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Forgiving someone is never easy. It does not happen overnight, it is a process. Often it requires getting over the faulty beliefs and practices taught to you by the very people you are trying to forgive.

Beware the need to punish. In your anger, you may withhold the healing act of forgiveness as a way to punish or to retaliate against the person who hurt you.

Beware the desire to continue focusing on yourself. Forgiveness allows for you to move on to a healthier focus on life, away from your self-consuming relationship with food and on to a healthy balance of focuses and interests.

Beware the belief that you deserve to be hurt and miserable. You don’t; that’s your unhealthy belief system talking to you. Forgiveness will bring you peace, healing, and relief.

If you were never provided with examples of love and forgiveness growing up in your immediate family, where can you get them? Trying to remember the people who did give them to you as a child, maybe a grandparent or family friend. Then think back to how much you needed love growing up. Remember how you would have felt if you had received acceptance. As a forgiving adult, you can give those who wronged you the very things you were denied as a child, breaking the cycle of abuse.

If you have constructed the myth of a happy childhood, giving up that dream will be painful. You will have to discard our idea of the perfect mom and dad or the image of an idyllic, loving family. Instead, you can establish a new relationship with your family, just as they are. 

For some people, their pain and hurt are so deep inside them that their ability to forgive is buried under layers of anger and resentment. If this description fits you, you will need to search outside of yourself for the strength to forgive. Again, you need to understand forgiveness is something you can rarely accomplish immediately. You’ve lived with your pain for many years; allow yourself the time you need to work through your need to forgive.

Sometimes, we need external support to work through this healing system. If you are struggling with finding forgiveness and peace in your life, the team at The Center • A Place of HOPE can help. Our faith-based approach focuses on healing the whole person. Fill out this form or call 1-888-747-5592 to speak with a specialist today to learn how your faith can be an integral part of your healing journey.