For many abuse survivors, the traditional forgiveness advice doesn’t ring true. Most often people tell us that our anger, hate and resentment are harming us. For me, this focus misses the mark. For it is not hate and resentment that holds many survivors back; it is fear.
Boundaries issues are common in abusive family systems. When a child’s body, heart, and soul are routinely violated, their life is constructed in the absence of boundaries.
One of the reasons forgiveness was so frightening for me, is that it felt like I would be leaving myself wide open to injury. Forgiveness was premature until I had healed enough to protect myself from further harm.
Forgiveness and boundaries must go hand in hand.