Betrayal comes in many forms, some worse than others.
But one way or another it is a feeling that can stick with you for a long time ~ even when what happened is something we resonate with more than being a part of it at that moment.
Sometimes it is an ‘innocent’ indiscretion. A confidence that is betrayed, sometimes without the person even realizing they are doing something wrong...
This can happen when the secret is embarrassing, heavy, or even painful to the person keeping it; while for the other person it is something unimportant, or perhaps even humorous. Certainly not something to be secretive about.
In other words, it is very individual what is considered important, what is a secret, something to only be told in confidence. And while others may not understand what exactly makes this particular situation so important, they definitely should respect this sense of importance.
An other kind of betrayal is backstabbing. An intentional act or interaction that is meant to hurt the other person. When this is done by a (relative) stranger, it is hurtful and unpleasant no matter what the situation is, or where it takes place. When it is done by a friend, it may well be something that is unforgivable and will likely spell the end of a friendship.
Then there is the betrayal that ~ whether it is done by a family member, a friend, or a stranger ~ results in bodily harm or even death. Apart from the physical damage, this of course also does a lot of emotional damage. And it leaves scars and memories that can haunt many life-times; and can even be the cause of ‘unexplained’ behavior that comes out of nowhere ~ that is when the memory is triggered in one way or another...
The ultimate betrayal, however, is when parents betray the trust of their children.
Our parents are the ones we turn to for protection, for love, for nurturing. As children we turn to them when we are sad, hurt, or scared. Yet when a parent is the one that scares us; who hurts us... we are left to our own devices and often end up with an inability to trust anyone we will come across during the remainder of our lives.
Whichever form it takes, betrayal begs the question what is in it for the person feeling the need to betray someone else.
And this often has to do with a sense of power and domination ~ and on some occasions with getting back at someone else in the worst possible manner. It has to do with coming out on top at whatever cost.