Trust occupies a central place in human life. It is the factor that inspires reliability and dependability in marriage. Trust must be mutual for a marriage to be successful. Mutual trust between couples engender complete submission, surrender and self-giving. It is the indicator of agreement and a sign compatibility between the couples. It is, therefore, not an exaggeration to say that trust is the major imperative for the health and success of any marriage. Interestingly, trust is easily earned in our everyday life, through the simple things that we do in the presence of and behind our spouses. It is not “buyable” with money. However, the scarcity of trust between couples have been identified as a major factor for marital breakdown.
Problems of trust embody issues bordering on integrity, truth or reliance which inspire confidence in the other person. Important as it is, trust may not come naturally or automatically, it is built and maintained by little but important actions over time. In other words, trust is earned through consistent trustworthy behavior. A breach of trust blocks intimacy and impedes growth and is more likely to exude fear, suspicion, anxiety and lack of confidence. Trust issues in marriage can stem from lack of integrity, consistently breaking promises, consistently lying, being secretive (hiding details of one’s life from spouse) and past disappointment or betrayal (for example, experience of infidelity). Trust, when broken, can be restored with effort and commitment which may include:
- Being true and truthful at all times.
- admitting and taking responsibility for misdeeds instead of justifying or passing blame,
- apologizing in humility and sincerity where you have gone wrong
- working out specific steps of accountability (for instance, allowing access to phones and social media accounts), and
- committing to openness and honesty by being consistently trustworthy