Forgiving Myself

This topic contains 5 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by

 
Participant
2 weeks, 4 days ago.

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  • #121057

    Participant

    I have realized how important this is. Shame is derailing my life. I became a Christian as a teenager, and wanted to live my life for Christ. I married someone I thought would share this vision. We raised a large family together. My life was shattered when I discovered his pornography addiction twenty years ago. Over time I took a “if you can’t beat em join em” mentality, and participated with him in it. This led to disastrous consequences. Over the past seven years I have repented of that lifestyle, and in fact am almost finished with seminary in the hopes of helping others. And my husband is in an accountability group for pornography and doing pretty well. Over the years we have progressed from drinking a nightly glass of wine or two to continuing to that on week nights, but drinking 8-9 glasses of wine a day on weekends. I do believe this is to escape the shame of what we have done and some irrevocable consequences. Yet the “new me” is free from this, and free to help others forgive themselves and connect with God.Three of my kids have called us out on drinking too much, and this is embarrassing to me.I think my husband is still in denial about our drinking… no DUI’s, no drunken outbursts, we just fall asleep on weekend nights after too much wine. We have good health and excellent blood work.
    Thus the 30 day solution. So here goes… I forgive my parents who set impossible standards for me to follow. I forgive the church for not teaching me to connect to the love of God.And I forgive myself for doping with pain in a destructive way. I am the beloved of Christ, and therefore I love myself.

  • #121062

    Participant

    a brave story — you are an inspiration.

  • #121120

    Participant

    I gave up my career to care for my disabled son and my x husband stole our life savings and I did not find out until we got separated. I was so beaten down by his emotional abuse that I did not fight for me and my kids during the divorce and ended up broke at 50. I drank during the marriage as It was not good for me to stay at home and give up my career to care for my son, and the pain of his disability was so hard for me I drank to cover up the pain. This destroyed my marriage and when I got separated I drank even more to cover up that pain too. After the divorce I tried to get sober but failed and spent this past 10 years drowning in my sorrow, my shame for not fighting for what I deserved, for my stupidity and cowardliness, for my current situation . I find it hard to forgive myself for not being a better parent during the divorce and separation; for drinking during those times, for not paying attention to our finances and finally for not fighting him in court. I find it hard to forgive myself that for the past 10 years as a single woman, I have been unable to make it back to where I left my career 25 years ago. I have a MBA I should have known better.
    But now I have started the 30 Day Sobriety Solution and am finding strength to forgive myself and my x husband. I want to live a different life, so I have to learn a new way to live. I did the best I could under the circumstances; I made mistakes but now I am forgiving myself. I am free.

  • #121122

    Participant

    Wow. These lives of ours are amazingly dynamic and dramatic. I guess they always have been for humanity since the apple. A resource that’s been so very helpful to me comes from http://www.intouch.org This is Dr. Charles Stanley’s website. Plus he gives sermons on TV. Each morning I read a small passage of scripture, and then the commentary, which are sent to my e-mail account. They’re called “Daily Devotions”. I’ve been doing this for a few years, so I’m starting to rack up teachings. The stories in the Bible really aren’t that long ago if you think about it. Things are becoming clear. God doesn’t want any of these bad things for us. We’re to become almost child-like again and enjoy the simple joys. They are definitley there. The simple pleasures are so much fun once we rid ourselves of alc.
    Good luck, good people! We’re blessed that we found this resouce to help us!

  • #121965

    Participant

    I am ashamed to share my story and it will take some time for me to work through the shame and get to the point that I could forgive myself. I cheated on my husband – with only one other man who I fell in love with and hoped to have a future with – but the relationship lasted for 12 years. Eventually, I left my husband and the man I had cheated with – I needed to start over, to stop lying and cheating, to live my life honestly. But, in the process, I caused so much hurt to the man I was married to for 23 years. I probably should not have married him in the first place. I knew even then (and shared with my closest friends) that I was not particularly attracted to him. But he was my best friend and I was weak. I knew I would never have to worry about him letting me down and, deep inside, I did not believe I was worthy of someone I was really attracted to. I didn’t feel that someone like that would want to stay with me. So I took the easy road but I was never fully present in our marriage.
    It makes it even harder that my husband was a good person. He did not cheat on me, he did not abuse me, he did not have any addictions (though I felt his interest in pornography was excessive and a turn-off). But we had almost nothing in common, and I felt that he was unwilling to grow. In our 40s, his interests were still the same ones we had in our teens. This, and many other rationalizations, were how I justified being unfaithful. I know there were many other more appropriate ways I could and should have dealt with feeling unsatisfied in our marriage – therapy, even divorce if therapy failed, would have been more respectable than having a long-term affair. I was immature – another excuse.
    In some ways, I feel that drinking too much has been a way of punishing myself because I feel that I am a bad person for what I did to my husband, a weak person for not handling things more honestly. This is something I will need to find a way to overcome. Perhaps write him a letter of apology. Perhaps see a therapist myself. I don’t see any way I could say that I love myself otherwise.

    • #121969

      Participant

      Hi @Spring2376.
      I agree that you would benefit from seeing a therapist.
      And your idea to do a “Total Truth Process ” letter to your ex husband (which you don’t need to send) could be cathartic.
      Since we can’t go back, it is imperative to do the work of self forgiveness in order to move forward and make peace with a less than perfect past.
      Onward Friend!

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