Trust, In Response To My Prompt

In my prompt, I said that to me trust is both given and earned.

In the beginning, I would take what @ahplanez said:

We have to trust people to some extent in order for us to interact with them in the first place.

This is the start. We trust that the person we are greeting at our place of work is not about to take out a gun and shoot us.

We trust that the other car coming in the opposite direction will stay in their lane, as we plan to stay in ours.

We trust that courtesy will be matched with courtesy.

In response to my prompt, @usfixerspet said:

in my opinion, trust is the act of believing in someone and believing that they will act or behave in the manner they have said or implied they would.

And the next step. Someone says something about who they are, about what they will do (either in direct contact, or in writing—a profile, a journal entry), and I take them on faith.

For example, in my work, I lead a lot of teams made of up of disparate individuals. What makes it work is trust that they will do their jobs, so others can get their parts done as well.

I often ask, “When can you get this done, and what do you need for it?” In the beginning, I double both, until I know how accurate they are of assessing their own skills from experience.

I trust them to make a good faith effort.

@Just_Louise said:

I think how much you trust another person can vary on what knowledge you have of someone because who you trust determines who may have power over you. You can trust different people to different degrees. For example, you may give a lot of trust to someone who is a medical doctor to the point that you may trust this person with your life without having much other knowledge of who they are.

Which adds to the equation. I will trust someone who presents as a developer on what to do with my code over someone who presents as a kindergarten teacher.

@RouxFaraHara said:

I wish I could be like you and just easily give it and then have it earned, but my past does not allow that sadly.

And my response is best summed up by what @NaturesChild wrote in their response:

Self Trust: No matter how many times trust has been proven, one is only capable of trusting as much as one trusts oneself. We can trust someone less (due to experience and perspective) but not more as doubt and insecurity will win every time.

It’s as much about trusting ourselves to make the right decisions when it comes to trust as it is about them being deserving of our trust.

It’s easy to doubt ourselves when we are blindsided by a betrayal or dishonesty we didn’t see coming. It’s up to us to pick ourselves up and look for all of the times we have been right, and start all over again.

For ourselves, as much as for other people.

@belovedpet said:

Trust is a leap of faith, every time.

And _smash_ delved into the differences between faith and trust in her response piece.

@TeddybearSpanks touched on something that I find incredibly hot:

What is the point when one has enough evidence the other person is trustworthy? Maybe this is a kind of an edgeplay for me.

That’s part of what D/s is about for me. Part of why I’m exploring the ideas and concepts of trust right now. I’m looking deeply into what we do, and why we do it. What makes it so powerful a bond to me.

@jbravo469 said:

I read something the other day that rang true to me: you don’t know who you can trust until you do.

Which, after thinking about it, rings true to me as well.

Distrust breeds distrust. It is a deep cycle, and very hard to break free.

Trust breeds trust. Same cycle in a different direction.

Sure, I may be wrong sometimes. Of course. No one is infallible. But I give the trust to everyone that I can afford to lose, and enjoy the ride.

And the last part of trust as we’ve discussed it so far is from @BambiBlue, who said:

A small mistake can be forgiven and forgotten, a purposeful breach of trust though means a loss of a play partner, a friendship, the end of a marriage perhaps.

And this is the key, right? As I said, no one is infallible. Mistakes will happen.

We trust that someone will not break our trust intentionally, and if they break it by mistake, they will do their best to make amends.

Trust.

Such a simple, innate thing. And yet, so much goes into it from every side.

Thank you all for participating with your thoughts, your writings, and your reading. I’ve enjoyed this.

I have another writing in me about trust. It’ll be coming soon.

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Kink, Like Any Other Relationship, Begins As A Simple Calculation

In a message this morning:

Why do you always turn me down?

He asked, so I gave him an honest answer.

I said that he has not made me feel that he is worth the time and effort of creating a new relationship with him. I’m sure he’s a perfectly good person (at least probably so), he has just not shown me that he has what I am looking for.

When it comes right down to it, kink, like any other relationship, begins as a simple calculation.

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Any Problem You Can’t Discuss In Your Relationship…

…is two problems. Or more.

1. The problem itself.
2. The problem of not being able to discuss it.

Lately, the topic of relationships black holes has come up in several conversations. I take that as a sign I need to write and think about it.

Let’s say you have a problem. You talk about it, and it doesn’t work, so you put it away, and avoid talking about it again. (1)

Now, a new problem pops up, and you start to talk about it. Unfortunately, too late, you realize that it’s related, and the topic comes back to THAT WHICH WE DON’T DISCUSS. You put it away, too. This problem has just become a part of the relationship black hole. There will be multiple problems like this. (2)

Unfortunately, the nature of a black hole is to suck things in. Now, even a problem that wasn’t related to the first problem, but is related to the related problem is now a potential powder keg. Luckily, by this point, you’ve gotten more savvy, and you avoid talking about it, just put it away as soon as you see it. (3)

And, then, the final stage, when the black hole takes over your whole relationship. This is when anything that pisses you off, causes resentment, or makes you feel sad brings you right back to the original problem, because it’s been festering so long. (4).

Let’s look at this in an example:

You forgot my birthday. It’s a BIG deal to me, and I get upset. You are intractable, and I feel like you just don’t understand. We have a huge blow-up. No one gets what they want, no resolution is found, and it just gets put away. (1)

Unfortunately, two weeks later your bestie throws a surprise party for their partner, which sets us off again. That’s when we realize that every mention of birthdays will be an issue. We pack it away, dry our angry tears and go to the party with our friends. It’s not brought up again. (2)

A few months later, when a sort of truce on birthdays has been created by just not talking about them or acknowledging the issue at all, I see an over-the-top romantic video online for an anniversary. I send it to you, suggesting that MAYBE you won’t forget our anniversary, too. It’s only three months away. Now every celebration of love, affection, and appreciation is a part of the relationship black hole. (3)

The relationship goes on, limping along, until a few weeks before my next birthday, when you forget to take out the trash, and it becomes, “You never remember anything that makes me happy! That’s why you forget my birthday!”

Now, everything that upsets me or pisses me off brings up that core hurt (and possibly others) because it’s never been resolved, and because I’ve gone over it again and again in my mind, so I’m familiar with the pain, and can access it instantly. (4)

So, would you rather have one problem to talk about or two problems that multiply exponentially?

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Poly is NOT Equality (Poly Is Not, Part VII)

Poly is not about equality. Never will it be about equality for me. There is no way someone I met three weeks ago will get equal treatment to those I’ve had in my life for years, no matter the NRE.

It’s a silly thought to me:

I know! I’ll suddenly open a joint bank account with this new partner, just because the other partner has one…

No. Just no.

Not gonna happen.

I’ve had my Pet three years. He has earned so many things from me in that time that no one has ever gotten from me before.

Does that mean if I start dating you that you will get the same?

Nope.

You will get the same chance, though.

This is equity.

EQUALITY is treating everyone the same.

EQUITY is giving everyone the tools they need to be successful.

Giving everyone a fair chance to become more, to grow more, to create a deeper relationship—whatever that relationship is with them.

This is what poly is about to me.

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Behavior Modification: When Letting Others Be Themselves Is Freedom, Exercise 8

Today’s writing is about changing ourselves, our behavior and how we react (rather than respond) to others in negative places.

One of the greatest negative cycles in and out of personal relationships is the cycle of trying to control those around us, especially those we love.

It’s a familiar pattern, and a destructive one, that is worth the ongoing process of rooting out.

1. Partner has a negative thought.

2. Partner has a negative feeling associated with that thought.

3. Partner reacts to the thought with undesireable behavior.

4. You experience the undesireable behavior.

With strangers, this is where you typically come in. You don’t see their thoughts or feelings. You simply see the results.

This does not change the process.

5. You add your own negative thoughts and meanings

You also now remember other bad things that you have experienced, with your partner or with others, related. You remember negative things you have thought or heard.

6. You experience negative emotions and confusion and uncertainty.

Your thoughts about your relationship are affected. Your self-image may be affected.

You try to change them, you try to show them why their feelings are not valid, or their thoughts are not correct. And you invalidate them.

You may say hurtful things from this state that you wouldn’t otherwise, in defense of your own wounds.

So, how do we break this cycle for the good of ourselves and for others?

Let’s start by focusing on Step 5.

Say to yourself, “I realize that their thoughts are their thoughts. Their feeling are their feelings.

“If I had their same background and upbringing I very well could have those same thoughts and feelings.

“I choose to love and accept them even when they experience those negative thoughts and feelings, and I choose to emanate from my being love, compassion, strength, and acceptance; to be the person/friend/lover that I know in my heart that I am during those times.”

This will automatically give you a much better step 6. It will totally change step 6 for you, in fact. Your thoughts will be focused outward, on others, giving them your compassion, rather than turning inwards, and bullying yourself.

When this becomes a habit, you will be free.

Free from the knee jerk emotional reactions, confusion, self-doubt and othe negative feelings that are enslaving you.

Free to love people for who they are, and communicate with them from a position of love and compassion.

Free to reclaim your personal power.

Now, I’m not saying you are not already personally powerful. I’m saying that until you gain control of your own reactions of trying to control and mold other’s thoughts and feelings, you unconsciously give up your personal power in those situations.

We all do this. This is why we should all keep striving to learn and grow, and why none of use are ever ‘done.’

Once you have broken the cycle, choose.

The path outlined above is a box, built of confusion and negativity, designed to limit your choices.

Breaking free gives you freedom of choice. You can make decisions from a position of strength and love and true desire for your life and what you really want to do for your best self:

  • Make a personal change.
  • Reassure someone.
  • Challenge their thinking with compassion.
  • Engage in a discussion to understand them more deeply.
  • Choose to disengage/not respond.
  • Choose to not have them in your life.

Another thing that this freedom allows is to focus.

Especially in relationships, interactions are better when you focus on the other person’s inherent goodness.

It’s too easy when in a row to focus on everything that is bad and negative and annoying and cranky and just plain wrong about them.

But that just makes things worse for you both.

If it’s a partner you’re engaging, focus on why they are your chosen partner to begin with. You will see that person in their personal struggle, and it will fuel your love and compassion.

If it’s a friend, think of why you’re friends.

If you don’t know the person at all, giving them the benefit of the doubt hurts them less, and removes the pain (or much of it) from you as well.

Exercise

Practice this in the past, present, and future.

Past

Look over conversations (with partners, with strangers, online or off) that have vexed you in the past. Replay them, stopping at step 5 to change your thought processes. Go back over the way you reacted, and imagine how you would have reacted differently, if you’d freed yourself then.

Feel good about how you have learned.

Really.

This is important. Feel really good, knowing you are learning something amazing for yourself, and you are freeing yourself and giving yourself the tools and know-how to make others feel better, too.

Future

Imagine having conversations similar to those in your past. Imagine freeing yourself and how you will be able to respond to those as they come up in your life.

Feel good about it.

Present

When the negative cycle begins, pause for a moment to free yourself. You may be deep into the argument by then, but still take the time to breathe and disengage from the negativity.

It’s not too late. It may be later than you would have hoped, but it’s earlier than if you’d put in no effort at all.

And feel good about it. Pat yourself on the back. And look forward to doing better next time.

Feeling good is important.

I’ll say it again: Feeling good is important. This is your personal self-praise.This is how you change your own behavior.

So feel mad good. Silly good. Goofy good. Like 14-orgasms-without-attendant-oversensitivity-good. Allow yourself to feel downright giddy for doing a good thing.

Because it is a damned awesome thing.

Going to try it? Have tried it, or something similar?

I’d love to hear your experiences.

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Yes, You Are The Problem!

When yet another relationship ends in disappointment, it’s easy to point fingers and blame others.

You think “If only they would…” or “Why can’t they just…”

You tell yourself you haven’t met the “right person” yet. The truth is that you haven’t been the right person, yet.

Until you change how you create and maintain relationships, you’ll keep repeating the same patterns over and over again.

None of your relationship problems are caused by the other person.

Not one.

As long as you keep putting the blame on others, you’ll keep struggling in love.

Any pattern you see in your life, any fight you have again and again, any jerk you date over and over, any fear or problem or disappointment, all of these things start with YOU.

They come from your own fears, insecurities, beliefs and emotions that are running your life and behaviors without your conscious understanding.

Until you learn how to spot those behaviors, and turn them from unconscious habits into conscious choices, you cannot make a permanent change.

They won’t let you. They’ll pop up again and again. In the guise of a deadbeat partner, an unrepentant liar, or a manipulative schemer. They’ll show up when you get angry about unemptied dishwashers and unwashed children, instead of the real problems facing you.

They will run your life… until you refuse to let them.

And that’s the good news.

Because being the problem can be daunting and depressing. It’s easy to beat yourself up, and feel like there is no hope, or that you just aren’t worth it.

You are the problem AND the solution.

But being the problem also means that you are the solution. You have control over who you are and how you choose to treat the people around you.

That is power.

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Go Ahead, Be As Cranky As You Want.

You’re allowed. Even around me. Even when I’m in a good mood.

Because your emotions are yours, and they are valid.

They are, however, not my emotions. And because they are not, you can be as cranky as you want, and I can be me—here for you, ready to talk with you, hug you, love you.

My love for you is my gift to you. My desire and want and intimacy—all the same. I give them to you without expectations of recompense.

I do not need your happiness to be happy.

I would LOVE for you to be happy. I revel in your joy. Your joy adds to mine. Your smile makes mine wider. You add value to my life. You are important to me.

I just don’t NEED your reaction to spark my happiness. I don’t NEED you to make me change or do what’s right.

Because I am an individual. I am free. All of my happiness, my joy, my love, my desire… it radiates from me to you.

It is yours for the taking.

So, go ahead and be as cranky as you want to, as you need to. I’m here for you.

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Oh! The Irony!

In one of my profiles online, I have a set of instructions that reads like this:

When writing, please introduce yourself, send a photo (if you do not have one in your profile), and tell me exactly what caught your interest in this profile. If you are not within an hour or so of me geographically, then also provide your plan for meeting me in person within the next two weeks. If you write wanting more than a simple friendship without ANY of these things, I may ask you ONCE, I may simply decline. I prefer someone with an attention to detail and a willingness to perform.

slave_wannabe:

Mistress willing to surrender to the right Mistress mind body and soul, its all about YOU and i will learn to please, worship and serve your every whim, i will obey and take punishments for your amusement and pleasure, slave john to get to know and trust YOU.

Me:

If it is about me, perhaps you should read my profile and actually follow my instructions.

slave_wannabe:

Nookie, you have a nice profile but its long, follow what instructions, willing to comply, slave john

Me:

If you cannot even read a full profile for instructions, then you are not a good fit for me.

Best of luck, slave_wannabe.

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