Can I Trust Again? Or…Too Much Damage?

This is part 2 of my transcript on trust with Nat.

Her second question relates to the amount of damage and her capacity to trust and rebuild.

Nat:  Part of that is, is there is a point when there’s been so much damage done that after I found out about this and with him continuing to flirt with other women, I would get so upset about the flirting even if it was innocent. Where I kind of got to the point, where I thought, there’s been so much damage done that I’m just not going to be able to trust him again, because he has this need to interact with these other women. Or is that something that we could work on?

Bob:  OK. You have decided that you can’t trust him, is that correct?

Nat:  Yes.

Bob:  90 percent of you has decided that you can’t trust him.

Nat:  Yes.

Bob:  85 percent of you says I’m out of here. Is that correct?

Nat:  Right. That’s about right.

Bob:  OK. You have made a decision. Also, please know that these decisions are never a 100 percent. There will always be doubts and you’ll always question your decision probably at some level. Maybe 10, 15 percent of the time.

Nat:  Right.

Bob:  Is that helpful?

Nat:  Yes. I think so.

Bob:  Are you sure? OK, what else is going on here for you?

Nat:  Well, I guess my question was, can a person get past these feelings and trust somebody after so much damage has been done. I know the answer is yes, but it seems like too much of a hurdle.

Bob:  You’re asking a great question, and there’s no concrete answer for that. Rebuilding trust is difficult, and it doesn’t happen quickly. I say that trust is a function of time and predictability. In other words, he needs to be predictable over a period of time for you to feel like you can trust him. And it sounds like that’s not happening. Correct?

Nat:  Right.

Bob:  And rebuilding trust, I’m working hard at generating some new material on this and they’ll be coming out probably in the next six months. But you’re not alone in this. There are a high number of people who go through infidelity and the big question is, will I ever be able to trust him or her again? Or will I ever be able to trust myself again? Maybe that’s the primary question. I’ve been hurt here and can I ever entrust myself to someone else. That’s also another chunk of this.

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One Response to Can I Trust Again? Or…Too Much Damage?

  1. Corey says:

    This is something that I have been struggling with. I like the notion that trust is a function of time and predictability. I also believe that in the short-term while trying to build trust one should show that you are able to try trusting your partner but with verification that cheating and all associated activities have ceased. I am doing this with my wife. She cheated on me with two men (maybe more) over a period of at least 7 years. She refuses to tell me about the affairs so I have had to piece it together like a jigsaw puzzle. She says she is sorry (that I found out probably) and will never hurt me by cheating on me. I have told her that time will tell. I have forgiven but will never forget. Cheating changes everything forever… I look at my wife with love but suspicion. And everything done and said is analyzed. I was a fool once but I will not be a fool twice.
    I hope that over time my trust will build back. On a scale of 0 to 10 (0 being no trust and 10 being complete trust), I am at a 2.

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