How are you able to forgive?

How are you able to forgive? –

How are you able to forgive the people in your life who have wronged you? I get this question, a lot, and I don’t even think I have an answer that will satisfy those who ask me. I’m honestly not really sure how and sometimes even why I forgive, sometimes easily, sometimes with reservations, but I do know how I feel when I do. I feel better. That statement may sound a little selfish, forgiving to make yourself feel better, but think about it for a second. If you are harboring resentment and anger and carrying that around, do you feel better? I know for me I do not. I feel worse.

Forgiveness can be such a controversial topic among people. Many religions preach forgiveness. Therapists tell you to forgive. But everyone is different and has experiences that are not our own. I know some things may be unforgivable and also unforgettable. I get that too. I myself always wonder how victim’s families forgive murderers and abusers. But maybe that is more part of the healing process for the person(s) wronged and not the person who was responsible. But I am not one to judge, I can only speak of my own experiences.

In some instances I have forgiven but not forgotten. I may be guarded around that person or not as trusting anymore, but I do release the anger and resentment. It’s not an easy process either, it takes a lot of self-reflection on my part. Forgiving does not mean I am naive or walking around with blinders on. It means that I have come to a place where I have reconciled, and at times accepted, what has happened. And for me it brings peace and healing.

Forgiving is a personal thing. It is not a reflection of anyone’s character whether they choose to forgive or not. It is not a sign of strength or weakness. I have family members who constantly bring up all the wrongs that were done to them and it affects them negatively. I have been in that situation too and I felt worse when I was. There have been many instances in my life where the person doesn’t even know I forgave them. I may never even see him/her again, but I still forgave them. I am not saying I am perfect and the poster child for compassion, far from it. But something changes inside me when I forgive. I am able to move on. Sometimes the relationship is repaired and better than ever, sometimes it just ends. I don’t forgive because I expect the person to come running back to me, that would only lead to false hope and it wouldn’t feel genuine for me, it would feel fake, and only lead to more hurt. Forgiveness has to be real, authentic, as least if you want to heal and move on.

I have also written about forgiving myself. For me this was the most important forgiveness of all. Playing your mistakes over and over in your head and being angry at yourself does not help you move forward. Come to terms with what you have done, or didn’t do, and just move forward. There is no timetable for that either. You do it when, or even if you are able.

Forgive and heal yourself first, accept that you are flawed and that mistakes will happen. Forgiveness of others may follow, and if it doesn’t, that is okay too. It is your choice and your life, your experiences, just make sure it is the best choice for you. I can only speak for me and I feel better, happier and most of all, at peace.






About geminilvr

I have been through many relationships in my life, most long term, and they have all shaped who I am in some way. I try to find humor through the pain and heartbreak and find the strength to do it all over again. My blog is sprinkled with past relationships, current status and thoughts on it all! I hope my experiences make you smile, laugh or cry along with me and relate to the complexity that is life, my life, perfectly imperfect.
This entry was posted in blogging, communication, dailyprompt, forgiveness, goals, heartbreak, hurt, life lesson, love, relationships, sorry, Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to How are you able to forgive?

  1. Very well said. I have written about forgiveness too here if you are interested in my take. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I have never been able to forgive…however most of the time, if it’s a friend who betrays me, it just ends. I never seek retribution or retaliation. Our friendship is just over.
    Other betrayals…the ones from the people I trusted more than anybody….that is different. I have heard that forgiveness is all about “freeing you.” No it isn’t. It’s about letting the betrayer off the hook. It’s about giving THEM what THEY want.
    They don’t get a free pass from me. They don’t get to destroy somebody and get forgiveness and stroll down the path of happiness with a smile on their face. Or they don’t get to ignore drunken torture and abuse and then wait until they’re on their death bed and ask for favors and forgiveness.
    Do I sound bitter? I’m not really. Everybody who knows or has ever known me, knows my stand on betrayal. That is the one thing I never forgive.
    I offer total loyalty and I expect that in return. If you can’t give it, we’re done.

    Liked by 1 person

    • geminilvr says:

      I completely understand your side of it too Laurel. It is a personal choice and there are times that someone does not deserve your energy or time. I know your story is very difficult and I can’t even imagine putting myself in your shoes. As I said in my piece there is no right or wrong when it comes to forgiveness, we can only know what is best for ourselves and what we can handle.


      • Exactly. I admire those who can forgive and find peace with that gesture.
        Inability to forgive is just another one of my many character flaws. Sigh. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • geminilvr says:

        See but I would never say it is a character flaw to not forgive. Until we walk in someone’s shoes we shouldn’t judge – it is not a sign of weakness or strength it is your own personal journey and it is yours, no one else’s. I admire that you have been through so much and are able to keep your humor and have the courage to write about it.


      • I should probably expound on that a little. Betrayal is the unpardonable sin with me. My children….holy moly. My children have screwed up royally at times and I forgave them….we all make mistakes.
        Betrayal is never a mistake…no matter what anybody says. It is always a choice.

        Liked by 1 person

      • geminilvr says:

        that makes sense

        Liked by 1 person

    • While I certainly understand your perspective, consider the other side of the argument. Forgiving does not mean that you are willing to forget, or even allow that person in your life again. Often betrayal is going to mean the end of the relationship. And assuming that you are no longer in contact – forgiveness isn’t about giving them what they want. In fact, they aren’t ever going to know. It is about you. Because it allows you to let go of the hurt and the anger and all of the rest of the emotions. The emotions that are ultimately going to drag you down with them.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Well….”they” might know. Loser wanted my forgiveness. He wanted to be able to bring his tramp to my house and sleep in my bed with her while I slept on the sofa. He wanted me to forgive him and for us to be “friends.” Now…the whole time, he wouldn’t agree to a divorce because he “couldn’t imagine not being married to me.”
        If I forgave him, he would expect us to be a family again. He and his tramp already turned my children against me. Forgiveness? Not a chance.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. eddaz says:

    I do love to forgive, it actually is very easy for me to do but forgetting is the problem. It always leaves a scar unfortunately.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. gilian says:

    Great piece. Whoever has been forgiven much loves much. For me, when I saw how God has forgiven me, I had to give the same unconditional forgiveness to others and let God be the judge. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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