In my opinion, the first and most basic ingredient to any significant relationship is trust. It’s so important that without it you have nothing. It’s the foundation on which all relationships are built. Some people are more trusting than others, some are more trustworthy than others, and these traits are based on their life experiences. Trust doesn’t happen in an instant, but it builds over time. It can be shattered in an instant and lost forever. It’s fragile. I don’t think it can ever be totally rebuilt again if there is a major breech of trust.
When you trust someone there has to be a certain amount of predictability that make us feel we can depend on this person. Repeated good experiences teach us to feel safe. There has to be a feeling of reciprocity. If you are a good friend to someone in time of need, you should feel that you can count on them to be there for you should the need arise. Most important is that whenever you trust someone you make yourself vulnerable and place yourself at their mercy. Trust necessarily implies intimacy and sharing confidences and involves a certain amount of risk of someone exposing your secrets. Trust should never be taken for granted. It takes a long time to build up. It should be cherished and protected.
A trust can be broken by conscious betrayal, poor judgment, an honest mistake, or a misunderstanding. When a trust is broken it causes pain, disappointment, or loss and it is going to change the relationship or end it. If the violation is extreme, the betrayal too deep, and the pain is too great the chances of regaining trust is nearly impossible. Experiencing a broken trust of some kind in anyone’s lifetime is practically unavoidable.
Restoring trust is about the violated person’s feelings and whether they can regain the confidence they once had in the person who broke their trust. It can take a long time and a lot of forgiveness for them to get past it, if they ever do.
We need to value trust and understand how crucial it is to any relationship.