A couple of weeks back, I posted a question on my IG asking, "Does forgiveness equal reconciliation?" And the consensus was basically, "no." The gist was that forgiveness is necessary, but we don't have to allow people access to re-enter our lives. My opinion is that most times, you can forgive and reconcile; however, you place boundaries on the re-entry. I first started this method due to the inability to let people go; then, I realized some people needed to get gone. Then there are people that I loved so dearly and played such an intricate part in my growth as a person that I allowed back in but placed boundaries. Why would I let someone I don't 100% trust back in my life? The easy answer is that love is still there, and trust can be rebuilt. The boundaries help me stay in touch with reality and not my rose-colored few of the situation.
None of us are perfect, so I tend to show others grace. Communication is also the key to understanding the meaning behind others' actions or inactions. Because we cannot change people, it is essential, to be honest about what traits you can handle when deciding on the people you want around you. For example, if you are a person that has massive resistance to liars, it may be hard to stay friends with a habitual liar. It's all about knowing your deal-breaker to determine if your offenders can regain access.
Define Reconciliation again?
The older I become, the more I realize the importance of who has access to my space. Once someone infiltrates my peace, I must retract and assess the situation. Am I feeling this way due to a trigger? Am I allowing the person to validate how they feel? Is this a repetitive offense? Were my feelings validated when explaining my side? These are the main questions I ask myself. After this self-interview, I must talk with this person to gauge how they feel and express how I feel. Honestly, these conversations are often a "agree to disagree" situation, but do both of us still hold the key to reconciliation?
The traditional definition of reconciliation" is the restoration of friendly relations. (Google) To restore something means to bring something back to its original form. (also Google) Let's be honest, once trust has been lost or feelings hurt, can things go back to being the same? Honestly, I don't think it can, but that is not such a bad thing. I believe disagreements allow us to learn about our spouse, friend, co-worker, family member, etc. After these revelations, we better know how to love this person better, understand where they come from, and hopefully, learn more about ourselves. Even IF you decide to allow the person to remain in your life, the relationship will not return to its original condition.
If not a Reconciliation, What Is It Then?
I refuse to state some cutesy work to replace the word reconciliation. So I looked up the word, re-establish, and it is defined as making something "anew ." Furthermore, anew is defined as "in a new or different and typically more positive way." (Google) In essence, starting anew is a fresh start. This could mean re-creating the relationship to build trust and reacquaint each other. It also means handling each other differently on this next level.
So, this next level is still up to the discretion of the individuals. I mentioned boundaries in the above paragraph, and I believe this is established when entering a new level. Both sides should decide on this new level. Sometimes this involves a fail-safe of the friend understanding the offended is working on correcting the problem, and the offender has to be patient in renewing trust.
When You Forgive, Forgive.
Nothing is more annoying than someone saying they forgive you and don't do it. What's more annoying than that is a person that forces the other side to forgive them. No one wants to receive an idol apology or be told they are forgiven, and they are not. Whatever side you are on, it takes patience on both ends.
Also, if you fully forgive the person and start anew, then a person should not continue to be badgered. Once again, be honest about how you are feeling. It is not technically a fresh start if forgiveness is absent.
In my closing, reconciliation may not exist in relationships (at least per Google); however, re-establishing boundaries, understanding, and trust are more realistic. Once true forgiveness has been implemented, it will take both sides to maintain the relationship.
Don't Be Shy? What are your thoughts about this subject?