Some people will never admit their mistakes. But it is possible to move on.
Forgiveness is often seen as the “and they lived well” ending to an unjust story. Someone does something wrong, but eventually sees their mistake and makes a heartfelt apology. “Could you ever forgive me?” Then you, the person who has been hurt, are faced with a choice: Show forgiveness — giving yourself peace — or hold on to enmity and hatred forever. The choice is yours.
However what is forgiveness exactly?
In some ways, it’s easier to define forgiveness by what it is NOT. Forgiveness is not justifying what the other person did. This behavior was wrong, is wrong, and will always be wrong.
Think of forgiveness as something you do primarily for yourself. Because forgiveness is defined as offering kindness to another person, it can be hard to get there! (Since you were wronged, why should you now give tho another person “something”?)
It might be helpful to think that you don’t have to give literally “something.” Forgiveness does not have to exist anywhere “outside” of you.
“Forgiveness is my insurance against the kind of toxic anger that could harm me.” It is not necessary that there should be reconciliation after forgiveness. You can just go your separate ways.
Once you remove reconciliation as a goal, it’s easier to see how forgiveness will benefit you as much as—if not more than—the other person, giving you the opportunity to cut ties with them completely.
Don’t let the fear of “missing something” stand in the way of forgiving someone.
But don’t be too hard on yourself if you struggle to forgive someone and can’t…