Dating is never easy. Many people give up on it after a while. But, this rarely lasts. No one can stay away forever because we, as humans, are hard-wired to desire companionship.
We want to be loved, but it can seem hopeless when the dating scene looks so bleak all the time. So, what do you do when you’ve fallen for someone who’s been burned one too many times? How do you handle the intense trust issues?
No situation is ever the same, but you can read on to discover some things you can do.
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Women with Trust Issues
Unfortunately, a lot of people have trust issues. It’s not exclusively a female condition – men can get hurt and become jaded, too. While cheating isn’t the only thing that can cause trust issues, it’s one of the most common.
According to a study of over 70,000 adults, about one in five men will admit to cheating on their partners. Infidelity is also the most common cause of divorce. These are scary facts, and it can make trusting someone that much harder.
But, men and women are wired much differently, operate differently, and often have different needs.
So, here we’ll cover the do’s, don’ts, and our best advice for being with a woman who has trust issues. It’s not hopeless, but you must be careful and approach the situation with caution.
First of all, here are some things you can and absolutely should do:
The adage that “honesty is the best policy” really rings true here. It’s important in any relationship, platonic or otherwise. But, when someone has been lied to over and over again, honesty from a partner with genuine intentions is crucial and non-negotiable.
It’s also worth noting that being honest doesn’t just mean not lying. Lying by omission is also real, and you can be dishonest by hiding crucial or relevant information from her.
She’ll be just as upset if she finds out about this than if you’d told a straight-up lie.
Ensure your intentions are authentic and genuine.
Speaking of intentions, make sure they are real and genuine. If they’re not, please don’t waste her time or yours.
Not only will you make her trust issues worse, but she’ll realize the truth about you sooner or later, and you’ll both have wasted time.
Make the first move.
If you’re really and truly interested in her, you’ll probably have to make the first move.
After so much heartbreak and drama, she’ll be cautious, nervous, and shy, even. When you feel like the time is right, it’ll be up to you to tell her how you feel or ask her out on that date.
If you think you’re already a patient person, learn more patience. It won’t work if you don’t have the utmost patience. This is just a simple fact. If you’ve been in relationships before, this one will be different. Slower. More deliberate.
It will require you to wait as she becomes ready for each step forward. If you practice the right amount of patience, you’ll no doubt impress her and all the time spent will be worth it when you gain her trust.
If you’re not a good listener, you’ll have to become one. Like honesty, communication is of the utmost importance in any relationship, but it’s even more crucial when dealing with someone who already has trust issues.
Listening is a huge part of communication. As much as you communicate your thoughts, feelings, and opinions to her, you must be prepared to pay attention when she expresses hers.
And this doesn’t mean just sit there quietly as she talks. Pay attention to what she says, and respond/react appropriately.
.. and Don’ts
Now you know what to do, which is a great first step. However, it’s just as important to know what you absolutely should NOT do:
Don’t break their trust in any way.
When most people think of broken trust, they immediately go to cheating. This is one of the ultimate betrayals, yes, but it’s not the only way to break her trust.
Going against your word in any way, or contradicting things you’ve told her, or doing anything you’ve said you wouldn’t do, or anything you know will hurt her.
These are all ways to break her trust immediately. Don’t do it. It is often impossible to rebuild it once it’s broken.
Don’t play mind games.
This one is simple. Don’t mess with her head. Don’t manipulate her, and don’t make her wonder where you’re at all the time. Act like an adult and be straightforward.
Don’t take the little things personally.
She has a lot of baggage to unload, and she needs to re-learn what it means to trust someone.This means she might be a little upset if you get a text from a female co-worker, or something similar. This isn’t an attack on you.
The fact that you’re not cheating is just going to take some getting used to for her.
Don’t be late without letting her know.
Everyone is late sometimes. Maybe you’re stuck in traffic, or you overslept. It happens, but try not to leave her hanging. To the best of your ability, give her a heads up when you’re delayed and not going to make it on time.
Don’t flirt with other people.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s an issue in a lot of relationships. There’s nothing wrong with being nice, and you should absolutely respect everyone around you, but don’t get flirty in your exchanges with other females.
Don’t do it behind her back either. She’ll find out the truth eventually.
Don’t avoid answering her questions.
This can start looking suspicious very quickly. You are, of course, entitled to your privacy. But, if there’s a question you’re uncomfortable with, simply say so. Don’t dodge the question by changing the subject or putting it back on her.
Don’t even joke about cheating.
In some relationships, this can be fine – funny even. If your woman has a traumatic relationship history and trust issues, though, it’s not appropriate.
Even if you are one hundred percent joking, it could plant a dangerous seed of doubt in her mind that will only escalate if you keep it up.
They Love Differently
A woman that’s been hurt too many times in a row is still capable of loving someone and being in a relationship. There’s no doubt about that. But, there’s also no doubt that they’re going to love you differently.
The beginning will look different. They’ll behave. Differently, the whole process will be a bit different. That being said, different doesn’t mean bad. It might be different, but it’s always worth it when you’ve found the right one.
The following are some things you can expect when you’re going after a woman with trust issues. If you pay attention and prepare yourself for them, you’ll be much better equipped to handle the tricky situations when they come up.
She’ll be incredibly cautious in the beginning.
Be prepared for the fact that they won’t reveal too much information about themselves too quickly. They will communicate with you and begin to assess whether or not you’re trustworthy.
But, you’ll have to be the one to speak up if you want a second date. They won’t be the one to do it.
The best thing to do here is to understand her boundaries clearly and respect them while communicating clearly as well.
She won’t be herself until she’s entirely convinced it’s real.
This doesn’t mean that they’ll lie or pretend to be something they’re not. It just means they won’t be comfortable letting everything out – including insecurities, skeletons, quirks, etc. – until you really know each other well, and she knows she can trust you.
This is where that patience we mentioned earlier really comes in handy. Don’t rush anything and let these things come out and happen naturally. It’ll be worth it in the end, don’t worry.
She won’t be the first to call or text at first.
This is where you’ll have to take a lot of initiative. It’s not that she’s not interested or doesn’t want to talk to you. She won’t text first because she’s been either ghosted by a bunch of jerks, or she’s been made to feel like a burden in the past.
Over time, she’ll grow more comfortable initiating communication. She will get to the point of feeling comfortable saying good morning first without assuming she’s annoying you.
She’ll be on high alert for red flags, shady behavior, and triggers.
These triggers can be quite specific or very broad. For example, if she ever caught a boyfriend cheating with an ex, she may be very uncomfortable if you have a close friendship with an ex-girlfriend.
She’ll be hyper-aware of things like this, so be prepared for that. It might come up in a way that seems random or unexpected, but she may have been dwelling on it for a long time. She’s not paranoid. She’s simply protecting herself from repeating the past.
She’ll want to take it slow.
This is pretty much the same across the board for all women who have trust issues. She won’t rush into anything. She may not even want to be physically intimate for a while, as she’s probably tired of feeling used and left behind.
Be prepared to go slowly and do not pressure her to move forward or take another step before she’s ready.
She won’t stop paying attention just because you’re now in a relationship.
\Just because you two have officially started dating doesn’t mean she’ll be able to relax right away fully. She’ll still be on high alert. She’ll still need time and patience. Don’t stop working at it and putting in the effort just because you “got” her.
She’ll get her friend’s opinions.
Don’t be too scared of this. If you’re an honest, decent person with good intentions, her friends will see this. If she’s introduced you to them and wants their opinion, that means she’s potentially getting more serious about you and can see things going further.
She’ll make absolutely sure you’re both on the same page about marriage and children.
You can be sure that at this point in her life, she’s done messing around. If she’s going to be serious with you, she’ll make sure you’re on the same page.
Anyone can say they want kids at the moment just to get what they want, and they know this. Whether she wants to get married and start a family pronto or she never wants to have kids, she’ll have conversations with you about it.
If you can’t talk seriously about your future together, she won’t want to get invested.
How to Love Them Back
Now you know what to do and what not to do when dating a woman with some serious trust issues. You know how they’re going to behave, and you know that it’s worth it.
The last thing you need to know is how you can most effectively love them back. Just as they love differently, loving them can look different too.
Let them know they’re loved and appreciated – often.
Don’t be stingy with the appreciation and love, once it’s appropriate. Don’t come on too strong too fast, but once you’ve begun developing a true relationship, let them know how you truly feel.
Frequent reassurance makes them feel secure and will help them develop a strong and deep trust for you faster.
Treat them right even when you’re mad.
No one is perfect, and you will get mad sometimes. The real test of how much you love her is in these moments. Don’t be dramatic, don’t shout at her, and don’t storm off and make a revenge tinder account.
All of these are hurtful in the end and will only serve to break her trust.
Talk through any problems that come up.
Don’t avoid problems, and don’t give her the silent treatment. Be willing and prepared to talk calmly and rationally through any problems that may come up on your end or on hers.
Just because she has trust issues doesn’t mean you can’t voice your concerns or opinions. But you must do so in a calm, respectful, and open way.
By now, this should go without saying. Respect her boundaries and don’t rush her at any point, for anything. It may be a long road to gain her trust and commitment, but the time and effort are necessary if you truly want to be with her.
Don’t Be Overwhelmed
Don’t let all of these do’s, don’ts, and other advice worry or scare you. Loving a woman with trust issues isn’t a huge ordeal. It just requires a few extra steps and some extra attention and care on your part.
Be patient, honest, and real. That’s the bottom line. Don’t be like the rest and stupidly break her heart.
Frequently Asked Questions: Short Answers
How do you fix a girl with trust issues?
You cannot single-handedly fix a girl who has trust issues. What you can do is offer your love, help, support, and patience.
Ultimately though, it’s up to them to go through the process of healing. They must heal themselves, and you must prove yourself trustworthy. This is how you can both move past her trust issues and develop an authentic relationship.
What does it mean when a girl has trust issues?
It means she’s been hurt, betrayed, and lied to too many times. As a result, she struggles to trust anyone at all.
How do you date someone with trust issues?
You must be patient, understanding, and honest at all times. It’s also important that you take the first step, initiate contact – especially in the beginning – and respect her boundaries and the pace she wants to go.
Why do I have trust issues in relationships?
If you have trust issues, you’re probably the one who’s been hurt, cheated on, or abandoned one too many times.
If you’re wondering where your issues are coming from, examine past relationships, how you were treated, and how they ended. That’ll be a good start.