Saturday, December 5, 2009


The other day I saw Dr Wayne Dyer on the Bonnie Hunt Show. While this man has written over thirty self-help books, I don't think I've read even one. Not because I don't like his message or anything like that. I guess maybe he began his climb to "self helf guru" fame as I was finishing through the process of remodeling myself. What ever the reason, I've missed him as an expert.

I'm not really sure why I watched him this time. Maybe because Bonnie Hunt began her show with a rather personal discussion about her own life. It's not the kind of fare I'm used to from a host on talk television and I guess that drew me in. Then I hung on to see what Dr Dyer had to say.

He talked about a number of things but the one that stuck out to me was the subject of forgiveness. I know forgiveness is a sore subject for many of survivors of childhood abuse and it's certainly not something that I know much about. I guess that's why the subject struck me the most.

Dr Dyer grew up in an alcoholic family. He said for the longest time he carried around a rage because of it that completely comsumed his life. Not until he let go of that rage, did he get free of the past.

I've been thinking about it since then and I'll probably be thinking about it for a while. My question is "How does one forgive?" Is it something that just happens? A place one works to? Just how does one let go and forgive?

I realized something during this questioning. It's not just that I don't forgive........I don't think I've ever been forgiven. Sure.....I've been forgiven for little trangressions like forgetting the milk or that Lindsay wanted blue instead of pink..........but for anything major. I'm not sure that I've ever been forgiven.

I know my oldest daughter has not forgiven me for what she thinks I did to her as a child. I suspect that my oldest son also has not forgiven me. And obviously I am estranged from my family of origin because they have not forgiven me for not being what they expected. So maybe I'm not good at forgiveness because it's one of life's skills that I've never learned.

I know how to be pissed off and mad at the world (figuritively speaking) because I've been hurt. But when that anger is enough and move on........not so much.


Donna said...

Sometimes I think I have forgiven my brother for the years of sexual abuse, but I just can't forgive my Mother for the violence, the abandonment, the selfishness, the lying...

Kahless said...

I hate the word forgiveness and it is contriversal.

But translate it to "letting go" and I actually believe that is important. Because then you give up its power over you.


I was thinking of you Wednesday night for some reason.

Kahless said...

And I am thinking of you again right now...

Rising Rainbow said...

Donna, I can sure relate to that even though my mother is now dead. She never took responsibility and probably never stopped harming kids and it's hard to let go.

Kahless, you are right about it being controversial. The word can sure push the buttons of a lot of victims.

As for thinking of me, your timing seems to line right up with me being down in the dumps.......some kind of connection there.

Thanks for being there, friend.

AnnL said...

Hi Mikael,

Responding to this very late, as I'm just reading this now. I used to have a hard time with forgiveness, and still have to remind myself to let go of the anger and let go of the hurt. It doesn't mean that you FORGET what was done, but it means you let go of the grudges and the hard feelings and the anger. Those feelings hurt us more than the person we're angry at. They keep us stuck in one place--the past. We need to be in the present.

I just read a quote that really hit home to me and I thought I would share it with you. "When you hate people and hold things against's like taking poison yourself and expecting the other person to die!" ~ Joyce Meyer

One thing that helped me forgive was realizing that just because I forgive, doesn't mean I forget. If someone has really hurt or betrayed me, I may never trust that person again. And, that's ok. I can not trust without being angry about it.

Your children don't forgive because you never taught them. We learn from our parents and if they saw you holding grudges, that's what they know. It's like the cycle of abuse that needs to be broken. I'm 50 yo and still connecting the dots of my "issues" with how I was raised. I don't blame my parents--they didn't know any better--but understanding why I am the way I am, helps me to overcome and move forward.

Anyway, I hope some of this helps.