How Do You Build Trust?

Question: Dear Luise: I HAVE JUST FOUND A DAUGHTER THAT I DIDNT KNOW I HAD AFTER 18 YEARS SHE FOUND ME ON FACEBOOK HER MOTHER NEVER TOLD ME ABOUT HER WHEN WE DATED 18 YEARS AGO THEN WE BROKE UP AND I LEFT FOR COLORADO AND WAS THERE FOR 6 YEARS WE HAVE HAD DNA TEST AND IT COMFRIM’S IT SO WHAT IS IT THAT YOU SAY TO A DAUGHTER AFTER THAT LONG AND HOW DO YOU BUILD THAT TRUST SO THAT SHE KNOWS THAT I’M NOT GOING ANYWHERE AND THAT I WILL BE HERE FOR HER ANYTIME DAY OR NIGHT. J.

Answer: Dear J.: Well, she found you…so that’s a big plus. You are not intruding into her life; you were invited.

Your greatest asset would be to be consistent. She doesn’t know you and has no idea whether you can be trusted or not…so teach her by being trustworthy.

Be a good listener. We all need to get better at that. Listen and be careful not to bury her under advice. Have fun with her. And don’t overdo it. Don’t give her the impression that you feel guilty (why should you) and don’t try to “buy” her.

In other words, take it easy like you would when getting acquainted with any new person. Be honest with her and let her know you want to do your best but you are pretty green at the “father-thing.” Make it a mutual adventure if you can. Blessings, Luise

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