Thursday, December 22, 2011

Trust and confidence

I mentioned earlier this week how I'm learning that, in a solid, healthy relationship, outside friendships (even with the opposite sex) are okay. 

A couple of commenters thought this made sense; others disagreed, and stuck to the adage that men and women "cannot be friends; the sex gets in the way." 

One commenter admitted that one of her close friends is a guy who she "hooked up with a long time ago" and her boyfriend is okay with that. But, she says she would not be okay with him hanging out with a woman, especially one with whom he'd had a relationship. 

It takes a lot of guts to admit something like that; it's probably true for a lot more people than are willing to admit it. It's also very insightful; the commenter knows she can trust her boyfriend, and unlike so many others, she's not blaming him for her own self-esteem issues.That alone takes a lot more confidence than she may realize. 

I think any time that your partner, especially if you've been together a while, has something (hobby, relationship, success) outside the "unit" - it's scary. When you allow yourself to count on someone being around, anything that gives them a little independence from the relationship can make you wonder. 

It's even worse if you're insecure. "Oh, I'm very confident," some people respond. Fine - confidence is an attitude; it's how you present yourself to others. It's very possible to be confident on the outside, and still a little unsure of yourself on the inside. 

More than that, it's also possible to be confident in every part of your life, but maybe a little insecure over one small detail. 

I was once that woman who had no confidence in my relationship; at the end of the day, it truly was my own insecurities and self-doubt that caused me to feel that way. It wasn't about whether I could trust X - I just didn't trust myself.  

I didn't trust that I was good enough. 

It had nothing to do with him, or how he treated me, or how I thought he felt about me. It had everything to do with how much I didn't think I could do, and how threatened I was that X might "find out" what I couldn't do well. 

Thing is - eventually, we all have to come to terms with our weaknesses, and either accept them or overcome them. Once we do that, it won't matter who we meet, or what the circumstances. Once we trust ourselves - trusting them, and the situation, is that much easier. 

There's no definite answer for how to find self-esteem. Hell, even the most confident people struggle with it on a regular basis. Once you accept that it will be a life-long journey with its ups and downs, the closer you'll be. 


  1. Trust is the foundation in relationships...without it, there is no relationship.

    I used to be the insecure jealous type. It nearly cost me my marriage. But with a lot of hard work, I have learned to change and now my marriage is stronger than ever!

  2. I am living proof that a female can be friends w/a male... My husband's friend who also is married, is a good friend of mine... I think if you have a good relationship w/your spouse there is no questioning on either side if they're crossing that line.. We're like brother and sister, sounds weird, but when u have two couples who trust one another and aren't insecure whether their significant other is messing around then it works... Even after my husband had passed I remain friends w/Brian and his wife.

  3. Brilliant.

    Love the post.

    There are so many sides to this, but it all comes down to the self-esteem of both people in the relationship.

    Can make or break a relationship.

    Still learning that.

  4. OK trust may be the foundation of a relationship and self-esteem in my opinion is what keeps you, as an individual, going on in life. But the bottom line is that for a relationship to work, being sexual or friendly or whatever, you need to communicate. There is nothing more important, as far as I am concerned, that prepares the grounds for a successful relationship. Been there, haven't done that or allowed that not to be done and it ended badly. Talk, talk, talk and let the other person to get to know you.

  5. "It takes a lot of guts to admit something like that; it's probably true for a lot more people than are willing to admit." So very true. It seems obvious, doesn't it? Without trust, there is no relationship. There are times we create double standards. The sad fact is that we need to be honest and self-aware before we can have a healthy relationship and I think you made that argument quite soundly.

  6. Thank you so much for this post. I feel like my lack of confidence gets in the way of EVERYTHING. Like tomorrow night, I'm going to Christmas party with my man's family and friends. I'm usually SO good socially around people but I just freeze and want to hide at these things because I actually care what they think. In the end I usually regret not putting myself out there more and "come to terms with [MY] weaknesses, and either accept them or overcome them."
    This self confidence thing extends to even that part of my relationship. Luckily, I'm with a pretty loving and accepting guy, comfirming even more that it's just me who needs to "trust myself"
    Thanks! <3

  7. Just wanted to say that I completely know how you feel. Your posts are very well written and relatable. Please come check out my blog sometime and tell me what you think about my posts, it would mean a lot to me! :)

  8. ...I think that you have a lot of self confidence at this time and I admire you because this is something that we all have to had!!!...Your post is realy amazing!!..Thank you so much for this post!
    …All in Style…!