Why Anyone Who's Experienced Infidelity Will Feel Empowered By 'Lemonade'

by Karen Schneider

So, in case you haven't heard or don't reside on planet Earth, Beyoncé broke the Internet with the recent release of her visual album, Lemonade. After dropping an ominous teaser trailer that gave away nothing, but hinted at much more, millions of fans (and likely even haters) flocked to watch her latest experiment — an artistic, visual album interlaced with poetry and music — unfold on Saturday night.

The world sat back and soaked up every minute of the hour-long peek into Mrs. Carter's personal life. They witnessed her diary being thrown open for all to read, leaving no pages or footnotes unturned. Beyoncé and Jay Z are normally very discreet about the details of their personal lives, so to be allowed into something so private, so intimate and so raw is a treat that is too hard to resist (and not watch on repeat).

Social media has exploded with theories, with many arguing this is just another well-executed ploy by the Carters, and their marriage was never in danger. They believe Jay and Bey are just as in love as ever, sitting atop their thrones, laughing all the way to the bank as the success of Lemonade continues to explode.

Coincidentally, the release of Bey's athletic line, Ivy Park, was also announced not too long ago. There is no doubt sales are sure to skyrocket. Perhaps she is just that good, and this is all a dark fairytale spun from music and visual imagery into the gold of a convincing tall tale.

However, I can't help but think there is truth behind her story because the details and the emotions are far too accurate. They're almost uncomfortably honest, and some are far too relatable.

I was also once a character in my very own nightmare. There was a Becky with the good hair, though she answered to another name (and she definitely didn't have good hair). I was captivated by the visual imagery Beyoncé used to describe the 11 stages from grief to rebirth, and I was amazed by her illustration of how the pain of betrayal seeps into every crack, causing a once-confident woman to break under the guise of deemed unworthiness.

At one point, she gasps out, "Are you cheating on me?" The water fills her lungs, rendering her breathless. Some describe it as too dark, but not me.

The year 2009 was my Lemonade, though I wish I had looked half as fierce as Beyoncé while I wore my pain. My stages were crazy, jealous, unworthy, stupid, feeble, weak, broken and ruined. Pain is dark, heartbreak is dark, but betrayal is the darkest.

Betrayal forever changes you as a person. You will heal, but you will not forget. When someone who you loved and trusted betrays you, it's a swift punch to the stomach you never quite recover from. The breath that gets knocked out of your lungs is replaced by something much heavier, and it becomes harder to inhale. Betrayal takes you to a very dark place, and nightmares take different shapes.

There are lots of Beckys with the good hair in the world. Bey showed us that even she is beautifully, darkly human, and emotion really knows no logic. Lemonade perfectly illustrates the beauty and the pain that is love, and it proves none of us are exempt.

My marriage did not survive, and it didn't ever have a chance. My nightmare did have a happy ending, as I grew exponentially stronger as a person from having experienced what I did. But, it just took me time to appreciate the value of the lessons I learned. The pain I once wore is now a badge of strength.

As for Bey, it appears she has chosen to forgive Jay and allow their relationship to experience a rebirth.

Whether you loved Lemonade, or you're sick of hearing of the music mogul's latest move, there's one thing we all know for certain. Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter is a smart, strong icon of a woman. Not to mention, she's also a marketing genius.

As a survivor of betrayal, she has risen through the depths of her heartbreak to share her message and empower others who feel broken. As usual, Bey forces us to look in the mirror and remember how flawless we are. She reminds us we are more than worthy. We are strong, and we are beautiful. Long live the Queen.

Until we have seen someone's darkness, we don't really know who they are. Until we have forgiven someone's darkness, we don't really know what love is.

— Marianne Williamson