When and How to Rebuild a Relationship
By Sandy Schroeder
Sometimes it's difficult to keep a relationship strong in today's world. Daily pressures, changing events, and family demands can nibble away at a relationship, but if you have trust very little else matters. When trust is lost, everything changes.
If you are wondering about a relationship, you might begin by measuring actions against words. A wise friend of mine said, "Watch what they do not what they say."
Time and again I found she was right. When that right person just kept showing up when I needed help I knew he was a winner. When my cat was sick, he was there ready to help. When my car had problems, guess who fixed them. As the relationship evolved, I was able to help him too. One thing lead to two others and gradually we knew we could always count on each other.
If you are wondering about a relationship that may have had a break in trust, either on your end or your partner's, it's important to remember relationships can be rebuilt. Sometimes the relationships actually come back stronger than they were before. Don't rush to paper over the problems or call if quits. Instead think about what you have and what happened to change it.
Here are some ways to rebuild from Prevention.
Put everything on the table - The only way to overcome a breakdown in trust is to be totally honest about the issues. If you hold things back, the relationship will fall apart again later. When both of you are willing to talk about what happened, why it did, and how you felt, you have a chance to fix it.
Whoever broke the trust must apologize - If you were the one at fault, say so and say you are sorry. If your partner broke the trust, ask for an apology. It's crucial to admit what happened and apologize.
Both people must feel that they are heard - As you talk about the things that happened, it's crucial to not point fingers or make negative remarks. If you really want to repair the relationship, just keep it low key and be willing to say what you think and how you felt.
Change the actions that broke the trust - After feelings are discussed and apologies are made, it is critical that the actions that broke the trust be changed. I have known couples who tried again and again to keep their relationships going, but they never actually fixed the original problem. She continued to overspend. He spent way too much time at work. She never stopped to listen to what he said, or he just assumed it would all work out.
If you value the original relationship, take the time and make the effort to talk through the facts and the feelings. Get help if you need it. Down the road you may be really glad that you did.
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