March 13, 2017

Building a bridge to Trust

Rebuilding trust can be a challenging task in the face of all that has taken place in a relationship impacted by addiction. Rebuilding trust begins with two fundamental components: forgiveness and unconditional love.

Forgiveness. You do not need to face your loved one and say, “I forgive you.” But, you must make that statement to yourself and be prepared to honor your declaration. When you carry your hurt, your pain, or your anger into a relationship, there is can be no healing. Forgiveness is a form of healing. Without healing there will be no trust. Until you let go of your emotional baggage, you cannot move forward.

Unconditional love. When you can honestly say, I love you no matter what – past, present, future – you are there. Your love cannot be conditional upon the choices, decisions, behaviors of another. There is no formula for withholding love that will create a path to healing or trust. Unconditional love means to love someone despite their failings.

  • Forgiveness and unconditional love enables you to engage in interactions devoid of your adverse emotional pain.
  • Unconditional love and forgiveness provides the other person an opportunity to openly share where they are in their journey and the struggles they are currently experiencing.
  • The act of forgiveness removes judgment, criticism, condemnation, and expectations from your agenda.
  • In unconditional love you clearly express your desire to support them in their recovery and your willingness to rebuild a broken relationship.

It may go something like this. “I know you have been on a very difficult and challenging journey. I am sorry for your struggles and your experiences. I want you to know how much I love you and that you are the most important person in my life. I love you more than you can imagine. Every day you are hurting and suffering, I hurt with you. I so dearly desire for you to be at peace, to be happy, and to celebrate the life you desire. Because I love you as much as I do, I want you to know I am here for you when you decide you need my support. I am hoping you can open up with me, share with me what is going on in your world, so we walk this out together.”

Take a minute. Soak this in. You will have questions. You will have concerns. You will have doubts.

Let’s talk this out.  Please let me know what your questions are.  I look forward to walking through this with you.

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About Dave Cooke

Dave Cooke is a dad on a mission. His mission is to help parents get control of their lives over the powerful, destructive influences of a child's addiction. As the father of a son in a ten year heroin battle, Dave knows all to well the challenges parents and families face. He also knows there is a way to find peace in the chaos. It is his mission to help parents discover their path to a healthier, balanced life even if a child's active addiction is still part of their daily journey.