To The Girl Who Forgives Too Easily

To The Girl Who Forgives Too Easily

Everyone deserves more than one chance
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"Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it."

- Mark Twain

I see you. I see you standing tall and showing everyone nothing but love, but on the inside you feel weak and exhausted. You learned early in life that it was impossible for you to hate things or people. You didn't have a hating bone in your body, but you were always very hard on yourself about it.

You always wondered if you were weak because of how easily you are ready to forgive someone. And it's not just how you were raised, it's mostly just who you are and how you are wired. You have so much love for everyone and the world, but none for yourself. You see other people for who they are despite their troubled actions and are a firm believer that everyone deserves a second chance. The only problem is that you give more than just second chances, you give three or four or an infinity amount of chances. Because of this people often take advantage of you and you wonder if you are the pushover that people have called you. But despite all of this, it just goes to show how you never give up hope on anyone no matter the circumstances. That is the beauty in forgiveness that most people don't see.

Although you are your toughest critic and don't give yourself as many chances as you do others, you still have hope. Even after forgiving the same person countless times, not once do you question your instinct to forgive. It is just something that comes natural to you, not because your weak, but quite the opposite actually. It takes a lot of strength to overcome someone's actions or words and to let them go. People don't understand the hurt that we go through ourselves sometimes to see the good in people. Forgiveness takes real mental strength. These days people are so accustomed to holding grudges and expressing hate which is easy to do. It's so easy to just give up on someone or yourself and move on. But it takes a lot of strength to forgive those that have hurt you the most and continue to love them for who they are.

I know you stay up some nights pondering if giving them another chance was the right thing to do. You've told yourself many times that they may not deserve it or maybe they are just really using your own sensitive emotions and empathy against you. It makes you feel weak-minded, like you enjoy letting others run over you, but that's not it. You just have so much compassion for everyone and are very empathetic so it's easy for you to put yourself through someone else's shoes or to see things from their perspective. You also forgive so easily because you don't like to let people down and you know that if the situation were reversed, you wouldn't want anyone to give up on you. You like knowing that you can be the peace someone finds or that you find in yourself, even if it makes you sometimes question your strength and will.

But throughout these experiences, you've learned that you're not necessarily weak-minded, because it actually takes a lot of strength to forgive someone. No, you've learned that you are sensitive to other's emotions, and that's okay. It makes you more human.

It takes a lot for someone to continuously forgive; it can be an exhausting action. Though it may look like it to other people, forgiveness is not easy despite how easy it is for you show love to others. It's a lot of inner turmoil that we sift through even though we know that at the end of the day we will forgive with every part of us.

Cover Image Credit: Vital Smarts

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5 Perks Of Having A Long-Distance Best Friend

The best kind of long-distance relationship.
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Sometimes, people get annoyed when girls refer to multiple people as their "best friend," but they don't understand. We have different types of best friends. There's the going out together best friend, the see each other everyday best friend and the constant, low maintenance best friend.

While I'm lucky enough to have two out of the three at the same school as me, my "low maintenance" best friend goes to college six hours from Baton Rouge.

This type of friend is special because no matter how long you go without talking or seeing each other, you're always insanely close. Even though I miss her daily, having a long-distance best friend has its perks. Here are just a few of them...

1. Getting to see each other is a special event.

Sometimes when you see someone all the time, you take that person and their friendship for granted. When you don't get to see one of your favorite people very often, the times when you're together are truly appreciated.

2. You always have someone to give unbiased advice.

This person knows you best, but they probably don't know the people you're telling them about, so they can give you better advice than anyone else.

3. You always have someone to text and FaceTime.

While there may be hundreds of miles between you, they're also just a phone call away. You know they'll always be there for you even when they can't physically be there.

4. You can plan fun trips to visit each other.

When you can visit each other, you get to meet the people you've heard so much about and experience all the places they love. You get to have your own college experience and, sometimes, theirs, too.

5. You know they will always be a part of your life.

If you can survive going to school in different states, you've both proven that your friendship will last forever. You both care enough to make time for the other in the midst of exams, social events, and homework.

The long-distance best friend is a forever friend. While I wish I could see mine more, I wouldn't trade her for anything.

Cover Image Credit: Just For Laughs-Chicago

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If God Didn’t Intend For Women To Be Equals, Why Did She Make Us So Incredible?

Yeah, I said She.

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An article that absolutely infuriates me has gone viral. As a feminist, as a writer, and simply as a woman, it drives me up a wall to see another woman proclaiming that God's plan for women was to "submit to their husbands."

I don't know where to start with all the issues I found in reading the piece, so I'll start with what a feminist is. It's a subjective term and its connotation varies from person to person.

But to me, feminism is being empowered and expressive individuals with open minds and open hearts. They are activists for change and equality. They have concerns about the environment and global warming. They acknowledge issues within sexism and racism and then try to figure out how to solve them. They see that the world isn't perfect.

Feminists are the reason we can vote. They're the reason birth control is an option for us. They're why we're allowed to wear pants. They're why we have careers. The female pioneers paved the way for anything we're allowed to do, and they are why we celebrate the power of women every March.

But instead, the woman who wrote "I'm A Christian And I'm Not A Feminist, Because God Did Not Intend For Women To Be Equals," used our month of pride for clout. And took justification from The Bible to do it.

The Bible is not an instruction manual. It was written over many, many years by hordes of sexist men whose existence we have minimal proof of. And over the last thousand years, it's been translated and reinterpreted more times than anyone could ever keep track of. That's not to say it doesn't have some good lessons, but lessons are all they are.

Thinking your worth and capabilities were planned for you thousands of years in advance is ignorant. Religion and The Bible and God are as subjective as feminism. Everything is open-ended. One person's view of who or what God is not going to be the same as the last.

Commonly, God is seen as a man at the center of the universe who holds all existence in his hands. He is the reason why anyone does anything. He is the rule maker. And He is judging us and waiting for our every mistake.

But as a proud feminist, I've chosen to have my own idea of this holy being. I wasn't brought up in church, but I decided to believe in something much greater than myself or anything I've ever seen just because I wanted to. I want to believe that faith has to come from somewhere, and I didn't want a book making the rules for me.

Just by watching life move through time, I happen to believe God is the good in all of us. Not one being, but he beginning and the end of everything. The push and the pull. The conscious and subconscious. And considering that God is the creator, I've concluded God must be a woman because women are the creators.

And in my experience, women have proved themselves to be much stronger and more capable than any man.

As for what She creates, I think She makes no mistakes. I think She tests our patience and beliefs by giving us what we don't expect. There's intent and love in everything She gives us. I think every woman was made to be relentless, imperfect, fearless, and even a little rebellious.

And if we're saying Adam and Eve were the start of it all, then God proved that right off the bat. God saved the best for last, and then made her a badass. Yes, the first woman came into this world as a rule breaker. She questioned authority. And since the beginning of time, authority has been a snake. The world is our forbidden fruit to bite.

The sole purpose of a woman isn't to submit to anyone. A woman can do whatever she damn well pleases, just as any man. A woman's worth isn't tied to what kind of wife or mother she is and how closely she follows the rules. I was raised by the most incredible mom and wife. She did happen to stay at home with me and be the traditional woman. But while she was home, she taught me how great it is to be a woman. She made sure I knew I could be whoever I wanted and would pay no consequences for that.

My parents didn't raise me in a church. And I never saw that as a flaw or lack of judgment. My southern home was like a church; full of faith and love. But on Sundays, we would sleep in and have a big breakfast at noon because we had too much fun staying up late Saturday night dancing around our living room to music. Whitney Houston, Dolly Parton, Shania Twain, and Madonna led the choir — singing about independence and the power of being empowered as women.

As a feminist, I will not judge those who haven't accepted all the honors of being female. I can just tell everyone how wonderful it is to stand for something. I can set an example so that more women will go forward.

And despite what anyone thinks of feminism, there's nothing exclusive about it. Feminists don't think they're any better than men, they just want the chance to prove their capabilities. It's so much bigger than thinking men suck. The truth is, we should have men at our side, not in front of or behind us. And not for romantic partnerships, but as allies. The best men are feminists too. We can make this walk alone, but there's power in numbers and in diversity.

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