6 Reasons Not to Forgive, Not Yet | Psychology Today

6 Reasons Not to Forgive (Yet)

1. Urging forgiveness ignores the fact that anger naturally rises after being hurt and often needs to be integrated, not rooted out like some bacteria-borne illness.

Despite popular misconceptions, anger has a raw power in it that can be integrated—a power that can help a person stand up for themselves, make future injury less likely, and build a sense of empowerment and self-confidence. In fact, research shows that forgiving too readily can erode self-respect [1] and lead to greater relationship problems and partners that are more disagreeable. The point is that claiming some of our anger can be healing and productive.

2. Encouraging people to let go of anger before the natural course of its process is suppressive and harmful.

3. Counseling people to forgive when an injury is still recent risks dismissing the pain people are going through.

4. Advising forgiveness can ignore the value of confronting an offender.

5. The appropriateness of advising forgiveness depends upon who is asking whom to forgive.

6. Advising forgiveness, or letting go, to groups of people who have suffered sustained injustice is often ignorant and highly suspect.


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