Have you forgiven your bullies?

Discussion in 'Bullying and Violence' started by liktheangel, Feb 27, 2015.

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  1. liktheangel

    liktheangel Active Member

    I've been reading about forgiveness and recovery lately and I was wondering if any of you have forgiven the people who bullied you?

    So people who have been broken, bullied and abused say the only way to move on is to forgive, to you believe this?
  2. insiiideouuut

    insiiideouuut Well-Known Member

    No. I'm a fucked up emotional wreck as a long-term effect from years of bullying, the damage is pretty much permanent so I don't see any reason to forgive. The only thing that can really heal you from years of bullying is time.

    Forget but don't forgive.
  3. Freya

    Freya Loves SF Staff Member ADMIN SF Author

    Yes. The things that happened to me when I was a child cannot define my present - I will not let it. The person I am now is a million miles from the person I was as a teenager, and I assume that the bullies that tormented me in those years are also different people now. I believe in second chances - for everyone - I forgive the people that hurt me in the past and presume them to have grown up. I don't believe that I can really claim to be a compassionate adult if I cannot forgive teenagers for being teenagers.
  4. Witty_Sarcasm

    Witty_Sarcasm Eccentric writer, general weirdo, heedless heathen

    I don't know if I have forgiven them or not. All I know is that I will never be able to forget what happened in the past. Hopefully someday I will be able to move past all of that and finally heal.
  5. SilentLegend

    SilentLegend Member

    No, I have such a hard time forgiving my own self let alone others.
    I haven't seen my bullies since HS, so being away from them has helped, but I know if I see them again the bitterness will come rushing back.
    At the end of the day whether you forgive or not the important thing is to improve your life and be happy with yourself, those bullies won't matter when it's all said and done.
  6. Petal

    Petal SF dreamer Staff Member Safety & Support SF Supporter

    Hard question. Hmmm very hard question, while my mind is saying yes, you're past it, you have not let them win, my heart says no. They made my life a living hell, I did not leave my house because of them. I was very young when I started being bullied and they were much older and should have known better. I'd like to forgive them, i would if they admit to what they have done and apologise.

    DRKSHDW Member

    It's not a matter of forgiveness for me. I have a son, and when you see what kids are like, they have very little sense in what they do. Forgiveness means someone intentionally wronged you, and young people don't have the self awareness required to do anything intentionally, they're just dumb animals. Forgiving a childhood bully is like forgiving a rock that fell on your head, it's meaningless.
  8. Petal

    Petal SF dreamer Staff Member Safety & Support SF Supporter

    I disagree with the ''teenagers just being teenagers'' because that makes it sound like it's just a part of normal growing up when it isn't. I was 14, bullied by teenagers aged about 17, threatened with a knife, I gave them a lot of money. I was a very easy target for bullies as I was so quiet, naive and didn't have lots of family to stick up for me, hell they didn't even know about it until I completely stopped leaving the house because of it. Can I forgive them? I suppose I could but it's not a natural part of growing up. Maybe that isn't what you mean, im sorry if it isn't. I am a compassionate adult, there will always be bullies, parents and teachers need to open up their eyes and take action.
  9. Freya

    Freya Loves SF Staff Member ADMIN SF Author

    Obviously threatened with a knife is an extreme example and not "part of growing up" - but teenagers being horrid to each other IS a part of growing up. I was referencing my own experiences which although there were no knives involved did include daily ritual humiliation and physical violence on occasion. My point, though, was not that bullying is acceptable but that the person you are ten years later is not the same for the most part. The people that bullied me grew up, learned it was not acceptable, became different people. I became a different person. I choose not to hang on to bad feelings and anger about something that happened when those people do not exist anymore - they grew up and changed. I can't speak to anyone else's feelings or experiences - the question was about whether or not I had forgiven my bullies. That is what I was answering.
  10. Petal

    Petal SF dreamer Staff Member Safety & Support SF Supporter

    I think that is my problem, thanks for pointing out that bullies are not the same people they aren't 'cos usually that IS the case but in my case they have not changed, one has been in local news for stealing, the other sells drugs (i live in a village, we hear everything) my bully, i will call her P, P smiled and laughed at me a few months back when I was getting on a bus as if to say ''haha i got away with it'' and that infuriated me. The other bully, i confronted last summer, he denied to my face what i know he did...i'd rather not say what happened next.

    I think while I have overcome a lot of things this is not one I cannot easily forget, it makes me cry, im crying now. How dare they, i was never horrible to anyone in my life and the police told me i was a lovely girl from a very respected family.

    (the bullying had something to do with the rape-i'd rather not going it, its a long story, they were spoken to by the police when i reported the rapist and they denied everything but were caught out because i had kept a blackmail letter and were screwed, their game was up, but as of now nothing legally can be done unless someone else comes forward but yeah i probably do still need counselling over this).

    Maybe just one day they will realise what they did and apologise. I do forgive them, i feel sorry that someone can be so low to do that to someone else. I know I have become a better because of what happened so at least there's a positive in the negative.
  11. iBananya

    iBananya Member

    I don't believe it's the only way to recover, but it is certainly more for the victim's benefit than the bully's. In fact, it's not really for the bully at all. It's purely something that can be a positive experience for the victim. And I think it depends greatly on what was done to you, by whom, how often, and even at what age. I never really had any experience with bullying until I moved to the US, and even then it wasn't bullying per-se, just being mocked regularly and a few cruel slurs and stuff, things that can't even be compared to full on bullying. The moment I let them go though and just forgave it, even though they didn't stop, it stopped affecting me. People who attack others on any level purely do it because they are weak and want to feel power over someone, they feed off the knowledge that they get to you and that they can keep doing it.

    There's no cure all for things like this, but forgiveness can be a step towards letting go. Like they say, forgive but don't forget. If you're angry, if it causes you to feel feelings of hate or anger, if it's something that comes up in your mind often, this person is still doing the damage to you. The moment you are able to in some form or another "let go" (I know this is FAR easier said than done, I'm not presuming it's easy or even possible in all cases), this person loses that power over you and you gain the ability to move forward.
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