How To Navigate Your Relationship When A Partner Has Trust Issues

Because trust is one of the cornerstones of a healthy relationship, issues relating to trust have the ability to completely jeopardize things. When one partner has trust issues, the whole foundation of the relationship can become unstable. As WebMD notes, trust issues often lead to jealousy or pushing out a significant other. In cases of severe and prolonged trust issues, a person might experience emotional or even physical abuse at the hands of their distrustful partner.


While relationships with trust issues may be more difficult to deal with, it's important to remember that people aren't inherently bad for having them. Several factors beyond a person's control may lead to trust issues, including low self-esteem, childhood trauma, loneliness, and a fear of rejection, per Choosing Therapy.

If your partner has trust issues that are having a negative impact on your relationship, it's not necessarily time to break up with them. There are a few things you can do to help your partner with their trust issues and improve your relationship.

Avoid triggering behaviors

Naturally, certain behaviors can be triggering for those with trust issues. When this is something your partner experiences, it's especially important not to act in ways that cause them to be suspicious.


In an interview with Bustle, psychotherapist and divorce coach Cat Blake reveals that you should avoid doing anything that toys with their trust, especially if you're undermining their confidence on purpose: "Some people tend to do these behaviors and sometimes enjoy the rise it gets out of their partner," Blake explains, adding that you "cannot be surprised when your partner becomes untrusting" if you act suspiciously.

Of course, you're still entitled to your privacy, but as a rule of thumb, try to be as honest and transparent as possible. There is zero room for gaslighting or hard-to-get games in a relationship where one person is having trouble building trust.

Practice patience and reassure them

The best quality you can have in a relationship that involves trust issues is patience. It may take your partner a while to deal with their issues, and there will invariably be hurdles along the way that test you. But if you love this person and see a future with them, you'll have to be patient as they work things out.


It's common for people with trust issues to be reluctant to open up to their partner, and to need constant reassurance (via HerNorm). It's important to listen to their worries, even if they seem silly to you, and let your partner know how you feel about them (even if you have to repeat yourself a few times).

Support them, but don't try to fix their trust issues

It's understandable that you'd want to get rid of your significant other's trust issues. But in many cases, these go well beyond the capacity of a romantic partner. suggests being there to support your partner as they work on themselves, but not trying to erase their issues altogether.


You can avoid exacerbating your partner's trust issues by being honest and open with them. You can also be understanding and give them space as they seek outside help, perhaps in the form of therapy. But it's not your role or responsibility to "fix" them. Trying to do so can cause you both stress and frustration. 

Understand the cause of their issues

It can help both you and your partner to learn more about the cause of the trust issues that are plaguing your relationship. While this is imperative for your partner to start to build trust, it can help you to understand where they're coming from and respond with more empathy and kindness.


According to online relationship therapy platform ReGain, your partner might feel better once they've opened up to you about the events that caused them to become distrustful. And being able to see things from their point of view might help you to support them more effectively.

Don't feel guilty

While your partner understandably needs a lot of support if they have trust issues, remember that your needs still matter in the relationship too. Try not to feel guilty or take it personally if your partner is having trouble trusting you (when you haven't caused that reaction). "Don't immediately blame yourself if your partner has trust issues; it actually might have less to do with you than you think," LMFT at Millennial Life Counseling Liz Higgins tells Elite Daily.


As you regularly check in with your partner to help them build trust and work through their issues, remember to check in with yourself and ensure your needs are being met too. If your partner's trust issues advance to the point where the relationship is becoming toxic, you might want to evaluate whether staying with them is the best thing for your wellbeing. Remember that abuse is never okay and it's always your right to feel safe in a relationship (via Office on Women's Health).

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.