Forgiveness is Better than Regret

Today’s great post comes from our friends at Live Your Best Marriage. Enjoy!

Ever noticed how difficult it is at times to forgive your spouse for something really hurtful they said, or did? Sometimes it’s puzzling as to how they can even say or do these things in the first place. It’s also a lot easier to keep track of the things that are “their fault” instead of our own. When being rude to your spouse comes in the form of retaliation, there’s a feeling that it’s justified. Been there, done that – many times over. I’m realizing now, that forgiveness is better than regret.

I never understood how great it feels to let things go, and to forgive. It truly makes you free, knowing that the person who did wrong doesn’t owe you anything. I don’t want to look back some day and regret spending so much time being angry and resentful. I want to know that I loved fully.

Realizing how short life actually is can help minimize arguments between husband and wife. The small things become too petty to even address. Many comments are dismissed and ignored because I don’t want to spend any time or energy fighting. Arriving to an age when you understand that time is not endless, you also begin to realize that every moment you share with your spouse is precious, and fighting becomes meaningless. Suddenly, it no longer matters who “started it”. It requires a big attitude change, in order to begin viewing the situation from this perspective.

My heart breaks for the couples who live parallel lives, sleep in separate bedrooms, and share more personal information with friends and co-workers than with one another. These things happen because a lot of little things build up over time. Marriage is a team, you’re working with and for one another- not against. The purpose of marriage is for husband and wife to walk side by side, any other way, defeats the purpose.

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To all of you young couples who are newly married, please stay on a path of peace. Consider my advice, and don’t allow bitterness to take over. For those of you who have been together for many years, you can start fresh. There is still time to let go of the past, the negative attitudes, the bad memories, and begin to cherish one another, again.

Remember those special times, in the beginning? The things that made you attracted in the first place?
And let’s suppose that the wrongs they have done, are “debts” that they owe you. After many years, these debts seem to have accumulated so much, and you’re not sure if you can forgive them and go back to zero.

Back when your relationship was new, your spouse’s flaws were much easier to ignore, and your balance sheet was at zero most of the time. The good probably outweighed the bad, and there were more positive experiences because of the simple fact that there were fewer experiences. The question is: what about now? Time has passed – good times and bad – and you have a choice to make. Why not let their balance go back to zero now? I wish someone had told me this, before having countless fights with my husband.

When you’re 95 and looking back, which will make you feel better? Knowing that you lived in complete disgust because you were easily irritated by the person you made a lifelong commitment to, or knowing that you truly lived life to the fullest because you chose love? I want to look back knowing that it was time well spent, being on good terms with my husband.