As I belatedly wake up my blog for the new year and start my musings, I am contemplating the question: Who can I trust?
My parents? My siblings? My spouse? My partner? My children? My best friend? My teacher? My analyst? My financial advisor? My boss? My lawyer? My priest? My God? My government? My community? My fellow citizens? My pets? ……. Myself?
This is a big question, a really big one.
The answer, of course is very personal. And as I grow older (and hopefully wiser) I probably become ever more discerning over who I can trust. Less of a knee-jerk response, but far more considered. I concede that trust to many people may come naturally, without too much thought. But I venture to suggest that everyone will have a different set of yes’s and no’s to the short list above. And each of us can draw up our own list to contemplate.
How we answer the question will depend, of course on our personal beliefs, upbringing, social circumstances, experiences and morality. And then we inevitably ask how we can establish trust in the first place, if trust is permanent, how and when trust can be broken and once broken if it can be regained.
Trust is inevitably linked to faith and love. And for some people trust is absolute. Some would also say that faith is trust and that love cannot be love without trust and faith. I agree with many of those sentiments, but if we narrow it down to trust alone, we have enough of a personal conundrum.
Of course trust is a double sided coin. It is not only who or what I can trust, but am I trustworthy too? And let’s admit, with every trust there is possibly an element (however small) of mistrust.
As I look back on the experiences of my life – the bumps, the bashes, the hurts, the disappointments – as well as the joys, the satisfactions, the loving interactions – I can’t help but contemplate trust. Both in receiving and giving. In other words, who can I trust and am I worthy of the trust of others? I do ask myself these questions. Regularly.
Well. For me it is never fixed. It is never an assumption, nor an instinctual response. Trust, for me is not absolute. And the more I ask the question of myself, the more the picture changes. Trust, it seems to me, is pliable and requires constant examination. And I, in my trustworthiness, am probably just as pliable in other people’s examination of me, of trusting me. I accept that probability too.
The only fixture I do aim for, however, is the last on my list. And for me the most important.
Trust…..in myself. But even that is not guaranteed.
Who do you trust? Do you trust yourself?