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Should we trust? 

I say yes, unless there is a reason you shouldn’t.

One of the elements which contributes to the ease and flow of a successful relationship is trust. When trust is a part of our relationship, the qualities and traits of our partner are easier to discover and observe.

What better way to become familiar with someone than to watch them – on the empty canvas of a budding romance – be who they really are. We have the opportunity to witness growth and development, while also learning about ourselves – if we are wise.

There is no need for worry, uncertainty, jealousy or any other negative emotions that oftentimes find their way in, and disrupt love. Trust is like the gatekeeper. There is no secret password that will allow the entry of created fears that would sabotage the foundation the two of you are building. When we trust, dark thoughts cannot penetrate your thoughts. Trust keeps them at bay, permitting love to develop and flourish.

Yet, many seemingly functional, healthy relationships crumble, to the couple’s dismay. Looking back at their behaviors, they admit the one necessary element – trust – was replaced with one or many of the negative emotions. This informs me that old memories of personal back-stories were overlaid onto the growing relationship. So the question becomes: How does one destroy trust?

The simple answer is fear. Fear disguises itself as many emotions. It begins with suspensions; Questions that our insecurities invite into the relationship that stem from our past experiences. Who is that person? Where are they? Do they really care about me? And it can go on.

These are triggers which activate memories that no longer serve us. Although memories can be destructive, they are simply stored information from our past which no longer exists. Unpleasant memories cause the list to spiral out of control from there. Uncertainty enters when we don’t feel safe enough to be secure in the relationship. Dishonesty comes into play when we fail to honestly communicate our true feelings about or insecurities.

Once these emotions are activated, everything changes. The positive feelings that were developing or have been developed begin to decline.

How can you make the shift to get love back on the upswing? Trust. That’s right, trust. There is work that needs to be done, as this is going to require courage and faith. Usually, unless you have a valid reason not to trust the person with whom we’ve decided to be in relationship, it is easy. However, you’ve got to clean up your backstory and remember that your past is not your present, and technically does not exist. Cultivate the courage to have faith in your partner and dare to experience a full, drama-free relationship.

Dr. Lateefah Wielenga works as a life and relationship coach and is also an ordained minister. She has a private practice in Long Beach. Call 895-0516 or visit www.thecounselingkitchen.com for details.

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