He has hurt you for the last time. You’ll never trust him again. It is not fair. Why do you always end up with fools like this? You wanna forgive, but you just can’t.
I see you. I’ve been there. On the edge of forgiveness, but not jumping into the water. It’s a miracle that I was even considering forgiving him. He had done the ultimate wrong to me. I could not bare to even think of letting him off the hook. Why should I let him off the hook? He should suffer out the rest of his days. He should know that he is not forgiven, nor will he ever be forgiven. He’ll have to live with the guilt for the rest of his life.
This is how I used to think when I had been hurt. This is how many people feel now when they get hurt. We think that forgiveness is a jail that we can put him in for crossing our personal boundaries. We think that drawing away from him is a punishment and that he will miss our presence in his life so much that he will be vexed with a lifetime of sadness. So we trot the path of unforgiveness, hoping to hurt him for the last time.
It is a do unto others as they have done unto you scenario. In this scene, you are the one that is living with the hurt and resentment. He is the prisoner and you are the warden of this prison that you have made for him. Even if this were really so, remember that warden is also in the jail and doesn’t have much fun either.
Unforgiveness is like you drinking the poison and hoping that he dies. You are the one who is living with the pain. You are the one that is living with the resentment. Your life is being affected by the very thought of the situation. While he has moved on with his life. You are stuck in the limbo of a past situation; wishing that it had gone differently. Oprah says, forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could have been any different.
Releasing the Pain
It has already happened, and as much as it hurt you then. It is over and done with. To forgive is to give up resentment and stop feeling angry toward someone or about a situation. It’s not letting him off the hook or exonerating him from wrong doing. It is about releasing yourself from the prison. You see, when you forgive and set him free from the prison that you made for him, you will then realize that you were truly the prisoner.
You can’t forgive him, because you are holding on to the pain. Part of you feels that you have to. Then there is another part of you that feels like you want to be free from this prison of resentment, but you do not know how.
How to Forgive
The first step is to redefine forgiveness. Forgiveness is stopping the insanity of trying to change the past in the present. You must accept that it did happen. Yes, it happened. That does not mean that you ever have to like what happened, but just accept that it occurred.
Step two is ‘What do I do now?’ What can you do about it in the present. Most often, the answer to that question is to let him go from your life. This way, you do not allow him to ever treat you that way again. I understand the desire to hold him your life. You have your reasons. But if you desire to feel the freedom of self-love again. You will not keep someone in your life who you desire to imprison.
Step three is to let it all go. When you think of the pain that he caused, then immediately begin say the words that you’ve been longing to hear from him. I love you. Please forgive me. I am sorry. Thank you. Repeat these words softly to yourself when you feel the pain. When you remember the hurt. Mutter these healing phrases to yourself. This is the beginning of the cleansing. Before you know it, you will have forgiven him.