Worth the Effort

I hope that you also can learn to be more forgiving of your partner.  Doing this will be worth whatever effort you have to make to get there.  Even if you are able to develop a forgiving nature, however, you will still have specific offenses to work through.  But being forgiving will reduce the number of obstacles you create in your marriage and improve the pleasure of the time you spend with your loved one.

No matter how perfectly loving your relationship is, your partner will do irritating things and make choices that are potentially dangerous to your relationship.  Inevitably you will have to make decisions that may require difficult conversations.  Forgiveness will help you have more peaceful conversations and help make the difficult decisions easier to think out.  Both situational forgiveness (forgiving a specific act) and dispositional forgiveness (becoming a more forgiving person) can be practiced with specific techniques for getting over wounds and moving on.  Most of the time the health of our marriages requires only that we be more forgiving of who our partner is.  Some of our partner’s actions may require specific acts of forgiveness because the resulting wound is so deep that the grief takes time to heal.  The power of forgiveness is such that even situational forgiveness is easier the more forgiving we are in general.

— Dr. Fred Luskin, Forgive for Love, p. 56

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