Counseling Corner | Tim Gilleand, MA, LMHC Discusses Forgiveness

This video segment is from Restoring Hope, a TV series hosted on WHMB40 and serving the Indianapolis area. Crosswinds Counseling offers counseling services throughout Indiana.

Hi, I’m Tim Gilleand, licensed therapist & clinical supervisor here at Crosswinds. Today I want to talk to you about something that I usually spend some time working on with almost all of my clients because it affects us all at some level – and that is the hurt and the pain that we carry from all kinds of situations from our past. Everybody has this. Some different degrees, different situations, but the feelings, the emotions that come with that is the same. We carry this hurt and this pain. So what do we do about it?

I tell my clients you have 3 options when you have this. First option: revenge. They hurt you. You hurt them back. What’s the problem with that though? It’s a cycle. They hurt you. You hurt them. They’re going to hurt you again, and we’re just going to keep going on and on forever. But it’s an option. Doesn’t solve the problem though. So let’s go on.

Option 2 is what I feel like most people end up doing. That’s just finding some way to live with the pain. I’m going to push it to the side, I’m going to shove it down deep, I’m going to ignore it, I’m going to distract myself, and just hope it doesn’t come back. The problem though is that we stuff, and we stuff, and we stuff something, eventually that thing will blow up. And then what do we do? We start stuffing again. It’s a cycle. It’s going to keep going on. It hasn’t solved the problem still. So both of those two first options – not solving it.

There’s one option left, and that is the hardest one. And that’s forgiveness. Forgiveness is choosing to treat someone not as they deserve – it’s not saying that what they did is right. It’s choosing to say I’m going to treat you the right way regardless. And it’s hard. It takes a lot of work, but I want to give you one little piece on it today. That is forgiveness is for you. It’s not for them.

So let me prove that to you. Walk with more for a second. Imagine, you’re a third-grader on the playground. Little Johnnie comes up and he pops you in the nose. You go home that night. You’re hurt. You’re angry. You’re stewing over it. Right? What’s little Johnnie doing that night? He’s doing his own thing. He’s not thinking about it. It’s not bothering him. It’s bothering you. So does little Johnnie need your forgiveness? No. He’s fine. Do you need to forgive him? Yes. It’s for you. And there’s so much more on forgiveness we need to talk about. It’s so much of a bigger concept than most people realize. So myself, the other therapists here at Crosswinds would love that chance to walk you down that path of healing that comes through forgiveness.

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