3 Ways Post Betrayal Syndrome Affects Your Life

Dr. Debi Silber
3 min readMar 3, 2021

It’s as if the person you loved, the one you trusted — just took a mask off, revealing who they have really been this whole time. Your heartbreaks and the pain is so raw, so real, so all-consuming — you can barely breathe. You feel like you got sucker-punched, nothing makes sense. You frantically start questioning everything, including yourself.

How did this happen? How did I not know?

The shock, the lies, the deception — you feel so rejected, so abandoned, so alone. You don’t know what to think, you don’t know what to feel, and you don’t know what to do. The only thing you know for sure — is that life will never be the same. That’s what it feels like to feel blindsided by betrayal. How do I know? Because that’s what happened to me, along with millions of other people who struggle to make sense and recover from one of the most painful human experiences. It affects three different aspects of your life, let’s dive into them.

1. Health

There’s a collection of symptoms, physical, mental, and emotional so common to betrayal that it’s known as Post Betrayal Syndrome. We’ve been taught that time heals all wounds, well that’s not necessarily true. People spend so much time, money, effort, and energy going to the most well-meaning doctors, coaches, healers, therapists — to manage a stress-related symptom, illness, condition, or disease. At the root of all that stress? An unhealed betrayal.

2. Work

You want to be a team player, but you’re so afraid. The person you trusted the most proved untrustworthy — how can you trust a boss or coworker?


You want to ask for that raise or promotion, you deserve it — but your confidence was shattered in that betrayal. Instead, you don’t ask and you’re bitter and resentful, and that’s the energy that you’re bringing into work every day.

3. Your Day-To-Day

You have trouble sleeping, you’re exhausted and you could be using sugar or caffeine to help you stay up. Your immune system is compromised, your adrenals have tanked, you could be having digestive issues, weight changes, brain fog, and more. You’re full of heartbreak, sadness, anxiety, and grief because you’ve been



Dr. Debi Silber

Dr. Debi Silber, founder of The PBT (Post Betrayal Transformation) Institute https://pbtinstitute.com helps people heal from the trauma of betrayal.