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trusting yourself... a message from my therapist

I've been hurt by a lot of people in my life that I really trusted and cared about.. as I'm sure we all have. My parents, friends, mentors, romantic partners. I got to a place where I felt I couldn't trust anyone again because I was so petrified of being hurt like I had been in the past.

So I held myself back. I built up walls to protect myself and not let anyone fully in. I retrained myself from fulling feeling love for another person, or from fully letting someone into my life again. I kept my relationships lukewarm and "safe". But how is experiencing feelings in a "lukewarm" way, living life? Aren't we here to experience and feel deeply the full array of emotions and experiences that life has to offer?

But how could I let myself fully feel, and fully experience life, without getting hurt again? How did I know I could trust someone again?

Well, that's just the thing, you can't know that. You can't know that you won't get hurt again. You can't know that another person won't betray your trust or let you down. But here's what my therapist taught me. The key is not putting your trust in others. The secret is to put the trust in yourself. It's to understand that no matter what happens, no matter who hurts you, you trust that you'll be able to handle it, and that you know how to take care of yourself. You trust that you know what you're doing now, that no matter what, you'll be ok because you've got yourself. And you also trust that because of your past experiences, you know better now. You know your boundaries, you know what you want, and you won't allow yourself to be in an unsafe situation again.

Realizing this took a huge weight off of my shoulders. I could allow myself to fully be with and experience people without wondering if I could trust them fully- because it didn't really matter. What mattered was that I trusted myself. I trust myself to get out of unhealthy situations. I trust my body to tell me who it feels good to be around. I trust my discernment and intuition. And I trust that no matter what happens, whether my trust is broken or not, whether someone hurts me or not, I know how to take care of myself now. I won't let it break me. Because I've got me, always.

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