Struggling with Trust? .... Read On!
I had a fascinating conversation with renowned speaker and author Jason Evert from the Chastity Project this week on my show. We talked about the one thing that we need to have in order to love, form friendships and build intimacy with a partner.
We talked about trust, and the sad reality when it’s being broken. Here’s a part of our conversation, you can watch the entire interview here. Below are Jason's answers.
Jason says without trust, love is impossible.
“Intimacy is impossible, friendship is impossible. Trust is a pre-requisite to love. You can’t give your heart away if you’re not willing to trust.”
Distrust: Is it a hurt from the past or basic instinct?
The feminine genius, the intuition, the instinct. Especially for a woman, it is said that the female brain, you can actually hear sounds that are actually imperceptible to the male brain. We are talking about nuances and inflections within the human voice that are completely imperceptible to the male brain.
I think there is an entire conversation that the male brain can’t hear. Just in terms of sentences, women’s brains I think over billions of years have been able to intuit meaning behind words and ask 'is this trustworthy, there's something in his voice that makes me feel like he is not completely honest', and if those little red flags go up, I think the woman got to look and say ‘okay where is this coming from?’ Is this coming from a hurt in my past?'
And you know when you feel triggered or agitated you need to ask yourself: 'When have I felt this before? Well I think I felt this before when my ex-boyfriend burned me and cheated on me and I caught him with so and so.’
Okay well you might be on to something here, or this might be simply be a regurgitation of something in the past that hasn’t quite been processed and so you need to look at 'hey maybe there’s a little something here that I really need to pay attention to when it comes to this other person. Maybe my intuition is giving me a red flag because to move forward and bury that intuition could be dangerous to me or is this agitation coming up because of something in the past'. That takes a level of discernment to see whether the issue of distrust is really with this person or still lingering from the person in the past.
So how do you know if you if it's something you need addressing?
I like what you said earlier, trust, it takes so long to build, but in the sense takes an instant to destroy. It's almost like if you’re building a house of cards or skyscraper, it might takes five years to build the skyscraper but then with one bomb it is levelled, literally in a minute it’s gone, and so it’s a lot the same with trust.
Especially once its been destroyed, the person who destroys this trust often expects it to be resorted as quickly as it was dismantled, but it doesn’t work that way, I mean its brick by brick. It’s got to be put back together, it’s a process that takes time, a process that you ask yourself, am I willing to trust this person again, and depending on the type of relationship you might be in, let’s say it’s a marriage, there’s kids involved, they’re both willing to work on it, this is going to take a little bit of time. Counseling might be necessary.
And so if you’re wondering should I trust this person in a relationship or before relationship, I would say to make sure not to decide that all by yourself, just going lone ranger, trying to figure it out. Talk to your girlfriends, family members, talk to people whose opinions you respect and admire because a lot of time they might be able to call you out and say ‘hey I think you are kind of over reacting to this whole thing I don’t think he really meant that, he seems like a really good guy’, or 'you’re really blind, wearing rose coloured glasses this guy has some major issues and you keep sweeping him under the rug, thinking you’re just going to fix and rehabilitate this boy. You’re not his mother, you are not his messiah, don’t try and play that role, so a lot of time our friends will be able to call us out, one direction or the other, if we are under reacting or overreacting when it comes to distrust.
So, what happens to our brain with this whole trusting/distrusting of someone?
I think distrust is the survival mechanism [in our brain] because of how central trust it is to a relationship, and when we have gone through emotional trauma and betrayal in the past, you know, our brain is trying to protect us from having to go through that again and so and we are going to be a little hyper-reactive and over sensitive but we need to be careful that our solution is not to be become completely numb to it.
I’ve had girls come say to me ‘I am sexually liberated I can sleep with a guy and not really know him that well and if he doesn’t text me the next day, I am not all heart broken, I am not crying about it. I am an independent woman. I am sexually liberated.'
This to me is not liberation, this is numbness, this is a third-degree burn. Because the first degree burn is painful it hurts a little bit, second degree you have blisters and its red, third degree its charred, its black, the nerve endings are dead, you can poke it with a needle and you wouldn’t feel anything and that is a lot like a heart of someone who’s been burned again and again emotionally they think ‘oh I can handle this, it’s not a big deal’, that’s numbness, that’s not wholeness, that’s not healing, so a lot of time what we do is to protect ourselves, we put our heart in a little bit of a cage.
Nobody is going to get in here, so you might be willing to be vulnerable physically with someone, but you are unwilling to be emotionally vulnerable with the same person, and sometimes that cage cannot turn into a castle, like nobody is getting in here. If I let you in here, I know what you’re going to do, you are going to see me and you’re going to find me, and you are going to reject me and you are going to betray me, and eventually if those stones stay up long enough the castle becomes a coffin, and you become literally unlovable not because you’re not lovely but because you refuse to allow yourself to be loved out of fear of being betrayed and that is hell. I mean that is despair, the unwillingness to receive love.
It’s almost as if you are living a bit of hell on earth, this complete rejection of the willingness to receive love, and that’s not how God wants for us, and its scary.And that’s why I recommend if you’ve been through serious form of betrayal or in fidelity or whatever, find a good counsellor you can talk to, and there’s no shame. I know in some cultures I know it’s like 'oh no if you go to counselling this means you have broken mental health issues, you are crazy'.
You get over these dumb cultural stereotypes.
I mean if you have a broken leg, you go to a physical doctor, if you have a broken heart, you go to a counsellor, a psychologist, and be able to work through those things so you can be willing not only to give love, but also to receive it.
Jason Evert is a Chastity author and speaker, has eight children and resides in the US.