In midst of the bad news we’ve been heard over the past few days, Christina Grimmie’s death, Orlando massacre, Stanford Rape Case, and toddler drowned by an alligator, how does one come to the point of forgiveness and acceptance towards the perpetrator? From my own experience and my observations of others, forgiveness and acceptance take time.
I’m not the type of person who says you need to forgive someone in order to move on, its more of if you accept the situation, then life goes on. If forgiveness comes after you accept the situation, that’s good. If not, that’s fine as well.
I dislike forgiveness because it’s forced upon me from my religion, my friends, and my parents. I understand that they mean well, but forgiving someone when I’m not ready to forgive is more detrimental than not forgiving at all. Also, I’ve observed too many instances when people said they’ve forgiven the person that harmed them, but their actions don’t speak it at all. An example is my mother. She says that she forgives my late aunt for her past transgressions towards her, but she keeps on bringing up how my late aunt had a bad attitude, was inconsiderate, and rude towards her. That’s not forgiveness, but resentment. The bad part is that since my aunt is dead, she can’t defend herself . I also dislike forgiveness because many people skip the part that it’s actually a process, similar to grief. Are their instances where you’re able to forgive the transgressor quickly? Yes, such as when someone breaks your favorite gift. Other instances such as a breakup, an assault, a bad financial decision, not so much.
Another thing I don’t really believe in is closure. I feel that it brings upon more pain than needed because there are expectations that the person asking wants to hear. Processing the pain through writing, therapy, talking and other comforting activities is healthier.
Forgiveness ebbs and flows in my life. There are days when I feel that I’ve forgiven the people who’ve hurt me and there are other days, usually triggered by unfortunate events, where I feel they don’t deserve my forgiveness. I’m okay with that. As long as I’m co-existing with my feelings and living the best life, then I’m good.
Photo By Mary Hayes Davis [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons