Forgiveness is HARD
True forgiveness is a beautiful thing. It is also one of the hardest things one can do. In all my years of life (a full 28 of them) I can honestly say I never truly managed true forgiveness.
The earliest knock I took in life was at age 5. I was molested which consequently led to a suicide attempt and childhood depression. Until recently I thought I had forgiven the person who had done that. However when a love interest asked me about it, I grew very aggressive and hostile and reluctant to talk. His questions, in my mind, felt like being violated all over again. This was not my love interest’s intent. I do not know if he intended the following conclusion to happen, but it turns out that even though I can talk about what happened to a certain extent and it does not bother me in daily life, after all these years (23 of them) I never really forgave that person for what transpired.
Repressing memories is a specialty of anyone who went through something awful. However, repressed memories does not equate forgiveness. It merely helps one to “forget” about it, but the latent resentment remains and festers. If I truly forgave that person, the feelings of hostility should not have surfaced …and I should not have felt like I was damaged goods after a simple question from my love interest. As uncomfortable and mad as I was at him, I am now grateful towards him, for he helped me by uncovering a problem.
This uncovering of the problem had another backlash he did not expect. Having felt violated by his simple and sincere question I started to withdraw from him. It is a defense. Push that away which makes you uncomfortable.
In retrospect I wouldn’t have pushed him away if I truly forgave the perpetrator in the first place. The resentment his questions arose in me along with the feelings of worthlessness would not have been an issue. Forgiving the perpetrator means forgiving yourself as well and not allowing negativity to feed on you. By simply repressing that memory I have allowed negativity to feed on me to such an extent that my thoughts are practically 24/7 dark and depressing. In effect I am still a victim of that injury, that so long ago occurred.
Silent resentment is the worst kind.