How to Rebuild Trust

Betrayal is the ultimate hurt. It is really hard to get over a betrayal by someone who is close to you. The impact of betrayal is broken trust. Once you have broken trust with someone or someone has broken trust with you, it can be almost impossible to rebuild that trust. If you really want to rebuild trust, it can be done. Both parties must be committed to the effort it takes and be willing to take the time and spend the time to rebuild that trust.

Cycle of Trust


Steps to Rebuild Trust

  • Commitment: Make the commitment to rebuild trust in the broken relationship. You can’t rebuild trust unless you really and sincerely put 100% of your soul into the effort.
  • Admit Wrongdoing and Apologize: Trust can be rebuilt after the person who has committed a grievance or a series of grievances admits his/her error and apologizes. If the relationship is stuck at the point of hurt feelings with neither party apologizing, then it is impossible to move forward. Each person needs to take responsibility for his/her part in breaking down the trust within the relationship and apologize.
  • Forgiveness: If you decide you want to rebuild trust, you have to leave the past in the past. Nothing hurts the effort to move forward more than the act of bringing up everything from the past. Once you say that you want to trust again, you agree to start anew and forgive past wrongs. If you haven’t reach the forgiveness point, then you must first work on forgiveness before you can rebuild trust.
  • Patience: Rebuilding trust takes time. It takes a lot longer to rebuild trust than it does to break it. The only way you can trust again is to have a history of incidents and episodes in which someone proved his/herself to be trustworthy. So, you have to give the relationship time to experience trust and develop that history of trust.
  • Do: Actions do speak louder than words. Anyone can make a promise to not do something again or to do better next time. You can only rebuild trust through actions that show trustworthiness. Show that you can be trusted by making your words match your actions.

Rebuilding trust is hard work. If a relationship or someone means something to you, it is worth the effort to repair broken trust. Trust is built through a cycle of behaviors that show mutual respect and love between two people. Invest the time and energy to build that cycle of trust.

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Comments 7 comments

Sheila Lee profile image

Sheila Lee 5 years ago from Canada

Nicely done! Commitment, admittance, forgiveness... all essential. Loved it. I voted up!

truthfornow profile image

truthfornow 5 years ago from New Orleans, LA Author

@ Sheila Lee. Rebuilding trust is hard work. All the elements have to be in place. Thanks for stopping by to read my article.

Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

I think few human beings possess the list of qualities necessary to rebuild broken trust, as they would personify a "saint". I agree completely with every quality you list, and although we may want to say we can trust someone who has betrayed us, I think the reality of it is rare. Once adults develop patterns they are extremely resistant to change. And the patience required is especially difficult when one is the betrayed. Change is grueling for one person, much less the two involved in rebuilding trust issues. Your article, truthfornow, is well-written, truthful and thought-provoking. Thank you.

truthfornow profile image

truthfornow 5 years ago from New Orleans, LA Author

I agree with you Amy. People always say they will work to rebuild trust. But it is very hard work. It is very hard to get over broken trust.

always exploring profile image

always exploring 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

Very good advice, but it is difficult to trust when you have been hurt..It is a work in progress with me..Thank you for sharing...

truthfornow profile image

truthfornow 5 years ago from New Orleans, LA Author

I have a hard time rebuilding trust as well. Sometimes I just can't do it and let the other person know. It is even harder sometimes to not let broken trust experiences impact your new relationships.

always exploring profile image

always exploring 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

I fully agree. Bringing old baggage into a new relationship is a bad beginning...Cheers

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