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Thread: Discussion - forgiveness and forgiving

  1. #11
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    Forgive and reunite are not the same thing

    Thumbs up for Manya.
    Also- forgiveness is a complex idea.
    Sometimes a person needs to recognize the harm he caused others and than he can be forgiven.
    Sometimes he needs to face a harsh sentence and than he can be forgiven
    but pay attention- forgiveness is a sword with two edges-
    sometimes if you forgive your abuser- you end up not forgiving yourself!
    There is no right or wrong in forgiveness
    but imho-
    forgiveness starts from within, forgiving yourself for being abused and for surviving.

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  3. #12
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    Hi...

    This is an interesting discussion. I had the same one with others. I told them I have forgiven my abuser, but won't forget. Some can't forgive...they have hatred towards their abusers...and I certainly understand, but I figure they still have control if they can illicit an emotion from me. I guess to each their own.

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    Jane (05-29-2016)

  5. #13
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    Imo forgiving is not like excusing someone for a misdemanor or minor slip up...have no probs with that. Forgiveness is an altogether personally confronting thing. For me the topic of forgiveness only arises when someone does something that really impacts on my life and sense of self. Sits best with me if I think of it as not minimising or downplaying the original harm and hurt, sanitising the behaviour (indeed sometimes the focus needed to forgive makes the behaviour sting a bit more) it is about accepting that we are all human, are all worthy of love (took me a while to get there on this one) and until I acheive some exalted never gonna happen level of perfection am standing in judgement of myself when I judge others. Generally takes me a bit to process and get to the stage of forgiving...sometimes do not tell the involved person I have done so depends on whether I see any good coming out of contacting them. Suppose my main motive to forgive is based on my belief that life and people are neither all good nor all bad (including me) that by accepting this (in my eyes) truth forgiveness makes sense...clears my path to move forward.

    Does that make sense? Hope so.
    Rest in my arms precious child; cradled and warm. You are safe. The war is over.

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  7. #14
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    How to forgive?

    As a child, I was abused at the hands of my father, his jealous ex, and his weird friends. I don't think I'll ever be able to forgive them but now, years later, I'm being told by multiple people that I need to forgive or I'll never be able to move on. I don't know how! I have a deep seated anger and hatred of all them, especially my father who introduced my to my other abusers. How do I forgive him and move on with my life?

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  9. #15
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    I was abused as a child and once I got out, I was a pretty angry person. I had been angry at everyone, everything, with no real aim at anyone in particular. While I was still trapped in the abuse, I was pretty brutal to myself with that anger, and once I got out, little cracks appeared and the anger just randomly affected the ppl around me. At one point, completely accidentally, I physically hurt someone with whom I had become friends. I was devastated, cuz I had promised myself that I'd never hurt anyone the way I had been hurt. I realized that my anger wasn't just affecting me, it was affecting others--but I couldn't make it go away. It was there constantly.

    I had been going to a therapist and mentioned all this to her, and she mentioned that maybe the anger was cuz I hadn't forgiven anyone. I balked at her suggestion because I felt angry, and I felt that if I forgave those who had hurt me, they'd have power over me, it'd mean that what they had done wasn't really all that bad, that by forgiving them I was giving them a free pass. It took me a while, after exploring forgiveness with other people and other things, for me to come to the conclusion that forgiveness was for me, for my health--that those who hurt me weren't really gonna know whether I forgave them or not, and prolly didn't care.

    For me, forgiving meant that I was able to work through the anger that I still had, but it didn't mean that I said that what they did to me was ok. It didn't mean that I forgot all the things that had happened to me, but those memories were no longer the foremost in my mind. I struggled with forgiving them because I thought it really did give them a free pass, but it didn't. I still know that they've done bad things, but those bad things aren't the primary reason for my existence now. The main thing that I found helpful was that I wasn't angry 100% of the time any more, after I was able to forgive those who hurt me. I also thought that forgiving meant that I didn't mention what had happened to me ever again if I really forgave someone, but then I discovered that I could mention it, and that has really helped as I work through the effects the abuse left with me.

    I think forgiving was a big first step in my healing from the trauma that abuse left me with, cuz it took the control over my emotions away from those who had abused me. It was something I did in spite of what they had done to me. Maybe it was my first choice outside of their influence, I'm not sure. Never really talked about this process before. Hehe. Even if it wasn't my first choice, it was a major decision I made on my own. I'm not saying that poof, I forgave them, and suddenly things were all better. For me, forgiving was a process and it took me a while. It came down to the point of not hating those who had abused me and not having huge amounts of anger for what happened to me--I guess I'm just saying that what happened to me consumed me and how I felt before I forgave them, and afterwards it didn't. I still need therapy, cuz I have things that affect my daily life, but before forgiving, therapy was less effective, cuz the anger was kinda blocking any other progress. For me, forgiving them allowed me to make progress, they don't even know whether I'm holding anger towards them or not, cuz I don't have any contact with those who abused me. That's kinda why I think forgiving them is really for me, and that's the biggest thing that helped me to forgive them.
    ~Tasha

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    Hi MoRomori

    Was a process for me too...took a while for me to feel ready but I also forgave my attackers ...like for Tasha it was a thing I did for myself...a decision for my own good. Never told them I had forgiven them. Was an internal letting go process. Reality was that what they did was cruel...will never come to terms with that...will always send shivers up my spine. My forgiveness was nothing to do with accepting their bad behaviour...idk was more to do with accepting that like me they were more than their behaviour. In my case forgiveness did not mean that I wanted to re-establish a relationship with them...was more like I broke a strong bond forged by our shared history...released myself to move on - work to heal.

    Is my forgiveness a 'done deal'? On a good day yes...other days I need to remember my decision to forgive and consciously let go.

    My story - for what it is worth.
    Rest in my arms precious child; cradled and warm. You are safe. The war is over.

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  13. #17
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    might be a cold response, but sometimes helps me to look at things coldly, when im stuck:

    to me forgiveness is basically refusal to continue beating at a dead horse. for example, someone molested me when i was 4yo - im not having urges to embrace him now or turn the other cheek or any such thing. nopes. however, its been decades ago, and i figure he kicked the bucket by now. so im not planning gory revenge scenarios when im having insomnia. screw him, whether hes dead or alive, i got my own life. some people i dont like are still alive for sure, and i could even find their current address i guess, if i put my mind to it. doubt i could press charges though, been a while ago, no evidence left, nobody would convict them just on my word alone. so i choose to move on. its not a choice actually, i have no choice, theres not a darn thing i can do. i can seethe with rage or i can say "screw them" and focus on something more productive/pleasant. thats what forgiveness is to me...
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    Have merged some threads that discuss the subject of forgiveness...members' thoughts and ideas based on their experiences.
    Rest in my arms precious child; cradled and warm. You are safe. The war is over.

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  17. #19
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    forgiving to me is a bit like not staying with your hand on a hot plate...moving away and doing something to salve the pain.

    Think it is normal to get angry with who or whatever caused you pain...and be driven to release it. For me this releasing is an essential stage of my letting go process. Do not have to do anything monumentally big (under my breath expletive sometimes are enough)...sometimes feel I need to express my angst a lt (sometimes to anyone who will listen). What I invariably find is that at some point the being angry/sad/whatever stops making me feel better - does the opposite fuels my aggro - keeps me stuck and tied to the thing/person that/who traumatised me. At this point I have come to learn that for my own sake I need to let it go. When it is no longer a release...is keeping my pain alive...using up too much of my oxygen.
    Rest in my arms precious child; cradled and warm. You are safe. The war is over.

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  19. #20
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    For myself I find the word Forgiveness too loaded to be of much use, especially as it a word that has some kind of moral imperative behind it that is often manipulated in my experience by people, myself included at times, who want to move quickly past or completely skip the taking responsibility for your actions stage of conflict resolutions. If someone wants me to forgive them for a hurt they have caused they have to convinced me that they have owned responsibility for their actions and understand why I was hurt, apologise, make recompense, prove themselves. I am pretty tolerant and accepting, I think, when I fall out with people it's usually for repeated disrespect or maybe a single act if it is way of line enough but mostly it's the end of a long line of being uncomfortable about our dynamic.

    For me understanding is more helpful than forgiveness, I understand some the thought processes of why my cousin's friend thought it ok to rape a 10year old girl, I understand why my parents couldn't look after us and were so scared of all professional that we were never registered for health care, I understand that my sisters were triggered by my talking about my rape and so wanted to shout me down as selfish for dragging it up again when my cousin reappeared in our lives. Understanding their thoughts and motivations helps me. It's not really about me as a person, it's about them and their issues. I don't forgive them but I understand and forgive myself by saying I don't want to be around that any more.

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