SurvivingInfidelity.com Forum Archives

Return to Forum List

What exactly is forgiveness?

You are not logged in. Login here or register.

Hurtbuthopeful35 posted 8/7/2014 13:52 PM

His would you define forgiveness of an affair?

Are you saying "you're off the hook?"
Or "I believe you when you say it was wrong and will never do it again?"
Or "I love you despite what has happened?"

What do you think?

ascian posted 8/7/2014 13:57 PM

"I will no longer live my life in anguish over the actions you undertook."

Forgiveness, to me, is something done for myself not for other people. It's a letting go of pain, and a dedication to moving forward in my life.

Hurtbuthopeful35 posted 8/7/2014 14:02 PM

So, when you come to the point when you decide you will no longer dwell on it (understanding there may be triggers)? When you are ready to not talk about it day in and day out?

rachelc posted 8/7/2014 14:02 PM

my definition is very different than others, but no less worthy:
I understand how you got to the point that you would make that choice. I have empathy for the position you were in when you did that.

I do love him despite of what he did. But I will never understand how he could do it twice. But, I move forward kind of not thinking about it and gathering more positive memories with him.

It is not a choice to me, it has become a process, one that I took off the table and if it happens it happens. If not, there is no bitterness or resentment that necessarily needs to be tied to it, although I do have some of that now.

Also, I find that people's view of forgiveness changes as they move through this. I won't be surprised by anything in this regard as time goes by.

BtraydWife posted 8/7/2014 14:02 PM

Forgiveness to me is earned. Forgiveness means things are cool now between us.

Acceptance is what I do to let my anger surrounding a situation go. It's what I do to release myself from the poisoning pain.

The two can happen independently of each other, simultaneously, or at the same time but at different rates.


You can accept without forgiving, but you can not forgive without accepting.

tushnurse posted 8/7/2014 14:03 PM

Forgiveness, to me, is something done for myself not for other people. It's a letting go of pain, and a dedication to moving forward in my life.

^^^^THIS^^^^^

I felt it was the last piece of healing for me. It's accepting what happened, and letting it no longer define me. It had to happen at the end of all of this, it couldn't happen sooner, it wouldn't have been real.

I always wince when I see fairly new folks say they have forgiven.....For me, I don't see how that's possible. They may be committed to forgiving at some point, but I feel true forgiveness has to happen after you have healed yourself, and your heart.

Crushed15Feb13 posted 8/7/2014 14:18 PM

It is not a choice to me, it has become a process, one that I took off the table and if it happens it happens. If not, there is no bitterness or resentment that necessarily needs to be tied to it, although I do have some of that now.

^^^This is the way I look at it, too.

Hurtbuthopeful35 posted 8/7/2014 14:19 PM

Thank you all. I asked bc I noticed a couple of threads around this theme and wondered what it really meant.

My husband has asked for forgiveness. I have not replied beyond hugging him tight when he says this. First, I don't feel I can truly forgive while I'm still thinking about it non stop. And second, because I'm not sure what it looks like.

I wonder what WH "wants" when he asks for forgiveness. I will ask him.

Forgiveness is more than just the words.

rachelc posted 8/7/2014 14:22 PM

I wonder what the intent is when someone asks for forgiveness, particularly if the forgiveness is for the giver of it.

We've not asked that of each other. I have asked him to please consider forgiving himself.

JustWant2BHappy posted 8/7/2014 15:08 PM

I think that with forgiveness comes acceptance and understanding of the A. I believe that if you are working toward R, one of the goals should be forgiveness. If there isn't forgiveness will there always be resentment? My IC continues to push each week on working towards forgiving myself. I have a hard time thinking about forgiving myself when the person that I hurt has not forgiven me. It just doesn't seem fair.

jendo posted 8/7/2014 15:13 PM

I'm almost four months post dday and I cannot even imagine forgiveness at this point. WH is doing everything right. In many ways I almost love him more now than I ever have- he has evolved into a much better version of himself through lots of introspection and work. I accept what he did, but cannot even imagine forgiving him. I am coming to understand how he got to where he was. I understand that he was broken and vulnerable. But I can't imagine forgiving. Either no where near it or it's just not happening for me. I don't know yet. I wonder if it just hits you when you are truly ready? I wonder if done never are?

Rebreather posted 8/7/2014 15:39 PM

I don't know. I suspect it is utterly different for each of us. I don't subcribe to biblical concepts, so that one is out for me.

I have never been a fan of forgiveness and I told my spouse very early on that he would never hear me say those words. And in over 7 years, I have not.

My IC, however, simply considers it "a desire to stop punishing." If that is it? I've been there for some time. I don't want either of us to hurt over this any more. I will never forget it, nor will he. But it doesn't drive our lives. I love him. I honor him. I respect him. I feel something more than acceptance for all of this. I'm at peace with it. I think that might be my version. But it crept in slowly on little cat feet.

AFrayedKnot posted 8/7/2014 15:48 PM

Forgiveness is the relinquishing of debt. She no longer owes me anything more than what is expected in a normal relationship. I no longer judge and categorize her as a wayward. She is just my partner.

Wodnships posted 8/7/2014 15:57 PM

To me forgiveness is

"I will let go of my resentment toward you for what you have done."

It doesn't mean you forget, or condone or justify the actions.

steppingup posted 8/7/2014 15:59 PM

Forgiveness is when you let them know that the burden or cost of the offense is paid for (by you) for something that could never be repaid.

bionicgal posted 8/7/2014 16:08 PM

Hmmm. I like a lot of these.
And I have felt it creeping in "on cat feet." For me, it is the combination of him making a safe environment for me, with me being willing to have empathy for where he was at the time of the affair.
It is also moving past my personal hurt about it to a healthier place, and putting the A in it's rightful place in the bigger picture.

If I had to quantify it, I'd say I am 78% there.

Didact posted 8/7/2014 17:24 PM

Steps that I think I need to have it happen for me:

I accept what you have done to me.
I see that you have done everything you can to make amends for it, and have truly committed to preventing it from happening again.
I know that you truly understand the pain you caused me.
You have forgiven yourself.
I forgive you.

Return to Forum List

© 2002-2018 SurvivingInfidelity.com ®. All Rights Reserved.