My personal motto has evolved from "forgive and forget" to "forgive, but never forget." Simply erasing the memory of someone's hurtful actions is not within my power. Instead of stressing over forgetting, it is much healthier to focus on forgiveness and moving forward, while keeping the lesson learned in mind.
1. I'm Not Naive
During my childhood, at the age of five, I was innocent and believed that everyone was truthful and kind. However, as I grew older, I learned that this wasn't always the case. Now, I am far from naive, and the idea of forgetting a betrayal from someone close to me seems foolish and unrealistic.
2. I Don't Want The Drama
Forgiving those who have wronged me saves me from the pain and drama of holding onto grudges. However, I choose not to forget because I don't want to experience the same situation again. By remembering who has caused me harm in the past, I can avoid them and their negative influence in the future, leading to healthier relationships.
3. If They Did It Once, They'll Do It Again
Offering second chances is something I support, but only for minor offenses. I firmly believe that for certain actions, like cheating, there should be no opportunity for redemption. If I simply forget what happened, I am setting myself up to be hurt all over again by the same person. Therefore, I decline any further chances from them.
4. I'll Recognize It Before It Happens Again
I take lessons not just from my own mistakes, but also from the mistakes of others. If someone has lied or cheated on me in the past, it has taught me to be better at identifying warning signs in the future and preventing myself from being hurt again.
5. Forgiving Helps Me, Forgetting Doesn't
The ultimate way to heal is through forgiveness. By releasing the anger and pain, I am able to let go of any thoughts of revenge. Forgetting does not bring closure or healing, but rather makes me an easy target for others to take advantage of.
6. I Have Too Much Self-Respect
I refuse to be a doormat for people to walk all over. It is important to me that I am respected and loved. If I continue to forget past transgressions, it only opens up opportunities for others to use me again and again.
7. I Hold Others Accountable
The responsibility for making amends rests with the person who caused me harm, and I have already done my part by forgiving them. It would be unfair for me to shoulder the entire burden and forget what happened. The task of replacing bad memories with good ones is theirs alone.
8. Trust Has To Be Re-Earned
I don't completely cut people out of my life for minor infractions, but I am cautious about trusting them again. Once trust is broken, it takes a lot of effort for someone to earn it back. I keep the memory alive as a reminder to be careful and not let my guard down too easily.
9. It Helps Me Move On
Remembering past events doesn't mean I am fixated on them or stuck in the past. Most of the time, I don't even think about them unless I come across the person responsible or notice similar behavior from someone else. When I forgive, I am able to move forward, but remembering serves as a protective shield against future hurt.
10. I Don't Know How To Just Forget
Erasing memories from my mind is not something I know how to do, as I have mentioned before. My recollections of childhood events still remain vivid in my mind, so how can I remove more recent memories that are just as prominent? It's a challenging task that I prefer not to attempt and instead concentrate on other activities.
11. I Can't Pretend Nothing Happened
When I try to disregard a hurtful experience, it only intensifies my frustration. It feels as though I have been betrayed all over again, and I want the other person to understand how angry and wounded I am. After I have forgiven them, they can begin the process of rebuilding our relationship. However, I am not willing to forget what happened and act as though everything is back to normal.
12. I Deserve To Be Treated Better
I have the option of acting like the bigger person, forgiving and forgetting, which would mean pretending that nothing happened. Alternatively, I can choose to assert myself and insist on being treated with respect. I refuse to keep toxic individuals in my life who do not care enough about me to avoid betraying me. It is better for me to recall what they did, walk away, and be assured that they will never be able to hurt me again.