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Many questionnaires are available to measure relational trust, (trust in a relationship partner) as well as global trust (trust in human nature). Each wrote extensively about trust and the key role it plays in children’s ongoing growth and development.Clearly, trust matters a great deal to a lot of people, especially to those of us who are striving to have a loving, fulfilling relationship. How children learn to trust was a fundamental question explored by several eminent developmental psychologists of the 20 century, notably Erik Erikson, John Bowlby, and D. Erikson proposed that infants develop basic trust when they have successfully resolved the first psychosocial crisis (or opportunity) in life, the conflict between .
Their double messages confuse children and play havoc with their sense of reality.
Gregory Bateson focused on this important dynamic—the “double bind” — in his book .
Trust can also be defined as a verb: as actions based on having confidence or trust in oneself.
On an action level, trust involves being able to “do something without fear or misgiving.” A number of psychologists recently reported that, over the past 10 years, there has been an unprecedented rise in trust issues among couples who seek counseling.
In fact, attachment theorist John Bowlby concluded that basic trust, as defined by Erikson, is absolutely necessary for the healthy psychological development of the individual throughout the life span.
He described the secure and insecure attachment patterns identified by Mary Ainsworth in one-year-old toddlers as being strong indicators of their level of trust.
Mutual trust within happy couples is reinforced by the presence of oxytocin, a neuropeptide in the brain that expedites bonding between a newborn and its mother.
Loving, affectionate, and sexual exchanges between partners also release oxytocin, which, according to some scientists, “makes people trusting not gullible.”By contrast, mistrust can disrupt even the most loving relationship.
Based on clinical research, he concluded that children learn to distrust their perceptions in social interactions when they have been confused and mystified by double messages experienced in their family.
These painful events in childhood leave unseen scars and have a profound impact on us throughout life.