Forgiving a Friend (The Ultimate Guide + Image Quotes)

Forgiveness is a difficult concept to grasp. To truly forgive someone, you must acknowledge that they did something bad, if not downright terrible, to you, but look past it to value what they have to offer while maintaining your dignity. I've had to forgive someone I was angry with several times in my life, for a variety of reasons. Here are some tips I've learned over the years on how to forgive while maintaining your dignity and avoiding losing a friend.

1. Keep your bond in mind

I once had a major feud with my own sibling. I didn't think what he did was right, fair, or even justifiable, but what helped me forgive him was remembering how important a brother's relationship is. We not only grew up together, but we would see each other whether we wanted to or not for the rest of our lives due to family obligations. Not to mention the fact that I adored him and could recall many happy memories with him that far outweighed one thing that deeply offended me. My brother has become one of my closest friends, if not necessarily one of my favorite people, since I was able to forgive him.

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2. Consider the worst things that have happened to you

I almost immediately forgiven someone for something really bad they did to me because I couldn't imagine not having them in my life at the time. That made me realize that what a former friend of mine did to me that caused me to stop talking to him paled in comparison to what I was so eager to forgive. I contacted him as soon as I realized this, and our friendship grew stronger despite the schism. Before sacrificing a strong friendship over temporarily hurt feelings, consider what you've been willing to forgive in the past.

3. You are not required to tell your friend that you have forgiven them

Far too few people in the world understand this fundamental of forgiveness. You should forgive for yourself, not for the sake of the person who offended you. You might lose their respect if you reached out to them and told them you forgive them, especially if they did nothing to earn that forgiveness. But that doesn't mean you can't let go of your rage against them quietly.

The true power of forgiving someone else is allowing yourself to let go of negative emotions toward them that are weighing you down. Making the offender feel better is sometimes beneficial, but it is not always your responsibility to absolve them of their guilt. As perplexing as it may appear, you can be ready to forgive someone before you are ready to tell them.

4. Consider what you'd lose

Sometimes, no matter how valuable your pride is, it isn't worth what losing a friend would cost you on a social, emotional, or personal level. Even if you are furious with another person, you must maintain a sense of pragmatism before tossing a friendship that has lasted years out the window. Remember all of the good times you've shared. In many cases, all of those good feelings will outweigh the bad ones you're having right now. The value of a good friendship cannot be overstated.

Forgiving a Friend
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Even if you don't believe your friend deserves forgiveness, remember that you'll be the one who suffers the most if you hold on to your rage.

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