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Why Is It Hard for Some People to Trust and How to Trust Again

Why Is It Hard for Some People to Trust and How to Trust Again

Trust no one. This seemingly beneficial virtue for a happy life can be a bit counterproductive, making issues where there didn’t need to be one. A lack of trust can lead to a multitude of issues, including the inability to maintain relationships. But if you trust too much, you leave yourself vulnerable; a target for disappointment.

The concept of trust: the firm belief in reliability, truth, ability, or strength of something or someone; is a bit foreign when reclusive secrecy has become the norm. But the fact of the matter is, if we build our walls up too high, we doom ourselves to a fate full of solitude and loneliness.

The concept of trust is developed early on in life, leaving room for developmental issues down the line.

During our infant and toddler stages, we as humans being assessing our emotions and grasp on certain dynamics. Our concept of trust is one of the first to be established. More often than not, trust issues are developed early on in life as a direct effect of an occurrence or lack thereof during childhood.[1]

    Children who did not receive consistent attention, nurturing, affection, appropriate discipline, or acceptance during their developing stages are likely to establish issues later on in life; and are likely to struggle with maintaining relationships. This is even more true for children who are exposed to abusive environments, as their view of normalcy in relationships has been permanently skewed.

    Trust issues can develop during any stage of life due to a variety of reasons.

    Trust issues are not exclusively linked to childhood experiences, they can really develop during any stage of life.[2]

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    Adolescence is another milestone for trying and developmentally altering experiences. Young teens who are bullied and teased at school or at home may develop a mistrust for their peers, as their self-esteem has been effected which in turn will play a monumental role on that individuals ability to trust.

    Traumatic life events during any stage of life including adulthood can seriously hinder the trust spectrum. Occurrences such as theft, illness, or loss of a loved one. This person has been disillusioned, and have to come to terms with new emotions such as loss of control, abandonment, or loss of security. On a more heinous scale, experiences such as sexual assault or rape can leave the victim stripped of the ability to trust.

      The most common of trust issues, relationship issues, can develop at anytime.

      Now, these can manifest during a normally healthy relationship, stemming from a childhood experience that clearly has not been processed. But more likely than not, everyone goes through “that one” relationship that turns their world upside down and alters the way that they view relationships and themselves indefinitely. Those who have been cheated on are likely to carry the notion into future relationships that no one can be trusted, and if they didn’t answer your text in 5 seconds, then they must be cheating.

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        And yes, granted, in today’s hook up culture, it’s difficult to give people the benefit of the doubt. With the illusion of variety and adoration generated by social media outlets; the promotion of “side pieces” and “main squeezes”, there’s not much room for the die-hard romantic who wants to achieve a meaningful and monogamous relationship.

        This may surprise you, but the cheater in the relationship is typically the one with real trust issues. There are very few reasons why people cheat, and although some of the reasons may be understandable, none are excusable.[3]

        But usually people tend to cheat when they’re feeling insecure, like they don’t “have it” anymore, or they have a nagging suspicion that their partner could or is doing better than them. To avoid being the one who gets betrayed, they go ahead and cheat so that they are in control of the situation so to speak.

        There is a direct connection between the existence of trust issues and mental health.

        Perhaps some of the most tragic trust issues are those that are generated by PTSD, due to some horrifyingly traumatic event. Many adults who have underwent war and all of the experiences that come with it, often carry those experiences with them off of the battleground.

        Many of these individuals feel that they did not receive the appropriate support from their government or their peers, after offering the ultimate sacrifice. That horrific experience leaves these heroes riddled with issues, trust being the main contender.

        Often times, the presence of trust issues are often couple with a multitude of additional issues. Be it abandonment, humiliation, or a traumatic physical experience, trust issues don’t travel alone. These additional ailments are a good indication as to what has caused the trust issues to begin with.

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        Although the trust has been lost, you can still gain it back.

        Unfortunately, there is no quick fix to this problem. Trust issues are deep seeded, stemmed from an early experience, ingraining itself into your overall development. But it is not the end all. It can be mended.

        Therapy – the most direct and effective way.

        This should be your first method of attack. I know, I know.

        Going to therapy eludes to some kind of stigma, like you’re crazy or something, or can’t handle your life. But the truth is that none of that is true. You’re just a bit damaged, and you may not even be aware as to what has caused the damage. You’re battling the after effects and you deserve a rest.

        Speaking to a counselor/therapist/psychologist can be incredibly beneficial, because you end up digging deep and unveiling aspects of yourself and memories that had been suppressed. This is helpful for both the individual as well as the couple, if the trust issues are within the relationship.

        Communication – a good relationship takes two.

        Just because your previous partner did you wrong doesn’t mean that every person out there is an insatiable, insecure sex fiend.

        Talk to them. Tell them how you’re feeling. You might think that you’re coming off as needy and whiny, but those qualities are much more welcoming when you compare them to paranoia, insecurity, accusing, and eventually resentful. Tell your partner how you’re feeling, and why you think that you have these emotions. If they’re willing to work with you and get to a place where you feel more comfortable, they’re a keeper.

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        If they’re thrown by your concerns, then you need to move on. You’re sliding down a toxic path to nowhere.

        Moving On – sometimes letting go is better than holding on.

        Sometimes it’s not all in your head. Sometimes you’ve learned from your passed experiences, and although they have left you a bit jaded, they have also left you with a intuitive wisdom. Perhaps your lack of trust has left you cynical, yet observant. Regardless of whether or not your resignations stem from a very real place, you have to weigh your happiness with the satisfaction of being right.

        If you’re mind is running a million miles a minute, trying to decipher if your partner is telling you the truth; it’s time to cut it off. It is bound to run its course eventually, otherwise you’re just stuck circling in the motions.

        You deserve happiness, and eventually you will find someone who doesn’t make you question every little thing.

        Featured photo credit: Stocksnap via stocksnap.io

        Reference

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        Jenn Beach

        Traveling vagabond, freelance writer, & plantbased food enthusiast.

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        Last Updated on June 24, 2019

        Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression

        Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression

        A study [1] published in Depression and Anxiety found that social media users are more likely to be depressed. This was just one of the huge number of studies linking social media and depression[2] . But why exactly do platforms like Facebook and Instagram make people so unhappy? Well, we don’t know yet for sure, but there are some explanations.

        Social Media Could Lead to Depression

        Depression is a serious medical condition that affects how you think, feel, and behave. Social media may lead to depression in predisposed individuals or make existing symptoms of depression[3] worse explains[4] the study above’s senior author Dr. Brian Primack. So, the problem may not be in social media per se, but how we use it.

        Signs You’re Suffering From “Social Media Depression”

        If you feel like social media is having a negative impact on your mood, then you may be suffering from “social media depression.” Look for symptoms like:

        • low self-esteem,

        • negative self-talk,

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        • a low mood,

        • irritability,

        • a lack of interest in activities once enjoyed,

        • and social withdrawal.

        If you’ve had these symptoms for more than two weeks and if this is how you feel most of the time, then you are likely depressed. Although “social media depression “is not a term recognized in the medical setting, social media depression seems to be a real phenomenon affecting around 50% of social media users. As explained in a review study[5] published in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, if a person has a certain predisposition to depression and other mental disorders, social media use may only worsen their mental health.

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        Social Media Could Crush Self-Esteem

        We know that social media and depression are in some way linked, but why is this so? Well, according to Igor Pantic, MD, Ph.D.[6], social media use skews your perception about other people’s lives and traits. To explain this further, most people like to portray an idealized image of their lives, personal traits, and appearance on sites like Facebook and Instagram. If you confuse this idealized image with reality, you may be under the false impression that everyone is better than you which can crush your self-esteem and lead to depression. This is especially true for teens and young adults who are more likely to compare themselves to others. If you already suffer from low self-esteem, the illusion that everyone has it better off than you will just make you feel worse.

        Causing Social Isolation and Other Negative Emotions

        Another commonly cited reason for the negative impact of social media on mental health is its link with social isolation. Depressed people are more likely to isolate themselves socially and chose only to interact indirectly through social media platforms. But communication online tends to be superficial and is lacking when compared to real-life interaction explains Panic. What this means is not that social media leads to isolation but the other way around, possibly explaining why we find so many depressed persons on these sites.

        Lastly, social media use may generate negative emotions in you like envy, jealousy, dislike, loneliness, and many others and this may worsen your depressive symptoms.

        Why We Need to Take This Seriously

        Both depression and social media use are on the rise according to epidemiological studies. Since each one has an impact on the other, we have to start thinking of healthier ways to use social media. Teens and young adults are especially vulnerable to the negative impact of social media on mental health.

        Advice on Social Media Use

        Although these findings did not provide any cause-effect explanation regarding Facebook and depression[7], they still do prove that social media use may not be a good way to handle depression. For this reason, the leading authors of these studies gave some suggestions as to how clinicians and people can make use of such findings.

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        One suggestion is that clinicians should ask patients about their social media habits. Then they can advise them on how to change their outlook on social media use or even suggest limiting their time spent on social media.

        Some social media users may also exhibit addictive behavior; they may spend too much time due to compulsive urges. Any compulsive behavior is bound to lead to feelings of guilt which can worsen depressive symptoms.

        Having Unhealthy Relationship with Social Media

        If you feel like your relationship with social media is unhealthy, then consider the advice on healthy social media use provided by psychology experts from Links Psychology[8]:

        Avoid negative social comparison – always keep in mind that how people portray themselves and their lives on social media is not a realistic picture, but rather an idealized one. Also, avoid comparing yourself to others because this behavior can lead to negative self-talk.

        Remember that social media is not a replacement for real life – Social media is great for staying in touch and having fun, but it should never replace real-world interactions.

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        Avoid releasing personal information – For your safety and privacy, make sure to be careful with what you post online.

        Report users who bully and harass you – It’s easy to be a bully in the anonymous and distant world of social media. Don’t take such offense personally and report those who abuse social media to harass others.

        The bits of advice listed above can help you establish a healthy relationship with social media. Always keep these things in mind to avoid losing an objective perspective of what social media is and how it is different from real life. If you are currently suffering from depression, talk to your doctor about what is bothering you so that you can get the treatment you need to get better. Tell your doctor about your social media use and see if they could give you some advice on this topic.

        Reference

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