Why Don’t You Trust Me?: Overcoming Trust Issues

In a previous post, Trust in Relationships, we discussed the importance of trust. Trust is the bonding force of every relationship. It allows us to successfully develop and maintain happy and healthy relationships. However, if you or your partner are unable to trust each other, this can become very difficult. This post will help you and your partner recognize the signs of trust issues, the causes and how to help fix them.

Signs of Trust Issues: Although no couple or relationship is the same, there are several signs that couples dealing with trust issues have in common. If you have noticed any of these signs in your relationship, then it could be a strong indication that there are trust issues at work.

  • You Invade Each Other’s Privacy. Do you find yourselves checking each other’s email and social networking accounts? Do you each other’s mail, text messages, call history or phone contacts? Do you do this WITHOUT your partner’s permission?
  • You Are Overly Possessive/Jealous. Do you ask too many questions about your partner’s lifestyle? Does he or she? Do you find yourselves needing to know every who, what, when, where and why? Do you or partner get angry when you talk to people of the opposite sex? Do you want your partner all to yourself?
  • You or Your Partner Becomes Sherlock Holmes. You check phone records, emails, social networking posts, bank statements and any other records and information you can get your hands on to verify that your partner is being faithful and doing what they say he or she is.
  • You or Your Partner Have Doubts. You want to believe and trust your partner, but you are suspicious of his or her motives and actions.

What causes someone to have trust issues? Although trust issues can develop within a relationship, often times they are caused by previous betrayals. Traumas such as sexual assault, abuse, neglect or abandonment can cause someone to distrust others. Traumas such as these and constant let downs by family and friends can also cause low self-esteem. People with low self-esteem almost expect people to cheat and hurt them because they don’t feel good enough. They are unable to trust that people genuinely care about them. In addition, constant betrayals and trauma’s in a person’s life can cause them to become overly anxious when it comes to relationships and the future. Frequently dating cheaters in the past can also cause a person to suspect that every relationship they enter will be plagued with cheating and betrayal.

How to Build or Repair Broken Trust: Before you can take steps to effectively build and repair trust, there are several issues you need to address. Do you, your partner or both of you suffer from trust issues? If so, why? Are you willing to work through these issues or just cut your losses? Once you and your partner have discussed these things, you can use the following tips and techniques to help build and repair the trust in your relationships.

  • Let Go of The Past. You can’t be happy in the future if you don’t let go of the pain from the past. In order to move forward, you need to past the behind you.
  • Be Open and Honest. The more your partner knows about you, the more he or she will trust you. Don’t keep secrets or hide anything. If your partner asks about how you feel about something, tell them the truth. It may hurt their feelings, but at least they know that they can expect the truth from you. You should also be open to anything they have to tell you in exchange. Don’t judge them or dismiss their thoughts. If you do, they think that won’t be able to trust you with their thoughts and feelings.
  • Set boundaries. Discuss what type of behavior is acceptable and what is not. The clearer the boundaries are, the less likely there will be a violation of trust.
  • Keep Your Promises. The easiest way to break trust is to not do the things you say will, even if you think it’s trivial. If you promise your partner that you will kiss them goodnight at bedtime every night, you need to keep that promise.
  • Keep The Lines of Communication Open. Communication is always important, especially when it comes to building trust. The easier it is to communicate, the easier it will be to trust each other.

Learning to trust someone isn’t going to be easy. It’s going to take a lot of time and a lot of patience. However, if you really want a relationship to work you’ll both try.

6 thoughts on “Why Don’t You Trust Me?: Overcoming Trust Issues

  1. Started to look for some positive advise (something)…I have always struggled with trust issues starting very young with traumatic events of losing someone very close and being molested by a family member at a young age as well. I also have a daughter from another person who has not nor ever been in the picture. Ended the relationship and moved on. I then was with someone for about 4 yrs. cheated on me too. Ended that one as well. By now my daughter is 3 and I meet my current partner of now almost 7 yrs who has been the best stepfather really a father to my daughter. Due to the fact that her biological father has not and is not in her life. Its ok because my daughter has a great father figure. But, he cheated on me too…this time I have not left. Tried but not quite. I still fight for hope. We both met in our 20′s and now we are in our 30′s. I will admit I am no angel but I have changed. Recently, about 2 months ago he left out of town for business and during that time I would call his phone just to see where he was and what he was doing. Something in my gut told me something was wrong. He returns home and 2 weeks later he needs to leave again. That was ok. What happened was the night before he was to leave I go through his email and find pictures of his last trip kissing a girl and hanging out with her in her hotel room. The picture said it all. Anyways, this was the feeling you get that you stop breathing like someone knocked the wind out of u. I gasp for air and just cried. I was so lost. When I showed him what I found he had a face that just kinda stayed stuck to the screen. Like he didn’t even want to look at my face. Trying to think of something to say. Anyways, nothing he said was good so we just got into a very bad argument. I even told him to cancel his flight but he didn’t. He just started yelling at me saying how it was me that pushed him and made it easy for him to do such thing because of how I was before he left. In other words, since I haven’t fully trusted him yet from the last time he cheated which was about 1 yr ago he said that when he met this other female he felt different talking to someone that didn’t have an attitude like me. He claimed that because of how I am with him it made it easy for him to do what he did. I do admit I have an attitude but Im working on it. Its not easy starting all over again with someone that you’ve pretty much been with the longest and know so much about especially when they hurt you in that way of being with someone else. My self esteem of course was low and its even lower now. He of course said he didn’t have sex just a kiss. Sure! At this point we are trying to work things out. We still live together. All he says all I have to do is stop with the daily attitude and think more positive that it will help the relationship and help prevent from it happening again. At this point, I am Lost. I feel like Im just starting all over again and it might happen again. I still have that image of him kissing this other girl stuck in my head and its haunting me everyday. I cry at night almost every night. Im not sure what Im doing. Also, my daughter doesn’t know anything but she does see that something is different because she doesn’t see my as happy as I was before all this. I don’t want this to affect her in her future when shes older. I love him very much, we are still young and we did have very rocky start and we managed to stick it through but really if it wasn’t for me who stuck around we wouldn’t be together all this time and I am still here. I did separate a year ago when he cheated but it was only for a few months. Then we got back together and it was hard to trust him again and he was willing to wait for me and he has. But he did it again and its killing me. I lost 10 lbs. yes that sounds awesome to someone who wants to lose weight but for a skinny person like myself its not good. I don’t like looking in the mirror. I hardly do. I want to get through this. Any similar stories or suggestions. I don’t want to give up. How can we work through it again…. Thanks!

    1. You have every reason to be distrusting of him. Although you may have an attitude, there is no excuse for cheating. Instead of finding comfort in another woman, he could have talked it out with you and told you that he wasn’t happy.If I follow correctly, this is the second time he’s done this so it’s understandable you have a hard time trusting him. Right now you have a choice. You can give it a third shot or walk away. If you do stay though I would give him an ultimatum that if he cheats one more time you’ll leave him for good. If you do go that route though, you have to stick by it and be firm.

      It looks like your trust issues may stem from the trauma you faced when you were young. I think once you resolve those issues you’ll start to trust people more. A lot of organizations offer free counseling. You can find out which ones by going to https://rainn.org/. They also have an online hotline and a phone one you can call if you want to talk to someone about it. This is also a really good book that may help you: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0615209661/ref=oh_details_o01_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

      Hope this helped! If you need any more advice feel free to get back in touch. Hope things start going better for you.

  2. There is absolutely no disputing that I have trust issues as well. As near as I can tell I might as well need body armor everywhere I go, especially after the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013, which rekindled the day my high school was smoke bombed. Now both images are pretty permanently stuck in my mind.

    It’s not just with relationships as described here. I can’t get professional relationships to blossom either. I’m in the process of a career change, and I’ve gotten emails from groups about several face-to-face networking opportunities. I’ve refused them all because I have come to the conclusion that people are out only to hurt. I saw the pictures of the marathon bombers from just before the devices were planted in Copley Square and I know I would have mistaken them for tourists getting rid of equipment that was beyond repair.

    I see no hope. Do you?

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