Trust vs. Respect in Relationships

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Trust and Respect are two very important pillars of any relationship. However, people often use the terms interchangeably. Since getting into my relationship with my partner, these two words are recurring topics. Being the writer that I am, I thought it would be best to blog about it, so I can get my thoughts together and out of my head. This is my opinion, I’m not saying I’m right and my partner is wrong. I’m not saying trust is more important than respect or vice versa, I’m saying this is what trust and respect mean to me.

First of, trust is something that I usually give people from the beginning of our relationship/friendship. My motto is “I trust you until you give me a reason not too.” Now, in terms of my relationship, I obviously trust my partner. From the moment we decided to commit to a long distance relationship when I was in school, I trusted him. If he wanted to cheat, he was given more than enough opportunities to do so, and he didn’t. I know, if anyone’s partner is going to cheat, they will. I trust that he wouldn’t do that to me, as naive as it sounds, I trust him entirely. BUT my trust in him isn’t just about him being loyal. It’s about me feeling emotionally safe with him, me becoming more vulnerable with him. For me, trust isn’t an issue. My issue is respect.

Again I say, people use these words interchangeably. If you trust me, then you won’t have an issue with so-and-so, or if I do so-and-so. It’s always if you trust me than you would trust my decision. Thus meaning, if you don’t accept their decision, you don’t trust them, which isn’t always the case. It’s certainly not the case with my partner and I. However, what about respect? Respect for your partner? Respect for your relationship?

Respect means understanding that two individuals do not think exactly the same. I understand that my partner and I have different reactions, different upbringing, that we are COMPLETELY opposite, which means communication is very important. However, I trytry being the key word – to look through situations through his lens. I know I’m not perfect, I know I get it wrong sometimes. I know I mess up too. It’s important to note, it’s not about who is right and who is wrong, its about getting out of my own head, and looking at things through my partner’s perspective.

Most people think, “I wouldn’t have an issue if s/he did this, so s/he shouldn’t have an issue if I do it.” Or, “I trust my partner, so I don’t care if they do so-and-so.” BUT that’s still looking at things through your perspective, it’s not looking at things through your partner’s perspective. In order to do that, you have to get a sense of how s/he views the world, which in return will help you gauge situations and decisions, with your partner in mind. 

Thus, before you make any decisions in a relationship, think about how this decision will affect your partner? How it may look to them? How they may feel? NOT, how you would feel if the roles were versed.

This does not mean that you are not a individual, considering someone else’s feelings does not mean your individuality is completely erased. However, what it does mean is – you are sharing your life with another person. Sharing your life means taking them into consideration when making decisions.

Again I say, trust doesn’t always beckon respect nor does respect beckon trust, but you need both in a relationship for it to function. With all of that being said, I would love to know your thoughts on this topic. Leave a comment and tell me what you think.

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Friendship is Tough, but Letting Go is Harder

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I wasn’t always a sociable person, a people’s person. Actually, I was just the opposite. When I was in middle school and high school, I had a tight group of friends of about four people. People I could rely on and trust. I was friendly enough to everyone else. I knew a lot of people, but I can’t say we were friends.

It wasn’t until university that things changed for me. Once I hit nineteen, I could legally drink – not like I was drinking beforehand – and that’s when things changed for me.  Other than the alcohol, the other thing that changed was me. I was developing into myself, not physically but mentally. I was growing – still am. I was more in-tuned with who I was. I was also working with a therapist, so I could start the process of healing from my past trauma.

With all of these changes that were taking place, I was able to find people who were real. Who understood the pain I felt from my trauma, who’ve experienced things similar to me, who had the same values and ambitions. I created friendships, which were based on truth, honesty, and communication. They exposed themselves to me and I did the same – figuratively of course. This marked the end of my reign of solitude, I bloomed for the first time in my life. Thing is, no one told me that blooming, that letting people in would be so damn difficult. The connections I built, made me want to build more to expand my horizons. And I did, which is all fun and dandy till shit hits the fan.

You’re probably wondering what the hell is the point of this post. Be patient, I’m getting there. Recently, one of my close friends and I had a falling out. It was completely out of the blue. I didn’t see it coming at all. I really valued her friendship, she was one of the people that I opened up too while I was in university.

We went to a mutual friend’s birthday, and she was so cold and distant towards me. I actually went home and cried in my partner’s arm because it hurt. More than that, it was unexpected and awkward. Everyone else at the birthday noticed the friction between us, which made them uncomfortable. I tried to reach out, call her and see if we can work things out. However, it was just excuse after excuse. Last week it hit me, if she thinks I don’t “add anything to her life,” then why on earth am I trying so hard? Friendship is tough, especially for someone who enjoyed their solitude, but letting go is way harder.

“Letting go means to come to the realization that some people are a part of your history, but not part of your destiny.”

The reason why it’s so damn hard to let go is because deep down, some part of us have hope. Hope that things will change. Hope that things can be different. Hope is good, but realizing that you deserve better is so much better.

The Mandatory “New Year” Post

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It’s officially 2018, which means it’s time for the mandatory “new year, new me” post. Although it is cliche, a new year really does mean a new beginning for some. For others, 2018, does not mark change but rather signifies just another year – same shit, different day. For me, the new year symbolizes hope, change, and resiliency. But let’s put aside what a new year symbolizes for a second or what it means to you. Let’s focus on one word – self-reflection. 

The New Year is an amazing time for self-reflection. To evaluate what we have, what we want, and what we need. These resolutions are important because they allow you to reevaluate yourself. They may be the same resolutions you didn’t complete last year, but that doesn’t matter. You may try and fail again, but at least you tried.

So, instead of this being a cliche New Year’s post, this will be a post about my reflection of 2017…

From January to April, I was in Nova Scotia completing my courses for my masters. April – June, I was in Toronto, completely unemployed. June – August, I was living in Downtown Toronto working as a Residential Manager. August – December, I was working my first full-time permanent position, which is where I am today.  Although there were a few transitional periods in my life last year, I am happy that I ended the year with some sort of stability.

With that being said, I didn’t accomplish all that I wanted too in 2017. In 2018 –

  • I hope to find the motivation to finish my thesis.
  • I hope to teach an English Literature class.
  • I hope to become the person I need to be, the person I want to be.
  • I hope to change my mindset and become more forgiving and trusting.
  • I hope to change the decor in my house.
  • I hope to communicate better with my partner.
  • I hope to be patient with myself and partner.
  • I hope to make more time for my family and close friends.
  • I hope to make more time for myself.
  • I hope to take my health more seriously: meal prep, less fast foods, and more gym.

With all of these hopes and goals, the thing that means the most to me is being resilient. With this in mind, my final vow is – I will remain resilient.  I will keep fighting for myself. As long as I am resilient, I know I will accomplish all that I hope for and so much more…

 

 

Overwhelmed

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One word sums up exactly how I’ve been feeling – overwhelmed. I feel like I’ve been getting attacked from all sides: friends, family and my partner. I know I’m not perfect, and I know I don’t do everything right. However, there is only so much one person can take.

I don’t see you enough. I see you too much. You don’t give me the benefit of the doubt. You don’t add anything to my life. There’s always something with you.

I have every form of criticism on repeat in my head like a mantra. Since my grandfather passed, things have been hard. Maybe I haven’t given attention to those who wanted it. Maybe I’ve been leaning on my partner more than I should. But I can’t deal with it anymore. Enough is enough, and I’m done.

I’m in a hole. It seems like the more I try to dig myself out, the worse it gets. So I’m going to stop digging and let it be.

There was a time in my life where I didn’t care what people said, I was very content being on my own and that’s the place I want to get back too.

Dear family, friends and partner next year will be different. Next year I will keep to myself. Next year no one will hear from me. At least this way I can’t pester no one or disappoint anyone. This way no one will have to deal with me.

I choose to be a lone.

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You never wanted a relationship, you just wanted company. — Queen Sugar