What is forgiveness and how do I do it?

I carry around a lot of shame that is unearned and irrational, and yet understanding that it is unearned and irrational doesn't make it disappear.

I think this kind of shame is made when we are kids and not capable of rational understanding.

I love this. Shame and disappointment in self is something I've been coming to terms with a lot over the past twelve or so months of my life, and have only recently been able to start integrating that child's experiences and trying to take care of her.

I don't think that all children are incapable of rational understanding however - but I 100% acknowledge that most people on this sub were probably raised in such a way that did not allow for rationality to develop healthily.

I think forgiveness for others comes from being able to forgive yourself, be that self-forgiveness for shame or otherwise. It's very freeing once you're able to. I may be getting ahead of myself, but I've forgiven people in the past few weeks that I thought I would take that venomous hurt and pain to the grave over... because I started to forgive myself for feeling that pain and the shame surrounding that.

Super counterintuitive, but I do agree that once we treat ourselves with a little kindness, things can improve. The hard part is being kind to yourself.

/r/traumatoolbox Thread Parent