Monday, May 5, 2014

Forgiveness.... You can do something positive in your life without it

From Prager University

We have all had times in our relationships when we hurt a loved one, or a loved one hurt us. That's part of life. But not all of us know how to forgive, even when the other party has offered a sincere apology. In this Prager University course, UCLA psychiatrist Dr. Stephen Marmer shares the three types of forgiveness--exoneration, forbearance, and release--and explains why anyone who wants to mend meaningful relationships must first understand forgiveness. Internalizing Dr. Marmer's teaching can be an important first step, for many people, to keeping and fixing their most valued relationships.


Nice little ditty about forgiveness. Too bad the doctor seems to take the real human element out of the equation, like how do you forgive those that hurt your child? Should the parents of murdered children forgive their killers? I can't imagine the pain parents go through under these circumstances.

At the same time,  you don't have to forgive to do something positive with your life. Here is a video about the Keren Malki Foundation. An organization created in memory of a 15-year-old girl murdered in the Palestinain-terrorist bombing of a Sabarro pizza parlor in Jerusalem, Israel. Malki Roth worked with those with special needs. In honor of her, her family has set up this amazing foundation that helps all people without asking their political affiliations and ethnic origins. And no, they have never forgiven her murderer, who was set free by Israel in order to secure the release of a 19-year-old Israeli soldier who had been kidnapped by the terror group Hamas. Her murderer also celebrated the lives she took, especially the number of children she killed.

Meanwhile, back in my own little world, I refuse to forgive those that bullied and alienated my children. and you know what, I shouldn't have to. In fact, it helps me figure out ways to help and secure a future for my children, while teaching them to protect themselves and to stand up for what they believe in. Teaching children self-empowerment is an important part of parenting. You get no where in life if you live life as a doormat.

Forgiveness may take many forms according to this little video essay, but in the end it's you giving up your right to say "hey asshole you messed with me and I am not going to take it anymore." Why would you forgive someone that hurt you so badly that it actually changed your life and how you felt about other people? This is not about letting these individuals live rent-free in your head. It's about self-respect and self-esteem. You don't necessarily have to "forgive" someone who hurt you to move on with your life. In fact remembering what was done to you can give you the strength to move on and be able to protect yourself and those you love in the future. It's called self-preservation. Something I totally adhere to and something I totally practice on a daily basis, especially when it comes to protecting those I love.



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