Are your actions eroding the trust in your relationship?

There is nothing wrong. There’s been no fighting or bickering. Things are genuinely going well. You’re flipping through a magazine and happen to read an article talking about cheating spouses. You scroll upon a Facebook post from a friend referencing infidelity. The topic on your favorite talk show is about how to find out if your spouse is being unfaithful. The cover of a magazine in the checkout line says something about a man leading two lives. You’re sitting on the couch watching TV and next up is Cheaters!

Hopefully, none of this has an impact on you. But for some, all of this negativity can sow seeds of doubt where there is no cause to be. It may not be these particular outside factors but a conversation with a friend where they share something their spouse has done. Now, all of a sudden, you’re questioning you and yours. You find yourself stalking his social media accounts to see who’s following him and commenting on his posts, whose pictures he’s liking. You catch yourself looking over his shoulder while he’s on the cellphone to see who he’s messaging. You question where he was when he’s a few minutes later than normal. You may even go so far as to look through his dresser drawers, laptop bag or car or trying to look through his phone.

Let me say this, if you’re looking for something, you’ll surely find it. That’s not to say you’ll find evidence of actual cheating. What you will find is enough to feed your fears when in actuality it could be something completely innocent. But, you’ll question it anyway and that’s how it begins — the erosion of trust in your relationship. I by no means am saying that you should ignore questionable behaviors, but why would you want to spend the energy creating doubt? Life is too short. I refuse to live my life this way. I simply have too much to do. My mom used to say all the time, “whatever is done in the dark, will come to the light.” I trust and believe in that.

Why are we like this? It could be because we’ve been hurt in the past or maybe what we may have observed with our own parents. But, quite honestly, we have a ton of help. Cheating scandals are discussed in the media ad nauseam. Reality TV shows seem to glamorize it (i.e. Temptation Island). More and more songs appear to normalize it (i.e. The Weekend by SZA). A week or so ago, I saw that one of the trending Twitter topics was #pieceofmylovechallenge. Yes, that’s about having a ‘side piece.’

How does one shield themselves from falling into this trap? Let me assure you, it’s not a good place to be. I’m no expert, but here are my ‘rules:’

  1. What I focus on is what I see, I don’t go searching for anything.

  2. I don’t construct these ideas of what he could be doing or where he is.

  3. I don’t automatically think it’s the worst case scenario when something occurs that is ‘suspect.’

  4. When I do feel it necessary to question my husband about something, which is a rarity, it’s not in an accusatory manner.

    These actions are important. I want my husband to know that I trust him completely and my actions should reflect that. He is not a child and treating him like one will not make him become more trustworthy, it’ll only push him away. I treat him the way I want him to treat me when it comes to trust. If he legitimately hasn’t given me a reason not to trust him, I will continue to do so.