Love, Always

Is it possible to forgive … anyone? (Even the one who has hurt you most of all?)

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“I never knew I could be hurt this deeply. What he did feels unforgivable.”

“I can’t believe she did this to me! I trusted her!”

“I can’t believe I’m still upset about this! Why can’t I just let it go, already?”

During 18 years of working as a psychologist and 12 years as an attorney, you bear witness to a great deal of heartache … and anger.

I’ve watched hundreds of people mourn the “end of innocence,” sitting right there in my office — a time when they said goodbye to trusting people, + shifted into a new era of cynicism, bitterness and big, heavy grudges.

If you’re a frequent reader and visitor, I’ll bet you know the seven words that are coming next:

It doesn’t have to be this way.

No matter how hard you are hurting, and no matter what they did, it is ALWAYS possible to forgive.

Fully.

And completely.

But I know you might not believe me.

I know, because when I say things like this to my clients, I’m often met with resistance — at least initially.

They tell me things like:

“No. You don’t understand, Dr. Gelb. What they did to me was really horrendous. It’s not possible for me to forgive. I can’t even wrap my head around the concept.”

I do understand.

Sometimes, people do things that are really, really awful.

Even then, it is possible to forgive.

There’s a true story I was told, once, about a brave Jewish woman who survived the Holocaust and later started a small business in the United States.

A few years down the road, her business was set aflame by anti-Semitic vandals, in the dead of night — people committing a hate crime against a woman they barely knew.

But this woman refused to be burdened by hatred and bitterness.

She carried on. Rebuilt her shop. Continued to serve. Continued to love.

Many years later, a reporter asked this woman,

“How did you manage to forgive all of those terrible people who wronged you, time and time again?”

She said, simply:

“I did not forgive them … for them. I forgave them … for me.”

This woman understands the true power of forgiveness.

When you stop clinging to anger and bitterness, you set yourself free.

Forgiveness is one of the greatest gifts that you can give to yourself … to the people that you love … to your community … and to the world.

Can you forgive? Yes, you can.

And I would be honored to support you — through private, confidential coaching or through the practices that I share in my latest digital book: The Life Guide On How To Forgive The One Who Hurt You Most Of All.

You deserve an unburdened life

A life that is light, joyful and free.

I am sending you love and strength, for the journey…

xo.

PS. Think about a person or a situation that made you feel hurt.

What would it feel like to be free of those exhausting, heavy feelings?

Imagine yourself … like that. Move towards … that.

8 Comments
  1. I know somewhere in my heart that you’re right about being able to forgive. Haven’t been able to up till now. Your post has inspired me to keep trying. Thank you.

    • Hi Cathy: So glad you’re being tenacious. That pot of gold (inner peace) at the end of the rainbow, awaits. :)

  2. I have a picture of my mother and me taken over 20 years ago, right here on my desk. It’s here not because I was close to my mother, but because it represents 3 things: my growth in actually having a relationship with my mother at the end of her life; my accomplishments in overcoming some of the hurtful aspects of my childhood; and my learning to forgive.

  3. I’ve been carrying a grudge lately, but since reading this blog earlier today, I realize I really don’t want to carry those “angry” feelings around. Thanks for the valuable information.

    • Hi Gertrude: Hooray! It’s such a burden to carry a grudge and so unfair to ourselves when we do. Congrats on “lightening” your load.

  4. It’s so easy to stay in a blame mindset and make someone else responsible for our unhappiness. That’s where I’ve been living since my long-term relationship broke up. But I’m seeing that there’s no relief in pointing fingers. Appreciate your wise words today, especially.

    • Hi Barbara: Thanks for sharing your insight. Experience is a great teacher and… sounds like relief is on the way!