If respect is the force that keeps a relationship afloat, trust is the oar that moves it forward. But what is trust?
According to clinical psychologist and writer Sabrina Romanoff, trust is a sense of security and loyalty. It allows you to be vulnerable. You willingly rely on another person because you feel safe around them.
Building trust takes time, patience, and consistency. Though the process is long and complex, you can forge trust in small, simple moments. Keep your promises, listen to your partner when they are upset, mean what you say, and own up to your mistakes.
But what happens when trust is broken?
Trust is at the core of every mutual relationship, romantic or not. You cannot create a meaningful connection with someone you do not trust.
What causes a person to lose trust in someone? On the surface level, deception, half-truths, exaggerations, and white lies are the main culprits. But sometimes, distrust can spring from something more complex than dishonesty.
Loss of trust can come from hurt and betrayal. It happens when you talk about people behind their backs, throw friends under the bus, or blame others for troubles you created yourself.
In romantic relationships, trust can break in an instant or corrode gradually over time. Regardless, trust issues drive a wedge between couples, causing them to slowly (and often painfully) drift away from each other, physically and emotionally.
Infidelity is one of the top reasons couples cease to trust each other. But for others, there is no apparent reason. And the process is slow, subtle, and unclear.
Feelings of betrayal arise when partners repeatedly fail to keep their promises or miss commitments. If your partner’s words consistently do not match their actions, you learn to lower your expectations until, one day, you no longer believe them.
Can you rebuild broken trust?
Before one can rebuild trust, healing and forgiveness need to happen. Check out Steps to Rebuilding Trust in a Relationship to learn more. Here are some quotes on broken trust to help you cope with the hurt and take the first steps to forgiveness, healing, and moving on.
101 Broken Trust Quotes
So, what happened? Sometimes, we can’t grasp how it started and what went wrong. These quotes on broken trust will hopefully help you keep perspective, gain insight, and better understand the situation.
1. “One who is fed on promises eats from an empty bowl.” – Marsha Hinds
2. “A man who trusts nobody is apt to be the kind of man nobody trusts.” – Harold Macmillan
3. “Consistency is the true foundation of trust. Either keep your promises or do not make them.” – Roy T. Bennett
4. “Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships.” – Stephen R. Covey
5. “Trust is like a mirror, you can fix it if it’s broken, but you can still see the crack in that reflection.” – Lady Gaga
6. “Betraying someone can be a mistake. Betraying someone twice is a choice.” – Garima Soni
7. “Trust is built when someone is vulnerable and not taken advantage of.” – Bob Vanourek
8. “Being trustworthy requires: Doing the right thing. And doing things right.” – Don Peppers
9. “Trust is that tiny thread that holds your band together; when trust is torn or tampered with, you will have a broken band; your business will fall.” – Bernard Kelvin Clive
10. “Trust is earned, respect is given, and loyalty is demonstrated. Betrayal of any one of those is to lose all three.” – Ziad K. Addelnour
11. “Trust. It is like placing a blade in someone’s hand and setting the very point to your heart.” – Cassandra Clare
12. “The most expensive thing in the world is trust. It can take years to earn and just a matter of seconds to lose.” – Jay Shetty
13. “Without trust, we don’t truly collaborate; we merely coordinate or, at best, cooperate. It is trust that transforms a group of people into a team.” – Stephen Covey
14. “Trust is like that. You can break it for a good reason. But it still remains broken.”– Harlan Coben
15. “Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.” – Albert Einstein
16. “You need a lot of things in any organization, but one of the critical things is trust. When you lose trust and you feel betrayed, and it’s not a matter of judgment.”– Arthur Blank
17. “I would rather my enemy’s sword pierce my heart than my friend’s dagger stabbed me in the back.”– Michele Bardsley
18. “I’m not upset that you lied to me, I’m upset that from now on I can’t believe you.” – Friedrich Nietzsche
19. “The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.” – Ernest Hemingway
20. “Some people are willing to betray years of friendship just to get a little bit of the spotlight.” – Lauren Conrad
21. “Loving someone is giving them the power to break your heart, but trusting them not to.” – Julianne Moore
22. “Breaking someone’s trust is like crumpling up a perfect piece of paper. You can smooth it over but it’s never going to be the same again.” – Unknown
23. “The chief lesson I have learned in a long life is that the only way you can make a man trustworthy is to trust him; and the surest way to make him untrustworthy is to distrust him.” – Henry L. Stimson
24. “Betrayal annihilates trust. The more trust there is to begin with, and the more deception is involved, the more damage is done.” – Sandra Lee Dennis
25. “Each betrayal begins with trust.” – Phish
26. “We’re never so vulnerable than when we trust someone – but paradoxically, if we cannot trust, neither can we find love or joy.” – Walter Anderson
27. “Trust is the highest form of human motivation. It brings out the very best in people. But it takes time and patience.” – Stephen R. Covey
28. “He who has never been betrayed sees no value of trust unless he’s scorched by the fires of betrayal, too.” – Samuel Zulu
29. “The truth always fights to break out and it usually succeeds. Lies are a burden. They entangle us and weigh us down. It’s not worth the struggle. Telling the truth clears the air. It liberates.” – Anonymous
30. “They don’t lie to protect your feelings. They lie because the truth might cause you to make a choice that won’t serve their interests.” – Brian Weiner
31. “Even the smallest lie can break the biggest trust.” – Anonymous
Before you heal, you have to accept the pain. It’s okay to grieve. Here are broken trust quotes for those who are hurting.
1. “It was a mistake,” you said. But the cruel thing was, it felt like the mistake was mine, for trusting you.” – David Levithan
2. “If they ask you about me, tell them: ‘She was the only person that loved me with honesty, and I broke her.’ – Shahrazad al-Khalij
3. “To me, the thing that is worse than death is betrayal. You see, I could conceive death, but I could not conceive betrayal.”– Malcolm X
4. “Let’s call cheating what it is: a complete betrayal of trust.” – Greg Behrendt
5. “The truth is never as painful as discovering a lie.” – Nitya Prakash
6. “Trust was a double-edged sword. It could give you hope, but it could cut you in an instant when it was broken.” – Tiffany King
7. “I feel like when I give trust that isn’t earned, I receive hurt that isn’t deserved.” – Steve Maraboli
8. “You say things, but don’t mean it. And then, there are those that you mean…but you left it all unsaid.” – Unknown
9. “The worst feeling in the world is knowing you’ve been used and lied to by someone you trusted.” – Anonymous
10. “When your trust in someone is broken, you will inevitably experience shock, denial, anger, and sadness, feelings that are, in many ways, akin to the mourning process following a death.” – Dr. Jane Greer
11. “Shattered legs may heal in time, but some betrayals fester and poison the soul.” – George R.R. Martin
12. “Everyone is broken here. Some with love and some without love.” – Unknown
13. “One of the worst feelings in the world is having to doubt something you thought was unquestionable.” – Unknown
14. “That’s the thing about trust. It’s like broken glass. You can put it back together, but the cracks are always visible – like scars that never fully heal.” – Hope Collier
15. “Some of our bad friends smile and laugh with us. Then, they go behind our back and laugh at us…with their ‘good’ friends.” – Mitta Xindlu
16. “It’s the same old story you’ve heard a thousand times. Somebody’s trust gets broken. Somebody’s left behind.” – Travis Tritt
17. “The worst part about being lied to is knowing that you weren’t worth the truth.” – Mishaela
18. “Pain changes people, it makes them trust less, overthink more, and shut people out.” – Unknown
19. “I may have trust issues, but some people seem to have an issue with the responsibility of being trusted.” – Melchor Lim
20. “When trust is broken, there is not any medicine to recover that again, as it was before, even if you try hard to gain it back.” – Ehsan Sehgal
21. “Sometimes trusting a friend is the hardest thing to do, even the closest friends can become enemies.” – James Merrow
22. “After all, what does being in love mean if you can’t trust a person.” – Evelyn Waugh
23. “You want to believe that there’s one relationship in life that’s beyond betrayal. A relationship that’s beyond that kind of hurt. And there isn’t.” – Caleb Carr
24. “I had trusted him. I had even trusted him after he betrayed me. I was too open for my own good. I still gave that man my heart even after he destroyed it.” – Jacqueline Simon Gunn
Give your heart a chance to mend at its own pace. Here are broken trust quotes for those who are in the process of healing.
1. “The healing of broken trust is a natural process. Trust itself is natural.” – Mira Kirshenbaum
2. “If you’re betrayed, release disappointment at once. By that way, the bitterness has no time to take root.” – Toba Beta
3. “For only when faithfulness turns to betrayal and betrayal into trust can any human become part of the truth.” – Rumi
4. “Broken trust can heal.” – Mira Kirshenbaum
5. “We simply cannot sit and stare at our wounds forever.” – Haruki Murakami
6. “What is stronger than the human heart which shatters over and over and still lives?” – Rupi Kapur
7. “Let yourself find peace with the apology that’s never coming. Even if it came, it wouldn’t be enough, and it doesn’t hold your healing.” – Anonymous
8. “I make no apologies for how I chose to repair what you broke.” – Ellen Pompeo as Meredith Grey
9. “Broken trust is hard to heal because we’re not even trying to heal it. We’re just trying to make ourselves feel safe.” – Mira Kirshenbaum
10. “It is strange how often a heart must be broken before the years can make it wise.” – Sara Teasdale
11. “Broken people lead to broken hearts. That’s why it’s so important to heal from one relationship before starting another.” – Mandy Hale
12. “Every time your heart is broken, a doorway cracks open to a world full of new beginnings, new opportunities.” – Patti Roberts
13. “When someone breaks your trust, don’t feel stupid for trusting them. You didn’t do anything wrong. They’re just an unworthy person.” – Sonya Parker
14. “It breaks my heart to know I will never be able to trust you again. I’ve learned so many lies and each time it takes a piece of me that you will never get back again.” – Karen Kostyla
15. “Instead of saying, “I’m damaged, I’m broken, I have trust issues” say “I’m healing, I’m rediscovering myself, I’m starting over.” – Horacio Jones
16. “It is better to suffer wrong than to do it, and happier to be sometimes cheated than not to trust.” – Samuel Johnson
17. “People who consistently and consciously hurt you do not deserve more chances. They deserve less access.” – Morgan Richard Oliver
18. “What is love after all but trusting in the unknown.” – Marty Rubin
Learn to forgive. Broken trust quotes for letting go.
1. “If you spend your time hoping someone will suffer the consequences for what they did to your heart, then you’re allowing them to hurt you a second time in your mind.”– Shannon L. Alder
2. “You are going to break your promise. I understand. And I hold my hands over the ears of my heart, so that I will not hate you.” – Catherynne M. Valente
3. “We are all mistaken sometimes; sometimes we do wrong things, things that have bad consequences. But it does not mean we are evil, or that we cannot be trusted ever afterward.” – Alison Croggon
4. “I’d never slam your cupboards shut or clank and clatter pans and pots. I’d never hide your keys, or knock your photos off the wall. I can’t haunt your house; I’m not a ghost after all. I’m merely a girl…you’ll think of me when stars shine and rain falls, and on Thursdays just because.” – Anonymous
5. “You can forgive some people without welcoming them back in your life. Apology accepted; access denied.” – Madi Prewett
6. “When you choose peace, it comes with a lot of goodbyes.” – Anonymous
7. “Forgive them anyway. Because sometimes apologies never come and it’s up to you to restore your peace.” – Kayil York
8. “When you care about someone, you can’t just turn that off because you learn that they betrayed you.” – Paula Stokes
9. “If you have been brutally broken, but still have the courage to be gentle to others, then you deserve a love deeper than the ocean itself.” – Nikita Gill
10. “If offering apologies and making promises fixed broken trust, there’d be no broken trust left to fix.” – Tim Cole
11. “Broken trust forces us, first, to acknowledge a painful reality we may have chosen to ignore, then, to make some difficult decisions.” – Jane Greer
12. ““Sorry” works when a mistake is made, but not when trust is broken. So, in life, make mistakes but never break trust. Because forgiving is easy, but forgetting and trusting again is sometimes impossible.” – Anonymous
13. “It’s amazing how someone can break your heart and you can still love them with all the little pieces.” – Ella Harper
14. “To forgive someone who hurt you is easy but to trust them again is next to impossible.” – Anurag Prakash Ray
15. “A person may break your heart and break your trust, but never ever give them the power to break your spirit.” – Anonymous
16. “Broken trust and anger will close a heart until honesty and love is once again found.” – Anonymous
Learn to trust again. Broken trust quotes for moving on.
1. “Everyone suffers at least one bad betrayal in their lifetime. It’s what unites us. The trick is not to let it destroy your trust in others when that happens. Don’t let them take that from you.”– Sherrilyn Kenyon
2. “You may be deceived if you trust too much, but you will live in torment unless you trust enough.”– Frank Crane
3. “I believe if you want to be trusted, you have to trust first. If you do that, you will be betrayed sometimes. But the value of engendering trust is greater than the cost of being betrayed sometimes.” – Mark Leslie
4. “Things get broken, and sometimes they get repaired, and in most cases, you realize that no matter what gets damaged, life rearranges itself to compensate for your loss, sometimes wonderfully.” ―Hanya Yanagihara
5. “My story is filled with broken pieces, terrible choices, and ugly truths. It’s also filled with a major comeback, peace in my soul, and a grace that saved my life.” – Steve Maraboli
6. “Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.” – Maya Angelou
7. “All of us must act selfishly to learn charity, must lie to learn honor, must betray and be betrayed to learn to value trust and commitment.”– Bill Vaughan
8. “You don’t repair that relationship by sitting down and talking about trust or making promises. Actually, what rebuilds it is living it and doing things differently.” – Patricia Hewitt
9. “Broken trust doesn’t have to mean the end of your life story. It’s time to write the next chapter.” – Anonymous
10. “I was never one to patiently pick up broken fragments and glue them together again and tell myself that the mended whole was as good as new. What is broken is broken, and I’d rather remember it as it was at its best than mend it and see the broken pieces as long as I lived.” Margaret Mitchell
11. “You are not crazy. The things that happened to you, hurt. The things they said that broke your heart, broke your heart…You lived through trauma, pain, and unbelievable hurt that has changed you forever. That makes you a fighter, with a memoir of scars; a warrior birthed in the mess of life. What a brave soul you are.” – Kayil York
12. “I believe everything happens for a reason. People change so you can learn to let go. Things go wrong so you can appreciate them when they’re right. You believe lies so you eventually learn to trust no one but yourself.” – Marilyn Monroe
The Take Away:
Trust is a delicate thing – so difficult to build yet so easy to break. Many of us will encounter betrayal at some point in our lives. It will hurt, but it is no reason to stop trusting again. After all, one of the most vital components of a happy relationship is trust.
We hope these broken trust quotes gave you insight and inspiration to move on and helped restore your faith in the good things in life.