How to Forgive an Addict
Forgiveness is an act that takes energy and strength. At some point, it’s just too draining.
After a while, however, anger becomes resentment, which eats away at your spirit endlessly.
After months or years of lies and betrayal, sometimes it’s tough to want to forgive. Sometimes it feels downright wrong–morally wrong, logically wrong. How can forgiveness truly be offered after addiction? Forgiveness, it seems, is akin to “No problem–nothing wrong was done.
What Forgiveness Is Not
Forgiveness doesn’t mean denying one’s emotions. If it feels like a grade schooler being forced to apologize for a role in a fist fight…that’s not really forgiving. Forgiveness takes time and self-inspection.
Forgive But Don’t Forget
When we hold onto bitter feelings, we subtract from our happiness unnecessarily. Nevermind that it’s not a person’s fault these acts were committed; it’s the individual who’s suffering from them. A person does not have to forget the past in order to move forward.. What you can do is learn the lessons available, set boundaries, and hold true to them.
After someone hurts you, it’s natural to want to hold onto that pain as if it’s evidence. You want to show that person how much you’re suffering. But why allow an outside force to dictate how you feel within your own skin? It only hurts yourself. If you’re someone who believes in absolute justice, you can rest assured that your resentment isn’t necessary. If you don’t believe in that kind of thing, ask yourself what good your resentment is doing anyway: Just how much justice does your resentment offer the world?
Forgiveness Is a Journey
Resentment is not only a waste of time, but a major obstacle to overcome if you wish to achieve your goals. Once you quit enabling an addict’s disease to control your actions and thoughts, your path to freedom will become clearer and clearer. Just don’t put unrealistic expectations on yourself. If you have trouble letting go of a grudge, at least you’re aware of it. You’ll get there.
Interested in family counseling sessions? It’s never a bad idea. Check out our website to get a sense of what sorts of programs are available. For help with addiction, give us a call at (888) 744-9969