Three Reasons Why it is Difficult to Move on After There is Broken Trust

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Every case of broken trust impacts us on three levels. The damage on each of these levels is what holds us back from healing the broken trust and moving on. It doesn’t matter whether the broken trust is real or perceived. The impact occurs on these three levels. These 3 levels form the three reasons why it is difficult to move on after broken trust.

The Emotional Level

We have an emotional reaction to everything that happens in our lives, whether good or bad. In our memories, we store every experience. Memory is not only what happened.  It includes how we experienced the event using our five senses of sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell.

The question is how that information makes us feel. When we encounter distressing situations in our relationship, we link things that have happened to us in the past to what is happening now. It may not be the same, but if it is similar, we will react strongly. We relive the moment.

The more times we experience a similar event, the stronger our emotional reaction. When the breaking of trust occurs, the impact on the emotional level is severe. Broken trust represents the loss of so many things to us. It can mean things like the loss of security, stability, self-esteem, etc.

The degree of damage that exists on this level if left unhealed is the number one reason it is difficult to move on after trust is broken.

The Perception Level

Perception encompasses our beliefs or opinions about certain things or people.

When something happens repeatedly, you will form a belief or opinion about the likelihood of it happening again. When we have a perception of how a person is going to behave in a situation, we place that perception on that person. In our eyes, our perception of them defines their character.

We perceive that they will do a specific action when faced with a particular set of circumstances. If that perception is negative, we expect our interaction with them to be more negative than positive.

Human beings tend only to observe and hear things that confirm their beliefs. No matter what your partner does which is right, if there is broken trust, you will only see what confirms they are untrustworthy.

Our perception of our partner after they have broken our trust is the number two reason that we find it difficult to move on once trust has been broken.

Behaviour Level

Based on how strong our emotional level reaction is and how our perception of events or people is, we will moderate our behaviour in response. The strength of impact on the first two levels can lead to behaviours that destroys the relationship or keeps our partner at arm’s length.

The actions that we take at the behaviour level due to the damage at the emotional level and the perception that we have built up of our partners is the number three reason why we find it hard to heal and move on after trust is broken.


In relationships where there is broken trust, a great deal of emotion is built up.  This leaves the injured partner to believe the other will always break or damage their trust.

As a result, the hurt partner cannot just move on (change their behaviour). They will instead adopt practices that can destroy, cripple or keep the relationship at arm’s length.

To begin to heal the relationship the damage at the emotional and perception levels must be addressed first.

You can change the perception, heal the emotions and restore the relationship. We know how to restore trust and love in a relationship.

You’ll be amazed how counselling can help you better trust in your relationship

You will find that talking with StartPoint Counselling Beenleigh is your starting point for happy relationships and mental wellbeing.

StartPoint Counselling Practice is conveniently located in Beenleigh close to Logan, Mt Warren Park, Stapylton, Homeview, Waterford, Loganholme and Yatala areas. However we also offer phone consultations and telehealth for your convenience, see more about Booking Appointments here.

We offer a 15-minute complimentary phone session with one of our experienced counsellors. Find out how we can equip you to change your relationship into one that you will want to be part of.