How do you recover from lost trust, broken promises. Thinking about what matters and trust matters a great deal and trust is a frail as the Emily Dickinson’s thing with feathers, always perching in our souls and living on even when broken. And Trust is always broken and realizing that is a way to keep relationships alive.

Nations always fail to keep the promises made. All that is needed for a nation’s promises to be broken is a shift in power.  The initial treaties with our First Nation People were probably entered into with good faith, but as the country grew, others no longer held to them.  Hence the saying “White men speak with crooked tongue.”  One white man might speak differently but many speaking break promises.

But even those nearest and dearest that we think will never betray our trust do.  Think of a baby or child’s trust in parents.  Without knowing the meaning of the words babies and children expect parents to feed, love, and keep safe.  How else could they survive.  But parents cannot always feed, love or keep safe so trust is shaken and in time, usually during adolescence parents are seen as un-trust worthy, but the process starts earlier.

“Why did you buy me that soccor ball?” tearfully asked his father.  The boy had fallen  and twisting his ankle going for a kick.  Trust broken.

When the child moves into adolescence and suddenly sees the world more realistically, parents are often seen as have lied.  “Why did you make me go out for Little League?” a thirteen year old angrily asked.  He had long dreamt of becoming a major league star, but had also spent much of his Little League career in the out field or on the bench.  He had no talent Baseball was not the .  The parents had worked hard to switch him to a sport more suited to his needs.  Some thing that was forgotten when he finally realized he was not going to make the majors.  Trust was broken in the boy’s mind although the parents had done all they could to not encourage false hopes.

Even the most loving couples fail to uphold trust.  A dear friend whose husband had never betrayed, found his sudden death of a heart attack a betray.  “How dare he do this to me? I was to die first?”

Finally, in situations of extreme fear or other heightened emotions, trust often breaks.  I remember driving with my father after Hurricane Hazel had hit our town and most of the East Coast.  He started  cautiously through a puddle that grew suddenly deep enough to start seeping in the doors.  He jumped out of the car and fled.  I managed to get into the driver’s seat and back the car up to where Dad was standing.

Guiltily he explained. “I can’t swim. You can.”

I couldn’t, but had enough understanding to not mention that fact at the moment or ever. I knew my father loved me deeply, I understood how fear had hi-jacked his good reason.  I trusted him to do the best he could in any given circumstance despite this one lapse.

So my staying strong tips for dealing with trust.  Understand the fragile nature of trust.    Know your own limits and needs.  Know the limits of those in whom you place your trust.  Work to understand the forces at place pushing betrayal.  Work to forgive.  Forgiveness comes easier if we remember we are all human, we all fail sooner or later.  When trust is broken, be less trusting. Take care of you for the trust breaker is taking care of himself or herself or themselves.

Keep caring and stay strong.

Topic #85 How do you recover lost trust? In a person? In an idea?

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