In the complicated world of relationships, every rule, every question is totally valid.
A solid relationship is the one whose foundations are those of love, respect and trust. Without one of those elements, a relationship may be able to survive, but enjoying all its benefits will be impossible to achieve.
I've been writing about love and respect and other relationship-related topics, so today let's focus on TRUST.
Trust= firm belief in the character, strength, or truth of someone or something.
That's it. Easily explained, trust is to blindly believe in someone and take their words as undeniable truths. It's to rip out your heart and put it into someone else's hands, confident that he/she will never let it fall or even get dirty.
Imagine walking blindfolded and deprived of hearing in an unknown place, guided only by this one person you chose to follow no matter what. That's exactly how scary feels to trust.
If we think of it this way, we must question: Is trust something we must earn, or is it something are we entitled to?
At some point in my life, I walked blindfolded and deaf and ended up with plenty of scratches and burns and bruises all over. The path they led me on was full of thorns and rocks, slopes and cliffs. And I managed to survive. I escaped. Alive but damaged for life.
I trusted once. Over and over again. But I wasn't taken into account. My feelings were unworthy of attention. My words were just mere babbling that nobody cared to listen to. And I learned that no matter how hard I try, trust is a team effort. I would never end victorious if I was forced to be blind and deaf and silent in a relationship because my job was to trust just because.
I was fooled into believing I needed to trust with closed eyes, with my brain turned off and my bleeding heart deceived to believe in a love that was more of a convenience. When I talked, my words faded unheard. When I cried for actions, my petitions were buried unattended. I was accused of requiring too much attention. I was accused of being a selfish, high-maintenance woman.
Just like every old thing in life, the blindfold became so ragged that it fell from my eyes and I saw again. The gag that prevented me from speaking... was easy to spit it out of my mouth. And I chose to live. Not to trust. But to live. I've always had a hard time trusting people and it's a very difficult thing to overcome.
Like every other sentiment, Trust is something that needs to be earned. You weren't born with the right to be loved, respected and trusted. In fact, while you travel through life, you'll face tons of situations where you'll be unloved or even hated, disrespected and mistreated, accused or mistrusted.
To be loved by someone special -your S.O.- you must prove yourself worthy of that love. You must prove you cherish this person, act in the most loving and respectful ways, be capable of doing whatever it takes for his or her happiness. In order to be chosen every single day, you need to work hard on your emotional connection.
So, what is required to be trusted?
Believe me, trust is the hardest thing to give. There's a lot of things you can do or omit that will make you untrustworthy. But hopefully, there's a lot more to be done to be deserved and receiver of that longed trust.
Lies or truths.
Words are easily accepted and believed when you're honest. Even brutally honest people enjoy the trust of people who knows them. A single lie will make your every word questionable. Once you've lacerated the trust your partner gave you, he/she will have a hard time believing any word you say. Before judging your partner for his/her lack of trust, have into consideration the impact your lie had on them. Did you hurt their feelings? Did you make them question your desires and feeling towards him/her? You made them feel unwanted or in competition with unattainable beauty standards?
Be honest. Speak the truth. It's very hard to walk happy and blindfolded, knowing you'll get hurt again.
Focus on the good things rather than the bad.
I've been wondering that a lot lately. The reason why it's so hard to trust is mostly because we take for granted our partner. We oversee the good things they do and focus mainly on a little mistake. We need to focus on the good of that person. We must embrace the positive things he/she brings into our lives. Before judging your partner, think about all he/she brings to your partnership. Is he/she proving with details and actions his/her commitment to you? If the answer is yes, then work a little harder to stop questioning it all. You were hurt once. You know you're damaged. But that doesn't mean you cannot mend your fractured places. Think of yourself as a broken bone. You'll need a lot to heal, but with the right care, you'll certainly will.
Working for it.
People wrongly think they are to be trusted just because they feel entitled to it. Been in a relationship where trust or love or even respect isn't earned, is an absorbing relationship that only benefits one of the parties. Trust is something we must prove ourselves deserving of. We cannot expect to be trusted when our efforts for it are tiny and meaningless. Act properly. Be honest. Be conscious. Have details. Remember the little things.
Trusting requires a gigantic effort. You must be extra conscious you're acting in the right way. No, nobody is demanding perfection, but honesty. Without truth, there is no trust. Invest your time, money and energy where it matters the most: your relationship. Sacrifice your self-centeredness and act more humble and considerate towards your S.O.
Perception of reality.
You might don't care what the whole world thinks of you, and that's perfectly fine. The thing is... your partner doesn't form part of that big outer world. He/she forms a world on their own and their perception must mean a lot to you.
You shouldn't be acting in a way that would make your partner suspicious. Even if you have no mean intentions, acts can be misinterpreted in the worst ways. It all depends on how you're acting and responding.
Words vs. actions.
It is so easy to say how much you love, how much you care, how much you respect your partner, but your actions leave a lot to question. Words need to be accompanied by strong actions.
Don't act like you're the only one hurt and learn to say I'm sorry. Apologizing and accepting your mistakes before the shitshow begins is the best trait of a trustworthy person. If your S.O. is suspicious of something you did and she/he asks, don't act all defensive and see where's your fault.
I strongly believe that we chose to misuse the "private" word. Keeping things from your partner isn't privacy but secrecy. The latter has the power of a hundred nuclear bombs. Many times, we chose to keep things from our partners for fear to be judged or because we feel ashamed. Facing those battles alone is harder than we may think, and we can end up causing more damage with the secrecy than with the truth.
Before acting in your defense and trying to revert the blame, remember this is no UNO card game. You won't be triumphant because you throw all the blame back. You won't be the winner because you try to justify your suspicious acts and end up confusing your S.O. with guilt and blame. When your partner tells you they have noticed something different, don't start looking for ways to defend yourself. Listen first. Why are you in need of defenses if you haven't done anything wrong?
Think before talking.
But don't wait too long, unless you really want to prove you're unworthy of trust. Analyze your partner's claim or worry and try to be empathic. What if it were the other way around? Explain yourself and compromise to be more conscious. Most of the time, things that lead to loss of trust are simple misunderstandings that could have been quickly resolved if both of you have left pride aside and talk it through.
Dealing with thrusting issues? You're not alone. Take a deep breath and think. When both your brain and your heart are aligned, you'll know what to do.
Lots of love,