Rebuilding Trust After Trust Has Been Broken: Part 1

by Dr. Brian T. Hargis, Guest Blogger, Asher Family Foundation


Share this Post

Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind, let each esteem others better than themselves. Philippians 2:3

TRUST is a building block of the marital foundation. Lack of trust deteriorates even the strongest marriages over time, and no one enjoys living in the pain it creates. Therefore, the most challenging obstacles to overcome is rebuilding trust after it has been broken.

Rebuilding trust can variate depending on the level of emotional, and/or physical pain. However, there is good news! Marriages can recover by implementing and incorporating the following constructive points:

1. Communicate Feelings Honestly

Do not hold back your feelings.

It is perfectly acceptable to show emotions occasionally…. even for a guy. Remember – your spouse cannot read your mind; therefore, it is your responsibility to communicate personal feelings openly and honestly. Articulate your feelings in such a way that will get the issue aired and resolved.

When rebuilding trust with your spouse, they need to trust in what you say and know that you care. That’s why COMMUNICATING FEELINGS HONESTLY helps to rebuild trust because it demonstrates that you care. A caring spouse will ask questions about the other’s feelings and thoughts. A caring spouse will take the time to stop and listen without interrupting. This type of conversation through words and feelings creates a closeness called intimacy. When each spouse expresses themselves properly and honestly, the intimacy created brings the bonds of marriage back together.

By being true to yourself through self-expression of feelings, you show vulnerability and sincerity to your spouse – the foundation of rebuilding trust.

2. Express Needs Clearly

Expressing and meeting your spouse’s needs are two powerful methods to build trust. It’s your responsibility to clearly express your needs so that they can understand. It is not the listener’s responsibility to interpret what you are trying to say. You must articulate your feelings and develop the message so that the context is not lost in translation. Therefore, paint the picture clearly so that they are not left guessing what you mean.

Some spouses have no filter and they say whatever comes to their mind. Yet others have difficulty describing their needs. Others feel that they cannot express their needs and that leads to an erosion of trust.

There are two reasons why we may not express our needs:

1. We are afraid of rejection, or…

2. We are afraid of feeling ashamed for having such needs.

An example of expressing your needs clearly would be to describe what you want and/or need intimately. Many couples struggle with this one including those that have been married for decades but have never expressed what they want sexually. Have the personal courage to express your needs clearly. If you don’t, then they will never know what you want. Your connection and trust will never be as strong as it could be.

Therefore, rebuild trust by expressing your needs clearly.

Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge. Hebrews 13:4

Join The Discussion