Forgiving yourself in a conflict-charged marriage?

nelthy happy relationships

Forgiving yourself needs to be done!

I know that sometimes, you feel at the end of your rope….tired and empty from being in a poor relationship. It gets even worst in this time of the year, with so many pictures of happy families…like you have to face the very image of what is painfully missing from your own life. And now you see so clearly how you did invite this misery into your life!

You have bitter questions for yourself: why did I enter into this toxic relationship? what happened to me that I didn’t leave earlier? Can I be so stupid as to stay here, knowing how he treats me?

So, what’s the point for me to push your buttons and invite you to do something so outrageous as to forgive yourself and your  whole situation?

 You need to stop reproaching yourself for getting into this depressing marriage, because it can give you a way out of depression and helplessness!

This is the time; because not other month in the year will give us the courage to look into failed relationships and undo the knot of hard conflict and hard feelings… If it not now, when?

So, you are going to finish this blessed year 2013 with the best gift possible, the only gift nobody can buy. It comes from a generous, if wrongheaded heart, and is healing for you, the person giving it.

Are you still here with me? OK, please, think of the most awful confrontation of this year…take a bit of time and remember the one that left you with a bitter taste, like “is this what our relationship is going to be for ever?”

Don’t escape yet; allow your memory to recover most of the interaction with this person…It doesn’t matter if the reason for the fight was a petty one (most of them are). I want you to remember the angry feelings that pushed you to confront this person –that has provoked you somehow—in exactly this strong way.

Now, do you remember your anger? Good, then be in that anger for a second, and see it as a signal of your very much alive spirit, fighting back to defend yourself from attacks. You are the owner of this angry reaction, and there is power in feeling the anger…Things have not worked well, and now sometimes you feel trapped….We are going to imagine that strong anger as the ticket out.

Can you accept that it was righteous anger? that something inside you is clamoring for better treatment, more affection, and more recognition of the good things you do for the marriage? Then, I want you to close your eyes, do some deep breathing, very slowly, and concentrate in only one aspect:

You are going to forgive yourself! Forgive the choices that led you into this poor marriage; forgive the endless expectations of his change into a loving, respectful and attentive husband; forgive your eternal hope that by being patient and nice he would correspond with the affection you need…Wrap the person you were in this forgiveness blanket, and give her a hug. That is the only thing she needs now…to be forgiven, so she can try new behaviors.

And remember to maintain a grateful attitude no matter what the circumstances are around you. Be good to yourself, without guilt or remorse…You made it to here, this place of peace inside you; of total acceptance of who you were, and of the gifts still not used in your life.

Are you ready? This is not the time to chicken out….this is the time to get whole again!

IF you give yourself the gift of forgiveness, you will be one step ahead towards understanding that other people’s point of view is as valid as yours. From here, is easy to experience our shared fears and emotions, and then feel compassion for the other side, and for your own clumsiness…what you wanted was to be with a loving companion and not an aggressor, but you didn’t know how to get that and stop the negative behaviors!

YES, you understood it well: Forgive yourself. Breathe deeply and give your inner imperfect person a pat on the back and say to her: “Next time, you know how to do it better…”  More ideas on how to rebuild yourself, are here:  Boosting Your Self Esteem: Be Your Own Heroine!

 

About Nora Femenia

Nora Femenia, Ph.D, is the CEO of Creative Conflict Resolutions and the author of the book: "The Art of Living with a Passive Aggressive Husband," a field guide for women that have to deal with passive aggression in their partners. Nora also posts regularly on her blog Creative Conflicts. Visit her blog and join the community to discuss issues related to Conflicts, Relationships and receive also Free her book “Breaking Free From The Silent Treatment.” You are warmly welcomed here, because we care for your happiness!

  • Janet

    An article that cuts to the core of any kind of rocky relationship, albeit marriage or friendship….to realize “both” parties were doing the best they could with what they knew at the time…we were both seeking a better form of “love” from each other than what we were raised with….we simply used “ineffective” behaviours to obtain it…..I have discovered that as I have evolved it’s easier to forgive myself as I was very much “asleep” in my life journey…lack of emotional maturity and understanding of core issues is what led to the match-up….to discover that we are in fact each other’s “growth gift”….regardless of how the other person perceives this. We each have our own perspective of the relationship and this is skewed based on our unmet needs from early childhood….our unconscious was aware enough to match us up with someone who we could learn from…who closely resembled our parents…….someone we could learn new behaviours from realizing that there are other ways to get our needs met than caving into those of a person who utilizes passive aggressive behaviour to get their needs met. I have often pondered/wished I had known what I know now …,I’m sure all of us recognize that there were good parts within the relationship or we wouldn’t have married that person….to recognize the gift of children who entered our life……alas if I hadn’t had to learn this lesson I wouldn’t have matched up with this person and our daughter wouldn’t exist….as I began seeking the spiritual I discovered that our lives are filled with life lessons that are helping to propel us to a higher state of consciousness. Rather than bemoaning what has transpired I do agree with Nora that it is forgiving oneself as well as the other for what one didn’t know or understand. When one finally arrives at who they are minus their false egos, disowned traits, lost parts, defenses, addictions and delayed development it is easier to forgive yourself. Examining one’s own life is key to healing and the road to “wholeness”. This is the road to releasing yourself from this bondage of “blame”. It is possible as one moves forward in their life that they can thank that person for showing up in their life to wake them up to all of this…the hardest part is taking responsibility for the part one played in this connection. Whether the other person learns isn’t important as you embrace a more “whole” you. What’s the point of having gone through all these struggles if you don’t allow it to change who you have been! I no longer choose to see my relationship as a “failure” but rather as my “finest hour”!

%d bloggers like this: