Trust is one of the most basic foundations of a healthy relationship. Without it, your relationship would start to crumble even if you’re otherwise great in every other aspect.
If you’re having trust problems with your boyfriend and it’s been going on for a while, you must address it immediately before it will cause permanent damage to your relationship.
Trust may seem difficult to build but it really isn’t, if you know the right approach. In this article, let me show you 15 important ways you can build trust with your boyfriend.
1) Acknowledge that you’re having trust issues
Maybe you lost your trust in each other during the course of your relationship, or maybe one or both of you simply find it hard to trust people.
Whatever the reasons may be, it’s incredibly important that you acknowledge that you’re having trust issues.
If one of you continues to deny the fact that you have trust issues or they continue to minimize the issue like there’s nothing to talk about and fix, not only will you not be able to improve your relationship, you’ll also end up resenting each other even more.
If you don’t try to take this step, it’s certainly possible that your partner won’t even realize that trust is an issue, whether coming from him or from you. This is especially the case if he’s so used to mistrust in a relationship that it’s “normal” for him.
To make it easier for him, refrain from saying anything that is a direct or indirect attack to his character. Don’t make it seem like he’s the one with a problem.
Don’t say “Why can’t I trust you?!” or “Why can’t you trust me?!”
Instead, try a gentler language. Say something like “I think we should talk about why we have these arguments when I know we love each other so much.”
2) Both of you should commit to working on it
Building trust takes time and would involve a lot of steps—especially if it’s broken many times.
If you truly love each other, you should be willing to commit to building trust 1000%.
That means you both should be willing to do something a little bit uncomfortable and a little bit forced at the beginning. It also means you have to double up on patience. Otherwise, nothing will change.
You might be a little uncomfortable sharing your past, well…try.
It might feel like he’s forcing you to “report” to him when you’re out with friends, well…just do it.
If only one of you is willing and the other finds it “too much”, nothing will happen. You have to compromise and negotiate when you’re trying to build trust.
3) Forgive and stop pointing fingers
So they broke an important promise to you. It’s totally understandable if you’re still furious at him because of it. But what’s done is done and if you decided to stay with your boyfriend because you still have faith in your relationship, then you’ll have to forgive and stop blaming him for his mistakes.
Maybe you’ve got a lack of connection now, but that can change.
You can’t just sit and wait for your anger to subside before you decide to forgive him, or blame and punish him so that he’ll get “better.” That’s toxic and manipulative behavior, and if that’s what you’re going to do you might as well break up.
If you really want to rebuild trust, you should do your best to have a fresh start. As difficult as it may be, forgive. Being gentle is the only way to go if you want to work on building trust.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you should let yourself be a doormat. If you feel like he’s abusing how forgiving you are towards him and using it to mean he can just do whatever he wants, then you should call him out.
4) Discuss the times you feel like you can’t trust other people
Get a cup of coffee or a bottle of wine and just talk about everything related to trust.
You don’t have to put your relationship under a microscope. Make it easy on each other by talking about other people first.
Talk about the moments in your life when you felt betrayed.
Talk about your childhood—who were the people you can trust at that time, who were the ones that broke your trust?
Talk about friends, colleagues, classmates and whether or not you trust them.
If you really want to make a strong bond with your S.O., you have to know each other’s past.
Just talking about trust, even if it’s not specifically about each other, would make both of you understand each other. If they’ve lost trust in a lot of people, then be more patient if your partner can’t give you his 100% trust.
Maybe their ex cheated on them with their best friend. Only a person made of steel would be able to live with that without trust issues.
So yes, it might seem unfair but sadly, you have to prove to your boyfriend that he can indeed trust you, even if you’re the most trustworthy person in the world.
It’s not your fault—definitely not—but you have to accept the fact that he’s building a wall because he’s been burned too many times before.
5) Discuss the times you feel like you can’t trust each other
You should talk to your partner about your trust issues, simply so that both you and him know exactly what your problems are and maybe even the reasons why they exist in the first place.
Maybe they’re suspicious when you don’t reply to their messages in a timely manner or maybe you don’t believe them when they say they’ll start saving up for your wedding.
You have to talk about these things without fear because these problems already exist in your relationship. It’s much worse if you won’t talk about it. Just make sure you’re not doing it in an accusatory manner.
You don’t have to count the times you feel like you can’t trust them to prove that they’re a “bad partner”. Do it to be objective and to see each other’s patterns instead.
What were the moments that made you question their word?
What did they do exactly and did they keep doing it despite the fact that it affects you?
What could you do to earn each other’s trust?
As always, be gentle. Try to come from a loving place because you’re doing it to improve your relationship, not to castigate each other.
6) Make your relationship a “safe space” to talk about anything
Make your boyfriend feel safe to tell you anything. Don’t judge him, don’t throw a fit, don’t make it about you.
We all have gone through different things in our past. Sometimes, those events will make it hard for us to trust and that is truly unfortunate.
However, we’re not any less deserving of good things in life simply because of that—on the contrary, it means that we deserve a kind and understanding ear. It is a very human need to feel understood and heard.
It helps to be aware of and to practice understanding, and maybe then those wounds will heal and trust will once more come easily.
7) Set new relationship rules
Ask him what would make him feel like he can trust you.
Ask yourself what can make you trust him.
If your imagination goes wild when he’s out with other people because you once caught him flirting with a girl at the bar, then ask yourself if you can trust them to go out drinking in bars again.
If you still can’t, then give them a chance to prove to you that you can trust them again by setting some “rules” in your relationship. Maybe you should ask him to go out less or send you messages when he’s out. And maybe he should go home before midnight, too.
Is it too stifling? Maybe, but they’ve committed something that’s eroded your trust and they should try to make you feel safe again. As a partner, it is their duty.
However, if your boyfriend didn’t do anything at all yet you just have an anxious attachment style, then you should make the change. Of course, this won’t be easy for you so he should also do his share.
It can be as simple as setting a specific time to message each other (and being consistent about it) or letting you befriend each other’s colleagues so you can get a glimpse of each other’s work life.
Find specific solutions and ask each other nicely to cooperate as you both try to build trust in each other.
Always remember: You’re a team. You’re there to help each other feel safe.
8) Be consistent
Inconsistency is one of the things that makes it hard to trust people sometimes.
Let’s say you go to a restaurant and order a pizza. You like it, so you buy more pizza from them. But the flavor changes every time, and sometimes you don’t like it. You wouldn’t trust this restaurant, simply because it has never given you any reason to be confident in what it offers.
The same thing applies to personal relationships.
If you keep on blowing hot and cold— being incredibly affectionate one moment and then distant the next—and being so unpredictable that nobody can be really sure what it is you are like or what you want… you’re not really going to build trust.
Be consistent in what you do and what you say—to each other and to other people. Be consistent in your level of commitment to your relationship. And expect the same thing from your boyfriend.
In other words, you have to put more weight on your words because words are not just words, especially if you already have trust issues.
9) Follow through on your promises
Trust and reliability go hand in hand.
It’s hard to trust someone who isn’t reliable, while someone who keeps following through on the promises they make will be easy to trust.
It can be the big things like when you promise to buy a gift for his mother, but most of the time it’s in the little things like showing up to your date on time or watering the plants when you said you would be incredibly important.
When he’s the one having a hard time trusting you, remember to follow through on your promises. You’re only going to make him wary of you if you keep promising, and then failing to deliver on those promises.
But if you prove yourself to be reliable enough, and consistently enough, then he’s going to see that and it’ll be much easier for him to trust in you.
10) If you need something, say it.
Sometimes it’s easy to feel bad about having to ask for something from other people—even our partners! But when you find yourself frustrated when your partner fails to meet your expectations, stop for a moment to think—did you really tell them what is it you want?
If your partner has a habit of coming home late, and this habit of his is making you anxious, then tell him how it makes you feel and see if you can either understand why he does it or if he can come home earlier.
There’s a chance you might get into a fight, but that’s better than letting your frustrations stew until they become outright resentment and distrust.
He’s no mind reader after all. You can try to drop all sorts of ‘subtle’ hints and chances are that he won’t understand what you’re trying to say. It’s better to tell him straight up.
11) Admit mistakes
No matter how hard you try to avoid them, you’re going to make mistakes. And it’s important that you acknowledge your mistakes and try to make up for them instead of trying to sweep them under the rug.
Trying to ignore your mistakes or deny the fact that you’ve done them is only going to sow mistrust in your relationship.
Whether you try to make excuses or try to push the blame elsewhere, he’ll eventually see through it, and he will take note of it. This doesn’t just apply to your relationship, it could be with anyone.
If you always blame others when it’s clearly your fault or you are partly to blame, don’t blame your boyfriend for not trusting you. If this is your boyfriend, then it’s understandable why you have a hard time trusting them.
People get tired easily when people keep going “it’s not my fault, it’s that person’s fault!” or “but that never happened, what do you mean?” when confronted.
It makes them seem incredibly immature, dishonest, and untrustworthy. And you don’t really trust someone who’s untrustworthy.
Make a promise to each other to always try to admit mistakes, even the smallest ones. The more you do it, the easier it will be for trust to blossom.
12) Assume he has the best of intentions
One of the first things you should do if you’re having a hard time trusting your partner is to assume that your partner has good intentions.
So if your boyfriend lets you down, you might be tempted to think it’s because they’re doing it on purpose, especially if you never failed to remind them how awful it makes you feel when they do it.
But you can’t have a healthy relationship if you keep assuming the worst of him!
You’ll build an air of suspicion that is going to weigh you down and make it hard for both of you to really do anything in your relationship. And he’s going to want out, at some point.
Your boyfriend is a good guy. He may be lazy, it may be hard for him to follow through, so you need to guide him. But never ever forget that he loves you and he’s trying his best even if he slips sometimes.
13) Listen to his side without judgment
There’s always more than one side to the story. If you find your partner doing something that made you suspicious, or if you had friends sharing rumors with you, you should at least try to listen to his side instead of trusting whatever or deciding on the conclusion that you have arrived at.
For example, your friends might be telling you that your boyfriend has been meeting with a girl they don’t know at least once a week and tell you that he’s cheating on you when in truth he’s meeting up with a cousin.
You might still find it hard to accept his account. What if he’s just making excuses after all?
But you’ll just have to take him at his word. Let him finish explaining his side without rolling your eyes or trying to spot clues that he may be bluffing.
Truly listen and be open.
14) Have a stoic mindset
When you have a stoic mindset, you acknowledge that some things are just out of your control. Any chance of your partner being unfaithful is up to them, and whether they want to change or get better is also entirely their decision.
If he cheats, then it’s on them. It’s something beyond your control. Even if you follow them wherever they go, if they’re a cheater, they will find a way to cheat.
Likewise, even if you’re not around each other a lot (such as if you’re in a committed long-distance relationship), if they’re not a cheater, then they won’t cheat even if girls would throw themselves at your boyfriend.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that you shouldn’t care if your boyfriend cheats. But if he does, try to set aside your emotions and then try to approach the situation with reason. Ask him why he did it, if he is willing to stop doing it, and what steps he’ll take to regain your trust.
And if he cheats on you again, then that’s that. It’s their loss. It’s best looking for someone else to love.
15) Put yourself in his shoes
Imagine what it feels like to NOT be trusted.
Do you know just how painful it is when you’re not doing anything bad or suspicious, but in spite of that someone you love dearly keeps on being suspicious at you and questioning your every move?
Put yourself in his shoes for once and try to be kind and understanding. After all, you’re in a relationship together because you love each other, don’t you?
You don’t want someone you love to always question their every move and worry about being accused left and right simply because their partner is insecure or simply doesn’t know how to trust.
So think about how you’re making him feel and try to see if you can grant him some peace of mind. If you really can’t help but be suspicious towards him, either you’re just not meant to be or that you’re not ready for a relationship.
Trust is something that’s very hard to earn, and incredibly easy to shatter.
It is also something that you need in your relationship if you don’t want it to fall apart. So whether you’re trying to rebound from a painful event in your relationship or are bearing the wounds from past relationships, you should try to take steps to build trust between your boyfriend and yourself.
If trust isn’t being built, it’s being worn down. And trust simply doesn’t come into being overnight, so prepare a lot of patience.
And then, of course, sometimes people just aren’t worth the effort. But even with that risk, it’s worth trying your best anyways. It’s good to know that you’ve done your best to create a lasting relationship.
That’s what real commitment is all about!
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If you want specific advice on your situation, it can be very helpful to speak to a relationship coach.
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