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Forgiveness

Forgiveness can come immediately after wrongdoing, it can come sometime later, or it may not come at all.  Without forgiveness, anger and resentment are typically the predominating emotions after someone perceives they have been wronged.  Forgiveness is often thought of as “letting go.”

Why Forgive?

  • Resentment eats away at a person when unresolved
  • Forgiveness strengthens relationships
  • Stress is lowered when a conflict can be resolved
  • Substance abuse is less likely in the absence of resentment

Is Forgiveness Enough?

Depending on the situation, forgiveness may not be the best option.  For example, victims of sexual abuse are not always told to forgive their abusers because they are taught that it’s ok to be angry at their abusers.  There are also times when a person must accept that forgiveness is not enough to reconcile a dispute and a relationship must be ended.  In other times, a person must find a way to forgive themselves.  They may feel they have done irreparable harm to a loved one or that they have gone against their own code of ethics and find it impossible to forgive themselves for their actions.

Treatment

Therapy is often the right option when handling unresolved disputes.  It is helpful for both parties to be involved in the therapeutic process, but there are times when a client needs to engage in a more personal search for forgiveness.  If a person is unable to forgive themselves for their past actions psychotherapy is recommended to enable the client to progress as much as possible and learn from their mistakes.

We Can Help

Open Path’s therapists offer beneficial services that encourage insight, self-reflection, and healthy coping mechanisms. Our therapists furnish a supportive environment, providing healthy outlooks and understanding.

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