I’m going to say this very simply. TRUST IS EARNED!
People shouldn’t default to trusting you just because you say you’re trustworthy. Maybe it’s cynical to point all of this out, but we live in a world where trust is broken.
- We’re lied to repeatedly by the people around us.
- We’re lied to by the media.
- We’re lied to by salesmen who swindle us out of our money to sell us junk.
- We lie to ourselves.
It’s not cynical to suggest that we should be suspicious in this deceit filled world. As much as I believe you should be skeptical of the world around you, there’s one person you shouldn’t be skeptical of…your spouse!
You should be able to trust your spouse is faithful to you. If you can’t, you must put new guardrails and boundaries in place to resolve that tension. When I say you should be able to trust your spouse, that is a two way street.
They should be trustworthy, and you should be trusting. If either of you fail to fulfill your part in trust, then things will be very difficult.
Here are five things you must not do if you want to be TRUST WORTHY for your spouse.
To be clear, most of these by themselves aren’t that suspicious, but when combined, it paints a picture of infidelity.
Five Signs You’re Having an Affair
#1 | Hide Passwords
There’s a certain allure to secrets and the autonomy that they bring. However, in marriage, secrets are simply dangerous. I understand that certain jobs involve holding material you can’t share with your spouse. As a pastor I hear information about people daily which I can’t share with my spouse. However, that information is locked in my head, not my Facebook account.
When a spouse has accounts (Facebook, email, etc.) where they are unwilling to share their password with anyone, that is extremely suspicious behavior. Even if you handle information you can’t share with a spouse, share the passwords where that information is stored with someone who can know that information.
I’m as paranoid as the next guy. I don’t like being spied on. But in reality, this isn’t being spied on. It’s living with transparency. It’s actually very freeing.
#2 | Delete Text Messages
There aren’t many things more suspicious than deleting the record of your communication. When you immediately delete the entire record of conversations with someone, obviously it looks like you’re hiding something.
I have literally only deleted a handful of texts in my lifetime. They were directly related to messages where I was rude to someone or someone was rude to me. So I deleted them because I didn’t want to see them. At this point in time my text achieve is a bit much. But I can say with a clear conscious, anyone can see what I’ve been texting people for the last two years.
To be fair, this point is amplified by the other points. If you’re otherwise acting trustworthy, you probably can delete your text messages. If you’re violating the other principles and deleting text messages, it sure does look like you’re having an affair.
#3 | Disappear for Hours at a Time With No Communication
Nothing makes the mind wonder more than lack of communication. Just imagine the thought process going through your spouses head when you disappear for hours on end. You’re normally home at 5:30 pm, but it’s after 6:00. You haven’t sent any communication. What goes through their head…
- They must be stuck in traffic.
- If they were stuck in traffic they would be able to text me.
- They must have to work late.
- If they needed to work late they would have told me not to make dinner.
- Maybe they were in an accident?
- If they were in an accident the police would have called me.
- What else could it be? Why are they shutting me out?
Cell phones have made the 21st century unbelievably frustrating for everyone. We have far more access to everyone than we have ever had before. This is great, and terrible all at once. It has created new ways for us to be paranoid, and it’s given us new responsibilities to communicate.
We can deny it all we want. We can fight it all we want. The reality is that it is suspicious or terrifying when someone goes stretches of time without responding on their phone.
#4 | Turn Off Location Services on Your Device for a Window of Time
I am totally weirded out by the idea that my cell phone tracks everywhere I go. I get even more weirded out thinking about someone actually tracking where I’m going. It’s extremely creepy.
But it’s not creepy for my wife to know where I’m at.
There might have reasons for opposing the idea, but probably most of those reasons are pretty bad if you stopped to consider them. The probably involve you wanting to get away with something. Or you know you’re spending too much time doing something foolish.
When you turn location services off during a window of time, it makes it appear like you’re covering your tracks.
OF COURSE your spouse SHOULD be suspicious when you do that.
#5 | Spending Time Alone With Co-Workers of the Opposite Sex
Regardless of your intentions, when you spend time alone with someone of the opposite sex that you might be attracted to, it looks suspicious. If they’re looking for counseling, they can talk to someone of the same sex. If they just want to chat, it doesn’t need to be just the two of you. If its someone you’re good friends with, you can speak in a manner and place which wouldn’t be described as, “Alone.”
I understand that there are people in your life of the opposite sex where NOTHING is going to happen.
But let’s not kid ourselves. Sin makes people stupid, and our bodies (if they work properly) have biological reactions to people of the opposite sex. Whether you’re just physically attracted to someone or you’re desperate for an emotional connection, a private meeting with the opposite sex is a setup for an affair.
For the sake of your marriage, you should be extremely cautious about private relationships with the opposite sex.
It takes years to build trust, but you can lose it in a minute!
You could be an amazing spouse with a perfect track record, if you violate these five boundaries in a single night, it looks like you’re having an affair. Honestly, if you’re violating multiple of these boundaries, what should they put in the blanks?
- You were with a co-worker of the opposite sex, you deleted text messages, and you turned off location services …what does that look like?
- You won’t share your Facebook password with anyone, and you keep disappearing for windows of time. …what does that look like?
- You keep disappearing for windows of time and it’s always revealed you’re with an attractive co-worker of the opposite sex. …what does that look like?
Suspicious behavior is suspicious, and it SHOULD break trust.
Transparency (or lack there of) are incredibly powerful things.
- It’s very easy to trust someone who is incredibly transparent about their life.
- It’s very difficult to trust someone who won’t be transparent with their life.
There’s no real secret to convincing your spouse you’re trust worthy. You just behave trustworthy. Your spouse SHOULD have access to your life. If you’re doing things which make them believe something is going on, STOP DOING THOSE THINGS! Stop HIDING YOUR LIFE! Live transparently!
What do you think people should never do if they want to live a trustworthy life?