Trust Others

trust othersLearning to Trust Others

Lack of trusting yourself can manifest itself in a lack of trusting others and ultimately a lack of trust in your relationships.
Many victims of child abuse are fearful of expressing their emotions, inner needs and feelings. As a result there is a lack of communication. This includes not talking about the abuse and results in that veil of secrecy being extended and reinforced. Perhaps it is because to show emotions is like a show of weakness, perhaps you are afraid of complete rejection. Do you think your partner has the time to deal with the abuse you suffered?

Don’t underestimate the strength of your relationship. If there is a foundation of caring, love and mutual respect then the relationship will be able to withstand a problem such as this. There will inevitably be times when you regret having said anything at all, but really the whole thing will bring you closer together and cement your bond. If your partner is interested in you then they will take the time to listen and deal with your problems and feelings. Don’t use your fears as an excuse not to take the first step to develop trust in your relationship.

Learning to trust yourself and others is a big step – it takes time and practise – don’t expect just to be able to start trusting people because you have changed your mind set (although that is a good start!). These are the steps you need to take:

Listen to your feelings and honour them.
Communicate these feelings either to your partner, close ally or write them into a journal.
Listen to the voice within, it will tell you how you are feeling, but learn not to listen to it when it puts you down or tells you that you are stupid or unimportant. This is the work of your inner abuser
Challenge the Inner Abuser, combat his negative messages with positive, realistic ones
Use affirmations to challenge these negative thoughts.
Take risks: act as though you do trust – be very guarded and then see the result. If you find out you can’t trust that individual then you have learnt from the experience and will be unlikely to repeat the mistake again with the same individual.

6 Responses to Trust Others

  1. Avatarbosco1956ron says:

    When it is your own mother and father who molested you. This article minimises the damage.

    • AvatarCarolC. says:

      Exactly, when your own father sexually abuses you, the damage is not treatable. Relationships, marriage, etc is almost impossible because a child who has been abused by a parent usually sabotages any relationship because of major lack of trust, anger issues, and not being able to express love or affection because you learned to bottle up everything as a child to protect yourself from being touched again. You try hiding as a child, and when you are an adult, you are still hiding – hiding emotionally. It’s impossible to create a close bond with someone when you are afraid to get too close.

      • HAVOCAHAVOCA says:

        We disagree. We have seen hundreds of victims of abuse move forward and heal from the abuse they suffered at the hands of their parents. Don’t lose hope. It is possible to heal.

        • AvatarJolene Wood says:

          This article definitely minimises the subject of trust. I was abused by an older cousin (over 5 years older) virtually my entire childhood, and no-one noticed. I’ve been divorced from my ex husband of 9 years – who was very emotionally abusive. Now come and tell me that it is easy to just trust. You trust – you get hurt, and that is the reality in the lives of most survivors. The above is not a suitable answer. It skims merrily over the surface of an extremely crucial hurdle in recovery. What survivors want to know is where to start, and that is not by simply letting go and trusting almost blindly – because that is highly unlikely to happen. In fact that could potentially lead to yet another bad situation, and entrench mistrust even further. It would be far more productive to hear from survivors who can tell you how they did it – and I mean survivors of severe cases. Additionally, trust is not limited to a romantic relationship – survivors often have trust issues with EVERYONE. So once again, this article doesn’t even begin to answer that.

          • HAVOCAHAVOCA says:

            We agree with you. It is much easier to say ‘let go and blindly trust’ than to actually do it. I think, for me at least, this article generates discussion and a starting point for healing, even if you don’t necessarily agree with the approach of the author.

            There isn’t a single generic process for dealing with trust issues as a result of childhood abuse, every survivor is different.

            With that in mind, understanding your own needs as a survivor and developing your own plan comes from gathering information, deciding what will and won’t work for you and then moving forward with that.

            However I am sorry this article hasn’t worked for you. If you discover something that does work for you then feel free to share. Likewise, if other survivors want to share what works for them then please drop us a line.

            Good luck with your recovery.

  2. AvatarJohn Dray says:

    Thank you for this article. I am just coming to terms with having been in abusive relationships. This article spoke to me. (It actually made me feel nauseous!) I think that is probably the start of a healing journey.

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