A Friend Told Me She Doesn't Trust My Intentions

Jun 16, 2022
A Friend Told Me She Doesn't Trust My Intentions - Conversations Worth Having Blog

Today’s challenging scenario came out of the blue and made a lasting impression on the person who shared it with us.  When something like this comes to the surface and emotions are involved, it can be difficult to know how to respond in positive and proactive ways. How can we move forward after such a difficult introduction? We Name It, Flip It, and Frame It to create a positive frame.

Name It: A friend told me she doesn’t trust my intentions.

Flip It: My friend trusts me!

Frame It: Fulsome acceptance both ways, trust to share honest thoughts and feelings, and our joy returns!

Participants offered additional frames to paint the picture of what the positive opposite would look like if there was a trusting relationship. These included:

  • My friend supports and validates my decisions.
  • Mutual respect and openness to understanding.
  • Positive two-way communication.
  • Authenticity in communications.
  • My friend continues to engage and reach out to me.
  • Clarity over confusion.
  • Respect and acceptance.
  • Close bond.
  • Enthusiastic energy when together.
  • Feel heard and appreciated.
  • Validation of her feelings and her concerns.
  • Trust to share honest thoughts and feelings.
  • Worries are gone.
  • Conflict is ok.
  • Positive intentions.

Generative Questions

After the frame was selected – Fulsome acceptance both ways, trust to share honest thoughts and feelings, and our joy returns! – the group provided a full range of meaningful, generative questions.

Questions for Self

  • What assumptions am I making?
  • What mind shift do I need to make?

Questions for the Conversation with the Friend

  • How might we get back to the trust, acceptance, and joy that we had in our friendship before this conflict occurred?
  • When have you felt our relationship has been at its best? What did we do? What did we say? How did we feel? What conditions made that possible?
  • What can we do to rebuild trust?
  • What might you need from me to feel that we have trust in our relationship again?
  • What does a joyous relationship between the two of us look, sound, and feel like?
  • Please share what trust means to you. Or, how do you define a “trusting relationship?”
  • What do you value the most in our relationship?
  • What aspect of our friendship do you value?
  • What does “trust” look like for us going forward? What does it look/sound/feel like?

Cool Tip

Asking generative questions in the moment gets easier when you get into a regular habit of asking questions that make the invisible visible. Here’s a great tip for when you find yourself in a challenging conversation, Tune In:  Pause, Breathe, and Get Curious. This animated short will help get you there.


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