How to forgive someone?


67 posts in this topic

19 hours ago, BigUtahMan said:

I have found forgiveness is a skill that must be practiced, and often.
Forgiveness is more of a decision of you not trying to carry the weight of being wronged, than relieving the offender of anything we otherwise want them to feel.
Also my faith also teaches me, Christ paid for their sin, and suffered for my emotions. So ignoring those facts is insulting my God and my faith which is now a me issue regardless of the offense I suffered through. My resolution needs to be found through my faith in God, not in the actions of others.

Absolutely! We must die daily to our flesh which includes harboring on hurts, etc. forgiveness is a must!

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I see life as a long list of choices, some we regret, others we don't.

After moving to Canada to be with my wife, I brought my mother to live with us, we paid for her rent, we specifically got a place that catered to her. Then the market in Alberta crashed, wife and I both lost our jobs, living on EI, mother acts like Gollum with her face into a registered sex offender from Georgia who diddled with his own daughter, who also happens to be her fourth cousin or whatever. She didn't care that wife and I put ourselves on the line to bring her to Canada, being on the hook for sponsoring her for PR, every penny she ever took from the government we had to each pay back every cent. If she killed someone running them over with a car, we'd have to pay for it.. thats the oath for sponsorship undertaking, and rather than the 3 years my wife was on the hook for me, parents were at least 10 years. Nonetheless, I did it without question, my wife had even less reservations than I did for a mother that wasn't even hers. In the end, mother locks herself away upstairs with her head up this guys ass in a long distance relationship, we can't even beg her out of her cave to spend time with the family. Shes had a number of health issues including diabetes and such (lifetime smoker, her bp was 220/150 when we convinced her to see a doctor), none of which she wants to address, she decides for this guy she'll take herself off her heart meds, go work out like mad at Goodlife, all to the praise of her Goodlife trainers, winds up in the hospital a month later with congestive heart failure due to taking herself off her meds. The day she needs to go to the hospital my wife and I tell her lets take her now shes like naaaah, but then gets mad at us when we aren't there later to call emerg. Anyways, long story short, we were in a huge rent to own townhome in downtown Calgary so very expensive, she decides she's so involved with this guy she's gonna screw everyone else off, ignores us, doesn't do anything around the house making me and my wife pick up for her and our toddler at the same time. This mother decides she's gonna move just after we sign a new lease, but agrees to pay her portion as she's on the lease. She knows we got the place for her and couldn't afford it on our own while on EI. Doesn't care. Moves, gets mad at my wife for not helping her move in a nasty email later despite wife being at a wedding in another province that week (mother spontaneously moved up the date), then when she gets to Georgia she says she isnt paying her part of the rent as she said she would, meaning we were screwed and going to be homeless, and legally can't do anything as she's in another country now. Wife and I hunkered down and took several jobs to find another place.. the market still only had a 1% vacancy rate, people slow to run away from a recession, but we lost our place and had to throw things in storage and made a deal with a hotel. I warned my mother at the time that if she screwed us despite all we did for her and caused us to be put on the street (not just my wife and I but our daughter as well) I would disown her. The cousin she was with was quite wealthy and owned his own business, she was making bank from a work at home job, and didn't want to fork over even a few hundred for her responsibility of being on a lease with us. Her excuse was "it's just time for me to worry about me, mommy can't be there for you every time". And that was the final straw, she was disowned.

So I can forgive.. I just won't forget, and I made sure everyone in the family knows what she pulled, and for a diddling pedo. I won't know when she dies, and quite honestly, I don't care. My father died when I was 10 and I'm content knowing I have no parents at 34, but I have a beautiful family of my own and we're all the stronger for what happened. Well out of that situation and doing fantastic. Personally, I don't feel like I need any deity or belief system to cope with my issues, our own strength showed to be more than adequate. It's just unfortunate I had to be stuck with a pathetic family, and a worthless ex-mother.

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“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.” ~Mahatma Gandhi
Many of us are or have been emotional eaters, an attempt to soothe our souls with food, maybe grow a physical buffer of fat to insulate us from the emotional assault. Now that you have had WLS no longer can you turn to food in times of crisis. How do you forgive someone when every Fiber of your being resists? How do you look at them lovingly when you still have the memory of their unloving action? How do you let go of the way you wish things had worked out if only they made a different choice? After all, no one is purely bad, and everyone carries their own pain which influences the decisions they make. This doesn’t condone their thoughtless, insensitive, or selfish decisions, but it makes them easier to understand.


I always forgive. I must or I suffer, or cannot let go. I forgive myself first by realizing I've issues too, that I'm imperfect. If they abused me, I allowed it but why? Once I learn the why, I understand myself, the understanding helps me forgive. Then I can forgive them, the process is the same. I understand them, then I forgive them. It doesn't mean I condone what they did or accept the negativity of the situation, nor does it mean I want them near me, but it better than thinking I'm imperfect and tolerating their bad behavior or, harboring continual anger. To me, not forgiving feels worse to me than to them, it just keeps me in a constant state of negativity, as if suspended in the reoccurring memory of how I was wronged - and that's just no good for my mental health or spirit.

To me personally, people who cannot forgive are lost, and that's terribly self destructive and sad. It's worth the work and effort to get to the other side.


Newme17 likes this 1 Like this

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I have a few modes when confronted with something that could potentially need forgiving:

Forgive

Set aside but remember

Write them off

Forgiveness has been over-sold as the way to inner peace, possibly as a part of the Christian philosophy. On the other hand, to forgive, I need to find what was done understandable and see the perpetrator working towards self-improvement. That goes for myself, too.

Usually, I remember and act with caution in the future. If someone has repeatedly backed out on their promises, I won't be giving their promises any value in the future. And I won't set them up to fail by asking for promises.

Then there are people whose actions have been actively toxic/harmful and those are the people I write out of my life and count myself lucky to be rid of.

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On 1/8/2015 at 5:08 PM, My Bariatric Life said:

I don't know the circumstances of your situation but for myself it is important to make reparations. Yes, I think it is good to journal your feelings, or write a letter telling the person they suck and never sending that one, etc. Hemingway said to write long and hard about what hurts, and counselors also recommend writing as a tool for coping with difficulties. Oftentimes you can learn a lot about yourself through writing about your feelings and processing what happened.

However, I think a letter should be sent, or even better a conversation had, in which the opening for healing is created. If the person mattered to you to begin with then that love does not die; it just gets buried under the hurt. It can be unburied again. Of course it takes both parties to unbury it. You cannot control what the other person will do, so if you choose to try to heal the relationship you cannot hold onto the outcome, because that person may not be at the emotional level of maturity to let go, or be able to focus on your needs and your pain rather than their own. But at least you will know that you tried your best. And maybe, just maybe, the relationship will be mended... if not then, than maybe down the road.

Sometimes, reparations cannot be made. My mother was never going to change or acknowledge that she was the cause of the pain. I was emotionally abused by my mother from my childhood through to her death in October 2016 - I was the fat, ugly, stupid kid who could never do anything right. (There was more, but that kind of sums it up.) She never showed me any love or pride in what I accomplished. (I'm a lawyer, fairly successful at it, mother of 2 wonderful kids, and do lots of other cool stuff.) The one that hurt the most was that while I was the one holding everything together when my father was dying from leukemia and then making the funeral arrangements because she was too "upset", she looked me dead in the face and told me not to come to my father's funeral because I was too fat and I would embarrass her.

I never forgave her. I was the person responsible for her medical decisions at the end of life and I upheld her wishes. I made sure the funeral was just as she wanted it. And the day after we buried her, I went back to the cemetery alone and danced on her grave. I will never forgive her.

However, with the help of a really good therapist, I was able to grieve the mother I did not have before I became a mother. Every day, I struggle to not be what she was and to be a better mother to my children. Am I still angry? Yes. Forgive and forget, never. Have I let it go, yes. I stopped taking the bait years ago.

I wish you peace.

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Forgiveness isn't about them, as much as it about us. When I forgive, I take the burden I was carrying off my shoulders, and free myself of continued victimization. It isn't about the other person feeling bad, caring. or changing. It's about me changing and taking myself to a higher plane of consciousness. It's not easy, but I have learned it is a skill that can be learned and can improve with practice.


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On 10/27/2015 at 9:21 AM, Nate74 said:

I'm starting to think god is preparing me to lose my wife. It doesn't make sense but i just keep giving it to god. I know my wife has no respect for me nor desire and i'm not even sure if she has that much love for me anymore but i keep praying about it. It doesn't make any sense to me but i try not to hold on to my understanding. I keep trying to live by my vows better or worse but how do you hold on to someone who rejects you all the time and makes you feel like you betrayed them?

@Nate74 It is admirable to try to hold on to your marriage, but at some point you have to realize that it takes two to make a marriage. You need to take care of yourself physically, spiritually and emotionally and staying with a person who is unable to love you is not doing that. I stuck with my estranged husband of 18yrs through 4 horrible years of marriage, hoping things would improve and giving my best. It turns out that he had already emotionally moved on and was having an affair for those years.

You need to draw healthy boundaries for what you can and can't live with in your marriage. If your wife isn't willing to work with you, you can't fix things by yourself. Open communication is the only hope for this type of thing.

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