Dr. Dennis Neder, Author: "Being a Man in a Woman's World"
"You can become your own worst enemy when you're dating someone and you have trust issues."
I have been seeing this woman on and off for over 1 year, we have only been seeing each other seriously since the beginning of May. We have had difficulties with trust from both ends in the past, but things have improved dramatically over the past few months.
99% of the time I trust her completely and I know that despite the difficulties we have had, things are improving and continue to grow.
However, a there are a small percentage of the times where I have doubt. This manifests itself in behaviors such as questioning whether or not she is telling me the truth.
For example, today, I attempted to login to her cell phone account. I didn't login, but immediately felt like shit for doing this. I called her to tell her what I had done and apologize.
What can I do to keep myself from carrying out these behaviors a small percentage of the time which put our relationship in serious jeopardy?
First of all, if you're going to do something like this don't turn around and confess to it! All that will do is cause even MORE mistrust between you!! Sheesh!!!
You're right for feeling like shit. Invasion of privacy is the worst crime that can be committed within a relationship - even worse than cheating! The reasons for this are because of the source of it which I'll get into in a minute.
The very first thing I want both of you to do is to go change ALL your passwords - phones, email, everything - and then don't tell the other person. That's going to eliminate the temptation to invade each other's privacy. That will solve one big problem here.
The second problem isn't going to be as easy. The issue isn't that you both have trust issues; it's that you have "I don't trust myself" issues.
Let me explain:
What you don't trust is:
1) Your ability to know or sense when something is really wrong; and,
2) Your ability to deal with the things you find out.
Thus, you're both trying to get the OTHER person to make you trust them. That can NEVER happen. You can't give away your responsibilities here to someone else and expect them to live up to them. First of all, it's not their job. Second of all, what if they don't? Then you can blame them without taking any responsibility for it yourself!
The reality is that relationships are far more about PERSONAL responsibility than anything else. If you don't have it, your relationship will continue to suffer because of it.
Let me give you an example of how this works:
When I get involved with someone I'm going to date for a long period of time I tell them this: "You know, I can't be around you 24/7 to watch what you do and frankly, I'd never want to be in that sort of relationship anyway. I'm with you because I believe in you and I hope that's why you're with me. I'm a quality person and I want to be around people that have champagne tastes. If you decide you want to go out for beer, I can't stop you, but instead, I'll have realized that you're not the person I am looking for and I'll go off to find someone else that wants champagne."
Do you see the point of this little speech? I take PERSONAL responsibility for my actions - I don't try to lay them off on anyone else. Instead, I let her be responsible for herself too. I believe that I can deal with things even if I don't like them by finding someone else. In fact, I can and so can you!
If you need more of an idea of how this works, go to my website, http://beingaman.tv and click on "Video" and "Self Help" and watch the one about Trust.
The bottom line is that you need to start working on building up your own trust for yourself and stop worrying about what anyone else does, says or thinks - even your girlfriend.
Dr. Dennis Neder
Have a love, relationship or man/woman question? I answer all email. You can write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org for answers.
For more information about my book, "Being a Man in a Woman's World", visit: www.beingaman.com
Copyright (c) Dr. Dennis W. Neder All rights reserved.
Dr. Dennis W. Neder
Author of: Being a Man in a Woman's World
Dedicated to advancing the arts and sciences of relationships.
Start having the relationships YOU deserve!
Got a love, relationship or man/woman question? I answer all letters. You can write to me at email@example.com for answers. For more information about my book, "Being a Man in a Woman's World", visit: www.remingtonpublications.com