One of the most common traits of human nature includes seeking forgiveness when we do something to hurt someone close to us. “Sorry” or “forgive me” are often our instant responses to the realization that we messed up.
You may let out a sigh of relief when your significant others pardon you for something you did, but you should recheck if it also means that they have also forgotten what you did.
So how do you really explain forgiveness?
Forgiveness may refer to letting go of negative emotions and pardoning your significant other for whatever it was they did wrong.
Forgetting, is not easy. It means letting go off and forgetting the past mistakes of your partner and focusing on other things.
How is forgiveness and forgetfulness different?
Forgiving means that you no longer hold any level of anger in your heart or mind.
You’re ready to move on with your partner and no longer need to punish them for what they did. Forgiveness is also a form of reconciliation, which is a part of every strong, healthy relationship.
Forgiveness is often deliberate. We have often heard our elders say that the person who forgives is always the bigger the person. Yes, true, but we all know forgetting is way harder and complex than simply forgiving.
Forgetfulness on the other hand is more about completely taking a memory off of your mind.
This may as well sound humanly impossible. Humans, when hurt, tend to hold on to those hurtful memories longer than happier ones, as the hurtful memories leave permanent marks on your trust.
And as the famous saying goes, it takes years to build someone’s trust and a minute to break it.
What is more important for a healthy relationship?
Forgetting and forgiving may go hand-in-hand in relationships, but they both have their pros and cons.
While forgetting can get you rid of grudges and hard feelings, it may also be a sign of weakness. Forgetting your partner’s mistakes too often can lead to them taking advantage of it.
Sometimes, we need to be held accountable for our actions, especially when we hurt someone we care about. Forgetting might not make it easier to hold them accountable.
Forgetfulness might also lead you to similar situations, resulting in your getting hurt over and over again for similar reasons. However, in the long-term, it also means that you will not be bringing up old, bad memories in future arguments, which are practically inevitable in real relationships.
An end to taunts and sarcasm!
Forgiveness, as usual, makes you a better bigger person! It also means not holding on to any negativity. “Being sorry” however, means that the person regrets what they’ve done and promise to never deliberately do it again.
But if you keep forgiving them for the same mistakes over and over again, this may not be healthy for you, and the relationship. You might come off as “too easy” and they may take you for granted.
Sometimes, forgiveness is what your significant other needs, but maybe not what is best for you in that moment! Self-love is always important!
Forgiveness and forgetfulness- Role in healthy relationships
Forgiveness is only an option when your partner apologizes or shows regret about doing something wrong.
This is a sign that your better half cares for you and your relationship, and has enough courage to admit what they’ve done wrong.
Consider yourself lucky!
When you forgive, you move on from negativity, you make room for improvements and you get one step closer to becoming a better person. Forgiving and forgetting are equally important for a healthy relationship.
Forgiveness makes forgetting easier
Forgiving and forgetting result in better relationship-related satisfaction, and an overall peace of mind. Forgiveness makes forgetting easier, however, we should always take lessons and notes from our own, and our partner’s past mistakes.
We learn from history, but we do not hold onto it. So even with letting it go, learning and improving should be brought along. Like in all aspects of life, relationships require balance too to function properly. The right balance of forgetfulness and forgiveness are a key element to a healthy, strong and reliable relationship.