Susie & Otto


4 Little Words That Silently Kill Relationships

There are four words that almost NO one actually says out loud but millions of men and women sure think this about their spouse or partner.

What's underneath these four words can literally suck the life and passion out of an otherwise good relationship.

That's why we say these four words are silent relationship killers.

We know this sounds dramatic and we know what you're probably thinking...

If they're almost never spoken, how do they kill relationships?

Good question.

Glad you asked.

They kill relationships because they represent the predominant thought one person has for another--and what isn't spoken can be just as powerful or even more so than what is spoken.

What are these 4 dangerous words?

They are, "I don't trust you."

Before you think all we're talking about is what happens because of an affair, infidelity or one or both partners cheating on each other...

We'll tell you that you certainly might feel like that if you've been lied to or cheated on but there's much more to it when it comes to those four little words...

"I don't trust you..."

What we're talking about is taking you a little deeper into the whole idea of trust in an intimate relationship.

The idea of "I don't trust you" and a lack of trust can play out in a million different ways in a relationship.

For example...

  • I don't trust you to bring home your share of the money to pay our bills
  • I don't trust that you'll be home on time for dinner as you said you would
  • I don't trust that you'll not spend us into debt
  • I don't trust that you'll watch the kids the way I do
  • I don't trust that you'll do the laundry and not ruin my shirts
  • I don't trust that you'll be open to making love with me tonight
  • I don't trust that you'll be honest with me

You get the idea...

And if you're honest with yourself, you can recognize where you've had those thoughts over and over about the person you love--we certainly have.

While these thoughts of "I don't trust you" are pretty normal, it's important for you to become aware of them because of how they can negatively impact your relationship.

Early in our relationship, Otto would tell Susie every now and then that she didn't trust him in certain ways. She denied it but it turned out that when she really looked at her thoughts, it was true.

She didn't trust him in certain ways that had nothing to do with him cheating.

But her mistrust could have driven a huge wedge between the two of us if we hadn't talked it out.

If mistrust becomes your predominant thought about your partner, you're automatically building walls between the two of you.

The other person feels your doubt and can withdraw or become angry, leaving the two of you with a lot that's left that's unsaid.

And these walls affect your communication, your openness to intimacy, and whether your love grows or dies.

One of the agreements the two of us made at the beginning of our relationship was that if we were upset with something that the other had said or done, we would talk first with him or her and not first with people outside our relationship.

That wasn't always the case in our previous relationships and we paid the price of disconnection and the eventual end of those relationships.

We didn't trust that our previous partners would listen to what we had to say and that we could calmly talk about whatever we needed to--so we talked to other people instead of our partners.

So what do you do if you have the thought that you don't trust the other person to do or not do whatever it is that's your issue--and you have good reason for your mistrust?

You may have had that experience with this person in the past and you can't turn your back on the idea that it will probably happen again.

Or your lack of trust might have nothing to do with your partner but rather experiences you've had in past relationships and as you were growing up.

How can you stop saying to yourself "I don't trust you" when you really don't trust him or her?

If you've identified some places in your relationship and in yourself where you don't trust and you don't want to continue to allow this mistrust to come between the two of you--even something very small...

1. Identify what and who you really don't trust. Look within for the real issues of your mistrust which may have started long before your current partner.

Take out pen and paper and write the words "I don't trust you because..." and then keep writing anything that comes into your mind.

Just keep writing and see what comes up.

2. Identify the source of your trust problem. If it turns out that you need to do some forgiving of someone in your past, remember that you are forgiving for YOU and not condoning what the person did--assuming that you are no longer being subjected to those actions anymore.

Actively choosing to no longer be tied to these wrongs that were done to you can be extremely freeing. You may need the help of a qualified therapist or coach to support you in this process.

3. In order to start trusting another person, you have to get in your mind what he or she has to do to become trustable to you. So start making your list and be specific.

4. Be courageous and talk with your partner about what's been holding you back and ways you've been mistrusting him or her. Create some agreements and plans to move from mistrust even if it's about something very insignificant.

One of issues of trust for us has been keeping our home straightened up, especially with Otto's 21 year old son living with us.

One of the "Magic Words" phrases that we use is "Tell me your plan for ________."

Instead of worrying about whether whatever is in question will be put away or not., this phrase opens up communication instead of resentment.

Our suggestion to you is to make sure you don't allow hidden mistrust to silently kill your love for each other.

Take action and bring more love into your life.

Our best to you,

©2010, Susie & Otto Collins

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Susie and Otto Collins are spiritual and life partners who are committed to helping others create outstanding relationships of all kinds. They regularly write, speak and conduct workshops and seminars on love, relationships and personal and spiritual growth to audiences all across the USA. They are the creators of the "Relationship Toolkit" which has helped people in over a dozen countries improve their relationships. It includes a video called Spiritual Partnerships plus two booklets Love and Relationship Success Secrets and 101 Relationship Quotes Worth a Million Dollars! You can also read more articles like these and subscribe to their weekly newsletter on love and relationships by visiting their web site at Their new E-book Should You Stay or Should You Go? has just been released and is now available See Archives 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002 and 2001. Other Relationship Issues, Books

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