About a week ago, a friend of mine reached out to me to talk about forgiveness and the different levels that it includes. I thought that the topic would be really easy to write about but I couldn't really think of a "deep" way of talking about forgiveness. I found that, personally I think there are two levels. Forgiving and forgetting and forgiving and peacefully detaching.
Forgiving and forgetting to me means "look, you did this and it bothered me, please don't do it again, you're forgiven and I won't address this anymore." I'm sure we've all found ourselves in this situation ranging from different circumstances that we deem acceptable. Forgiving and peacefully detaching for me means, we've tried time and time to forgive and forget but one of us can't or most importantly (and maturely, in my opinion) this experience is becoming toxic and I'd rather just end it here.
Both experiences are equally gratifying. It says a lot to bury a situation and not let it effect you in the future but ONLY if you're actually able to do so. You must bury the petty with it because if you don't then it will be taunting. However, when you are able to bury the petty, it's so rewarding to see what you're able to overcome. It also says a lot about ones knowledge of self and the situation at hand, to be able to peacefully detach from a situation or person. I came across an paragraph from an article on Linkedin, that I think perfectly describes forgiveness.
Emotionally intelligent people are quick to forgive, but that doesn't mean that they forget. Forgiveness requires letting go of what’s happened so that you can move on. It doesn’t mean you’ll give a wrongdoer another chance. Successful people are unwilling to be bogged down unnecessarily by others’ mistakes, so they let them go quickly and are assertive in protecting themselves from future harm.
I think peacefully detaching is most needed when you've crossed the line of disrespect or no longer being useful in ones life. If you have no respect for someone, you will mistreat them, talk to them in ways unimaginable, talk about them in nasty ways. The definition of disrespect, is insult. Once someone has felt insulting by intentional actions, I think after forgiving, peacefully detaching is needed and necessary. You don't want to hold onto toxicity in any area of your life. Whether it be in the work place, at home, or with friends. It's not good and it adds stress. In terms of being useful, if you're not useful to me, have no purpose in my life, I think it's perfectly fine to peacefully detach. Can you be cordial? Absolutely. You should always be cordial.
Forgiveness is way more than saying sorry. At the end of the day, you have to know what's best for you and the situation. Some people may or may not like what you decide but it's okay. They'll be fine. It's a learning experience for both of you. Maybe they will be more cautious of their toxic ways.