Trying to Trust (and failing...)

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2005
Trying to Trust (and failing...)
Thu, 05-21-2009 - 7:49pm

I will readily admit I have trust issues. They go waaaaay back and are not likely to change, but I'm trying to cope with them. But...the people in my life who want me to trust them are not proving to be trustworthy. But it's my problem, in their eyes.

My husband tours with Broadway shows. He has had several emotional affairs and possibly more, so trusting him is challenging. I can forgive, but he has proven that he is not truly trustworthy. Affairs are not unusual in our world, so he expects that it's okay even if I tell him otherwise. (No, it's not worth dumping him. We only see each other 2 or 3 times per year and I certainly don't need another man.)

My boss is hurt that I don't trust her, even after she gleefully tells that she has let people go, "with no hard feelings on her part" just because they didn't fit in after years of loyal service. No word on how hard the feeling were on their parts... She is also proud of her drive and ability to walk over anyone or anything in her way. I give this job 110%, but do I trust her? Heck, no! I also suspect she has lied about getting rid of a dog who was very abused when her husband rescued it 6 months ago. It wasn't very pretty and was very scared of people. It just didn't fit in her boisterous, fast-paced life. So I suspect she turned him in to the humane society. Hopefully, he has a good calm home now.

My dad dumped 50 years of records of his marriage to my mother after her death and his marriage to another woman. His new wife demanded that he remove all traces of any previous marriage. (She had been married 4 times prior to this, and kept a lot of stuff from those marriages.) So he threw out all of my baby pictures, all of our family trip photos, etc. Everything was thrown away. This all happened without his offering me the chance to save any of it. Now he wonders why I don't trust him or his new wife.

I hear "Why don't you trust me?" so much that I have begun to doubt my own reason. I am the caregiver for my father, his wife, 50+ hour per week employee for an ungrateful woman, and wife to a cheating roadie. I am the first person anyone calls if they need help, a community leader, and the first to give whatever is needed.

Is it me? Do I just not inspire loyalty and love? Is it just too easy to use me? Or maybe I'm just PMSing and needed to vent a little.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-06-2007
Fri, 05-22-2009 - 8:00pm

First of all, welcome to the board.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-14-2007
Fri, 05-22-2009 - 11:50am

I'm not entirely sure where to begin, so I'll start with boss. I think at some point we've all worked for people that we don't trust. It happens. You don't need to trust her. I'm a little confused as to why she's hurt that you don't trust her—unless you've told her you don't trust her? And then I'm assuming you have a closer relationship than boss and employee. If that's the case, you have two choices: ignore the trust issue and be work friendly (assuming you don't get together outside of work) or go back to an employee/boss relationship where trust isn't so much of an issue.

As for your father—what he did is absolutely horrible and I agree, trust would be an awfully hard issue. I don't see a way around that if you aren't going to forgive/forget (which I would find hard to do myself). I don't really have any advice on that situation. It sounds like it's still fresh in your mind. Have you thought about seeing a therapist even if just to talk about it and work on ways to get past it? Therapy can be a great tool to get you jump started on getting where you want to be mentally.

On to the husband—I'm not trying to be mean, honestly, but if you only see each other 2-3 times a year and you know he's cheating/has cheated, why are you still married? From what you've said, it's obvious he doesn't value the marriage. Maybe I'm missing something or you've left something off, but you are allowing this to happen. I can honestly say that if I saw someone 2-3 times a year, they wouldn't necessarily have my trust—especially in the husband-trust sense.

There isn't a magic formula that is going to change how you trust people—either you do or you don't. There's a reason you don't trust your boss, your father and your husband. It's not necessarily trust issues, it's that they are not trustworthy in your eyes. In any of the situations you've mentioned, I wouldn't trust them either.

So now it's a matter of what to do about it.