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Author Topic: Forgiveness  (Read 6974 times)

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Offline med forum

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  • Posts: 76
« on: February 05, 2009, 07:46:08 AM »
Hello all...

I am back after a long hiatus. I've been dealing with a breakup (the boyfriend that I was talking about in all of my previous posts) in the last 8 months or so and trying to come to terms with a brief fling that he had during our 4 year relationship that took place almost two years ago.

I'm telling you.....just when you think you have things sort of lined up and you're ok, there's something that happens, something that a person tells you or something that reminds you of the good times and then all of the crappy times. There are some days when I feel that if I could just remember all the great times we had and forget the bad ones.......then I sometimes question whether or not I've REALLY forgiven him for cheating after all the struggles and support that we went through from the time that he was diagnosed. When I think of that, it kind of makes me mad. Why? Why did I deserve to be treated that way?

I asked him not long ago why......I though I was being as supportive as I possibly could be. And not only that, but it was GENUINE support and love. He said that he though he could fix everything that was going on in our lives and in our families and when he saw that he couldn't, he strayed away to find support from someone that wouldn't be judgemental.

We remain good friends to this day but then there are days when I just feel confused........I feel frustrated because family expectations and even our own expectations from a few years ago put the two of us as being married and happy. We spoke of marriage........and then everything seemed to change and the relationship became more of a burden to him than anything else.

Maybe time is the only healer????
Peace & health

Offline maddalfred

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Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2009, 05:52:39 AM »
For what it's worth, in my case forgiveness and coming out are very much alike.
You see it asked over and over, "When did you first come out" or What was it like coming out"?  "How do I forgive" or "Why should I forgive?" I forgive and I come out because I must. I forgive and come out because it is in my nature to, just as the desire to be forgiven or the desire to know my closest friends thoughts and feelings about themselves.

I have found out that coming out and forgiveness are ongoing processes, not encapsulated in one awe inspiring moment but something I find myself doing almost every day, mostly in small ways, sometimes with a big announcement of sorts. During times when I am deepest in my cups, when the demons of the hurtful things said and done in the past by those I love or have loved and trusted come back to mock me to shatter the fragile peace I keep within myself, I remind myself that these people, like me are only human.

People I have forgiven for these things I continue to have to forgive over and over because not to do so will only hurt me and feed upon itself. The same is true of coming out in that I come out a little each day in some form or another, I cannot help it, I am a gay man so how could my inner queer, my inner nature remain hidden with no outlet for release or expression in at least some small way?

For me, forgiveness is a selfish act, a present I give myself because deep down I know that to forgive others, again and again, makes me feel better about who I am as a person. I have also learned through the years that to not forgive only leaves me open to not being forgiven for my own faults and misdeeds, those already committed and those yet to come.

Maybe others have come to a point that they can say in all honesty that they can forgive and never have to look back, never have to re-examine those others they have forgiven, but this is so far not the case with me. For me it is an ongoing process and may always be so but I can live with that.

And as for coming out, I hope to have even a few friends that when I am gone who will remember me not as a queer or a gay man first, but as a human being, hopefully a thoughtful and caring one who did his best to make the world just a little bit better for those around him.

The hardest lessons I have ever had to learn are to forgive myself and to be who I really am with others, warts and all. This work is not finished. I imagine I will work on these things for the rest of my life but I have learned to live with that and it is ok for me.

Looking at your own situation, only you can decide what is best or how you will deal with this issue, you may go through many different methods until you settle on one that works for you. I do hope you find it, for your sake and for your own peace of mind.
<img src=http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj56/maddalfred1959/Me.jpg>

Offline Jeff64

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Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2009, 08:15:23 PM »
I will never forgive the person who infected me. I hope they die a slow and painful death.
Just how I feel right now...

Offline twalker6181

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Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2009, 10:53:50 PM »
My ex boyfriend of 6yrs never told me was infected and has infected me. How or can I even start to forgive him for what he has done to me. I feel like he should be charged for something but not sure wat ishould do, and im alsonew to this just recently tested and kinda of feeling scared depressed and alone.

Offline positivmat

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Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2009, 11:49:33 PM »
I am haunted by afflictive emotions. I was just discussing this with my therapist telling her that I do "battle" in my head against dead issues. I sort of try to force negative emotions out of my consciousness by telling myself I have to drop it. She suggested that I practice acknowledging the emotion by asking it questions like "what is this trying to tell me?  Who would I be without this emotion?  Sort of friendly welcoming to the afflictive emotion. I found (in the 2 days that I have been doing this) that it lessens the immediate impact of the emotion and the downward spiral that comes up afterward.  It helps me to get past all the angst.

Forgiving myself for cheating, not protecting myself and hurting my partner is one that comes up every day. But at this point, I think I can look the emotion in the face and move on each time it reappears. That is what I am going to practice as time goes by.

Offline positivmat

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Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2009, 12:05:27 AM »
Twalker, your issue seems big enough for its own separate posting. I can just tell you that your anger and your seeking justice will not cure you. While I believe that there is responsibility on the part of the infector (and the infected), I think that spending time thinking about it will only cause you more pain and anguish on top of your own health issues. I understand how much you might be drawn to blaming him and thinking about how he wronged you but if you can find a way to work through that, you will allow yourself space to be more content and start to deal with all the issues surrounding your own problems.

From time to time, each week, I indulge my anger at the guy from whom I contracted this virus and it makes me less happy and really brings me down. I know I have to move past it and I am working on it. Its much more peaceful in the moments when I let go of that line of thought. Therapy has helped in that regard. Reach out to people here and anyone you trust at home to work through this. Good luck and keep your chin up.


Offline twalker6181

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Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2009, 01:43:49 AM »
Thanks for the response matt ihave been talking to someone about this and has helped a lil but plan on also doing wat u said thanks again./

Offline GodSon83

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  • El hijo del capitán Trueno tenía pinta de raro
Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2009, 01:10:44 AM »
I think the same that Jeff.
I wish my exboyfriend (who infected me)
had a painful life, and i dont refer to health,
just emotionally.

He dont think on me. Never, he never told me he was infected,
and he always knowed this.

5 days after we broke, he starts another relationship with a
friend of a friend,
i feel anger... !
OK no objection, I need to forgive, but I Can´t.

Not now.

Jun 08  - (-)
Jul 08   - (+)
Dic 08 - CD4:921
May 09- CD4: 1,025   CV: 8,233
Dic 09 - CD4:    911   CV: 5,160
May 10- CD4: 1,054  CV: 6,510
Sep 10- CD4:     923  CV: 1,832
Mar 11- CD4:     508  CV:  1,489
Jul   11- CD4:  1,064  CV:    558
Nov 11- CD4:  1,945  CV:    795
Abr  12- CD4:    859  CV:    401  ´Still no meds´

I like i feel! :)

Offline AndyArrow

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  • Posts: 1,196
Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2009, 05:33:06 AM »
To forgive or not to forgive?

This is really something that is usually best handled with some one on one with a professional therapist. 

Whatever your choice dont let this consume you (as it so easily can).  Emotional stress can play a huge impact on your overall health.
It is not the arrival that matters.  It is the journey along the way. -- Michel Montaigne

Offline joemutt

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Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2009, 06:40:05 AM »
I think you (or one) shouldn't forgive until ready, if ever. Fake forgiveness stinks.
But for your own sake you have to try to let go of the festering feelings/emotions/thoughts,
hate is a poison meant for someone else that you end up taking yourself.
I think forgiveness and letting go/ no hating are separate mental states.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2009, 06:42:28 AM by joemutt »

Offline Joe K

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  • Posts: 5,820
  • 31 Years Poz
Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2009, 06:19:41 PM »
I believe that until you forgive someone, they will always hold power over you.  Forgiving is not forgetting or condoning, rather it is saying I am tired of the pain this causes me and I want it to stop.  But you cannot forgive others, until you are ready to forgive yourself for whatever role you played in becoming poz.  Having suffered domestic violence, I can empathize with those who are lied to, yet you still had the opportunity to be safe, just as I had the chance to escape, but it took me almost four years.

When I forgave my ex for abusing me, a great weight was lifted off of me and finally I was free of any misconceptions about who he was, or what had happened to me.  He no longer had any power over me.  At some point, you will need to move past the betrayal and see him for the true man he is.  Once you can clearly see, who and what he is, forgiveness becomes very easy, because at this point reality has replaced your emotions and you realize that you gain nothing by hating him.  You deserve to be free of him, so what are you waiting for?

Offline dtwpuck

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  • дано мне тело, что мне делать с ним?
Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2009, 06:19:26 AM »
I forgive because I am imperfect.     I cannot continue to strive to heal myself while I am busy worrying about the wounds of others.  I wrote once that "I am the culprit of my own theft of hearts".   I knew more about myself than I thought.  I cannot control the behavior of others.  Sometimes people are bastards.  But I am sometimes a bastard too.  It is not fair of me to expect others to behave toward me without thinking of themselves first.   It's not like I make my intentions THAT obvious.  Anyway, each person's mechanism is different.   I hope you find (found) yours.

Floating through the void in the caress of two giant pink lobsters named Esmerelda and Keith.

Offline mecch

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  • red pill? or blue pill?
Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2009, 01:40:40 PM »
2 years later its a mechanism that still escapes me though i want it so badly, to forgive someone.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline dtwpuck

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  • дано мне тело, что мне делать с ним?
Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2009, 07:13:42 PM »
When I was hiking today I was thinking about your post and that elusive idea of a mechanism of how to forgive.     I don't have an answer for you personally because I don't know you.  But it did get me thinking.   

It occurs to me that at some point I realized that my father, a Viet Nam vet who should be the poster child for PTSD, was human.  I watched him cry, break down, and express the horror he felt at following the orders to shoot a family of innocent people.   He never recovered from that.    When I realized that he had been keeping that piece of information in all his life, it suddenly became clear why he was abusive, drunk, absent.  Now, I had been dealing with years of my own demons and irresponsible decisions and long before had realized that I needed to let go of my anger toward my father.   It wasn't until I realized exactly how he suffered that I understood how to let it go.  He was just as fucked up as I was.   Maybe more so.  But his actions had reasons.  Those reasons were fallible.  But, I understood them.     It doesn't make him a better person.  But, suddenly I had a mechanism.   I don't know how useful it is to you to know how one person solved one problem, but it is at least an example.   

Sadly,  I can also think of one person whom I haven't forgiven.  Part of me doesn't want to forgive him.  I feel angry when I think of him and those feelings have made it difficult for me to trust my current partner.  So, not even those of us who have found a mechanism in one case haven't found the key to all cases.

I sincerely wish you success in finding that key.


Floating through the void in the caress of two giant pink lobsters named Esmerelda and Keith.

Offline the trebmeister

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    • daddy, you bastard
Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2009, 10:24:33 PM »
if you can manage it forgiveness is often the healthiest outcome for you.  bottling anger, feelings of betrayal, & all that junk [he said with such eloquence] isn't good for anyone. 

i'm pretty sure i was infected when my ex and i got together in 1983 but 8 years later finding his AZT bottle was a bit of a surprise since it slipped his mind to tell me.  when i confronted him his excuse was when my friend glenn first tested poz in 1985 i said i didn't want to know my status as long as there was nothing one could do about it. we practiced safer sex with each other AFTER we'd been together for several years when it was clear we were in a tacitly open relationship.  after that became clear to me i decided it was time to move on.   i've always maintained "open relationship = roommates who fuck" but getting untangled emotionally, intimately, etc. is easier said than done. 

that said, though, rich was always the one to resist planning life as a couple & for that i don't think i forgave him.  when we met he was a barback.   my income was easily twice his and i've always been generous to a fault so i was never completely sure if he liked me or the $$ or both.  he is one of the most irritatingly acquisitive people i've ever met.   regardless, i stayed with him in the hope he'd become more open to formalizing our relationship over time.

i forgave him more out of pity than kindness.  rich was/is unable to exist without another person along for the ride whereas i've been a lone ranger all my life.  without an adequate amount of quality down-time i get homicidal.  i tried to help him understand i actually preferred staying home with him, the dogs & cats, videos, books, etc. but understood his desire for social activities so please get lost for a few hours so i can relax without guilt. 

after we finally, fully split in 1993/4 rich had a new bf/lover within a few months.  our former mutual friends (who were for the most part my friends as luck would have it) called his new s.o. "the turtle" but i've always tried to be more generous.  rich looks like a living mummy without the cloth wrapping (if he's even alive -- i haven't spoken to him or anyone who knows him in several years).   he was such a doormat with steve, his lover, it made me cringe to see them together most of the time.  pavlov was no dummy.

the last time i saw rich and steve was about 2001, i guess, because i was still employed.  it must have been a holiday weekend because we stood on the crowded sidewalk outside lafittes for a few hours (with intermittent interruptions and cruises around the bar).  i felt close to him again that night as a friend and i think he felt the same.   as i said at the beginning of this epic i don't know who infected whom but believe i was poz when we met so i may have infected him early on in our relationship.  in 2009 it doesn't matter.

time heals all wounds and, if there is any justice, wounds all heels. 
Your friends may say that I’m a stranger
My face they’ll never see no more
There is but one promise that’s given
I’ll sail on God’s golden shore

Offline mecch

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Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #15 on: October 05, 2009, 09:05:20 AM »

I understand why I was hurt (anyone would be, and I also didn't protect myself) and I see explanations for why he was abusive. When I share my observations and explanations with him, he denies them all.  Everything was an accident, or ignorance, or I'm seeing it the wrong way, etc etc. Black is white. White is purple. Good is bad. etc etc. etc.

So, I have to forgive the shitty actions, and then I also have to forgive someone who takes no accountability for shitty actions.  Its such a tall order. 

I guess the key is that I will have to forgive a louse, a rat, a lying scheming selfish person.  I can't forgive myself that I spent 13 years with such a person. He can't have been that bad?  I can't have been so stupid? 

The actions yes, easy to forgive. The entire person -- ugh, its too hard. The shit returns to me.

But I guess that is the final key...   
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline dtwpuck

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Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #16 on: October 05, 2009, 07:53:51 PM »
Maybe you've hit on a place to start.  Forgive yourself for what you regret.

I also don't think you can separate a person's actions from who they are.  To me, saying "hate the sin, love the sinner" is pure idealistic bs.    When you forgive, you're forgiving both.    But it doesn't mean he's less of a jerk.   I don't talk to my father.  It's just too much work.   But I am not angry anymore.  And, that's a good thing.

Your ex is a complete loser.   You loved someone enough to give of yourself.  That says more about what a good person you are than anything else.    So, sometimes good people make the mistake of loving the dregs of humanity.   It sucks.  Bad.   But, it's part of the deal for being a loving person.

I think you're on your way.  But this all takes time, my friend.  Best of luck.   
Floating through the void in the caress of two giant pink lobsters named Esmerelda and Keith.

Offline TheRoof

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Re: Forgiveness
« Reply #17 on: October 11, 2009, 01:02:31 PM »
The guy who gave me HIV. Knew they had it. Worse then than that I had drug resistance in my virus.

In the end, if you do stay with that person. You have to lean on them for support. If you do not want to forgive them for this. Do not care about them. Your health is more important to take care of then living in regret about this.

I can relate to these situations to an extent for sure.


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