Something common in addiction recovery is learning about forgiveness. I have been learning recovery tools since the age of eighteen so this subject has come up often for me. I think I have come a long way in learning how to forgive others who have hurt me and even been able to not condemn them for perceived wrongdoing in the first place so forgiveness was not so necessary. It is unnatural for people to not feel offended by someone who is intentionally harming you. It's a process to go through to in order to go against a natural response. The cliche: resentment is like poison to the person who feels it rather than the person that it is intended to target is meaningful, but just hearing this phrase doesn't teach anything about how or why to forgive. Once one has forgiven then the phrase can be understood. That saying never meant much more than I should forgive for my own sake. It's not words that teach, it is life experience. I don't take things too personally and do well at not harboring grudges and definitely don't feel vindictive or vengeful very often but lately since some recent experience I have been feeling extremely betrayed and hurt so I have to relearn how to forgive. My fear is that if I let go of this and forgive that I will forget and let it happen again. I'm not quite ready to release all my anger because I want to let it sink in how wrong I was wronged. A bit twisted probably but that is me. I need to move on now so inch by inch I am reminding myself that it was never about me and only the other person. This other person is the one who has to hold themselves accountable and for whatever their reasons are for hurting me intentionally and unintentionally are their problem now. I can forgive someone more easily by inching closer to feeling pity for the other and less pity for myself. More empowerment to myself and less power to them. I make all my choices, including how I behave, think, and who I let in my life. Who matters to me and who's opinion I listen to. When I move from pity to compassion I feel even better. Obviously every individual grows up under their own unique circumstances and with their own genetics and I have compassion for all people who turn out to be hurtful and malicious. They probably need it the most. I am working towards feeling indifferent because I am an extreme feeler and would love it if I didn't care so much about everything. I wish we could all just love each other and get along. At least I know that love and compassion is what I want to strive for in this new chapter in my life and hope it spreads.