What Does It Take to Trust Someone?

Photo copyright by Dieter Drescher; Creative Commons License


A man in my life made me cry today.  He doesn’t know he made me cry or why, but it was a turning point for me as far as my level of trust and where I’m willing to go in our relationship.  These were not tears of hurt.  Not tears of joy either.

I was simply…moved.  And yet, there’s nothing simple about it.

This man has been trying to convince me to trust him on a specific matter, and  before today, I’ve several times come close and then backed away. It’s a big step for me to trust someone in the way he’s asked me to.  He’s always been 100% open with me and honest, though I know there are things he doesn’t tell me and I don’t need to know because they don’t affect me.  I’ve never had the instinct that he was lying to me about anything, ever, though my intuition has warned me when he was side-stepping issues I’d told him I refuse to discuss. I can’t get upset about that because he was honoring my request.  He’s  never judged me, criticized me, or lied about me to other people.  Somehow these are all things I expect of someone I can trust, but still I needed more.

I needed some kind of assurance.  All this time, I have been looking for more evidence that he was a good person, that I could trust him to take care me when I’m feeling vulnerable—and that’s a hard one.

I think, for  many reasons, I’ve been looking for a reason not to trust him and expecting to find one because that’s been a previous pattern in my life.  But I never have found a reason not to trust him.  Or reason enough to trust him.

Today, I found what I was looking for, and I found it in a simple statement, offered publicly.  A heartfelt declaration of compassion.  That was all. No more than a long sentence.  He could have made it all about him and crowed to the world about his good fortune at the expense of others, but instead, he showed a remarkable level of sensitivity that I found deeply touching—and proof that he really is a good man.

And for showing me the kind of man he is underneath, yeah, I can trust him on just about anything.