One of the things my partner and I like to do is go for long motorbike rides. At one time I contemplated getting my own license but I love the closeness that riding pillion brings so chose to stay that way.
Riding pillion on the back of a motorbike gives me lots of time to think.
On our most recent ride it got me thinking about trust. And I asked the question across my social media platforms recently – ‘Do you trust your partner?’
For most people the response was an instant ‘yes’ which is unsurprising. We’re conditioned to believe that if we love our partner, we therefore trust them.
But trust is something very different.
Trust is defined as the firm belief in the reliability, truth, or ability of someone or something.
Sitting on the bike of the bike behind my partner I have to have the utmost belief in his ability. I have to trust that he isn’t going to try to show-off, scare me or do anything silly. Being on the back of a motorbike is a vulnerable position to be in.
I trust my partner implicitly. So much so that I’ve even been known to fall asleep, or rather doze off, whilst on the back of the bike!
I have so much trust in him that I am completely relaxed – other than when we were riding over the Swiss Alps some years ago and my fear of heights kicked in. The views were incredible but I started shaking involuntarily. He had to pull-over because my shaking was putting him off! We stopped, I got off, took some deep breaths, and off we went again. I’ve since conquered my fear of heights using hypnotherapy and NLP.
However, back to trust and being on the back of a motorbike.
Would you trust your partner enough to get on the back of a motorbike they were riding? Let’s assume for this purpose that they have a motorbike license and know what they’re doing.
If you wouldn’t get on the back of a metaphorical motorbike with them ask yourself why not?
This might be a bit controversial but bear with me.
Throughout life we are told we need to take responsibility for ourselves, our choices, our actions, our behaviour and so on.
So why is it, when there are problems in our relationships we are quick to apportion blame to our partner and stop taking responsibility?
No matter what is going wrong in your relationship, some of the reason for the issues will lie with you – there are after all 2 people in a relationship.
“How can you say that Deb, if someone is in an abusive relationship?”
Well, whilst I’m in no way saying anyone is responsible for being the victim of abuse, and we cannot be held responsible for the behaviour or actions of another, we are responsible for our choices.
Having had 3 abusive relationships I know I did not deserve to be abused however, I take responsibility by acknowledging I CHOSE to enter into those relationships, I CHOSE to stay in those relationships, I CHOSE to ignore the warning signs before and during those relationships, I CHOSE to allow the behaviour to continue without being challenged.
Likewise, when I had a partner who cheated on me, I acknowledged responsibility too – at the time I was more preoccupied with other things going in my life and not giving him the attention he wanted. We often take our partners for-granted and when I looked back I could see where things had gone off track.
This in no way condones any of the behaviour of my ex partners but it recognises that there were two of us in the relationship, each reacting to the other in one way or another, each believing that their reaction/behaviour is correct and acceptable so continuing to behave in the same way. It becomes a self-perpetuating cycle.
Most of our behaviour is learned from family and those around us, we have rules we live by on a day to day basis but in our own homes there is no-one, other than our partner, to challenge our behaviour. If poor behaviour goes unchallenged it becomes normalised and accepted, regardless whether the behaviour is actually acceptable.
What behaviour are you allowing to go unchallenged in your relationship at the moment?
What behaviour are you exhibiting that you could change to make an improvement to how you perceive your relationship?