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"How do I work on trusting my girlfriend?"


My girlfriend and I just broke up after going out for six months. We had a good relationship in the beginning but after a while it started to go down hill, even though we want things to work she broke up with me to fix things; she wants me to change the person that I am.

The things that she wants me to change are: To stop worrying about her and other guys, trust, and she wants me to think before I say things, and jealousy. How do I do this?

17 Apr 2006
Name: Will
Age: 19

Dear Will,

In any relationship, the most important thing is a foundation of trust. If you donít trust your partner, how do you expect your relationship to grow? Without trust, youíre constantly questioning her motives, her friendships with other guys, and her feelings for you. And quite honestly, if she hasnít given you any reason to distrust her, not only do your relentless suspicions become old and annoying, but (as theyíve started to do with her ending your relationship) theyíll no doubt drive her away from you for good!

So the first thing you have to ask yourself is where your feelings of jealousy and distrust come from. Has she given you reason to doubt her? If so Ė if perhaps sheís cheated on you in the past or in some way, shape or form been unfaithful Ė while your feelings are certainly valid and founded, if you want to continue to be with her and move your relationship forward, youíre going to have to work through your feelings and get over past resentments and hurt. While itís always difficult to begin trusting and respecting a partner again after he or she has been unfaithful, itís not impossible; you have to rebuild your relationship from the ground up, starting with the very basic: faith in each other and your partnership. Because doing this on your own can be hard to do (anger and bitterness have a way of creeping in), it might be helpful to re-establish your relationship and work through your issues with a counselor who can constructively guide the two of you.

Now, if your girlfriend has never cheated on you, and if sheís given you absolutely no reason at all to be wary of her faithfulness to you, than point blank, youíve just got to get over it. Iím telling you right here and now, being constantly jealous and overly concerned about everything your partner does for fear she may cheat on you is NOT flattering or cute. I repeat: itís not flattering or cute. Quite the contrary, itís infuriating; jealousy is a relationship killer, plain and simple.

What may help you is getting to the heart of your feelings. Why are you so jealous?  Well, without knowing you, your girlfriend or your relationship, it could have much to do with your own insecurities. Perhaps youíre not very confident in yourself and you question why, of all the good looking guys out there, your girlfriend chose you. Well if thatís the case Ė get that thought out of your head immediately because itís ridiculous. What matters is she DID choose you. Clearly she wanted to be with you Ė not any of these other guys youíre jealous of, YOU! And by constantly questioning that, the only thing youíre doing is driving her crazy, and driving her away! Have enough self-assurance to realize youíre a great guy, worthy of a healthy relationship with a great girl. Accept that, own that and when you have that Ė a healthy relationship and great girl Ė nurture it rather than destroy it.

And nurturing isnít about continuous jealousy and questioning your girlfriendís choices, friends and life, itís about trusting her enough to give her the breathing room she deserves to be her own unique, wonderful person (after all, thatís who you fell for in the first place); realize that a healthy relationship is one in which the trust is so strong, the partners donít feel a need to control each otherís every move, because theyíre not threatened by their partner living his or her life.

Good luck!

Marissa

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