The question was, “When can you trust your man?”
A reporter who was writing an article on the topic for a major women’s magazine asked the question. It showed up in my e-mail because I subscribe to a service that distributes questions from reporters to experts all around the world who may be able to answer them.
I knew what the reporter was looking for. She wanted succinct little tips like:
- “You can trust your man if he always shows up when he says he will, or at least calls to tell you he’ll be late.”
- “You can trust your man if he introduces you to his mother.”
- “You can trust your man if he shows you his income tax return.”
But, after being married to a sociopath, and hearing the stories of so many Lovefraud readers, I knew that these external signs may not be accurate.
The luring stage
In the beginning of a relationship, the luring stage, sociopaths can be reliable and punctual. They may seem proud to introduce you to their families. They may appear to be financially solvent.
Sociopathic individuals can appear to be deserving of respect, love and trust as long as it suits their purpose. These predators know what they are supposed to do to win over a lover. And they are capable of actually doing it—at least until they feel like they no longer need to.
Once they have their hooks set in you, they may be late—or even disappear for days or weeks with no explanation. Their families may trip over themselves to be good to you—probably because they want you to take the parasite off their hands. And they may flash cash and financial documents—cash taken from the previous partner, and documents that are forged.
So how do you know when to trust your man—or woman? Here’s my answer: You can trust your partner when you can trust yourself.
When it comes to romantic relationships, there are two dimensions to trusting yourself.
The first is your own sense of self. You know who you are, what you want, and where your boundaries are. You know that you deserve to be loved simply for being yourself. You understand that a relationship involves giving and taking by both parties, not one person doing all the giving and the other all the taking. You will not jeopardize your well-being in order to have companionship.
The second dimension is trusting your intuition. Your gut, your body, your sixth sense, will tell you when something is wrong. You must have to have enough faith in yourself that you can hear or feel the intuitive messages, and pay attention to them. We get in trouble when we allow ourselves to be talked out of what our intuition is telling us. When a person or suggestion makes us feel uncomfortable, that’s our early warning system, and we must trust ourselves enough to listen.
I responded to the magazine reporter’s inquiry. I told her than the time to trust a man is when we trust ourselves. She didn’t reply. I assume that my answer wasn’t what she wanted.