After several days of helping a friend collect her part of the physical detritus of a shared life prior to moving into a life on her own, I’m also emotionally drained, as both the people are our friends.  I don’t say “were our friends” because singly they remain our friends even though now detached into two separate names rather than two names joined by the small word “and.”

This was the first time I’ve experienced this type of event this personally and I can only imagine what horrors often attend this breaking apart, horrors which, thankfully, didn’t attend this one, although the tearing apart was difficult and scarring enough.  However, as we cleaned and reassembled the house with the parts still left, I was glad that although it ended with tears, it also ended with love.  That enables the moving on to happen in an entirely different atmosphere, one as positive as possible in a rending situation.

In this, as in so many other times of life, the ideas expressed in the following quote are vital as is the idea that you forgive as much or more for your sake as for the sake of the person you forgive.  You forgive not so the other person feels better, but so you do.  You forgive not so they can move on, but so you can.  You forgive not to take away their pain, but to remove yours.  You forgive not so they can begin to heal, but so you can.  You may not forgive because it’s the right thing to do, but because it’s the only healthy thing to do.  And then you move on.

Take a look at your life and see where lack of forgiveness is keeping you in pain, in anger, in a place of self-injury and then forgive and become free to move ahead with your life in a much healthier way.  You can only control how you react to a situation, to a person and to feelings, so grab that control through forgiveness.

“If you do not release the pain and anger, and move past dwelling on old hurts and betrayals, you will be allowing the ones who hurt you to live rent-free in your mind, reliving forever the persecution that the original incident started.”

                                                                                                                              – Dr. Stephen Marmer; Psychiatrist; UCLA

Comments
  1. Good post Janet. This is so true. Life is a series of incidents where if we want to get past them forgiveness is all we can do. I like that you say we do this for ourselves as I believe that is so true of my life. Thanks for the post.

  2. Difficult issue to discuss indeed. I wish I could forgive, or at least forget, but as long as that person keeps trying to control me one way or another and refuses to let me live my own life and do the right thing for the children, it will be difficult. I can imagine how draining it can be on your end too.

    • Forgiveness certainly isn’t easy, especially when the other person not only isn’t repentant but continues in the behavior. And I forgot to say that forgiving doesn’t mean that you allow yourself to stay in or get back into the situation. I pray that your situation will improve or that the Lord will grant you strength to deal with it.

      janet

  3. An interesting and intelligent perspective

  4. Jayde-Ashe says:

    I agree, lovely post. Breaking up is never easy but that is the beauty of the human condition…we always recover.

  5. Ryan says:

    forgive yourself… that’s the key to being able to moving on with anything happen in life. forgive others, we can do easily. but forgiving ourselves, that’s just twice harder.

    • Thanks for your thoughts, Ryan. It can be very difficult to forgive yourself but if you forgive yourself, at least you know you did something wrong. There are those who never even realize they need forgiveness, which is worse.

      janet

  6. Joe Owens says:

    This is a habit I continually have to work on. When i have bumps with my wife it is easy to hold a grudge and not forgive. But I only hurt myself by doing that.

  7. viveka says:

    Like everything about what you’re saying there … life has caught me that, it’s far too short for not forgiveness. Even if the other part don’t want to forgive – I forgive … because I don’t want life to move on with out .. and I don’t want to feel the hurt and pain that is connected with it all.

  8. Thanks for a great post – I agree. 100%.

  9. Robin in New Jersey says:

    Excellent post, Janet. I am sorry about your friends.

  10. frizztext says:

    sometimes it is necessary to make an end.

  11. “Living rent-free in your mind” – that’s a powerful (and unnerving) image! A very wise post, Janet. We can’t avoid being hurt sometimes, but we can resist adding to our own pain.

  12. This post really hits home for me. I was deeply hurt by a person years ago, but I thought that I had moved on and was over it. Somehow I realized that for so long, I never actually forgave them, and doing so was incredibly freeing. That simple statement took the weight of the world off my shoulders, and I hadn’t even known I was carrying it before.

    • Hannah, that’s a perfect example of what I was trying to say. I’m so thankful you were able to finally forgive and move on and it’s a choice only you can make, even if it’s very difficult. Sometimes you have to make the choice over and over.

      janet

  13. Forgive and Forget. Easier said than done. Great post!

    • It is easier said than done. Very true. Forgetting may or may not happen but forgiving needs to and often over and over for the same incident/s. I don’t mean you should get in the same situation over and over and keep forgiving but it can take a long time to really forgive something and you may have to keep working at it.

      janet

  14. vbholmes says:

    Good advice, Janet, and well said.

  15. boomiebol says:

    Thanks so much for sharing this…

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