Lately I have noticed a good few number of people who were hurt somehow and who hold onto a lot of anger and hate in their hearts, people among my friends and family. I remember feeling that way too not so long ago. I have been backstabbed a few times in the past, and I had so much bitterness that I was no longer my happy self. It was really hard to let go of that anger and forgive those who hurt me. :( But one day my mom told me about the power of forgiveness. She told me that if I did not want to feel this way anymore, if I wanted to fully heal and be able to live my life without being bound to my hate, then I should learn to forgive others. At first I thought she was crazy. "How could me forgiving them make ME feel better?" After having a long heart-to-heart talk about forgiveness, I understood what she meant and began learning to forgive. I want to share with everyone here what it was that I learned and shared with my friends and family. :D
"Why Should I Forgive Them? 😒"
Being double-crossed by someone you care about sucks. You start to wonder why would they do this to you, or why they would say this or that to or about you, and you might even start to and wonder if maybe you deserved it. It can leave you heartbroken, depressed, and sometimes completely drained. 😪 After every betrayal that occurs, the betrayed usually have 3⃣ choices:
- They can hate the one who did them wrong and never forgive them.
- They can eventually forgive them, but still have nothing to do with them.
- They can eventually forgive them and give them the chance to right their wrongs.
You can choose to hate them for what they did and never forgive them, no one could blame you for it. Especially if they stole from you, cheated on you, or abused you. Those actions could make anyone hate them. 👿 But, you should still learn to forgive them as well as others. Not necessarily for them, but for yourself. Learning to forgive others for their bad deeds, even when you feel like they do not deserve it, is a virtue. It is said by many psychologists and other professionals that forgiveness is the number one trait linked to happiness in humans. 😇 Forgiving others allows your heart to let go of all the pain it had and truly heal itself, and allows you to fully move on. Holding onto all that hate and anger will not help you in any way. :/ It could leave you a bitter shell of your former self, possibly twist your views about love or life, and even affect your health. 😖 Do yourself a favor and let go of the hate and anger, and forgive them. If not for them, do it for yourself. If you don't want to forgive them, then you don't have to. Just keep in mind that continuing to hold onto that hate will not do you any good. :(
"Should I Give Them Another Chance? 😕"
If you had decided that you WILL forgive them, you still have the choice of either cutting them off or giving them the chance to make things right. What I'm about to say next mostly applies to dating relationships 👭👫👬:
Depending on how much you loved each other, how happy you were during the relationship, how often you fought versus how often you showed affection, and whether or not they made you feel like a beautiful, desired, and overall better person should help you decide which choice would be best.👌
If your love for each other was strong and genuine, you did not have any major fights during the relationship, they never harmed you, they were never emotionally distant or unavailable, you were both faithful to one another, you both want the same things in life, you did not feel restricted from doing what you love or spending time with your friends and family, and they made you feel like you were at your best during the relationship, then maybe you should consider giving them a chance to right their wrongs. People aren't always their mistakes. 😊👍
However, giving them that last chance does not mean that you should let yourself be blind to the possibility of them messing up again in either the same way or in a worse way. But you should also not expect them to mess up again, because plenty of people actually do change for the better. Prepare for the worst, but still hope for the best. 😁
Now, if your love for each other was not that strong, you fought all the time, you do not want the same things in life (ex: you want to get married and have kids while they do not), you were barely affectionate with each other, they were unfaithful, or they constantly made you feel like a terrible person during the relationship, then you probably should not give the relationship another chance. 😔👎 It is very likely to end again one way or another. And if they cheated on you or abused you, then you should also do what you have to do to keep them out of your life completely. 🙅
Forgiveness is the best form of love. It takes a strong person to say they're sorry, and an even stronger person to forgive.
"How Do I Make This Work? 😣"
If you feel that your relationship with them is truly worth saving, if you still love them and want to be able to not only fix things but make them stronger, then you might be saying to yourself "I want to forgive them, be able to trust them again, and make this work. But I do not know how. 😩"
Whether you have caught them in a major lie or web of lies, they said really hurtful things, they did both, or they did something else awful, learning how to trust your partner again after they have betrayed you can be difficult and feel almost impossible. 😓 But if you are set on trying, and are both committed to getting past this and coming out stronger than ever, here’s what you should do to help start putting the trust back into your relationship/friendship ☺️:
Get angry 😡
This does not mean stay angry, but allow yourself to be mad for a reasonable period of time. Do not hold back. Let out everything you are feeling with them, even if it includes screaming like a crazy person. 👹 And if you want, write it down in a private blog or journal. 📝 That way you are not bottling anything up, and are giving yourself the chance to properly heal without hanging onto any resentment that could lead to problems in the future. You need to work through it on your own before you even start working on it with them.
Accept that they're human 🚶
Haven’t you ever done anything awful, said anything wrong, or purposely deceived someone at some point? 🙍 None of us are perfect, even those who try to be. We all make mistakes, and we all deserve a chance to be forgiven. Your partner may have, at most times, seemed like Mr./Mrs. Perfect, but you have to recognize that they do have the ability to slip up. And if they do and genuinely regret it, then unless they harmed you or cheated on you, you should consider giving them a second chance. Wouldn’t you want the same from them if the situation were reversed? 🙇
Team up 🙏
If you’ve been thinking that since they are the ones who messed up, you’ll be sitting back while they fix the relationship solo, you wouldbe wrong. ❌ Rebuilding trust takes effort and commitment from both ends. You need to communicate and work together if you really want to overcome your issues. ✔️ While you look for ways to help regain your ability to trust, they need to focus on proving that they're once again worthy of that trust.
Keep it in the past 🕚⏪
This does not mean to never talk about it, but once you’ve both said all you really can say about what they have done, there’s no reason to keep rehashing it and rubbing how wrong they were in their face. You can not really let go of something and get beyond it if you keep bringing it up and arguing about it. Plus, you have to remember: People are not always their mistakes. You have to try to separate the person from the behaviour, and guilt-tripping them will end up doing more harm than good. ✋
Be patient 💆
Rebuilding trust takes time, sometimes a lot more than both of you would like. But you need to realize and make peace with the fact that things can not immediately go back to how they were before they betrayed you, and that you will not start feeling better about it overnight. 🌚 While it may be hard to remain patient, keep in mind that in the long run, through working through your problems, your relationship has the potential to be stronger than ever. 💪
Don't retaliate 👊🚫
When we have been hurt, we usually have an urge to punish the person who had hurt us. We want them to feel the pain that they made us feel, but this kind of thinking hurts everyone involved and damages trust even more. It’s been said, “Holding a grudge is like drinking poison and then hoping the other person dies!” 🍷😲💀 When you have been wronged in a relationship, give clear guidelines for how trust can be restored, but do not punish them. You do not have to make it easy for them to earn back your trust, but do not make it impossible either. 😥
"Closing Thoughts 👏"
Betrayal is painful, and hard to get over. But while it may feel impossible to do, forgiveness is a virtue that, with time, heals all emotional wounds. 💔🕒⏩❤️ Time alone does not heal them. Forgiving those who did you wrong allows your heart to let go of the darkness inside it and truly finish healing. 💓 As for giving those who did you wrong another chance, that's a whole other thing that no one else can decide for you. If they treated you right during the relationship, stayed faithful to you, and did not keep you from living your life and doing what you love, then maybe the relationship is worth saving. 😌 If they didn't treat you right, were emotionally distant, cheated on you, or were abusive in any way, then you probably should not hurt yourself trying to make things work with them. 😔 But who knows, it could go either way. If you want to give them a chance to make up for what they had done, then you know what to do. If you don't want to give them another chance, then that's fine too. Still forgive them and let yourself fully heal. 💗
I have only recently learned to be more forgiving, but my heart has healed a lot already. While I still have a ways to go, I no longer feel as angry and bitter. :) I hope that this has been of some help to anyone who is hurting, and I pray that your heart fully heals too. 💖