We all know that trust is the foundation of any relationship. Without it, that foundation cracks, and whatever's been built upon it is at risk of crumbling. Trust can take years and years to build, yet can be destroyed in a matter of seconds, with the utterance of just a few words, or the painful moment when one discovers an egregious act has been committed.
The breaking of trust is the squashing of spirits and the killing of dreams. It is cruel in that it is not only situationally hurtful, but also in its ripple effect, seeping into the psyche of those who have been hurt, creating obstacles for them as they try to trust again. It causes constant questioning and results in an unsettledness that is difficult to explain to anyone who has not experienced it.
My life's lessons have taught me that people who are ego-driven are not trustworthy. They are so caught up in their "ME!"-ness that they refuse to consider how their actions affect the people around them. They are condescending and controlling in their communication, with an uncanny ability to make even the brainiest of braniacs feel foolish. They say whatever they think people want to hear, regardless of its veracity; they do what needs doing in order to stroke their own egos, even when doing so costs them everything and everyone about whom they care. They are incapable of true love because true love is selfless and unconditional, neither of which the ego understands.
I believe that these people struggle to find joy and contentment. They are looking to fill the voids in their hearts with things that truly don't matter. They can't possibly trust other people fully because they recognize that they, themselves, can't be trusted. Our natural inclination is to project who we are at our cores onto others, to look at life through the unique lens we each have created, a lens that mirrors ourselves, based on our thoughts, feelings and experiences. If we are pure and positive and treat others with the utmost love and respect, we assume others operate in much the same way. If we are dark and self-serving, it is hard to imagine that others do not follow suit.
Can trust ever be rebuilt? The logical side of me would like to believe that it can... yet I am not sure how one goes about healing deep wounds, inflicted by people in whom we believed, who we thought were least likely to ever cause us crippling pain. Can people so driven by ego that they forget there are living, breathing, feeling human beings on the other ends of their selfish actions change? The logical side of me would like to believe that they can... yet I am not sure that these types of people actually have the courage and strength to do so. It is my belief that it is the coward who hides behind his/her ego, and to truly evolve, we must face our fears, as well as our inner-demons, and find ways to fill with gratitude the voids in our hearts, and to recognize and appreciate that what we have within us is, indeed, enough.
I am a believer in value added relationships, and I am well aware that we only continue to stay in relationships that somehow serve us. Even under the most challenging of circumstances, when trust is gone and all that remains is a shred of hope, if we stay, it is because the relationship somehow serves us. Otherwise, we would recognize and act upon the need to simply walk away.
The strength it takes to wake up each morning with a resolve to trust again is unimaginable, on some levels. And yet, the human spirit is stronger than anything that can happen to it, and so we continue to do what needs doing in order to move forward, and sooner or later, we learn to trust again.