I regularly assess the 3,000 responses we now have to my online quiz, and I am always left reflecting upon the daring questions some members of our community asked confidentially there.
I’m sure you are not surprised to hear that the number one issue that comes up again and again is with regards to Trust.
Here are a few quotes:
- “Can you forget an affair?”
- “How do I trust him again?”
- “Why would he cheat?”
- “Can they be saved after an affair?”
- “Does everyone cheat?”
The list is endless.
Trust is such a difficult beast that is never completely tame. It is risky business.
In my book I wrote “to build trust you need to do two things…keep promises…and be trusting yourself.”
In other words, you need to actively make sure that your words, your promises and your deeds match up. You need to consistently show that you are worthy of trust. Equally important however, is that you start from a place where you offer and show your partner your trust.
If you are always questioning your partner, or if you feel the need to know every detail of his or her day, who they have been with, where they have gone, you will find that your partner will begin lose trust in you as well.
It has to do with the energy you are vibrating. If you are trusting in your behaviours and actions with your partner, you are sending an energy of trust. Couple this sense of trustworthiness with you keeping your word consistently, and your trust level rises even higher.
The problem is that you can build up trust over years and years and then in one single moment you can lose it all.
I’m not talking about the fact that you forgot to bring home the milk. Well, if that’s happening every other week your partner might start to write the shopping list for you.
No, I’m talking about having an affair or flirting with another person.
That one time of you violating the trust in your relationship has the potential to eradicate all the trust that your partner has put into you over all these years.
You are literally back to zero.
Or even worse, because you now have the label of not-being-trustworthy, you may even begin to doubt if you can commit to what it takes to rebuild the trust your relationship deserves.
The only way out of the fog is to work through it together – otherwise you’ll end up trapped in the maze of misery forever.
You both need to take a clear look at your relationship and admit to each other what is missing, where you could improve, or what was lacking personally from the person who decided to stray.
An affair does not happen just randomly – there is always a story behind it. Something may not be working in your relationship, perhaps you felt lonely and unheard, or this may have happened because of boredom, immaturity, entitlement or even simply opportunity. There will be a lot of questions, a lot of reassuring, and perhaps even deeper underlying reasons that are often harder to identify.
You both need to articulate what it is, why this happened, and how you are going to renew your relationship to make it stronger.
Still, unless you both are not taking an unobstructed view at your relationship, you can’t rebuild the trust.
And what might sound even more difficult: you both need to forgive.
The one who cheated needs to forgive themselves.
The one whose been cheated on need to forgive their partner.
Make no mistake, this process is extremely difficult and I highly recommend that you seek professional help when you need to deal with this kind of situation.
If you are not going through this process of reflection, forgiveness and change, your relationship will always be under the dark cloud of mistrust.
Just read the comments above again. The frustration is almost palpable, built up over years of misery and distrust.
Here are few more:
- “How do I let go of the past when the same behaviour keeps happening?”
- “Do men always cheat?”
- “Can a cheater change?”
There are ways to rebuild trust and reconnect with each other to help improve your relationship, strengthening bonds and communication as you work through the pain of betrayal. If you want to find out how I might be able to help you, please connect with me and let’s have a chat.