Trust In A Relationship – What is It?

Trust In A Relationship – What is It?

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Trust in a relationship is the glue that holds it together.

But what is trust really?

Let’s take a hard look at trust and what it really should mean in a relationship.

Too often trust is mistaken for belief or even faith. This more often than not leads to hurt and disappointment.

Trust is not belief or faith.

Belief is ‘I believe he went to see the doctor because he mentioned something about not feeling well.’

In this case belief is derived from the ‘not feeling well’ mention.

Faith is ‘I have faith that he will be well because he is a good man.’

Faith here is based on the belief about ‘good men’ which as faith goes, is quite okay.

Trust at a minimum is ‘I trust he went to see the doctor because he said he definitely would.’

Here trust is based on something directly related to the person, not something assumed about him, or something based on what is thought about something to do with him.

Trust is based on some form of evidence most likely rooted in experience.

The Nature of Trust In An Intimate Relationship

The nature of trust in an intimate relationship is going to be markedly different from trust in any other relationship. 

Trust in this type of relationship requires a lot of comfort with each other. It means that both parties must feel comfortable in sharing, feel comfortable in being open, and feel comfortable in being emotionally naked with each other.

This kind of trust takes time to build. Too often we see relationships based on assumptions about values, about what is important or not, without taking the time to find out.

This kind of approach is likely to result in major disappointment in the relationship when expectations are not met.

Given the nature of intimate relationships, it can only be beneficial to take the time out to build trust based on deep discussions that ultimately demonstrate the values that are important to each person.

Making assumptions based on perceived morals or character is bound to result in unpleasant surprises and even relationship anxiety.

Building Trust In A Relationship

Too many times we build our trust either on belief or faith and think that what we have is trust. Well, we cannot build a house out of sticks and expect to have a house of bricks.

To establish trust, that trust has to come from the truth or the integrity of what our trust is based on. When we step on a man-hole cover in the road we trust that we will not fall into the hole beneath because we trust the integrity of the metal, we trust that it is strong enough based on what we know about metals.

That is trust built on what we actually know, not trust based on belief or faith. Building trust in our relationship based on just belief or faith is a sure way to set us up for disappointments.

Too many times the trust we have in our relationship is built on nothing but beliefs, faith, and assumption.  In “Trust Building In A Relationship & Resolving Trust Issues – Your Morals and Character Are Not Enough” I go further and demonstrate why trust building in a relationship – an intimate relationship that is – is all about comfort and the ability of both partners to create the environment of comfort within which both partners can be their best selves.

Building Trust Is About Building Comfort

Trust in a relationship is first and foremost about comfort level. The key is how you build that comfort level and on what basis you build it.

You can absolutely have the relationship you desire if you are committed to working on trust, maybe even more than you are committed to working on love. Share on X

Yes, that is right. Important as love is, trust can give you as much bang for your efforts as love can.

But first, you have to understand that it cannot be just left up to beliefs and faith about human  nature. You have to be deliberate on how you build trust in your relationship.

And you cannot make the mistake in thinking that your morals and character are enough for you to earn the trust of your partner. 

Unfortunately, they are not enough. Trust building can be a challenge but it will create the kind of relationship environment that allows you and your partner to give of your best, even in trying circumstances.

Trust Building After Infidelity 

Even when a relationship has been racked and damaged by infidelity, building trust in that relationship has to be done in a deliberate manner. In fact more so than before, trust has to be built without compromise.

Of course the nature of the infidelity will probably determine the most appropriate approach. But there should be one thing that is beyond negotiation or compromise – respect.

And here again we see a lot missteps with couples dealing with trust after infidelity.

As humans love is the one thing that  we will crave for after the dust is settled somewhat after infidelity.

However, maybe love is the one thing we should not crave for in this situation.

The absolute one thing that one must demand in a relationship that has suffered from infidelity is respect.

Respect for each other, respect for the relationship, respect for the dignity of love. Even if love itself is not easily felt.

The trust then after infidelity must primarily be established on respect. A respect that must be demonstrated in action and deeds.

Again trust here is not to be built on some notion of high morals or character but on actual experiences.

Trust – The Glue and Foundation That Holds It Together
While no relationship will not last very long without love, no relationship can be healthy without real trust.

Too often couples, rather than doing the work to establish trust, make-believe that they have trust in the relationship. In the end they end up with insecurity when little incidents of doubt crop up and instead of trust, anxiety takes it place.

Trust must be not only the glue that holds the relationship together, but its foundation if it is to remain strong and healthy.

Peta Jane Kayes

MBA - Human Resources Management, Author, mother, wife, my passion is relationships and healthy living.

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