Last night I got mad. I was mad because someone I trusted implicitly--in this case a religious leader of a former congregation to which I belonged--violated that trust egregiously. I won't share the details (too private on my end and too maddening on his end), but suffice it to say that my trust in the relationship between pastor and member of the flock was shaken. In this particular instance, information shared in confidence was used to defame a family member, and information given--nee promises made--were discovered to have been untrue (at best) or outright lies (at worst).
It made me want to be "lawyerly". When I have dealt with antagonistic lawyers in the past, they usually follow up our conversations with a document outlining the discussion and asking me to agree that the document contains the essential elements of the conversation. They do this so that there is a written record of the conversation, and so that neither one of us can go back later and say, "I never said that or agreed to that."
Should I have to do that with my religious leader? "Uh...sorry for the hassle, bishop, but could you sign this document indicating the details of our latest meeting? You know, just in case you decide to deny the things you said later on?" Uggh. I would hate to become that person.
Trust is a big thing with me. I don't like to violate trust in simple things with my kids. I don't like it when people in positions of implied authority abuse that authority and with it my trust. I don't even like it when public figures that I have come to admire abuse that form of trust.
I generally give people more trust than they have earned; my brother has told me that that is a flaw of mine, and it certainly has gotten me into trouble (I believe his exact words were, "You often reward trust and loyalty were none was tendered."). I have trusted people with money, only to have them renege on agreements made. I have trusted people with information about me and my family ("You're far too open with the details of our life," my wife tells me), only to have them use that information either to belittle or embarrass me later.
While there are other examples of violated trust, almost always that trust has been reciprocated, and both sides have been enriched by it. I guess that's what frustrates me the most: when that mutually beneficial relationship of trust is broken to my detriment, it causes me to begin to distrust every relationship and every situation. It causes me to want to be lawyerly.