Unforgiveness: To Forgive or Not Forgive — It’s Your Choice, Your Decision

 Unforgiveness..  to forgive or not forgive, its your decision and your choice!

forgive or don't forgive?



You have no idea what he did to me!” Ever hear someone say that? Did you ever say that? Or have you ever thought it while justifying your choice not to forgive the one who wronged you?

Recently, a dear friend told me he has stage 3 cancer. It is a type of cancer that is aggressive in nature. The saddest part is he complained of symptoms for over a year which his doctor chose to ignore and dismissed as insignificant. If the doctor had taken tests when asked, more than likely it never would have progressed to this stage. Immediately after my friend told me this, he stated, “I have chosen to forgive him and hold no animosity towards him.”

Too often we suffer physically or emotionally because we are holding a grudge that is destroying us. Both modern medicine and psychiatry have shown that unforgiveness threatens our health. Anger, resentment and being consumed with thoughts of revenge are destructive. There has been considerable research that shows a leading cause of many physical problems including arthritis and cancer is unforgiveness towards our offender or our self.

 It has been further reported that the opposite is also true. When someone makes the choice to forgive the wrongdoer, their own healing process begins. When we hold onto this negative emotion labeled unforgiveness, the greatest harm we are doing is to ourselves. Often the other party is oblivious to our grievance and remains unaffected. When we continue to hold on to thoughts of bitterness and revenge, we are stooping to their level. When we forgive, we rise above it. It can be euphoric because of the release it brings.

unforgiveness quote

 Unforgiveness can start innocently enough. Someone wronged us. We were hurt and justified our feelings by what they did. Time passes and these feelings may be suppressed but the subconscious never forgets them. Something may happen to ignite them and may be harder to suppress, especially if entertained by thoughts of revenge. These thoughts began to affect us emotionally and cause stress which is toxic to our well being. Sadly, when we say “I can’t forgive them,” we are really saying “I won’t.” The choice is entirely ours.

 I recently finished my memoir which I labored over for ten years, mostly due to this issue. I had been injured deeply and repeatedly through mistreatment of different varieties from physical abuse to being destroyed financially by a partner’s greed. When we hold on to the hostility, we keep ourselves in a form of bondage. Please realize that I am not suggesting it is easy to forgive but I am suggesting that making the decision to forgive releases freedom.

When you forgive someone, often it is difficult to forget what they did to you and that becomes a struggle. When I make the choice to forgive someone, it is common sense that I will always remember what happened and there is nothing wrong with that. The difference lies in not allowing your thoughts to consume you and maintaining a proper attitude toward the person who hurt you. Even some of the most awful things that happened in my past I can glean wisdom from which is a form of protection. I determine what I can learn from the experience.

When I was a child, my father taught me the importance of forgiving those who might hurt me. This prepared me for what happened in my life and for that I am grateful.

 Anger can consume you and will eat at you like a cancer because it is venomous. I have also heard it stated “What they did was unforgiveable.” I challenge you that if you ever feel that way, consider the alternative. You will suffer a great deal more by not forgiving.

When you make the decision to forgive someone, you are the bigger person and will realize the good fortune of being healthier as a result.


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Meet Carol Graham

Carol Graham has written 23 posts in this blog.

I am a wife, mother of two and grandmother of three. Family is of first importance, which includes many 4 legged members. Currently, I own and help operate two jewelry stores with my husband. My passion is being a health coach, which I have been doing for over 30 years. I survived cancer 40 years ago using alternative methods, which started me on the road to better health. Another great passion is public speaking. I am a motivational speaker that has much to share in the area of survival against all odds. I lived an intense life of outrageous traumatic events, always a fighter and a winner over cancer, rape, marital abuse, jail, loss of child, huge financial losses from fraud and greed of others. I strongly believe that laughter will get you through almost anything. I have just finished my memoir - Battered Hope - which was released this past summer. This fast paced memoir reads with all the elements of a good novel – character, conflict, suspense, and resolution. Follow my family through insurmountable hardships and witness the tenacity it takes for me to survive. It is a story of hope, perseverance, and faith.

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