Shattered Trust

Many of us smile through the brokenness when our trust is shattered. We try to hide the intense pain we feel.

It takes a lot for me to trust someone. In the past, if my friends trusted someone, I trusted them based off of their judgment. I’ve gotten burned a lot over the years and it was my own fault. Some of the same people whom I considered friends, were actually wolves in sheeps clothing and the people they had recommended were just as untrustworthy. I’ve been an individual who wears their heart on their sleeves most of my life and until the last decade, I had let a lot of folks shatter my trust. You would have thought that I learned my lesson but even when we think that we have learned from our mistakes, there are people who manage to still sneak in and surprise us.

Yesterday I got a shock. I had hired a friend of mine previously who had worked on my car months ago to do a brake flush. I paid him for the job thinking it had been done and done correctly. When another friend of mine took the car to get the oil changed for me, since I couldn’t get away from work and it really needed to be done, I found out that not only had the brake flush not been done but that my car was going to need more work. The same person who claimed to have changed the brake flush had helped me to replace my window on the drivers side. Guess what? He didn’t do that right either. After paying him to get both things done only to find out that it wasn’t, now I have to shell out several hundreds of dollars that I don’t have in order to get it fixed.

When people break our trust, it’s really difficult to get trust back in any type of relationship. Personal relationships suffer because when that trust is broken, it is one of the core foundations that cements two people together. Working to re-establish that trust can be a challenge. There are people who have over come lies, manipulations, and pure deception but they are few and far between.

When I was married, the marriage had been built on a web of lies. I guess Karma has a way of biting all of us in the butt when we’ve done bad things but the level of deceit that was bestowed upon me was earthshattering. It’s taken years for me to look past all the deception and to be willing to trust someone else. When we have our trust completely shattered, is it possible to regain that level of trust again?

In some cases the answer is yes. I’ve seen broken relationships that are now stronger than ever. It took a lot of time, patience and communication to rebuild but the people involved have all said that it was worth the work. It starts with forgiveness. Forgiving someone isn’t easy. It can be one of the most difficult endeavors that you take on. If you are the one who wronged someone, you may have to ask others for forgiveness and see if they are willing to forgive. There are many people in my past who have wronged me. Some I have forgiven and some I want to forgive but it isn’t easy. The level of pain that they caused cut deep. Holding a grudge doesn’t help anyone but sometimes those grudges are difficult to let go of. In my heart, I know that it isn’t healthy. Yet, I still feel that sting of betrayal. Each day is a testament of learning to let go of the inhibitions and fears that dwell deep in my soul. I’ve often heard the phrase to “forgive and forget” but that doesn’t imply the difficulties that go along with that statement. How do you forget when the other person has caused you years of heartache? In short, we have a choice. We can choose to let that person or persons control our emotions. We can continue to let them make us feel beaten, broken, abused, frustrated, confused, and even abandoned. We can choose to rise up from the ashes and be willing to say “I forgive you and you won’t get another thought out of me.” It’s our choice as to how we move forward.

Once trust is broken, it’s very difficult to look past the hurt. Forgiveness is a key to moving forward.

Grow up and recognize where you need to improve. Easier said than done, right? Anytime I have ever heard the phrase “grow up”, it’s been like a slap in the face. Each one of us deals with diverse issues and situations. Some are more decisive than others. Whatever the issue may be, it never hurts to take a step back and look at what you can improve upon. One of my closest friends has always told me that I dwell on little things and she’s right. I’ve really worked on this over the years. It’s something that I have to fight and when I get criticized, I used to let it bother me. Now, I move forward. It might hurt but by opening myself up to learn from the criticism, I’ve finally been able to embrace a more open conversation with myself and those closest to me.

Be willing to admit how you feel. This is imperative. If you aren’t honest with yourself and others about your emotions, then how can you expect anyone else to be? One of the hardest things many of us have to do is to be able to communicate our feelings. Some of us do it verbally, others by actions but no matter how you address a situation, be willing to be open and honest about your emotions. Don’t do violent things. But find a way to engage in conversations about what is bothering you or making you feel uncomfortable. Only then can problems be addressed. No one likes to mind read. Most of us flunked in that department.

You have to want something to work in order to get it to have the opportunity to work. I can’t stress this enough. What we want shows. When we want to be the best, we perform better. When we don’t care our attitude shows. Everything boils down to our mindset. Believe in yourself. The rest of the world may not be forgiving but you don’t have to show an example of unforgiving means. Don’t be the norm. Be the exception. Every day is a new chapter. Write your own story of forgiveness and triumph when trust is shattered. You aren’t broken. You may be temporarily beaten but you are the master of your life. And when someone shatters your trust and your heart, let yourself grieve but be willing to heal. You never know what surprises lie in store.

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