Trust is the foundation of every strong relationship, which is why you should expect complete honesty from your partner. Unfortunately, there are many circumstances in life that can break the fragile threads of trust. Affairs, drug and alcohol abuse, financial infidelity, and lies large and small can all shatter the bonds of a relationship. Once trust has been broken, it is hard to regain. However, you can save your relationship and rebuild your belief in each other again by focusing on these strategies.
Start With Yourself
An earth-shattering moment in a relationship rarely happens right away, which means trust tends to be eroded slowly over time. When this happens, both partners find that they went through a series of moments when they ignored their inner voice. Maybe you ignored that nagging feeling when your partner stayed out too late, or perhaps you refused to check the bank accounts. Either way, your trust in yourself has also been broken, and learning to believe in yourself will set the stage for learning to trust someone else again.
Readjust Your Expectations
No one is perfect. While we all know that, it becomes far too easy to place our partners on a pedestal. Of course, you are not expected to sit idly by while your partner has an affair, nor are you expected to tolerate somebody failing to do what they say they will do. However, it is possible for either of you to make a mistake. If your partner is truly remorseful and dedicated toward making a change, then choosing to trust them again also means accepting their imperfections.
Gaining trust again does not mean becoming a doormat. Whatever happened to break the trust in the relationship needs to be corrected. For example, a couple healing from an affair may stipulate that overnight trips out of town are no longer acceptable. Alternatively, financial infidelity could call for a strict budget and the cancelling of credit cards. Make sure that both of you agree on the boundaries, and set regular dates to check in with each other on how they are working out.
Follow Through On Promises
Once the boundaries have been defined, it is important to follow through. Rebuilding trust also involves keeping your promises in other areas as well. If you tell your partner you will call at a certain time, then make sure you do. Every time one of you sticks to what you said, it helps to strengthen the trust in your relationship.
Resolve Conflicts Quickly
Many breaches of trust in a relationship arise from other conflicts. For example, a lack of communication is often the underlying cause of affairs. Constant bickering, unresolved fights, and general hostility can all add up to a whole lot of unhappiness that one or both partners may attempt to alleviate through unacceptable means. At Cuppls, we always have professionals available to help you resolve those little conflicts effectively before they destroy the trust you are trying to rebuild.
Understand That Trust Takes Time
When trust is broken, many emotions come into play: anger, resentment, self-blame, and jealousy are just a few of the array of emotions that must be addressed before either of you can move forward. During this time, it is also normal to have differing views of how long the healing should take. The person who made the mistake may feel like it is taking too long to have trust again while the one that is hurting may still need more time. Try not to set a timeline, and instead simply accept that it is good to just see progress.
It can seem impossible to believe that you will ever look at your partner the same way again after they have broken your trust. However, it is possible to rebuild your relationship so that it is stronger than ever before. By looking at the mistakes that were made as an opportunity to learn more about each other, you and your partner can work together and grow from the experience.