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Forgiveness Doesn’t Have to Look Like Forgiveness to the Person You’re Forgiving

abstract black and white digital art; it appears to be a blurry arch
Image by Howard Duncan / CC BY

forgive (verb) – to stop feeling angry or resentful toward (someone) for an offense, flaw, or mistake

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As I mentioned in another recent post, people tend to have a very expansive notion of forgiveness. They’ll often act as though forgiving someone means that you forgot what they did or that you allow your relationship with them to be exactly as it was before.  » Read more

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What’s Forgiveness Orientation & How Does It Affect Relationships?

a rock with the English word "Forgiveness" next to the Chinese character for the same word
Image by James_Seattle / CC BY

There’s been a theme lately as I’m listening to people’s troubles and giving out advice.

You can tell a lot about a situation by what their particular forgiveness orientation is, how their forgiveness is balanced between self and others.

In the most simple terms, a forgiveness balance can be expressed with the following equation: Forgiveness of self divided by forgiveness of others.  » Read more

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An Effective Apology Can Be About Establishing a Shared Reality

a white outline of the united States map on a pink background. The words "SORRY" in pink are imposed over the US map.
Image by jason wilson / CC BY

I’ve been in a lot of relationships at this point. Some of them were marked by good conflict resolution and others… well, they really, really weren’t.

I’ve often said to friends that a good apology means the world to me. That for me it’s often less about there never being conflict in the first place and more about being with someone who apologizes well when things go off-track.  » Read more

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Apologies Are Far Less Helpful Than Not Offending Someone in the First Place

a black and white photo of a neon sign that reads "Sorry"
Image by Timothy Brown / CC BY

Very few social lives experience no conflict whatsoever. Chances are if you have enough friends are socially well connected enough you’ve run into a situation (or two or three) where someone has done something to offend someone else.

And once a social transgression has been made, it’s up to the parties involved to figure out how they want to make up —  » Read more

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The Paternalization of Marriage: “You Need to Make Your Husband Do X,” “Get Your Wife to Do Y”

a wedding cake topper of a bride dragging a groom away by the leg
Image by nola.agent / CC BY

Unfortunately, there’s no shortage of people who will judge you based on what your partner does — or doesn’t do.

I noticed this when I first got married.  I’d fallen in love with my husband for a number of reasons. An unflappable sense of confidence, a warm sense of humor, a kind of charm that’s difficult for me even now to explain.  » Read more

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