It is always my joy to tell my own change story to help people on this platform, why? I believe for me to make those changes happen in my own life. It can also and always help someone somewhere out there. My name is Michelle, and I want to talk about how I left being doubtful of people’s trust. I know trust is something many humans have issues with especially when we are to give trust to people who have betrayed them. Life will always be life, and we should take it like that.
Why did you make that change?
Since my first boyfriend left me for another girl after going through some hurdles with him, I started having doubts in trusting people. He was everything to me because I experienced what love is through him. He would not show it in time or let me say I did not notice him early enough that another girl he met during one of the camps took him away from me.
It happened that he came to visit one day and out of my inquisitive being, I picked up his phone when he decided to use the toilet. I had the urge to or let me say I was just tempted to go through his texts. Then I found the girl’s message thread. They had both gone far into each other. Then, I started connecting events with each other. I started finding answers to why he was always busy beyond the way he used to be. I could not bottle it up for him to leave and I just told him I wanted a breakup.
He came out of the toilet and met me in tears. He was confused about what might have led to my tears, till he saw his phone lying beside me. So, the next thing that came out of my mouth was “why?” He wanted to start explaining but I cut him short. To my surprise, he was not feeling remorseful because what he did next was to pick his phone and left.
The breakup happened. I was not myself for a while. Weeks roll by, I would still ask myself what I did wrong to deserve such treatment from whom I loved so much. I thought it would only be limited to me finding it difficult to trust whoever I would be going into a relationship with next. But, I realized it has started affecting other aspects of my life.
I started doubting promises from friends, especially when one or two things led to their disappointments. I would not want to listen to their side of the story because I started seeing every human being as the same. There was a time my mum was to get me something from the mall, but she was carried away with the day’s activities. She was tired and eventually forgot to get me what I asked for. On getting home, she was about explaining what transpired and why she forgot to get me my request. I just left her presence and locked myself in the room.
But, I started noticing I would find it difficult to trust anyone with anything, even my own self, started coming into the scenario. I would tell myself, “I don’t even trust anyone, not even myself”. I needed to be with someone to share my emotions with. But, how do I do that if I can’t trust anyone?
Sam came into my life. With all my moves to avoid his emotional advances, he kept at it. But, he noticed what was happening was not just a heartbreak, so he took it upon himself to quiz me. It was through this act of his, that I started having my way back with trusting people. Sam opened my eyes to the imperfection of humans, that no matter how someone seems perfect, look inwards, such person has his or her own lapses. He crowned it all that, “he is not promising that there would never be a breakup, but we both can always block every chance of it together by trusting each other.”
What was the transition like to overcome relationship mistrust?
I looked into those statement after we departed from the date that day. I started to place my own self into the same spectrum. To accept that fact was not easy, till I went into a self-examination moment. I would ask myself if I had never disappointed people or someone before? There, it came to me that it is a human thing to fall short of other people’s expectations.
It did not just happen suddenly that I started giving out my trust. I would monitor Sam’s lifestyle, how he would call in for a five minutes’ lateness to a meeting or date. How he tries to apologize for every bit of disappointment.
There, I started emulating this act. I would try to picture what might have happened to people for acting in such a way, instead of judging them by my past experience, I would try to ask questions. It did not come easy because, I was busy looking for how all these processes would make me trust again, especially in a relationship.
But realizing that trust is not what you only earn by getting it from others but, you just have to offer it to people too. It comes from both ends. Then, it occurred to me that I had to forgive my own past and take up the new processes of trusting people again.
Top 3 actions you took to make this change?
- Set the right expectation: I was looking for perfection. In reality though, perfection is achieved through collective efforts. I had to let my heart become neutral in dealing with people and issues. I opened up my heart to accept people the way they are. Sometimes, lowering my expectation minimizes my disappointments. I’m not saying to go way sub par though.
- Hit the right balance: It’s all about give and take. If I don’t trust my boyfriend at all, he will find very pointless to stay in relationship with me. That will actually motivate him to look outside. However, if I trust him blindly, he will think I’m too easy to cheat on. That will also motivate him to play around outside. The trick is to keep one eye open, and one eye close. On one hand, I give space and freedom to your boyfriend. On the other hand, I question him if I see or sense something uncommon shows up regularly. It’s hard to explain by words but I can assure you that female usually has a good sixth sense.
- Less judgmental: Innocence until guilty. I stopped judging people entirely with their little mistakes. Mistake are just effects. There are causes behind them. I started to ask for why there are mistakes instead of pointing at the mistakes. This mindset actually makes me happier and more empathetic to any relationships around me.
What are the outcomes of that change?
I came back to who I was and became better. It made me want to know more about people and what they are going through. Instead of seeing trust as weakness, I tapped into the strength it wields for the continuity of human existence. Although Sam and I broke up at last, we didn’t break up because we didn’t trust each other throughout these years. It was Sam who changed my view towards life.
I know you may have come to the intersection point on whether to accept your cheated boyfriend if he comes back, or not. I have another article just around that. Please feel free to click here to see I view this situation.
If you’ll never accept him back whatsoever, I recommend you read this article on how to recover from a breakup.
I’m sure you may have different experience than I have. Comment below or even better, share your journey of change with others!