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#50016 - 12/28/06 02:15 AM Re: FORGIVE????????
Steven Heath Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/06/06
Posts: 81
Loc: New York City
To all who have responded...I thank you for all of your thoughts and expressions to my posting.....it helps me feel that I actually "belong" somewhere on this earth. And by this I mean with you. Not a bad group to be connected with and to in my opinion.
I wish you all the best in the New Year.....uncontionallly with love....Steve


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#50017 - 12/28/06 02:19 AM Re: FORGIVE????????
Steven Heath Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/06/06
Posts: 81
Loc: New York City
OOPS..... I forgot the most important thing....how I feel.....The reality is that I feel that my voice is actually being heard and responded to. Thank You all so much.....Steve


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#50018 - 12/28/06 02:53 AM Re: FORGIVE????????
WalkingSouth Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/30/05
Posts: 16265
Steve,

This place is what it is because of people like you who have the courage to post a question such as the one at the beginning of this thread. People who are willing to take us to places within ourselves where we've been afraid to go, or would rather not go.

Thanks.

Lots of love,

John

_________________________
“Life’s journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ‘Holy ____…! What a ride!’” ~Hunter S. Thompson

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#50019 - 12/28/06 03:29 PM Re: FORGIVE????????
Jay Bee Offline
Member

Registered: 06/10/06
Posts: 52
Loc: NY
One definition of forgive I found was to stop feeling resentful or angry towards someone for an offence or mistake. Suffice to say, offences is most probably putting very mildly the stuff that has happened to us.

I think sometimes it seems very binary that either we have forgiven or we are forever doomed to wear this albatross of poisoning hate, anger, and bitter resentment around our necks as a noose choking us from all the goodness that life may have to offer. I personally feel that sometimes we may get upset or worried about others because we may feel thay are not even allowing the chance for some kind of transformation to happen with their relationship to all the negative feelings they may have towards the perps and what was done to them by these perps' hands. I think if we allow for the possibility of healing, something does eventually happen to all of that. Is it always something as profound as to spark forgiveness? I don't think so but something I have never been able to adequately define does seem to happen.

You certainly can't call it "acceptance" Some might call it "coming to terms with it" but even that is not quite it, it sounds too resolving.
It could be a dulling of pain except that something could occur to make just as sharp as it ever was all over again. Something does happen though that could lead to forgiving but something worthwhile nontheless, even if that forgiving never takes place.

I have to think about how we may have hurt others unintentionally throughout the process of dealing with all this ^&%*$#* and if by asking for possible forgiveness from those folks, are we being hypocritical by not giving the same towards the perps. My gut feelings say no way, but sometimes I DO get a little uneasy over this seeming contradiction at first glance.

Oh well, something for me to think about some more


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#50020 - 12/28/06 04:38 PM Re: FORGIVE????????
Nobbynobs Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/26/05
Posts: 1286
Loc: Toronto
Quote:
Originally posted by Jay Bee:
You certainly can't call it "acceptance" Some might call it "coming to terms with it" but even that is not quite it, it sounds too resolving.
It could be a dulling of pain except that something could occur to make just as sharp as it ever was all over again. Something does happen though that could lead to forgiving but something worthwhile nontheless, even if that forgiving never takes place.
Jay Bee,

This is troubling me as well. I have chosen to call this feeling "recovery" because I feel that I have recovered something of my earlier life, but even that is the wrong word because I am a different person now than I was then. Perhaps "emergence" is the right word. The person that was hiding behind all the hate and pain and fear comes out from behind that wall and starts to get on with things. I agree, it is a difficult phase to define.

Quote:
I have to think about how we may have hurt others unintentionally throughout the process of dealing with all this ^&%*$#* and if by asking for possible forgiveness from those folks, are we being hypocritical by not giving the same towards the perps. My gut feelings say no way, but sometimes I DO get a little uneasy over this seeming contradiction at first glance.
In the past, I intentionally hurt people. I think most CSA survivors do hurt people, although some are still afraid or unwilling to admit that they have done it.(look in the Friends and Family forum for evidence of this)

Abuse breeds abusers. I acted out my abuse in 100 different ways. Yes, the pain and anger from my abuse may have been part of my reasoning, but I was the one who made the decision to hurt people. I was also the one who made the decision to stop hurting people.

Some therapists don't teach this reasoning. They will happily tell us that nothing we did was our fault; we are blameless because we were abused as children. I call bullshit on that. If we use the same rationale on perps, then the perps are not guilty of their crimes because they were abused as children.

Being abused didn't take away our powers to reason or make decisions. If we make the decision to hurt someone else, then we are at fault. And I think that until survivors come to this realisation, they will be cursed to forever relive their abuse by abusing other people.

This is what is at the core of my belief in forgiveness. I know that I have hurt a lot of people. One look at my address book and all the names of friends who no longer speak to me will confirm that. I have seen the pain that I have caused and it tears me apart. I am aware of the damage I have caused myself. But I also understand that I am the architect of this pain. Yes, my abuse formed the foundation, but I am the one who chose to hurt other people. Once I came to this understanding, I began to understand my actions.

If I went back to the people I hurt and explained that I hurt them but it wasn't my fault because I was abused, they will thank me and then forever shut me out of their lives. Excuses mean jack squat. Those people don't care why I hurt them, they only care that I hurt them. So I began to ask people for their forgiveness. It worked. Not perfectly; because in some cases I had caused a lot of damage, but by and large, when I asked people for forgiveness, it worked. Asking forgiveness started a dialogue with the people I have hurt.

That was the beginning. The next step was to look at myself and accept that I have been very self-destructive. I was killing myself with guilt; guilt from the abuse and the emotional manipulation by my perp, guilt for the damage that I have done others, and guilt over the damage I have caused myself. So I let go of the guilt. I forgave myself for all the self-hate and doubt and shame. It didn't ease all the guilt. I still feel terrible about what I have done to other people; but it has helped a lot with my own peace of mind.

Forgiving my perp was the logical step from all this. In my own self-searching, I realised that I was capable of reclaiming my own innocence. Nothing had been taken away from me that I had not given up. So, I finally accepted the fact that I was capable of redeeming myself, of "reclaiming my innocence." I am still in the process of this redemption. It has taken me to places that I never imagined were possible. But during the first stages of this journey I forgave my perp.

The decision was not easy. The last thing I wanted to do was forgive him, because I thought that by forgiving him I was saying that what he did to me was acceptable. However, someone much wiser than me taught me the truth of forgiveness. Forgiving is not excusing. My perp will answer for his crimes. Forgiving is simply acknowledging that perps can also find redemption. It can happen. It does happen. I know this is true, because I found redemption myself when I finally accepted my own abuse of others.

And to go back to your second point, Jay Bee, I felt the same contradiction. I was being a hypocrite when I found myself asking for forgiveness when I harboured anger and hate against others. When I forgave my perp, I didn't expect anything to happen. And for a long time, nothing did. But then, eventually, I felt a growing sense of peace. I began to let go of my anger and hate, and I found that when I did this, it became easier for me to beg other people for their forgiveness.

One final note. I did not make this journey alone. It took a long time, and I had a lot of help, mainly from guys on Malesurvivor but also from a lot of gifted others, including my wife, my therapist, the lead detective on my case (a man truly called to his vocation), several priests and ministers, and a few people who will remain nameless. There are people in this world who teach Truth. Call them teachers, spiritual guides, therapists or ministers, they are dedicated to helping. My advice is "seek them out." Or call for help and they will seek you out. But if you do anything in the new year, find one of these people.

You won't be sorry.

Peace.

_________________________
When you go up to the bell, ring it! Or don't go up to the bell.

- Mel Brooks

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#50021 - 12/28/06 04:51 PM Re: FORGIVE????????
Cooljule Offline
Member

Registered: 08/10/06
Posts: 69
Loc: New Jersey
I think there is rightous act and self-rightous act

rightous acts=good we do to help others,with no motive of pay back

self-rightous=look what IIII did..i am better than other..I deserve this or that

_________________________
Come heal with me

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#444184 - 08/13/13 05:23 AM Re: FORGIVE???????? [Re: Steven Heath]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3536
Loc: O Kanada
forgiving my abusers was nearly impossible.
it took me until the age of 50 to even want to.
forgiving my abusers was one of the most difficult things i have ever done in my entire life.
it was also one of the best things that ever happened to me.

you can read about it here: warning triggers!
http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthr...2551#Post432551

i have done more healing since that day, than in all the years previous.
_________________________
Victor|Victim

War
Love
Poetry

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#444185 - 08/13/13 07:45 AM Re: FORGIVE???????? [Re: Steven Heath]
Jay1946 Offline


Registered: 08/08/13
Posts: 99
Loc: Miami, Florida, USA
Victor:

You speak words of wisdom. Forgiveness is what allows us to move on. It is more important to do it for us, than for the abuser.

I learned this lesson from a dear friend who suffered a very grave injustice. He suffered a lot as a consequence of very evil actions on the part of a group of people. Yet, he told me one day, that he felt he needed to forgive to move on. That if he did not forgive he would be mired, forever,in the hatred for what happened to him.

That was more than thirty five years ago. He moved on and has accomplished more in his life, since, than he ever dreamed he could have.

It's not easy, though.


Edited by Jay1946 (08/13/13 10:36 AM)
_________________________
Jay

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#444192 - 08/13/13 10:23 AM Re: FORGIVE???????? [Re: Jay1946]
Chase Eric Offline
Moderator
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 1486
To forgive is to exercise the ultimate power we have over the injustices we suffered.
_________________________
Eirik




Click my pic to see why I'm here

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#444214 - 08/13/13 02:33 PM Re: FORGIVE???????? [Re: Chase Eric]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3536
Loc: O Kanada
re: schindler's list clip you posted.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lK-AFHdD7Vw

can you imagine if the penalties for murder were suspended or abolished?
the earth's population would drop overnight.
we are talking total world war.
not many people would exercise the power of forgiveness,
if they possessed the power to execute others.

i know that i would have probably killed or been killed by now.

so, since killing people is forbidden, by church and state, we are faced with three choices.
1. breakin' the laws!
2. impotent rage of unrealized revenge fantasies.
3. forgiveness.

if you can think of another option, please post it here.
_________________________
Victor|Victim

War
Love
Poetry

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