Utah woman uses own experience to help other women coping with betrayal trauma

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SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – Moving forward after betrayal. That’s what one Utah woman is doing after leaving a marriage she says was full of cheating, abuse and pain. She’s now using her experience to help women worldwide.
 
“There were nights where I was so in so much emotional pain that I would just grab the sheets on my bed and scream and kick and yell and the pain was so intense that I could almost barely contain it.” that’s how Anne Blythe, Founder & CEO of Betrayal Trauma Recovery describes her reaction to being betrayed in the most intimate way.
 
“For me it started when I found myself married to a sex addict,” she continued.
 
There’s still debate over labeling it “addiction.” Sex addiction is not listed in the “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders,” which is considered the guide to mental health disorders, so many doctors prefer to call it, Hypersexual Disorder. The diagnosis is for people who have an “excessive” amount of sex and feel distress as a result.
 
No matter what you call it, doctors say the betrayal can leave the other spouse suffering from extreme trauma.
 
“Betrayal trauma occurs when someone we are in close relationship with betrays our trust in a critical way,” said Dr. Jill manning, a licensed marital family therapist.
 
Manning said betrayal trauma is different from other trauma in two ways,
 
“The first one is that we’re in close relationship to the betrayer, the perpetrator of that trauma so it feels more personalized versus a random occurrence,” she said.
 
The second factor, Manning says, is a high risk of reoccurrence, “because we share a life with that person.”
 
She said the betrayal leaves the victim feeling helpless and full of anxiety.
 
“Because their world has been devastated, it’s been rocked at a very core level,” Manning said.
 
She continued, saying victims also experience insecurity and isolation, “and when we are isolated it’s very hard to recover from this type of trauma.”
    
Blythe realized that was the case in her situation and desperately searched for help.
 
“I searched and searched, and tried everything. I tried different therapists, I tried different programs, and we went to all kinds of things. And I found that I still did not feel emotionally safe in my home,” she explained.
 
Blythe took it on herself to create that safe space women needed. That’s how Betrayal Trauma Recovery came into existence. The website has a podcast, offers support calls where survivors can talk with certified coaches, and group sessions.
 
“We have different types of support groups. We have a support group that’s just a one time thing where people can ask questions about certain topics, we have a betrayal trauma recovery club,” Blythe explained.
 
In just one year, Blythe has begun helping people in 33 states and 7 countries all from her Davis County home.
 
“I think the number one thing they’re getting is validation, and understanding that they’re not the problem,” she said.
 
Blythe said any person experiencing this kind of trauma needs to know recovery is possible.
 
“You are not alone, there are help, and just start looking. Just start making that effort to try and find the solutions for you,” Blythe said.
 
Blythe’s podcast now has nearly 10-thousand subscribers. To hear it, click here.

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