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Trust Issues in Relationships: Causes and How To Fix Them

Trust Issues in Relationships: Causes and How To Fix Them

Do you or your partner have trust issues? This post explores what causes trust issues and how to address them so that you can build (or rebuild) trust.

Together Team
May 27, 2022

Some people seem to have a lot of trust, while others find it difficult to trust anyone. Those who have difficulty trusting others may also find it hard to maintain healthy relationships. Unlike those who may be willing to give their trust freely and quickly, people with trust issues take more time before feeling comfortable with sharing personal information.

It's no secret that trust is essential in any relationship. Many things can cause trust issues, including betrayal, lies, and infidelity. If you are experiencing trust issues in your relationship, don't worry — you’re not alone.

So, what causes some people to be unable to trust, and how can they overcome this obstacle? This post will explore the different aspects of trust and offer some solutions if you or your partner struggles with this issue.

What causes trust issues in a relationship? 

There are many reasons why someone has difficulty trusting their partner, including being lied to before (by the current partner or a previous one) or growing up in an environment where deception was common.

When you lose your partner’s trust, it can be difficult to rebuild that relationship again since the initial connection between you and your partner will be impacted. It’s important to build up trust early on in the relationship to set an example for you moving forward, which we’ll share more about later.

Here are a few common reasons why someone may have lost their partner’s trust:

Infidelity 

One of the most common causes of broken trust in a relationship is infidelity or cheating. If either one or both partners were unfaithful during the relationship, this often causes deep wounds that are difficult to heal. This is also true for emotional infidelity, where one partner may be emotionally unfaithful through sharing feelings or intimacy with someone else. 

Although affair recovery is possible, it’s important to sit down with your partner to understand their motives for cheating and explore whether or not the trust that was lost can ever be recovered.

Lying and deception

Another common reason for trust issues in a relationship, which is related to infidelity, is lying and deception. Whether it’s lying about simple things like plans for the night or more serious issues like making up lies about your financial situation, being dishonest with your partner can erode their trust over time and make it difficult for them to trust you (and others).

Jealousy and insecurity 

Jealousy and insecurity can also be major sources of distrust in a relationship. For example, if you feel insecure about your partner spending time away from you or with other people, this could make you question their intentions and ultimately lead to trust issues.

Similarly, if you tend to get jealous easily, if your partner strikes a conversation with someone else, you might automatically assume your partner loves you less compared to others — even when that’s far from the truth. Feelings of jealousy can also cause trust issues to appear.

Other causes

Aside from what has already been mentioned, one of the biggest causes of trust issues is external influences such as social media or friends and family talking about their partners behind their backs.

People also tend to complain about aspects of their partner that they’re comfortable with, not necessarily because they want to make them change. It may simply be an outlet to vent without worrying about what their partner thinks of it. 

Social media 

Nowadays, one major cause of trust issues is social media and how easy it is for people to communicate with each other without their partners knowing. It’s also a breeding ground for gossip and rumors, further damaging trust in a relationship.

If someone is constantly seeing posts about their partner or hearing stories about them from other people, it’s only natural that they’ll start questioning what they’re doing and whether or not they can trust them.

Being uncomfortable

Another big cause of trust issues is simply not feeling comfortable in the relationship. This can be for various reasons, such as feeling like you’re not good enough for your partner, feeling like they’re too good for you, or even just feeling like you don’t really know them that well. If you aren’t comfortable with your partner and don’t trust them, it will be difficult to fully open up and build a strong relationship.

7 Signs of trust issues (with examples)

Now that we’ve covered what causes trust issues, sometimes it can be difficult to tell when someone has trust issues or if you have them yourself. Here are some common signs and examples of trust issues to look out for:

Difficulty opening up to others

When you don’t trust someone completely, you aim to avoid sharing your feeling and thoughts with them. This might be due to past experiences where you have been hurt or let down by others.

Reluctance to commit or make decisions 

Are you reluctant to make decisions or scared of commitment? That’s because distrustful people might struggle while committing to relationships. It might be due to their history and fear of getting hurt.

Problems with jealousy and envy

If you feel jealous of others, it may signify that you don't trust that you have what it takes to succeed. This can lead to a vicious cycle of self-doubt and insecurity.

Difficulty forgiving others

Trust issues can make it hard to forgive others, even if they have apologized for their mistakes. You may find yourself dwelling on past hurts and holding grudges against those who have wronged you.

Trouble trusting your intuition

Trust issues may appear if you find yourself constantly second-guessing yourself, doubting your abilities, or just find it difficult to trust yourself in general. It's important to learn to trust your intuition and instincts so you can make decisions with confidence.

Fear of abandonment

Some people develop trust issues because they cannot overcome their fear of rejection. This fear may be due to past experiences where you have been left behind by someone you cared about.

Feeling disconnected from others

Believe it or not, trust issues can make a person feel alone and isolated. This feeling of disconnection can prevent you from forming close bonds with others, making it difficult to trust others.

Trust issues in a new relationship

If you just started a new relationship and find it difficult to trust your partner, here are some things that you can do.

First of all, talk about it openly and honestly with your partner. Try not to let things go unsaid for long periods as this will create more distance between you. Be firm and direct about how you feel, and focus on the positive things about your relationship.

At the same time, it is important to look inward and figure out what might be causing these feelings of discomfort or worry in yourself. Take some time for self-reflection, and think about if there are any unresolved issues from previous relationships that could be affecting your current one.

Finally, it is also worth getting some outside support to help work through these issues. Consider talking to a therapist who can offer an impartial perspective and help you sort through your feelings. 

With patience and persistence, you can overcome trust issues in a new relationship and build something strong and lasting with your partner.

Effects of trust issues

The feeling of betrayal can be all-consuming. It can be difficult to move on when we've been hurt by someone we trusted. We may feel like we can't trust anyone again. We may become jaded and suspicious of others. Or, we may just feel really hurt and sad.

Since trust is such a fundamental part of our relationships, once that trust is broken, it can have a ripple effect on our lives. Trust issues can impact our ability to form and maintain close relationships, function at work, and even take care of ourselves.

We may find it difficult to confide in others or ask for help. We may feel like we're always on guard, waiting for the other shoe to drop. This can lead to anxiety, depression, and even substance abuse.

When we don't trust others, we may also have trouble trusting ourselves. We may second-guess our decisions or beat ourselves up over mistakes. We may have a hard time taking risks or pursuing our dreams. Our lack of trust can hold us back in life, so how can these issues be addressed? We’ll cover that in the next section.

How to fix trust issues in a relationship

When trust is broken in a relationship, it can be difficult to know how to move forward. If you're feeling stuck, here are some tips on how to fix trust issues in a relationship:

Be transparent with each other

The most common way to fix trust issues is to be transparent with each other. This means being open and honest about your thoughts, feelings, and actions. It's also important to be clear about your expectations and boundaries. If you're not sure where your partner stands, ask them directly.

Take responsibility for your own mistakes

If you've done something to break your partner's trust, it's important to take responsibility for your actions. This means apologizing, making amends, and committing to change. It's also important to give your partner time to heal and forgive.

Build trust slowly

Trust is not built overnight. It takes time, patience, and effort. If you're both willing to work on it, you can slowly rebuild trust in your relationship. Start with small gestures and work your way up to bigger ones.

Seek professional help

If you're struggling to rebuild trust on your own, consider seeking professional help from a licensed therapist. They can help you identify the root of the problem and advise on how to move forward. Don’t get afraid when you need help, as trust is the essential pillar of any relationship. 

5 Steps to trust your partner and rebuild trust

If you're struggling to trust your partner again after they've hurt you, here are some steps that you can take.

1. Talk about what happened

If you're feeling pain and resentment after your partner has hurt you, it's important to talk about what happened. This can help you to understand why it happened and start to rebuild trust.

2. Forgive them

Forgiving your partner doesn't mean forgetting what they did or excusing their behavior. It's about letting go of the anger and hurt to move on. This can be a difficult process, and it may help to do this with the support of friends or a therapist.

3. Set boundaries

If you feel like your partner has treated you badly in the past, it's important to set some boundaries in your relationship. This might mean making sure they have your permission before meeting up with certain people or having them check in with you if they're going out alone.

4. Talk about your needs

It's important to communicate your needs to your partner so that they can understand what you're looking for in the relationship. You should talk about your needs openly. Yes, this will keep the other person aware of what is affecting you. This means it will also help them monitor their actions in rebuilding trust.

5. (If needed,) take time apart

If trust has been severely broken, it's often helpful to take some space from each other to reflect on what happened and think about how you want things to change moving forward. This could mean taking a break from being intimate for a while or spending less time together until you feel ready to trust them again.

Fixing trust issues

Ending a relationship is never easy, but it can be especially complicated when trust issues are involved. Each type can cause immense damage to a relationship if not addressed. There are a few ways that trust can be broken in a relationship, like cheating, lying, and breaking promises. 

Without trust, we can’t form the close, personal connections that make life meaningful. But what happens when trust is broken? How do we rebuild it? And how do we know if it was ever really there in the first place? 

If you find yourself struggling to end a relationship because of mistrust, these tips might help. By understanding trust issues and how to overcome them, you can create stronger and more meaningful connections with the people around you.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Together Team

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