Written By IMAlive Volunteer Kate
When we forgive someone is it for their benefit or for our own?
Depending on the case it can go either way, or both ways. Forgiveness can take a load off someone’s shoulders on either side. When someone is forgiven, both people are more able to move on and give closure to the issue.
Forgiveness can play a part in minor offenses such as when feelings are hurt, or in more life-changing events such as abuse. In some cases, a person who has been abused or hurt in some way will choose not to forgive the other person. They think that by refusing to forgive, that the other person will feel ashamed for what they did and won’t be able to move on. The person who has been hurt may not want whoever hurt them to move on from what they did, especially if the victim of the offense is having difficulty moving on themselves.
It may seem like a strange concept but some believe that when you refuse to forgive someone, you are only hurting yourself. Often, the other person doesn’t care if you forgive them or not.
So, if they don’t care, then how do you move on from being hurt by someone? It’s hard to separate yourself from this. You have to realize that you exist outside of this person’s world and what they did to you does not define you. If you continue being angry at someone who doesn’t care, your energy is being wasted.
Here are some other ways to use your energy to be productive:
- Remember what they did and how it made you feel
- Use this knowledge to look out for warning signs that it may happen again with someone else
- If someone has said something about you, consider what they said and if there is any truth in it. Don’t let them tell you about yourself. Sometimes what people say is a reflection of themselves and not you.
Anger is like worry… if there’s nothing you can do about the problem, it’s a waste to be angry or worried about it.
It’s a deeply personal choice to forgive or not, but you have to think, who is it really hurting if I don’t forgive?