The second of 15 criticisms I have seen about forgiving: Forgiving is a ridiculous caving in to others’ demands.
Forgiveness and justice grow up together. As one forgives, one can and should ask for fairness from the one who is behaving unjustly.
The seventh of 15 criticisms I see about forgiveness is this: There is a “dark side” to forgiveness in that you let others take advantage of you.
The answer is similar to your points 2 and 4. You should ask for fairness when you forgive. This is not dark, but instead sheds light onto the problem so that you can solve that problem well.
I want to reconcile, but my partner keeps being mean to me. What do I do now?
If you want to forgive, I think you also need to ask for fairness. Then see how receptive your partner is to this call for justice. If you forgive first from your heart, then how you ask for justice likely will be more gentle than if you do so with deep anger. As we both know, it is important that your partner then see your pain and respond in a reasonable way to you.
If the other does not want to be forgiven, should I then not forgive?
Suppose someone said to you, “Please do not be fair to me. Under no circumstances, you are not to exercise justice to me.” Would you not be fair? Isn’t it your choice to be fair, regardless of the other person’s request? It is the same with forgiveness. You can forgive from the heart, as a free-will decision. You need not verbally proclaim your forgiveness toward the other if this person insists, but your forgiving always is your choice. The key issue here is how you forgive, and that can be done silently, from the heart and in actions that do not proclaim forgiveness.
It seems to me that anger is not always a bad thing. Can’t people be energized by their anger, focus, and attain fairness?
Yes, anger can be part of the motivation for achieving good. Yet, we have to make a distinction between anger within reasonable bounds (the emotion does not disable us, is not extreme) and anger that turns to resentment (a long-lasting and intensive anger that can lead to fatigue, distraction, and even physical complications). If we do not make this distinction, we could slip into resentment and conclude that it is good rather than dangerous in the long-term.