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Do you struggle with knowing whom to trust and whom not to? Trust is a big part of any relationship, especially one with your significant other. If you don’t trust that person, it’s going to wind up hurting both of you. Also when someone doesn’t trust you, it can feel like a betrayal or like they don’t believe in you or understand you.

Usually trust is based on what we see a person do: their actions. If someone says they will call and they do, we start to trust what they say. On the other hand, if someone says they want to hang out with you and they don’t show up, you call them a “flake” and start to doubt what they say.

Being called “trustworthy” is pretty desirable. We want people to trust that we will be there for them. Good relationships are marked by mutual trust. It’s pretty cute when a boy stands up for you because he believes in you. Guys love to be trusted, too. They love when you call them to ask a question or when you just want to be reassured about something. That shows trust.

The crazy thing about trust is that sometimes it can be misplaced. That can be pretty harmful. One thing that causes misplaced trust is, believe it or not, sexual involvement. Sex causes the release of a chemical called “oxytocin”. According to a recent issue of the “Monitor on Psychology”, oxytocin promotes trust. A study was done that asked the participants to split money with a stranger. Those who inhaled oxytocin offered the stranger eighty percent more money than those who did not.

What does that mean? That means that before the commitment of a relationship built on the ultimate trust of marriage vows, sex can cause us to trust our partners more than they really should be trusted. We might disregard the fact that they never call when they say they will just because we are sexually blinded. We may not see our relationship for what it really is.

One idea is to take a step back and evaluate how trustworthy our partners are. Try designating a certain length of time, maybe until you graduate or a few months time from now. Take this time to remove the blinder that sex can be. Abstain. Look at your relationship for what it really is. Does he do what he says he will? Does she tell you the truth? Try journaling or talking to someone else you trust about what you notice. Instead of sex, try planning creative date ideas or thinking of creative gifts to give your partner. This will lead you toward an honest perspective of your relationship that you can trust.

Guest blog by Em H.

The information provided here is general in nature.  It is not a substitute for a consultation with a medical professional. Before any medical procedure, it is imperative that you discuss your personal medical history, risks, and concerns with your doctor. If you have questions during or after a procedure, your doctor should be immediately contacted. Avenue Women’s Center is not an emergency center.  If you are experiencing severe symptoms, such as bleeding and/or pain, seek immediate medical attention.  Contact your physician, go to an emergency room, or call 911.