbidden song in your heart. Remember the changing colours of the rainbow long after the sun has blazed it out. And you will find that dreams are the stuff that a happy life is made of.” 

And on Ravi’s birthday, two days later, she gifted him with a Mont Blanc pen (to buy which she had been saving money since quite some time) and a card in which she wrote, “You empower me in a way you may never know. By just being there for me when the clouds seem to hang in shrouds of gloom, you brighten my life with the sunshine of your heart. I only have to imagine you smiling at me across the room and I know a peace that I can never describe.”

Jasmine did not know and neither did Ravi that things were about to change the contours of their friendship. The change came in the shape of Hilda, a desirable young woman for whom life was one big party. She was not half as attractive as Jasmine but she was a good fifteen years younger. And which man has even been able resist the pull of youth? Ravi was no exception. He liked Hilda’s adventurous spirit and found himself drawn irresistibly to her. Soon the times he spent with Hilda began to cut into the evenings he had once reserved for Jasmine, who had noticed Hilda’s charming ways with admiration at first but later grew resentful of her hold on Ravi.

She tried to subtly tell Ravi about her hurt feelings and when he continued to be obsessed with Hilda she became less discreet about her resentment. The final blow came when Ravi spoke angrily to her in front of Hilda. “I owe you nothing Jasmine,” he spat out. This was a betrayal worse than anything she had known and suddenly her well-constructed mansion of friendship came crashing down. She was devastated!

Betrayals happen at all levels, in big ways and small. In serious, intimate relationships and close friendships. When this happens it leaves behind a debris of feelings ranging from shattered trust, furious resentment, heartbreak, numbness, rejection, insecurity to total abandonment. Anyone can feel betrayed. Children feel betrayed when parents fail to fulfil promises. Students feel rejected when their teachers indulge in favouritism. Colleagues experience jealousy when their close office friends choose to be friendlier with other colleagues. But the most earth-shaking one invariably is the one that comes in the wake of a broken marriage.

Regardless of the source of betrayal, the emotional distress that ensues is really severe. It’s betrayal when a friend knowingly breaks a confidence causing hurt or loss of reputation, when a spouse professing love and loyalty gets involved in an intimate relationship outside marriage, when a boss for whom you’ve slogged your everything off, lets you down at the time of appraisal. If someone were to ask me, which is worse, being betrayed or betraying someone, I would say the latter. Because when you’re a victim you can choose to move on, but when you’re the one who’s caused the pain, you carry the pain of guilt wherever you go!

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Responses to Betrayal and its aftermath

  1. 1 megh

    I agree the last lines: “If someone were to ask me, which is worse, being betrayed or betraying someone, I would say the latter. Because when you’re a victim you can choose to move on, but when you’re the one who’s caused the pain, you carry the pain of guilt wherever you go!” sometimes we do it knowing/unknowingly.

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