June 1, 2008 Monta Vista High School Verdadera 21840 McClellan Road Cupertino, CA 95014 To the MVHS Community, As the 200708 school year draws to a close, the staff and advisors of Verdadera would like to thank our readership for its continued support of our publication. Support takes many forms while we strive to bring forth the voices of Monta Vista students as they reveal their personal experiences through confidential anonymous written expression. We need authors to write their story as well as readers who can relate to the topic and appreciate another's point of view with understanding and empathy and who may then be willing to share their own experiences on paper at another time. We continue to believe that mailing copies of Verdadera to every MV student's home will serve to expose whole families and, therefore, maximum numbers of our school community to our publication. Verdadera's publishing and mailing expenses are entirely covered through personal donations. At this time, we would like to acknowledge individuals who have generously donated monetary contributions as well as supportive letters of appreciation and encouragement to our cause this year: The Clifford O. Marks Family The Satterlee Family Rachel Greenberg Richard Prinz Man Sung Co & ChoyPik Chiu Chuan Chen Misao Michelfelder Kusuda J. Tsai & M. Kao Shun Wu John Wang & Julia L. Wang David V. Le & Han K. Nguyen Nancy Offer Virginia McCulloch Lau & Ronald W. J. Lau May C. & Paul Koski Terri L. & Michael James Bertrand Future contributions will continue to be accepted at any time and are tax deductible (Tax ID# 770296140). Please make checks out to: ASB/Verdadera and mail to: Verdadera Donation c/o Kathy Fetterman 22660 San Juan Road Cupertino, CA 950143933
Betrayal June 2008 Verdadera is a publication created by and for Monta Vista teens for the purpose of instigating communication concerning the “real world” of high school within the community. Each month, an issue on a topic relevant to the lives of our students is sent home for reading by parents and students alike. We encourage you to discuss and explore the issues and stories, as the publication aims not only to offer an outlet for expression but to improve our lives. Keep in mind that the emotions that flow through the text and the feelings behind the words could be those of your child, your classmate, or your best friend. While we do not edit submissions, we aim to publish personal experiences, not opinion articles. Please utilize all the resources present in the publication. Please feel free to email comments and feedback. The Verdadera staff thanks you for your interest and support. This issue includes stories about betrayal, how it has affected students, and how badly they have been hurt by it.
Student Submissions “You tell me that you need me, Then you go and cut me down” from the song Apologize by Timbalake. That fits the word “betrayal” perfectly. She always said she needed me. She told me that I was the only she could trust. She always told me that over the others, even though she said she trusted them as well, I was the most reliable, the most trustworthy. What a lie. She told that to every one of us. She has us hanging from the end of her finger, willing to do anything to make her feel better. Turns out she was playing all of us. She had us all caught up in this little game of hers, we never had the chance to fully take in our surroundings. In the desolate black world she had created, we ran to keep up with her everyday, ran from the huge black monsters that chased us from behind, at least, that’s what she told us we had to do. Then somehow, we were left standing there alone. Alone in that dark empty world, with no one to tell us how to find our way out. She abandoned us in this fabricated world of hers, the world she had created to seek attention
from those that would have never given it to her. She had our attention, played it to get what she wanted, then she got bored. She wanted new people to play with. Out from the empty world she jumped, leaving us behind, alone and broken. We had played her game so long, it became reality for us. She played the depressed damsel in distress. We played the strong (but only on the outside) friends that encouraged her and gave her the support she needed. She brought us all down into her world, then left us there. We had no idea how to get out. Over time, we found the light that penetrated the empty world and we found color again. But I don’t think we’ve ever fully left that world just yet. At least, I haven’t. I’m still stuck there, half in the dark empty world of nothingness and half in this world, a world of dreams and joy. Apparently, the damage has been done and “It's too late to apologize”. Betrayal Comes in Many Forms I want to scream
I feel betrayed Slapped in the face Cast aside I am mad. But yet,
I still feel like crying.
More Betrayal, Secrets aren’t secrets anymore Caught between the sorta truth and a lie What now? Life Sucks Sometimes Disguised behind pretty faces, good grades, And a façade of a happy personality Life can still suck. The Unexpected Betrayal. How would you define betrayal? No matter how you define it, there is no way its negative connotations can be wiped away. It’s hard to describe the kind of betrayal that existed between my dearest friend and her company. She was like a sister to me. I would have never expected her to be the one who initiated all my other friends to turn against me. She had a kind face that matched her personality. That was the reason why I was so shocked. It was one simple comment that led to another. Soon, it turned into snowball that could not be stopped. It was, in a sense, like an endless game. Sixth grade. My best friend started telling everyone I had an attitude problem, and soon I was excluded from the rest of the “group.” An outcast. What had I done? Absolutely nothing. Nothing to have deserved such disrespect to people whom I called my “friends.” I treasured those friends with utmost gratitude – without them my life was but an empty stone at the bottom of a well. Maybe it was a game to them, or perhaps a chance to break free of their childhood where I no longer existed. After coming home to a nice bed in which I could dry my tears with, I told my parents that school was somewhere I no longer wanted to go. I was friend less and betrayed. There was not a single person who stayed by me. The sad thing was, no one was still by my side or willing to admit they were wrong. It’s been a while since my first betrayal. From that
experience I learned a lot about people, their egos, and their motives to become “popular.” Perhaps I wasn’t the ideal friend to be with, but I still feel that such hatred was brought forth with unneeded abruptness. I was never able to say this “Sticks and stones can break my bones but words can never hurt me.” Words can penetrate pretty deep when they come someone you care significantly about. It was a lesson I learned well, and one that would prevent me from inflicting such harm on others. Experiencing that firsthand, I seek no revenge. Why repay hatred with more hate? Show them kindness and they in turn will understand their faults in shame. Betrayal isn’t forever. If you’re willing to forgive and forget, there’s always a chance to patch up the thorns in the rose – because the ending in this story was a happy one. Even after moving away, I have stayed in contact with the girl who started the avalanche of hate. She even sent me socks once! Trust can take years to build, but only a second to break. – Unknown Betrayal is harsh. The closer the betrayal is, the more it hurts. I was never very great in the friends business. I was a bossy, fat, too smart for my own good kid who had no idea when to shut up and when to speak up and what to say and what to do or not do. So in middle school, I decided to change. I raised my hand when I spoke, I tried to stay a little quieter, I tried to not be too bossy and let other people work out their own mistakes. And I made friends. Several of them. And I was pretty happy. There was one girl, Jane*. She was popular, beautiful, smart, nice, rich, everything you would want to be. And by seventh grade, we were best friends. Or, she was my best friend and I thought I was her best friend. I wasn’t perceptive enough to realize what a bitch she was. She probably wasn’t a bitch until later, actually. I ignored a few other people because of her, people who were not popular or cool, because Jane was “a better friend”. And she was for a time. But eighth grade happened. So our group of friends became a little larger. And Jane got more popular, more pretty, more athletic, more smart, more preppy, and not at all nicer to people who just weren’t worth it. I have met so many people who are amazing on the outside – smart, cheerful, popular, nice, friendly – but then you realize that they are just backbiting bitches who only talk to you when they
need something from you. Otherwise it’s just “ok yeah fine g2g cya later” and then they leave. And make you, the inferior one, feel just that. It seems like Monta Vista is full of them – people who will talk to you to get some information, like what contest you applied to, what elite summer program you’re going to, etc, etc. And then when its over they just turn back to their posse and leave you in the dust. I’ve been “friends” with too many of them already, and it hasn’t even been a year. I make it sound so dramatic, because it was and is. Betrayal is like someone punching you in the gut over and over and over. You never know when something might trigger it and you might get upset and angry all over again, which I hate. I hate that what they did still means something to me. Sometimes I feel betrayed when I’m doing homework or SAT prep. When I think about the fact that I don’t have life that whatever I do have sucks. I feel betrayed by God or my parents for dumping me in this hellhole. But I do have friends and loving parents. Kind of. Moving to another district is hell especially for me. Even though I kno that other people have it worse off I sit moping and dreaming and typing out all this shit about how bad I have it. I’m the one who betrays the most. These kids who really like me for who I am, I just want to get away cuz they aren’t popular, cuz they aren’t cool. Every time those kids come around, walking in a group to their lockers or to 711, I want to be a part of that group, I want to be a part of them, and not the “losers”. Even though the “losers” are the nice kids. And the groupies are rich, thin, pretty, smart, stuck up snobs. I want to be who I’m not. I want to be that awesome popular clone. I’m betraying myself, and I don’t f*cking care. Every time betrayal hits me, I disgustedly attempt this: “We have to distrust each other. It’s our defense against betrayal.” ~Tennessee Williams *Name has been changed to protect confidentiality. Everyone at one point in their lives has been betrayed. Although, it may just be once, it still leaves a strong imprint on that person. For me, I can easily come up with all the times I’ve been betrayed by “friends”. But there was one time, where I thought I was so cool. I put myself ahead of others and because of that I betrayed my friend.
It’s quite an ordinary story. The typical two girl best friend, though one is jealous of the other. The jealousy grows each day, and resentment can’t be held down. There was the evil best friend, and just the best friend in this story I became the antagonist. I never let my anger leave traces back to me. But I talked behind her back, spilling secrets that weren’t meant to be told. Until, I heard myself. One day I was told she was crying. Although, that sounds normal to everyone else, it wasn’t normal to me. I saw myself as a horrible person, and even though I tried to justify myself, in the end I still hurt someone I cared about. Betrayal is never pretty. It can never be justified. It will always hurt. But everyone has been betrayed before. Everyone. There was a girl I went out with for 10 months. Me and her went through a lot and we became really close. Even after we broke up we remained close and had an on and off unofficial thing for 2 years. Nobody approved of what we had but we didn’t care. We were the most important people in each other’s lives. We had our fair share of fights but we trusted each other and really cared for each other. Both as a girl and a special friend for me. Now since freshmen year I’ve kept good morals. Helping out strangers whenever they needed a hand, being courteous to everybody and respecting those who deserved it. I’ve earned everything I got and I not once stole anything. Another thing I was really against was drugs. I’ve had friends who did drugs. A lot. They always tried to get me to do it but I would just turn them down and they were cool with it. Where is this all going you might ask? Well lemme tell ya. The girl promised me she would never do drugs, and keep good morals, because she didn’t want to get on the wrong track and she didn’t want to dissapoint me. Well in my senior year she met this guy, and eventually went out with him. To be honest I was a bit of a jerk to her at the time. She had very strong feelings for me and I had feelings for her, but not so strong that I could make a commitment to her. So when she got with this guy, I was sad and felt stupid for missing my chance. This guy was in college and he had a pretty nasty habit of drinking and smoking pot a lot, and though I was worried for my friend, I trusted that she wouldn’t fall under the influence. Well was I proven wrong. In a matter of weeks she was partying all the time, and in about a month she got high for her first time. All because of this guy’s influence. I talked to her about it, saying when she was with me she wouldn’t have touched the stuff, but now she’s so easily influenced. After our 3 year’s I thought she would be smarter than this
and wouldn’t be so easily influenced, especially considering how strongly against drugs she was herself, and she saw a very close friend of hers change after smoking pot. When I talked to her about this, she just said “It’s not you and me anymore”. So just like that. 3 years of good influence, gone in a matter of a month. She completely changed, though she wouldn’t admit it. This was something I deeply feared. AS a senior, I’ve seen countless people, a lot them people like me who were so strongly against it, fall further the influence and change through these 4 years. Now someone who was like family to me, became another victim. I felt so shocked, sad, hurt, and felt so betrayed, that she so easily broke our promise, and her good morals and her thoughts of not wanting to disappoint me. And she couldn’t care less of how much she hurt me. We rarely talk now, but I’ve met someone else and I have never been happier. Betrayal does that betrays the betrayer. Erica Jong
Rodger L. Jackson gives us a clear definition of the word ‘betrayal’: “Betrayal is both a "people" problem and a philosopher's problem. Philosophers should be able to clarify the concept of betrayal, compare and contrast it with other moral concepts, and critically assess betrayal situations. At the practical level people should be able to make honest sense of betrayal and also to temper its consequences: to handle it, not be assaulted by it. What we need is a conceptually clear account of betrayal that differentiates between genuine and merely perceived betrayal, and which also provides systematic guidance for the assessment of alleged betrayal in real life”. Betrayal happens when someone we believe in turns on us, and leaks out to the public inconceivable truths confided in them. People experience betrayal in their own way. Some ignore it and remain friends, while others turn their backs on their close friends and never speak to them again. While these views seem logical, they both have their own problems. If you ignore the wrong deed and remain friends, then your friend might think you as oblivious and continue to betray you even more. On the other hand, if you completely destroy your friendship because of this, then you have lost a valued friend. My own experience in this matter is unique. I took a
different approach to the problem. A few years ago, I told my friend a secret. This secret, I told her, was not to be shared with anyone. I shared it with her solely because she was my best friend and I trusted her more than anyone else. The next day, I was astonished to find myself as the laughing stock of the entire school. I found out that I was being called names and laughed at because I was afraid of the dark. By the way, I have outgrown that now. I knew that this was the secret I had told my friend the day before. I sought to teach her a lesson instead of ruining my friendship with her. The next day, I came to school and went straight to my locker. I went on as usual to my History class. There, I found my friend and another friend. There was a bad rumor going on about this other friend and my History class was the place that it popped. Soon my other friend was so distressed by this rumor that ended up crying. She had experienced the same thing as me. – Betrayal I knew my friend was watching this and that she felt very bad for my other friend. I even found her comforting her. I took this opportunity to tell my friend about the offence she had committed to me in the same matter. She realized her mistake and we have never had any problems at all after that. I feel that this is the ideal way to handle betrayal situation. Make your friend realize their mistake without hurting their feelings. I never thought it would end like this. I trusted her. After all, why would someone lie and make up some tragic story just to get attention? I listened to whatever was on her mind and let her drag me out of class. I sympathized with her sorrowful stories and I worried sleepless nights over her problems. In believing that she understood how I felt, I told her my stories and my worries. I thought that she could understand how I felt. Instead of keeping my feelings secret, she went and told someone else, claiming that she “didn’t mean to”. My parents were called, and I was sent to Mr. Prinz for “counseling”. And then, after seeming to have fun with getting into deep, hot waters of trouble, she ditched me. She threw me away like I was some used toy that she didn’t want to play with anymore. Even now, when she sees me, she talks and chats to me as if nothing ever happened. She pretends that nothing ever went wrong. And then, she would drop in a hint that her life was thrown into turmoil again, quietly telling me some big, overwhelming problem
of her. I don’t even know if they are true anymore. I don’t know what to think anymore. When I listen to her speak, how do I know those words aren’t just lies? How do I know whoever speaking to me is not lying, trying to hurt me just like she had? What is betrayal? Simply a definition gained from Merriam Webster’s dictionary: to lead astray? Or is it something more? Something that rouses emotions and draws forth the tears of a lifetime? Something that can change your life and reshape the world as you see it? Often we find that betrayal is simply the breaking and shattering of everything that you believed was real. He broke me. He changed all that I had once lived for. I entered high school apprehensively; afraid of how I’ face so many people and the stereotypes that high school had earned. I didn’t want change, in fact, I was afraid of it. I shied away from anything that wasn’t in my comfort zone, hoping that my life would always be the same, and I’d be eternally happy in my circle of friends. Then he dropped me. Out of the blue, I became nothing to him. He told me to stop. He told me that he still liked his old girlfriend. I was over my head in confusion. Had I done something wrong? And the question that kept floating to my head again and again was: why? Why did he suddenly become a shadow of the person I thought I had once known? Why did he lead me on, pretend that he cared, and then leave? Was it simply for his amusement? For weeks, I simply moped. I went around doing my daily tasks like a robot. And it was there that I learned how to mask my emotions and manipulate things to go the way I wanted. Lying with my emotions turned out to be easy. Words were important – but body language was key. He changed me. For the worse… or for the better? I can’t answer that. But regardless… I’m not like the naïve and young girl that I once was. I don’t hesitate to admit that I have changed, I have become more realistic, and that I have learned the ways that society function. I crave change. I set goals and I stop at nothing to reach them. I don’t pretend to want the love or the fluff of the beautiful high school relationships that have established themselves in the movies. I don’t need anybody else. I am going to pave my path in this world and blaze through everything that stands in my way. Quite simply, I have become a bitch. I pity those who don’t realize who I am…because I have
gotten quite skilled at donning a mask. A mask of joyfulness and simple contentment over the apathy and lethal hatred that I have learned that I have learned to use well. Nobody realizes how much this betrayal has shattered my world. Nobody realizes the person I have become. But you know what? Nobody gives a damn, because in this world, in the end – it is only you for yourself. I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you Friedrich Nietzsche I liked this guy in December or sometime at the end of 2007 and apparently one of my best friends did too, but I didn’t know. Because she’s one of my good friends, I told her that I liked him and she swore not to tell; but of course she did. At first I didn’t know that she did it. I just knew someone did. I never suspected her because I never thought she would try to hurt me like that. But he wasn’t helping either, both because he began ignoring me and it sucked losing a friend. I was pretty shocked when I found out it was her, I mean out of all the people. I would much rather have her tell me how she felt instead of just spilling my secret. That trust factor definitely disap peared and even now I have trouble trusting her with secrets. After I thought about it, I was glad she did it because it showed how much I was wasting my time with that guy. I later asked her why she did it and she kept saying “I don’t know.” I never understood why she would not know but she still has not given me a clear answer. People tell me all the time “Oh she didn’t mean to, it came out on accident.” But she has not told me anything to back that story up, so for now I’m going to believe what I believe. I think that it all began when she accidentally told him someone liked him and he was beginning to think it was her. So then, she used someone she actually knew who liked him, me. It’s still a mystery and I’m still afraid to bring it up, but I will one day. There was one day when I was really upset. I was trying to plan something and something had gone wrong and I was at an especially low point in my selfesteem and general mood. I was walking around afterschool and saw two of my best friends (one of my ex). I wasn’t feeling well but still had my outside composure so I thought I might as well stop and talk to them when they waved me over. They were trying to plan a trip to the movies. They first asked me if I wanted to go (I answered I couldn’t) and then re membered I couldn’t drive and jokingly said I was
worthless. That short sentence broke my composure and I started to walk away. I ran when they called af ter me. That was the only time in my left I have run away from somebody or something like that. Even now if I think about it I almost always end up crying – I think that experience has forever attached itself to feelings of low selfesteem and loneliness. I know that they didn’t mean it and it was more of a tease youlittlesister kind of thing but I couldn’t can’t help feeling betrayed. I confess I had probably felt betrayed earlier in my life but I had probably forgotten about it. Up until last year, I put my trust and confidence in ev eryone I met and felt a sense of closeness with ev eryone I got along with. I can remember last year, the beginning of summer, I went to a business camp in New York City, and met so many diverse people. My room mate and I talked the whole night about how excited we were and after a few days, I thought we were ex tremely close. I don’t know exactly what caused it, but she started to completely ignore me when we weren’t in our dorms together. And even when we were togeth er, she would talk less and less to me, as if she had realized how “weird” I was. One evening, I walked in my dorm room and all the lights were turned off but I was too tired to turn them back on. Besides, it was still evening and there was still light outside. I was rummaging through my luggage when she came in, but didn’t notice me in the dark. So I said her name aloud and she completely jumped back in fright. Later that night, I overheard her talking to some other girls in our group about how I was “a complete creep” and “did weird things”. They all laughed and agreed. I was so shocked at that moment that I liter ally had to try to remember what I did that would have caused her to say such malicious things. From then on, all the girls whom I had origi nally also been close to seemed to mock me behind my back and give me a hard time by purposely shun ning me out of their group and whispering and point ing at me. Up until that point, the word “betrayal” was not in my vocabulary. It was an awful feeling, but I had also refused to let it ruin my camp experience. In a way I was betrayed on tow levels. One by my roommate whom I thought I had a pretty tight relationship with. Another by all the other girls who believed the lies and ridiculous things my roommate told them.
To me, betrayal is building up a trust and close relationship with someone and finding out that it was all based on lies. And although, I’m sad I had to experience that, I’m glad because I now look down on people that sneer at and make fun of “lon ers” that don’t “fit it”. Silence is a friend who will never betray” Confucius Over the last couple years, my parents have grown farther and farther apart. Honestly, I don’t remember the last nice thing my mom has said to my dad. Once and awhile, my dad will try to be nice, but nothing really comes out of it. They stopped sleeping in the same bed a few years ago. My mom sleeps in the guest bedroom because supposedly she likes how comfortable the bed is. I think they take all of it or at least most of it out on me. And since they don’t really talk to each other, they get mad at me instead. I’ve kind of accepted it because there’s not much I can do. If I fight back, I get everything taken away from me. And I’m not that good at dealing with it. Last year, I ran away. Lately, I’ve seriously been tempted to many times. I don’t want pity or for people to think they need to take in a charity case, so I don’t really tell people. People always tell me my parents are really cool. Oh what they know. Well, anyway, so I think my parents know they are going to get a divorce, but I think they’re too scared to do it. My mom probably cares too much of what her sisters will say. And my dad is just a big chicken. In fact, they have each even both individually told me they will not be together in twenty years. Honestly, I kind of wish they would do it, so I could stop being so stressed at home. I’m failing almost half my classes. I don’t know how to deal with stress anymore. Actually, I’ve been doing much better, but my dad doesn’t really understand after he’s yelled at me that I can’t really focus on homework. So I’m failing, and then he takes more and more things away from me. I guess it makes me fairly independent. But I don’t really sleep anymore, and then, of course, he gets mad at takes more things away from me. I know it’s because he cares, but I wish my parents knew how to deal with things without taking all these things away. Recently, they took away rides… Among many other places, they refused to drive me to school. But, don’t worry. I eventually figured that out. Anyway, I keep getting off track, so my mom often goes to Santa Cruz to hang out with her friends. And I’ve known them forever. One of them is a married woman with terribly annoying kids, and the other is a divorced man with a CRAZY son, who does way too much
drugs, impregnates girls, that kind of stuff. Actually, I think he moved to a different school, cleaned up a little, and is now like the star athlete, but that’s way beside the point. So, my mom often goes to Santa Cruz and often doesn’t come back to the next morning. I’ve never really thought much of it. But recently, I saw my friend who lives in Santa Cruz who knows my mom’s friend’s son. And eventually I asked, “Oh yeah, you know Dave? He says he knows you.” “Oh yeah I just saw him. He asked if I knew you.” “Yeah, his dad and my mom are like best friends.” “Oh really… that’s not what he said. He said your mom and his dad were dating.” How the hell do you respond to that? I totally played it off, and then things started clicking… I don’t really know what to do about it, so I haven’t said anything, but my mom spent the night Friday and it’s 5pm Saturday, and she still hasn’t come home. She does it a lot, but yeah. I mean I guess I shouldn’t assume Dave was telling the truth, but for some reason I believe it. My dad doesn’t know, and I don’t plan on telling him, but yeah. F*ck. It’s been a few weeks or so since I wrote this, and I wanted to revisit it. Basically, that Friday night my mom stayed in Santa Cruz she didn’t come home until Monday morning… We had a dinner with her parents, her brother and his girlfriend, who were visiting from Oregon. We called my mom a million times to come. Apparently, her phone died, so we never got a call from her. But obviously, she could have picked up any phone and called us at home. Whatever. Every weekend since then she has spent the night or the weekend there. She acts so shady. And recently she got pissed at my dad and was yelling at me because she has to pay the mortgage because he doesn’t even though she doesn’t have a job. And she kept saying, “This isn’t working. It isn’t working. I need to make a major change.” And she kept saying “major change.” Then last week I turned on the computer, which had gone idle after my mom left for who knows where. There were tons and tons of pictures of the man, his dog, his car, his house, etc. and a TON of his son at a lacrosse game. For some reason, out of everything, seeing the pictures of Dave playing lacrosse made me break down. I sat at the computer, and all of the sudden I couldn’t stop crying. Instead of coming to my games and taking pictures of me, she’s in Santa Cruz with her other family. It sounds selfish, but it really hurt me. She has never taken more than a handful of pictures of
me playing. I don’t even know anymore. We go on as a pseudofamily with our pseudohappiness, while in reality everyone just wants to get away from each other. Yesterday, when my dad asked where my mom was and I said Santa Cruz, he said, “Oh. With her boyfriend?” I said, “Yes.” Love me when I least deserve it, because that's when I really need it. Swedish proverb Okay, I really regret what I did, but at that time I thought it was necessary. So I was really good friends with this girl, and we shared deep thoughts and gave each other advice at times. One day while we were walking home, she told me something I wasn’t supposed to tell someone. Obviously in high school there are no secrets. But I usually do keep a secret. This one person I wasn’t supposed to tell was my best friend. They used it be best friends once, but are just friends now. Anyways, so I promised to keep that secret but then one day I was talking with my best friend and she was talking about that girl. I couldn’t help but spill what I knew and my best friend swore she wouldn’t tell. Somehow my friend found out that I told my best friend and from there on everything just kind of fell apart. Now I’m not that close with that girl, but we still are friends. This usually happens a lot in school, secrets spilling, but I regret this one a lot. Because I lost a friend, and she doesn’t trust me like before anymore. Now it’s worse because those two girls aren’t so hot on friendship terms. And this always leads me to defending or talking shiet about one when I’m with either one of them. And now I’m not that close with my best friend, so I really don’t have anyone who I can talk to without any worries of what they think. I learned my lesson of what happens when I don’t keep my mouth shut. It’s worse than it sounds (my feelings). Its hard to describe our feelings. I really wish I was best friends with them both again. Or hopefully find new ones who I won’t screw over with. Once upon a time there was a boy. This boy was not particularly handsome, but he had a personality that (in his mind) made up for the 'notsohandsome' thing. Anyway, this boy had a best friend. They had been best buddies for a whole TWO years (which in childhood terms is a century). They had many things in common: they played the same sports, ate the same food, and… liked the same girl. They had de cided not to compete for the girl, in fact they decided not to go out with her at all. But, as luck would have
it, the girl developed a crush for the boy's best friend. What makes the situation worse was when the boy's best friend decided to go out with the girl without telling the poor, lonely boy. THAT, my friends, is betrayal. Now you might ask yourselves what in god's name could make the story more hor rific than it already is. Well it so happens that the same phenomenon happened TWO MORE TIMES in the boy's life (with different best friends and dif ferent girls). Before we get carried away, one could argue that the boy was naive and has to get better best friends… don't worry the boy comprehends that fact fully.
To be deceived by our enemies or betrayed by our friends is insupportable; yet by ourselves we are often content to be so treated. - Duc de La Rochefoucauld I love summer. Especially when you meet new peo ple. It goes double for cute guys, perhaps triple when there's the palpable sting of static electricity fueled by some unseen force of pure chemistry. And that's exactly what it was the first time I met this guy; let's name him Steven. Well, Steven and I hit it off pretty well. Our friends (also made up), Donna, Eric, and Fez could MOST DEFINITELY tell. Donna knew the moment she saw it and fought relentlessly to nudge it along after it happened. It was almost defi nitely going to be something until Jackie came along. And well, what Jackie sees and likes, Jackie gets, and Steven became her new prey. Fortunately, Donna told her, oh no you don't! Steven's kind of claimed (kind of). Jackie tells me, Hey, no worries, if you've already got your eyes set on this guy, I will most courteously bow out. And I thought, hm. good deal, I'll just take my time. The VERY NEXT DAY, what do i see? Jackie and Steven going out to lunch. Well, lucky I'm a girl because that was most defi nitely a blow below the belt. Perhaps I was halluci nating. Sadly no, Donna told me the same story. Jackie only confessed after she knew I already knew. That's awesome Jackie, do you mind stabbing me in the back a little farther to the left, it doesn't hurt as much there...Lucky for me, I didn't like him THAT much, and I'm over it. But still, you'd think your friend wouldn't go against her word THAT fast. When your best friend betrays you, it hurts. But the thing is You can ultimately choose who your friends are. You can't, however, choose your family.
So when your only sanctuary, your only security in life, is destroyed, it hurts much more than when a friend betrays you. And that's what happened to me. My father betrayed his family. I knew it was going to happen. I've witnessed my parents argue to a point where it's even more dramat ic than those of Hollywood movies. It's a scary thing to see, especially at 4:17AM as a second grader. And the fact that I can remember the time on my Hello Kitty clock definitely says something about that night. About how I walked downstairs to see my mother pounding her fists against my dad's chest, screaming and yelling. About how she saw me, looked at my dad, then grabbed me and told him to leave. Saying, "She's MY daughter. Get out." That was when I was in second grade. It finally hap pened my freshmen year of high school. The betray al, the truths, the lies, the everything. The end to my family, the end to a security, to a sanctuary. The end of my "perfect" life. My mom had no problem telling me what happened. My father left us, and I lost someone who was al ways a protector to me. But the true betrayal was the fact that he had cheated. No, it wasn't about the money situation. No, it wasn't about the crazy tantrums my mother had suddenly started to throw. No, it was another woman. And the part that hurts? She's young enough to be my cousin. In fact, she's the same age as my cousin who will be graduating college this year. You do the math. I spent a year avoiding my dad, never picking up phone calls. It sometimes hurts me to the point that I get angry at him. How could he do this to me? To the family? To my perfect world. He doesn't under stand what it's like when my friends call me telling me they saw my dad and his mistress at the theaters, at the mall, on the bus. It's been three years, and I still haven't forgiven him. I was sitting next to a friend during brunch. She’s kind of a friend, but not really. I don’t agree with her when we talk about stuff, but we still talk sometimes during lunch and brunch. One day our so cial manager came up to us and asked us to be in a rally game. I said, “I don’t really want to…” Our so cial manager pleaded with us, “please could you do it with a friend.” *he gestures to my friend* “You could do it with her” I asked my friend if she would
do it and she replied, “I’ll do it if you do it.” So then we agreed to participate in the rally game and our social manager set us up. But then the next day she comes up to me, “I don’t know if I want to do it any more” I was like, Y? You said you’d do it yester day.” Then she said, “But I didn’t think you’d actu ally say yes” – “So do you still wanna do it?” – “I dunno.” Then the day before the rally, she comes up to me and tells me she doesn’t want to do it. After I realized how little time I had left I got pissed. How could she ditch me like that? And the day before the rally!! I got lucky and was able to find someone. Af terwards, she came up to me and said she felt bitter. I just thought to myself “you better feel bad b**** it’s your own fault.” I never forgave her for betray ing me the day before the rally. Trust is like a vase.. once it's broken, though you can fix it the vase will never be same again. - Unknown Betrayal is not a word I was familiar with until I started middle school. As I continued through the years, it was a problem that became for familiar with me than I'd liked. My first clique I was part of in 7th grade was a group of girls that were pretty tight but there was always something wrong in that group. The problem with us was that it seemed like we were all competing for this one friend's attention. There were all those fake rumors between that group about its own members that were unnecessary . Eventually in the summer of 7th grade I drifted away from the other girls because me and one of the girls kept fighting and she got everyone else to hate me. So I left that group and got a new group of friends. I guess I was hearing all these true rumors about me that were not meant to be spread around the school, they had been secrets my friends knew about me that I didn't want others to know because I didn't want people to judge me, but now it was too late. As 8th grade this girl and I became really close because we had sports together after school so our friendship grew stronger, we drifted from my 2nd clique. I would say we were like best friends until the start of 9th grade. She started getting really annoying and when she was standing up for this girl I really didn't like AGAINST me, that was it. I had left her like I had left most of close friends. Little did I know I be came a bitch after she left, I spread rumors about her and got people to dislike her more and more. I only realized how mean I was after this other girl in our group tried to get everyone to hate each other. "Seriously no one likes you" is all I wanted to yell at her, she tried to ruin my relationships with people I
didn't even know. I learned that betraying people to make them like you more just makes them HATE YOU! I'm really sorry to all the people I've hurt be fore through my useless betrayals. THANKS TO THE PEOPLE THAT BETRAYED ME CUZ NOW I KNOW WHO MY REAL FRIENDS ARE.
it was only after i was betrayed that i realized our friendship was a boat that was meant to sink from the beginning. it was the second semester of fresh man year that i made a mistake of starting one of the most significant experiences of my life. now i mean that as in it was one of the biggest things that's ever happened to me. and not in a good way. whether it was chance or retribution for what ive done, i met someone i became friends with. from the beginning to the end, the friendship only lasted for about ten months. for lack of related filler, ill just follow with the falling out. in a nutshell, i had fallen hard for a girl and i had just started, by all known means, my first relationship. its one of those things where any one would dance inside. anyways, i guess love had blinded me then, because my then friend and i were drifting apart violently in a metaphorical sense, and i was completely oblivious to it. with the intention of a truce if not peace, i introduced my then relation ship to my friendship. thinking that it was over, i be gan to go on with my life. but i was wrong because it wasnt over, and i paid for my blindness with the only thing of value to me, my relationship with that girl. it was during the first formal dance of the year which was my first that my friend finally took my sense of feeling and my faith in humanity. it was during the dinner before the dance that i found out i had been stabbed in the back. dinner had gone abso lutely as planned, when out of nowhere, the girl told me that my friend had told her that i was into anoth er girl. even as i registered the lie my friend told her, i somehow just had the feeling that it was all over. i had wasted three hundred and twenty dollars on the bids, corsage, tuxedo rental, and dinner. but i also lost something more valuable than anything else that night, my relationship. we ended up breaking up at the restaurant, all dressed up and everything, with her dumping me. surprisingly, i wasnt immediately angry or even hateful to my friend. all i can really remember was feeling the pain of betrayal beyond death or grief, love or hate. all i wanted was to have things go back to the way they were. my friend had taken advantage of my trust and faith and made me suffer for my stupidity. so i went home, trying to make sense of whats left of me. even one year later, i still dont understand why my friend did it, and i dont
think ill ever understand. youd think that friend would be better than me. now, im primed to gradu ate, with that incident a faded memory orbiting my thoughts. i cant wait to leave high school, where i pray i left my memories of that friend, along with my trust and faith.
Nevertheless, I will pick up the pieces and con tinue where we left off, playing my hardest for the team. But I will never be able to replace the hole left by him.
I need not fear my enemies because the most they can do is attack me. I need not fear my friends because the most they can do is betray me. But I have much to fear from people who are indifferent. Russian Proverb
I joined a team this year. It was the greatest thing that I have ever done for myself. Being on this team has boosted my confidence, given me friends, and still helps me get through the week. I feel that it has helped to define who I am.
There was one team mate in particular whom I admired the most. He was faster than any of the oth ers, knew what he was doing, and cracked us up with his jokes. I loved being around him, listening to what he had to say and attempting to follow suit in the advice he gave. He helped give this year's team some meaning, and was perhaps the most influential on my personal performance.
You told me how much you cared
I understood that he had flaws. He spoke of his shitty life, how he would sometimes drink to get over things, and how he longed to smoke just to break out of the monotony. He had a dark side, a side which I disapproved of but which all the same made him different and special. He was a true indi vidual who did what he wanted, didn't care what oth er's thought.
I should have known from the start that you were ly ing
Only recently I learned how he quit the team. I had no idea, but he had been missing from practice for several days when I was told. Friction had come up between him and another team member, another person I have a lot of respect for. Nonetheless, I was crestfallen. How could they rub against each other like that, ruining the good moments we all had and taking apart such core players? Whatever the argu ment was, I am very sad to see my friend go, even if he did have problems. I feel betrayed. Not by him, nor anyone on the team directly. I feel betrayed by life. Why is it that bonds are continually being broken? Why is it that people can't along?
That for me you'd always be there Lately all you've promised has been wrong And I can only rely on myself to be strong I became too complex and you stopped trying
You'd do anything to make yourself look good But never follow through as you know you should A liar and a thief, I can't forgive you You've stolen from me all that I thought to be true Apologies won't work for now it's too late Here is a promise that I will never break: You had me tricked and thought you were so cleaver But now that I know, I will hate you forever
Anything may be betrayed, anyone may be forgiven, but not those who lack the courage of their own greatness. Ayn Rand
BETRAYAL I have been working at Monta Vista High School for 8 years now. I am continually energized, inspired and made more caring and knowledgeable by the wisdom and compassion of teens. I think it is important to emphasize this point because we tend to spend a great deal of time headlining problems. We talk about problems with relationships, with school. We are critical and judgmental of others and ourselves. In these letters on betrayal, we read about some values that are important to teens. One spoke about having good morals—helping those in need, not stealing and staying away from drugs. It is clear how important it is to connect with others in meaningful ways. Several teens spoke about what they learned from difficulties in their life. They were able to take their personal experience and say, I’m not alone; everyone has been betrayed. They learned to be more caring and careful not to hurt others. They developed empathy for others through working with their own pain. There is an amazing amount of resiliencythe ability not only to survive hardship but also to thrive in the face of it. Before taking on a problem, I think it is important to keep in mind these strengths that we have: inner wisdom compassion, resources, resilience, successes in the past. Problems can present themselves as overwhelming. Thoughts or feelings can arise and totally convince us that they are presenting the whole truth and nothing but the truth to us. At times, it is our very own thoughts that betray us. Betrayal comes with a whole host of companions. They follow Betrayal wherever he goes. Resentment, anger, selfpity, pride, cynicism and over selfish concern are all ready to gang up on us to rob us of our happiness and peace of mind. We could spend more time examining our own thoughts and feelings. Check up. Are we exaggerating the situation? Did we understand what we heard correctly? Did I get the person’s meaning accurately? We could take a look at our own motivation before criticizing the intention of someone else. How can we keep Betrayal from pushing us around? Here’s one person’s plan. She is going to expect, not demand that everyone plays by her rules. Yeah, that’s her plan. Here are some of her rules: (Of course, she doesn’t go around telling people what her rules are and, anyway, if you’re her friend you are just suppose to know them) *I have used the personal pronoun, she. Please note that he is just as applicable. • • • • • • • • •
Friends must keep any secrets that I tell them; even if I don’t tell them it is a secret. Friends should always be there for me. No one should ever betray me. I can only be happy if others are nice to me. You cannot date my Ex without asking me. I can still have a Crush on my Ex after you date him/her and I have the right to go back to him/her at anytime without asking your permission. There are no secrets in high school. I’m looking for my soul mate. High school is a time to go out with many people.
The trouble with these rules is that they are Unenforceable (and sometimes in conflict with each other). We can’t control what others do. We can ask, wish, think it would be nice, but if we demand or overly expect then we are setting ourselves up for potential suffering. How does this work? Contrary to popular belief: others do not make us feel the way we do. We have undergone a lot of conditioning to blame others for our pain. Blame your teens, blame your parents, blame the school, blame society; we also tend to put ourselves down. Psychological research shows that we feel the way we do because of our belief systemour rules about how we think things should be. When they don’t happen that way, we feel angry, hurt, disappointed, betrayed, etc. Becoming aware of our beliefs, our rules, will help us not blame others, not hold a grudge. These grudges, grievances, “I can’t ever forgive you’s” are a burden we end up carrying around with us. We continue to let the other person hurt us; even though we think what they did was wrong. Yeah, we don’t forget, we learn from the experience; but we don’t have to honor what the person did to us by thinking about them, carrying their
picture around in our head and telling others about how we were treated so badly. Don’t get me wrong. Being betrayed hurts. I’ve been there and I have met many who have too. Everyone wants to be happy and not suffer. We can’t get rid of all the difficult people and situations in the world, but we can train our mind to be prepared and respond in a way that causes us the least amount of suffering. You aren’t the only person who has been betrayed. Now that you know how it feels to be betrayed, use that experience to not hurt others. Avoiding others is not the answer. We need interaction, human connection and communication. Think about your idea of friend. Maybe the person you’re applying that concept to has a different meaning for the word. Maybe they can’t embody your definition. I had an experience of this. I thought: Friends don’t tease me. That was one of my rules. Someone I knew was teasing me; I got hurt. He told me he wouldn’t tease me if he didn’t like me. If I have rules, I have to respect other’s right to have them also. I could choose not to associate with this person, see if he could adjust his rule or I could adjust my rule. I got over my hurt, took myself less seriously and was a little more playful around him. Maybe we would be happier if we expected things to fall apart; we expected to be betrayed. We’re not being pessimistic; we are outsmarting our Expectations. Expect contradictions; this might cause us to be more tolerant, patient, accepting. You can feel incredibly close to someone and understand they have a tendency to be insulting at times. Not being able to cope with contradictions can lead to denial and suffering; it may lead one to demonize or destroy a good relationship. I am not suggesting that we let people walk over us and wipe their feet on us—like a doormat. People do and say harmful things and they are accountable for that. We communicate; let others know what effect they are having on us. Collaborate with others about the situation; talk to friends, parents, school personnel and counselors. This might help. It would be nice; we would like it to have our desired effect. No Guarantee. Working on our own thought process, examining our rules can have lasting positive effects. Let’s not let our very own thoughts and feelings betray us by convincing us to follow exaggerations, half truths, or misunderstandings. Reference: Richard Prinz, MFT Student Advocate MVHS Room D204
Forgive for Good, Dr. Fred Luskin Healing the Heart of Conflict, Marc Gopin, PhD
Betrayal June 2008 Staff: Nita Chen, Paulina Dao, Gillian Decker, Natasha Desai, Dinah Drahluk, Hermes Huang, Kai Kang, Serena Lee, Gina Mawla, Yifang Qiu, Robert Rodine, Evelyn Shaw, Tim Wheeler, Vicky Xu, Matisse Yoshihara Additional Incoming Staff: Jackie Barr, Alex Cheng, Allie Choy, Jane Kim, Kriti Garg, Brittany Hopkins, Tiffany Lau, Shishi Wang Advisors: Hung Wei Chien, Kathy Fetterman, Carol Satterlee Visit us or submit stories at www.verdadera.org
Monta Vista High School Verdadera 21840 McClellan Road Cupertino, CA 95014 As the 200708 school year draws to a close, the staff and adviso...