They say trust is like paper…once crumpled it cannot be perfect again. When considering the number of dramas that can happen in human relationships, romantic or friendly, it seems a bit ridiculous that once trust is broken, it is broken forever. Unfortunately, this is a reality that a lot of us face and the outcomes can change the landscape of our lives and futures. Ooooh dramatic…
Trust is nothing more than a state of mind between you and another person. It does not involve a third party. Should anyone persecute you for showing forgiveness, just remember they must not have much going on in their own lives to be so concerned with yours. On the flip side though, nobody can force you to forgive someone either. Third party influences can make these situations much worse, so be cautious who you tell your problems to. People tend to confide in their closest friends and family when they have been betrayed but they may be better off speaking to a stranger. Those who genuinely love us can be clouded by anger and hate if we are mistreated and they may not see the situation for what it is. This can lead to inappropriate or drastic behaviour by the third party, resulting in the relationship being irreparable.
When trust has been broken, it takes time… and more time to rebuild, so it should be handled with the utmost care. It may take days, weeks, months or even years depending on what the situation is and who it is with. The main problem is that it takes a lot of weighing up and to’ing and fro’ing of the mind to move forward. The most important factor to consider is ‘what value does this person add to my life?’. If somebody keeps breaking your trust then they are not adding any value whatsoever and you should consider them permanently damaged goods. This goes for family too. People who are continually detrimental to your existence are not worthy of your time…in this life or the next.
Whilst it is painful to have your trust broken, you have to accept that we are all human and we all mess up from time to time. It is not easy to just forgive and forget though, you need to determine what impact the betrayal had on-
- Your immediate situation
- Your future
- The value of the relationship prior to this happening
- The reasoning behind the betrayal
- If you still want them in your life
Depending on the nature of the betrayal, you may want to put yourself in the other person’s shoes. There are all sorts of circumstances in which people are driven to screw up. They may have been trying to protect your feelings, felt isolated and alone, felt they did not have any other choice, a severe personal problem they were keeping hidden, or they may just be a waste of space who deliberately wanted to hurt you. Interestingly, the latter is very rare. Betrayal hurts because it comes from an unexpected place… the people we love and want in our lives. They do not mean to hurt us…unless they are mentally disturbed.
If you do decide to forgive the person and rebuild the trust, then you both have to acknowledge that it will not happen overnight. They need to give you an opportunity to tell them exactly what they did, why it hurt you and they should answer every question you ask them with nothing but the truth. To truly forgive another person, we must exhaust all of our resentful emotions like anger, frustration and sadness. The healthiest way to do this is to be able to speak freely without opposition, interruption or defence. If you are the guilty party, getting on the defensive will only make your circumstances worse and cause exhausting arguments. If you are the ‘victim’ and you decide to move forward, you must move forward completely and not hold the persons actions over their head for the remainder of the relationship.
If you are really struggling to trust someone, then your inner being is telling you to get out and you are blatantly ignoring it. Sometimes your head and your heart do not match each other and you have to absorb yourself in your innermost thoughts. Any nauseating feeling coming from your gut should not be ignored. And any sincere gesture from the other party to make it right should not be ignored either…you just have to make sure they are being sincere, not manipulative.
As for the paper…iron it?