General Question

Jude's avatar

How do you build trust in a relationship?

Asked by Jude (32198points) October 12th, 2010

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

25 Answers

J0E's avatar

It’s easy. You don’t do untrustworthy things. Be trusting and you will be trusted.

Rarebear's avatar

You earn it.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

I had a good friend who once explained relationship building mathematically. We often start by giving 100% to a relationship, and when something goes wrong, we pull back to 75%, and we keep pulling back until nothing’s left.

What we should do is start by giving 10% of ourselves to the relationship and then rachet it up from there as time goes by and things look good.

gailcalled's avatar

You never lie. You never make promises that you don’t expect to keep. You acknowledge when you might have made a mistake. You admit that you are unsure about some issues. You don’t try to be someone you are not. You listen without either interrupting or planning your rebuttal.

You establish these ground rules at the start of a relationship.

cazzie's avatar

When you say you’re going to do something DO IT! Don’t flake and then make lame excuses. Be HONEST… if you can’t do something, say you can’t…. Never make false promises.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

By giving and earning trust. Both sides are crucial.. If you don’t trust, you won’t often be trusted, either.

perg's avatar

Also, keep your expectations reasonable. We’re all human and make mistakes. Be understanding (but don’t be a doormat).

Disc2021's avatar

I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed, but I would assume by demonstrating trustworthy behavior. Sometimes you have to take a leap of faith, I might add.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

By your actions.
I couldn’t agree more with what @gailcalled said.

JLeslie's avatar

Never lie.

Always be happy to see the other person.

Being interested in what your partner’s goals are.

Making sure your SO never has to guess where you are.

It’s kind of like what your parents demanded of you (even though maybe we did not always comply for our parents) let me know where you are, when you’ll be home, what you are interested in, don’t lie. People don’t realize that many of these are actually just common courtesy for the people we live, or are with on a regular basis. When it was out parents we felt more like they were trying to control us, but as you get older you come to realize that no, it is simply reasonable expectations between people who care and trust each other.

bob_'s avatar

I agree with what others have said.

If you’re interested in a theoretical explanation, I’d say it’s by acting in a cooperative way. If both parties know that the other will put the collective utility ahead of their own, cooperation (i.e., trust) will be possible. See here.

lilaznchikka's avatar

communication and trust.

wundayatta's avatar

Not lying is good. Never making promises you can’t keep is good. Having integrity is good.

But people most often seem to think of trust as an absolute kind of thing that has to do with only one standard. If you don’t match that standard, you can’t be trustworthy.

In fact, you can trust people if they lie. If they lie consistently, that is. Trust is about predictablity. If I know that when you say you’ll do something, you won’t do it as you say, then I can predict you.

I have a mason who always says he’ll do things at a certain time, and he doesn’t show up for months. I can trust him to show up, just not when he says he will. If I am prepared to wait, he’s as reliable as anyone else.

I have friends who are always half an hour late. Always! When we arrange a date with them, we know this, and we plan for it. We slow our arrival so we’ll get there when they do.

If I have a salesman who always over promises. I can trust him. I know that he’ll only be able to do half of what he says he can do, and if I can live with that, it’s fine.

Trust is about predictability. It is about understanding a person’s behavior. You can establish trust with someone who lies or exaggerates or whatever, so long as they are consistent in how they do it.

It’s when people do something different every time they are in a similar situation, that’s when you can’t trust them.

xxii's avatar

Time and consistency.

cookieman's avatar

If I got here earlier, I would have answered similarly to @gailcalled (although not worded as well)
However, after reading @wundayatta‘s response, I think that is a much more practical way of looking at it.

picante's avatar

Interesting question, @mama_cakes. All of the advice above is excellent. If your question arises because you have lost trust in a realtionship, that is the tougher row to how, in my experience.

When a trusted friend, spouse, partner, SO has damaged the relationship by acting in an unpredicatable manner, it could be that more than 25% of the trust fund has been taken. The other’s actions to rebuild trust and regain your confidence are critical. Only by owning the violation and working to rebuild, can one move closer to 100% trust. And maybe some actions destroy all hope of rebuilding.

ducky_dnl's avatar

You keep your promises.

downtide's avatar

By being honest and true to your word. If you say you will do something, do it. If you say you won’t, don’t. And by showing trust to your partner – for instance by not doubting what they say.

CMaz's avatar

Just be a good bitch. And, all will be ok.

You know I love you. ;-)

Jude's avatar

This is wonderful.

augustlan's avatar

[mod says] This is our Question of the Day!

Neizvestnaya's avatar

How I build trust:
I offer a degree of transparency and make myself open to questions.
I try to underpromise and overdeliver.
I admit a few vulnerabilities/weaknesses in order to get some patience for them.
I try not to take for granted or take advantage.

How I want my trust earned by others
Turn out to be who you present yourself as.
Underpromise and overdeliver.
Share your vulnerabilities/weaknesses that might present an issue between us.
Don’t take me for granted or take advantage of me.

boffin's avatar

To quote Dr. Phil…

“The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior”

ChocolateReigns's avatar

Never lying, only promising things that you can pull through with, having integrity – those are all great suggestions. But, let’s face it – we’re humans! We mistakes! You have to be able to admit that you’ve made a mistake. But you also have to be able to forgive the other person when they’ve made a mistake, and accept an apology. When they don’t apologize, you have to think about what you might have done and make the first move. It’s hard, but a good relationship is worth it.

shoebox's avatar

I totally agree with @Rarebear 110% – you earn it.

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