Friendship Equals Mutual Trust and Respect
Trust and respect are at the heart of any meaningful friendship. Without either trust or respect, an authentic friendship does not genuinely exist. When you trust someone, you have confidence (or faith) in the goodness, reliability and truthfulness of that individual. You know that that person will keep the confidence and speak the truth to you even when it may be costly for them to do so. Also, you understand that they can be relied upon under challenging circumstances. Such a person is safe. They will never do anything to harm you deliberately. Rather they will always seek your wellbeing. Likewise, when you respect someone, you value, admire, appreciate and think highly of that individual. You will have due regard for their feelings, desires and rights. You take their ideas and counsel seriously and recognise their qualities and giftedness while accepting their weaknesses.
Obviously, trust and respect operate mutually on both sides of the friendship. Indeed, trust and respect must be maintained and guarded if a relationship is to be ongoing. Thus, author Steig Larsson writes, “Friendship – my definition – is built in two things. Respect and trust. Both elements have to be there. And it has to be mutual. You can have respect for someone, but if you don’t have trust, the friendship will crumble.”