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Trust Me


"Trust me," said the spider to the fly... and boy did that prove to be a big mistake!   There seems to be something in human nature that makes us want to trust other human beings, so that we can share our true selves with them without fear of being laughed at, hurt, or destroyed.  Yet trust is such a fragile thing, so easily shattered.  Once damaged, it's difficult and sometimes impossible to repair. 

It didn't take the fly long to discover he'd made an error in judgement.  In some situations it can take much longer, even years.  I once married a man who said he didn't trust anyone, but told me that if I gave him time he would learn to trust me.  Seven years of marriage later I still hadn't earned his trust despite being the best wife I knew how to be. I realize then that the task was impossible, his heart was closed to trusting, no amount of evidence to the contrary would every gain anyone admittance. I've found that to be true more often than I wish. Yet I am determined by nature, and if I think the person is worth the effort, I will stick around and chip away at that granite wall, hoping to slowly break down the barriers to communication and sharing.  Trust is a precious gift, it enables us to be real!

Although it is certainly possible to be easily misled by bad guys and master manipulators, I think we lose out on a lot of life... and love... if we close ourselves off to other people and become inaccessible.  We can't, or at least shouldn't let the experiences of our past overshadow our present and steal our potential joy.  What's important is to evaluate the character of the person who is attempting to elicit your trust.  Are they fair? Are they honest? Are they kind?  Do they speak badly of others?  Are they often angry or expressing contempt?  Do they have a genuine interest in helping others, or are they self-serving? 

As it is written, "Do not bestow pearls upon the swine"... be they your words, your thoughts, your feelings, or your stories.  At the same time, if you keep them hidden away from everyone, who can share in their beauty and delight with you in their value?  It always comes down to a matter of choice... choose wisely and move slowly, then love and live freely! 

Trust is a two way street.  I cannot feel safe about sharing myself with you if you don't trust enough to do the same with me.  It is give and take, safe in the belief that the person you are entrusting will not turn on you at some point and use what you have shared against you.  Yes, we've all had that happen, but it doesn't always happen, and if you choose wisely who to trust, it won't often happen. 

Make a pledge to be a trustworthy person.  Keep your promises and your word. No matter what might come between you and the other person in the future,  promise to never divulge information that could hurt them.  Holding the heart of another in trust is a sacred responsibility, treat it as such.  Increase your reputation as a person who others can turn to with their darkest fears and deepest hopes.  Having a trusting relationship is a wonderfully precious gift.  Work at it! Be the kind of person you want others to be. 

When trust fails, and at times it will, don't wall yourself away for ever.  Get back up, dust yourself off, and try again. Open yourself to trust again, a little wiser and a little stronger.  It's worth it.... trust nurtures love, and love is worth the risk!

19 comments:

  1. Excellent, beautiful post full of truth. Fortunately, I feel I am a fairly forgiving person and can move past things so when a friend of mine breeched my trust, I had to work past the trust issue, and I have and we are friends today. However, I learned from this situation, that with this person, I really have to be very careful what I share. I learned I wasn't the first person to have trust broken by her, and I wasn't her last. I enjoy her company and we have a set series of topics we discuss but when it comes to more personal things, I have other friends that I can trust with those things. Some people really struggle with not talking too much. So there are levels of trust with different people.

    On the up side of that experience, I made a promise to myself to be one of those people that others can talk to and share anything and it truly will go no further. For that reason, people do and will confide and seek help or advice/counsel and I consider it an enormous privilege.

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    1. You present a really good point here Carrie, that we trust people on different levels and share accordingly. With some family members I can only discuss the weather and my cats, some friends here know me quite well as I diclose a lot in my blog, and my husband knows me best of all because I trust him with all that is me and not to use that information to ever hurt me or betray me.

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    2. Some people do seem almost inacapable of keeping a confidence. It's as if they are compelled to share anything they know. Like you, I work to be a person who has learned the value of keeping shared things confidential, it is what I want from others, so I must be that myself. The Golden Rule always trumps all others!

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  2. Another very good post, Josie. Two in one day! What’s happening. You must have inspiration today… and we can all enjoy it. It’s not just trust… when you get close to people, they’ll often tell you about things that went wrong in relationships with other people. I’m sort of optimistic by nature… and so I’ll often ignore the warnings. And I do believe that sometimes people can change. But it can also be very hard to change. I fell in love with a woman once, who told me… just as we were getting to know one another, ‘I always disappoint men’. I thought, maybe she’s had some bad luck with men… men who expected too much… who wanted to own her. I had no doubts. But you know what…. She had given me fair warning, and the moment came. But I’m still open when it comes to meeting new people. I agree with you all the way. It’s such a waste to turn ourselves off just because of a bad experience.

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    1. Ahh, that is true, Shimon, often people will "tell on themselves" at the beginning of relationships, and we might be wiser to heed those warnings. Like you, I wish at times I had. I want to believe that people can change, and I have seen it happen, but that is more rare than common I'm afraid. Still, something almost always spurs us on to reach out and embrace new relationships in hopes they will go better, and often they do!

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  3. This is an extremely important issue for many people, both those with trust issues and those who create them. Unfortunately, some of those who do this create a lifelong legacy of pain on those they hurt. Sometimes there is no getting over it, only learning to live with it. It can leave deep scars, and the deeper the trust, the deeper the scar. Not all scars can be seen, but remain a painful reality.

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    1. True, Annie. I think many of us have had our trust betrayed in some heartbreaking ways, but it is tragic indeed if that prevents us from ever daring to trust again. I did not trust Papa Bear when I first met him, not because he wasn't trustworthy - he was, but beacause experience had taught me that people could change in an instant and become someone far different than what you thought them to be. It took awhile for me to trust the reality that he is, and to believe that he isn't going to change into a monster. I am glad I opened myself to that possibility! Emotional scars, just like physical ones, fade in time but they remain forever. We have to learn to live again in spite of them.

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  4. I hate it when someone tells me something then asks that I don't repeat it. This is no problem for ME, but the problem arises when the one who told me, tells nine other people, then thinks I'm the one who let the cat outta the bag.

    I say "If anyone hears of it, it will be because YOU told, not me".

    The story I love is of the women who kissed the snake then became angry because he bit her. He answered "But you knew I was a snake when you kissed me."

    I'm meandering here....sorry.

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    1. I love the story, Lotta Joy, it's new to me! I have had the same experience you've had, in fact I once had a supervisor who excelled at turning staff against each other by sharing information they had told her in confidence. Because they trusted her to be professional, they looked at each other as the source of leaked info.

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  5. Truer words have never been spoken. Trust is the foundation in all relationships and without it, there is no relationship.

    Great post!

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    1. Amen, Dan! I've seen some horrible relationships in which partners constantly monitored and attempted to control the behavior of the other. My theory is that it cannot and should not be done, and that if one desires to be untrustworthy they will find a way despite any efforts to prevent it. I totally agree with you, without trust there is no relationship, at least not one of any depth and meaning.

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  6. I just found about 10 spider eggs under a piece of furniture in my house today. Some of the spiders escaped! I'm not sure if I can trust another piece of furniture again. : )

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    1. I loved this comment, Joseph! It reminded me of something my son would say, and you made me laugh! Beneath the humor though, there is a message about how we will let damaged trust affect our future actions and relationships. Great comment! :-)

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  7. Hi Josie..I am not sure if your link to Sunday Scribblings works..but I am glad I found this post..it is very apt to being distant..of making those walls a little flexible..hard to learn..even hard to re-learn..jae

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    1. Hi Jae Rose! I was dissatisfied with my Sunday Scribblings post, so I pulled it off the blog. Will try again next week. :-) That one was connecting distance to the concept of trust, whether it be an enforced distance or a chosen one. It is so much harder to pull walls down than it is to put them up,but it is worth the effort! :-)

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  8. This is such a great post! I've always had trust issues. I don't trust innately: with me, trust is built. I am fortunate to finally have someone in my life who I almost instantly trusted, and who has never once given me reason to doubt that trust. You're right. It is SUCH a blessing!

    ...also, I've given you an award, and then I saw your "award free" badge. Don't participate if you choose not to, but you should know I value your insights and want others to know, too.

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    1. Trust doesn't come easy for me either, Red, experience has taught me that the hard way. But my Papa Bear is much like your Brett, something in them just says "trustworthy" and how wonderful to discover that they truly are! Thank you so much for the award, I truly appreciate the kind thoughts, even if I don't pass them on (kinda like a game of hot-potato :-))

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  9. This is an excellent post josie ! Trust is very important in any relation , I would say equal to love .
    By the way your link on SS doesn't work ...but I am glad I ended here and could read this w'ful post ...

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    1. Hi TTT, welcome to my blog! I decided later in the day that I wasn't happy with my Sunday Scribbling post, so I took it off the blog. I'll be back with another one next week! I appreciate you finding me and stopping to read!

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Your comments are always appreciated... they make me smile! :-)