Body Image Issues & Betrayal

by | Abuse Literacy, Self-Care

Women body image issues

Many victims of betrayal and emotional abuse develop body image issues.

This tragic effect of betrayal and abuse is difficult but possible to overcome. Understanding this issue can help victims of betrayal find healing and begin their journey to peace and safety. 

Why Does Betrayal Cause Body Image Issues?

Intimate betrayal is an assault on a woman’s body, spirit, and emotional health.

The “assault” of betrayal can take many forms:

  • A partner’s pornography use
  • A partner’s affair (emotional, physical, or virtual)
  • A partner’s verbal and emotional abuse
  • A partner’s masturbation and fantasizing
  • A partner’s sexual coercion and other sexual abuse

Emotional Abuse Can Cause Severe Body Image Issues

It’s not only betrayal that can cause body image issues in victims; emotional and verbal abuse can be devastating to a woman’s self-image. Anne shares her heartbreaking experience of an emotionally abusive episode:

“My ex told me very calmly that he had been lying to me every time he said I was beautiful. He said that I was not beautiful and that he couldn’t lie anymore. And I said to him: ‘that’s not true. I am beautiful’. He said: ‘Well, I just mean your personality makes you ugly.’ That hurt me more than anything because it was like: wait a minute….you physically are attracted to me but now you’re saying that you really, genuinely, hate me? He was so unwilling to acknowledge in any way, shape, or form that he appreciates me as a human being.

Anne Blythe, founder of Betrayal Trauma Recovery

Victims Are Not To Blame For Abuse and Betrayal

Tragically, many victims will blame themselves for their partner’s betrayal and abuse. Often, this self-blame comes in the form of “if I were more/less ___”. The simple truth is that you cannot cause, control, or cure the abusive and sexually perverse behaviors of your partner.

Betrayal Trauma Recovery Supports Victims of Betrayal and Abuse

We believe that every woman is beautiful and important. Especially you. No matter how you have been treated, what you have endured, or how long the abuse and betrayal have been going on, you are a beautiful woman, worthy and deserving of love and respect.

The Betrayal Trauma Recovery Group meets daily in every time zone and offers women the opportunity to connect with other victims as they process trauma, share their stories, express hard feelings, and ask important questions. Join today and find the supportive, validating community that you deserve.


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