It is normal to occasionally question your partner’s commitment to you, to wonder whether they would ever do a “dodgy” on you by leaving you for someone else or cheating on you. After all, you are aware that this happens in some relationships. Most of the time, you can reassure yourself quickly that your partner is committed and trustworthy. However, some people may find they continuously question their partner’s commitment and feel insecure in their relationship. They may worry constantly about their partner’s faithfulness, and find themselves “looking” for evidence of their mistrust. This may happen from relationship to relationship, or may occur in one particular relationship. There are several reasons you may feel insecure or trust is lost in your relationship:
- Trust broken or lost. The perhaps most obvious reason for mistrust in a relationship is when a partner has broken or lost your trust. They may have lied to you about something important, such as their whereabouts on a night-out, their relationship with a co-worker, or their use of money, drugs or alcohol. Since honesty provides safety in a relationship, it is normal to feel uneasy and insecure in a relationship when your trust is violated.
- Insecure attachment style. We all have different ways of relating in a relationship and attaching (or bonding) to others. Some people feel warm and cozy in their relationship, while others feel distant and alone, or anxious and on edge. Many of us experience an ‘insecure’ attachment to others, which is underpinned by relationship mistrust. An insecure attachment style can mean the person “clings” closely to others or “pushes” others away, or both. An insecure attachment style can cause the individual to feel mistrust in the relationship – they may question their partner’s whereabouts or think their partner is lying to them. If your partner has an insecure attachment style and they “push” you away, you typically will feel uneasy and anxious in the relationship.
- Low self-esteem. Low Self-esteem Affects Relationships and causes insecurity. You may doubt your worth to others, and sometimes feel “not good enough” for your partner. This may cause you to doubt your partner’s love for you and expect that someone “better” will come along.
Can trust improve in a relationship?
The good news is often you can improve trust in a relationship and usually it is not completely broken or lost. As a starter, it may be helpful to read blog post, How to Make My Relationship More Secure?
If you are experiencing low self-esteem, therapy with a psychologist can help improve your sense of worth in your relationship (you may also be interested in blog post – Tips on How to Improve Your Self-esteem in Your Relationship). Relationship or couples counselling with a psychologist can also address issues of mistrust by improving communication and creating behavioural change (you might also be interested in reading What Makes a Relationship Healthy?). As well, insecure attachment styles can be shifted by working individually or together with a therapist
How can Peaceful Mind Psychology help?
We are warm and empathic psychologists based in Melbourne, who are experienced and trained in supporting people through relationship counselling, with a focus on issues of mistrust and insecurity. If you would like some professional assistance contact us at Peaceful Mind Psychology.