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How to forgive myself

Community Member

I was unfaithful to my partner. She has forgiven me, but i just can't forgive myself. I feel like i dont deserve to be forgiven. I haven't made thr mistake again. How can I get past this? I have developed depression and anxiety over what I have done. I just want to feel alive again

1 Reply 1

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Dear Minder

Hello and welcome to the forum. This is a good place to talk about your various difficulties.

Forgiveness is a tricky beast and means different things to different people. I suspect that for your wife it means she has put the unfaithfulness to one side. Clearly she trusts you not to do this again and is content to move on. She would not do this if she harboured angry feelings about you. I imagine your wife has not referred to the matter since.

Forgiving yourself when you feel such shame is harder for you because you are sincere in your regret yet do not know how to atone, so to speak. The reality is that you cannot do anything that will change the past. If only we had time machines.

My feelings about forgiving someone who has hurt me are quite different from my feelings when I have hurt someone. It is part of the love you have for your wife that you regret hurting her. I think you would still feel some shame about hurting someone you are never likely to see again but there would be far less remorse and more easily forgotten. So what does that say about the relationship with your wife?

May I ask, do you keep apologising to her and if so what does she say? My guess is she tells you to forget it, that it's over and done with, and lets get on with lives. But of course it does not remove the feeling of guilt.

It's my belief that you need to let go of your shame and guilt, accept you did something wrong and will not do it again. I know, sounds easy to say but quite different to do.

So how do you stop thinking about something that has stirred up your feelings? Not something you have done but perhaps something you have read in the newspaper, a conversation at work, chat with your mate in the pub. I hope you get the picture. Can I get you to think how you manage these feelings without exploding?

Also what exactly do you feel about being unfortunately. What stirs your deepest feelings? I look forward to your answer.