When I was a child, my father abandoned the family. Once I was grown and he did not have the pressures of parenthood, he came to me and asked for my forgiveness. I refused because I was so angry. Should I now ask my father to forgive me for not forgiving him when he asked?

You were not ready to forgive your father and now it seems that you are. Please forgive your father first, if you have not done so. Then go to him and ask for his forgiveness. Please be patient with him because he may be hurt by your earlier refusal. Also, please consider forgiving yourself for not forgiving him earlier. Please be gentle with yourself on this. After all, the hurt you suffered from your father is deep and you needed time to sort it all out.

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Categories: Ask Dr. Forgiveness


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