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Six Top Steps for Recovering from Betrayal

Wednesday, February 11th, 2015

I have been asked to post here an old article (2005) I wrote for “Meridian Magazine” ( on recovering from betrayal. I will share this link on my author Facebook page and in my author newsletter this month. I’m placing the entire article here.

Six Top Steps for Recovering from Betrayal

As an author, I’ve had the opportunity to be a presenter at numerous public conferences and stake and ward Relief Society meetings. My subjects, though important, have never been as necessary to sustaining the joys in life as what I often speak on today.

It seems everyone experiences some tragedy in life, some trial or test. After all, that’s what we’re here for. And proving our character by the choices we make in responding to those trials is what forms the basis of God’s just rewards.

Being betrayed is part and parcel to many, if not most, trials—betrayed by spouse, business partner, friend, neighbor . . . How do you recover? Heavy subject . . . and one that has derailed many of life’s travelers! Yet the outcome for some individuals is positive. Over time, they seem stronger, more resilient, confident in themselves and in their relationship with Heavenly Father. What makes the difference?

In preparing the draft for Shattered: Six Steps from Betrayal to Recovery, my co-author, Bettyanne Bruin, and I encountered a number of victims who were willing to tell their stories of healthy recovery. The threads consistently woven through their stories were:
• A continued hope, faith, and reliance on the power of God
• Coupled with the willingness to face their realities,
• Pick themselves up, seeking solutions,
• And work with integrity to do their part.

Here are six powerful steps to recover from tragedy:

Step #1—Awareness

One cannot change the circumstances surrounding betrayal until one has recognized a betrayal has taken place. This may sound like an obvious scenario, but in the case of betrayal, the secrets surrounding this form of abuse are sometimes difficult to see; betrayal is often a “silent crime.” Frequently the victim does not know he or she has been victimized, whether it is through an affair, leading a double life, and/or secrets of financial indiscretions, until long after the victimization has taken place. Awareness must be the first step to betrayal recovery.

Step #2—Acceptance

Grief is the result following any type of loss, especially the loss of heartfelt expectations destroyed by betrayal. It is a natural part of an emotionally healthy recovery process. Shock, denial, anger, guilt, bargaining, and sadness are companions to grief. When the process is followed to its completion, acknowledgement and acceptance of one’s reality can be comforting results. Finding ways to successfully manage fear and positively channel anger brings about the yearned-for, pain-free hope that is necessary and must be the second step for a full recovery.

Step #3—Action

Once betrayal is recognized and accepted, action must take place, whether this action is choosing to continue or end the relationship with the betrayer. One must act, not just react, by setting reasonable limits, safely confronting the issues, and taking the risk to make life better.

Step #4—Authorization

Authorization, or permission to move forward with one’s life, is a vital step in the recovery process. One of the most common yet innocent characteristics of a victim of betrayal is his or her “willingness to submit,” “to be the nice guy,” or to give the betrayer “permission” to abuse. Authorizing the victim to take control of his or her life by establishing the proper support system and learning to trust him- or herself is a vital step in breaking away from the betrayer and healing the heartbreak associated with betrayal.

Step #5—Accountability

In fairness, the victim must hold him- or herself accountable for the part played in the betrayal, and give proper ownership to the betrayer, as well, for his or her part in the abuse. Taking the obsessive searchlight off the other person and focusing on one’s self empowers change. There is a time when one must quit being the victim governed by fear, and make a plan for what is and is not acceptable—never again compromising on those important issues. One can visualize beyond the past and look with hope into the possibilities of the future by forgiving the betrayer and making one’s self a product of one’s decisions instead of one’s conditions.

Step #6—Advancement

An old Chinese proverb states, “Be not afraid of growing slowly, be afraid only of standing still.” Advancement may be considered the last strategy or step of recovery, but it is also the first step in the rest of one’s life. Visualizing life with a set of fresh goals and a belief in one’s self creates confidence and courage. Healing occurs as one reaches out to serve and help others in need. To advance forward one accomplishes his or her goals one step at a time while maintaining a proper balance in life.

Recently I spoke at a two-day writers’ workshop. The morning of the second day, a participant approached me, telling me how much she appreciated my comments in one of my sessions the previous day. I spoke about writing and using an object to make an impression. The writing discussed was the book Shattered. The object was a kaleidoscope. I told my audience that when one experiences betrayal, he or she feels shattered, like broken glass fragments harshly thrown and scattered on a hard floor—never to be the same. But as the pieces are gathered, and recovery and healing occur, there is new beauty in the pattern and shape of the individual’s life, much as the colorful, magnificent designs made in a kaleidoscope.

The writer said she was inspired by the poetic visual of the kaleidoscope. So much so, that she stayed up during the night composing a poem. I was impressed with her insight as she explained why she chose certain phrases. She said, “Fear and anger are part of the grieving process, and it is while going through the motions that we begin to find scattered remnants [of ourselves]. ‘Butter the toast’ [signifies] taking care of own needs—physical, spiritual, and emotional. ‘Take out the trash’ [represents] discarding what is unuseful or unhealthy. ‘Turning, testing’ [is like] rotating the kaleidoscope, but also going in new directions, trying better ways of doing things, such as relating to others.”

© by Sharon Price Anderson

I am shattered,
abused, and bruised.
Broken fragments of me
litter the landscape.
Dazed, I wander
through chaos
bewildered by
where I have been.

Searching for
something real
to staunch the bleeding,
stop the tears,
heal the hurt,
I sift through fear and
anger of surreal days.
I go through the motions—
butter the toast,
take out the trash.

I find scattered remnants
of who I am
and gather particles of
hope, confidence,
forgiveness until
finally, I have
a handful.

Kaleidoscope pieces
form dazzling patterns,
prisms in the sun.
Turning, testing, I
discover something
new and beautiful—

I am whole.

Inspired by Shattered: Six Steps from Betrayal to Recovery—the book and the object lesson of the kaleidoscope. Permission for use granted to the authors of Shattered by Sharon Anderson.



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A Woman’s Power, Goal Setting, Chapter 7

Tuesday, January 20th, 2015

On my author Facebook page, I have been posting sections of the Goal Setting chapter from A Woman’s Power. That is one of my sought-after books, and I just wanted to share. This chapter is full of wonderful material. Here is a small piece.

Our view of our circumstances and our self-image may or may not be in line with reality. It may be merely what we have accepted. Many of us fool even ourselves by the role we play. But sooner or later we come to question our itinerary along the pathway of life. Sooner or later we want to believe what we are doing is important—we want to have a sense of purpose, of faith in what we’re doing.

Finding our reality does not come without a plan or effort. First, we have to find out who we are and what we really believe. Then we need to live by what we believe and not be swayed by what we simply have accepted of ourselves. We can consciously choose our destination and believe in our ability to learn and move forward. And we must not measure what we are or where we are going by looking at others or by looking at where we’ve been.

Cover - A Womans Power

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We Broke the World Record—Largest Live Nativity in History

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014

I arrived around 1:45 in the afternoon yesterday. I was layered in long-johns, skirt and long-sleeved tee shirt, sweater, and sheer over-costume. I wore wool socks and my snow boots. At that time in the afternoon it was above 50 degrees so I was plenty warm. But by the time my part was over and I started for home, it was 10:00 and around 37 degrees. I could no longer feel my fingers or my toes.

Parking was about a quarter mile away from the staging area.

1 Parking available

When I got there, the line to check in was already forming and it grew to be blocks long. The guys in the yellow vests were there to monitor and pick people out to be in the last angel segment. I got picked and moved up to the front of the line to register. I was given a purple wristband to designate what angel section I was supposed to be in.


At first it seemed pretty quiet in the staging area, but by the time everyone got there it was a bustle of people 1039 strong.


3a waiting for all to arrive

4a Me,-as-angels-began-to-assemble

It was reported by those who came from the north that it was snowing, but where we were (in Provo, Utah) the sky was a gorgeous blue.


On the left of the previous picture are the heaters that burned later in the night. But with over 1000 people, only a few found warmth there.

Eventually we were herded into the orange mesh area and given another wristband to facilitate counting of participants. I am up at the top back of this group.

5 eventually put into the orange mesh to count


Cameras were attached to these balloons that were maneuvered up and down for filming all day.

6 cameras were attached to these balloons that were manuevered

I am the light head on the top row of angels in this picture.

7 me at the top of the row

I am at the top, furthest left, in this picture. We are shouting hurrah that we broke the world record.

7a shouting hurrah that we broke the record

We were moved into our designated area for rehearsals that went on for a couple hours.


I was a hill angel. I’m at the top on the hill.

9 more rehearsals

As the sun went down in the west, the moon rose in the east, and the chill breeze lowered the temperature considerably. Here you see the balloon cameras high in the sky.

10 sun is disappearing and the moon is up

These are the angels with lights in their costumes, watching us practice our part. I am over on the far hill under the bright lights.

11 angels with lights in their costumes watching us practice

The arrow is pointing to me, next to the fog. They blew fog out in great billows during actual filming.

12 Me at the top of hill next to the fog

They took about 100 of our angels to increase the number of lighted angels for filming. This is one of the many times the lighted-angel segment was shot.


Almost all of the lighted angels were excused to leave at this point. About 25 were asked to stay for another shot that would be around the manger scene. Then they focused their filming on the manger with us in the background. This is what it looked like from my view.



After the manger scene shooting our angel segment sang our song over and over and over and over and over and over . . . We had bells and candles. I was a candle holder. They had a camera below, a drone camera flying around us, and men walking among us with cameras. At last they told everyone who felt they could not stand the cold any longer they could leave. The rest of us practiced again with our walking down off the hill while we sang and the remaining lighted angels circling the manger.

By this time the grass on the hill was immensely slippery. Each time we went up and down I truly feared I would be caught on camera as I fell head over heel, literally! But, thank goodness, I was able to keep on my feet.

After nine long hours of mostly standing in the cold, we were told we were finished. I had a terrible time fishing my car key out of my boot. My fingers just simply were without feeling, nor could they bend or grip anything. But you know what made it all worth it? At the end, one of the directors said, “You have been a part of history. Hundreds of thousands of people around the world will come unto Christ because of this video.”

Some days before, a Facebook friend posted this poster.

15 Facebook poster

That day I saw the article in the paper about this event and a website to go to to register to be a part of making history. Something told me this is that thing I needed to do that my future self would thank me for. I signed up that day, figured out my costume, and with determination fulfilled what I set out to do.


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Newsletter/Fan Update

Tuesday, November 25th, 2014

Amazing Offer

I am passionate about the messages in We Are Strong! I feel they are immensely important right now. I want to see these messages shared with as many women as possible. To help make that happen, I’m offering you the best deal you may ever get from an author, even better than the signed-copy offer on my website. Consider giving these books for gifts or using them for Relief Society book clubs or women’s retreats. I am offering We Are Strong by the case at my author’s cost—$4.00 per book. There are 24 books in a case. You will have to cover the shipping costs or pick them up at my home. Please forward this offer to any and all you think might be interested.


At this link you can read the amazing endorsements this book received even prior to printing.

Here is a piece of the “Deseret News” review of We Are Strong! by Alexis Jones.

“We are Strong” is a practical and spiritually uplifting guide to raising children righteously, no matter how old they are. Although it is targeted to mothers of daughters, it is also appropriate for other family members.

Exciting Award

I am sooooooooo happy and excited to announce my book I Am Strong! I Am Smart! is an Award-Winning Finalist in the Children’s Religious category of the 2014 USA Best Book Awards.


Invitation to Write

I was invited to write an article for a national online magazine, “GRAND Magazine.” The article came out in their 10-year anniversary issue. This is a screenshot of the article (page 54 of the magazine). And here is the online link. From there you can scroll left and right to view the whole magazine.

I was particularly excited about the sidebar ad they provided in review of I Am Strong! I Am Smart!—they LOVED it!


Opportunities to Speak

Since my last newsletter, I’ve had the opportunity to speak at a number of locations. One, though, that I particularly enjoyed was speaking at the 2nd grade Ranches Academy in Eagle Mountain. I was there with six other authors. Each author spoke to a different grade. I had all of the second graders, 50 or so students. I talked about writing and about how to deal with bullies. After all the authors spoke to the different grades, the students went to the gym for teacher presentations and a treat. Then they came to our makeshift bookstore to purchase our books.

The children were just wonderful. Oh, how I enjoyed that! If any of you would like such a program for your children’s schools, let me know.


Another speaking opportunity that I relished was being a presenter at the state, two-day League of Utah Writers conference in September. I had a wonderful group of students with a great class discussion.

This is a picture of me with two other presenters—Chantelle Aimee Osman and Kathryn Jones.


I also spoke at the first-ever “Local Authors and You” event at the West Jordan Library. That was a very unusual setup with well over 20 authors giving presentations and signing books.


Books Reviewed

Before I give you my reviews on books, I want to mention something about reviews.

I don’t know why some people just feel they must be mean. Some reviewers truly, truly are just out to hurt. Some of the authors in my guild have been experiencing that hurt when their books are otherwise receiving five-star, honest reviews.

I love what Tristi Pinkston wrote on her blog. I particularly say amen to this part. “The thing I wish all reviewers understood is this: It takes a huge amount of courage for an author to publish. They’ve taken their inner guts and stuck them on display for everyone to see. They’re not just telling a story – they’re showing the journey they’ve taken. And then they stand back with their eyes half closed, peeking out around them, to see not only if their story is accepted, but if they are accepted.”

I’m grateful to everyone who has taken the time to post reviews for my books. Especially if they have chosen to be honest and lift me up in the process.

From the Ashes by Julie Coulter Bellon

I’m not a romance reader. I’m a mystery, suspense reader. For that reason I didn’t enjoy this book quite as much as the other books in the series. But then I think that was the purpose of the book, to provide a romantic conclusion for two characters in the series–Colby and Sophia. And I truly LOVED the Hostage Negotiation Team series! For a short novella, the author provided romance, mystery, and suspense. So I decided to give the book five stars.

From the Ashes

The Man from Shenandoah by Marsha Ward

I’ve been wanting to read one of Marsha’s books for a long time, and I was not disappointed. It is a part of the Owen Family Saga.

I fell in love with one of the characters in this book. Well, not exactly in love. I guess it would be better to say I loved her character and want to be like her. This is one fictional character that really teaches a lot.

I found The Man from Shenandoah well written, well plotted, and well developed. If you like to read romance novels, particularly western romance novels, you will like this one. Especially if you like Civil-War-period books.

The book synopsis and information about Marsha are on my website.

Book cover

Thank You

Thank you to those who support and share my writing. My success has only come about because of you.




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Some Reviewers Misuse Their Power

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

I don’t know why some people just feel they must be mean. Some reviewers truly, truly are just out to hurt. Some of the authors in my guild have been experiencing that hurt when their books are otherwise receiving five-star, honest reviews.

I love what Tristi Pinkston wrote on her blog today. I particularly say amen to this part. “The thing I wish all reviewers understood is this: It takes a huge amount of courage for an author to publish. They’ve taken their inner guts and stuck them on display for everyone to see. They’re not just telling a story – they’re showing the journey they’ve taken. And then they stand back with their eyes half closed, peeking out around them, to see not only if their story is accepted, but if they are accepted.”


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Veterans Day

Tuesday, November 11th, 2014

Today is Veterans Day in the United States. Today I honor my father who served his country in WWII (50 missions), and then after the war continued to be an honorable citizen of the United States, voting in every election, rearing his children to love God as well as their fellow man no matter what color of their skin or their ethnicity, and to uphold the constitution of the United States. He was a great example of what it means to be an American, a good honorable human being. I love my father.


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Grateful for November

Sunday, November 2nd, 2014

Halloween is not my favorite holiday so I am happy October is passed and it is now November. I love Thanksgiving and all that it represents. I’m looking forward to having family here for this peaceful holiday. Happy November to you all.


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We Are Strong!

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

Note the specials (case price) for signed copies of We Are Strong! Click “Books.” Then click on the We Are Strong! book cover. If you live in my area, you can pick the books up at my home and save on the postage.


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Family Halloween Party

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

I love to plan parties, especially for our family. And I’m blessed my family members, for the most part, go along with me. :)

Saturday we had our annual Halloween party. Everyone is supposed to come in costume. Some do. Some don’t. But they come, and we have a really fun time. The parents bring the treats for the children. The parents choose a room in our house and all the children go room to room trick-or-treating. My husband and I provide a fish pond. The children seem to enjoy that. Then after the fish pond and trick-or-treating we have a family dinner.

Already I’m looking forward to next year!


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Excellent Hostage Negotiation Team

Friday, October 10th, 2014

Finally I was able to read a fourth book in this series. No, I didn’t read them in order, but really that didn’t matter. I’ve enjoyed every single one of them independently. I wish the series was going to continue, but other than a novella, I’m told the series is complete.

If you like action and suspense mixed with a spark of romance, you’ll enjoy All Fall Down by Julie Coulter Bellon.

All Fall Down

This is what All Fall Down is about.

Ring around the rosy, a pocket full of posies, ashes, ashes we all fall down . . .

That simple rhyme turns negotiator Claire Michaels’ current hostage situation into an international incident. Claire just wants to help get everyone out safely, but as the crisis escalates she realizes she’s dealing with an al-Qaeda operative who has the means to become another bin Laden—with the potential to attack America. Claire has her own personal reasons for wanting to stop al-Qaeda, but time is slipping away as negotiations break down. Can she overcome her scars of the past in order to get the hostage out alive and possibly stop an assault on U.S. national security?

Navy SEAL Rafe Kelly is on leave to recover from a knee injury he suffered during his tour in Afghanistan and he doesn’t expect to be fighting terrorists on his home turf. But when he is taken hostage and his brother is kidnapped, Rafe teams up with a hostage negotiator in order to stay alive and get his brother back. The terrorist is always one step ahead of them, however, and the situation quickly turns from desperate to deadly. Will Rafe be able to save himself and his country without anyone he loves getting caught in the crossfire?


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