In Lieu of Forgiving
Victims of PTSD, and the victim's families, cannot understand the concept of forgiveness, aside from the grace of Almighty God.
Somehow, we must dig deep into our souls and find the capacity to forgive and forgive and forgive, regardless of the circumstances. It is not that the victims are crazy, but rather they have been so traumatized that they are not who God created them to be. It is not their fault. Its everyone's fault. It is sin's fault. Like the soldiers who crucified our Lord—they just know not what they do.
Years before he died, the fact that I could not recall my father ever telling me that he loved me waxed stronger and stronger on me. Finally, I sought counsel. After explaining this to my counselor at length, he wisely suggested that I write a letter to my father, explaining my frustration, and then tearing it up and tossing it in the trash can. I could then begin moving on with my life. My father would never know my feelings, and I would be much, much better.
That's what I did.
Almost two years before his death, on November 9, 2007, I wrote a letter....
Yes, I wrote the letter and then tore it up.
Now, that was a great alternative to forgiving my father, was it not? It was so well written. Grammatically correct, and just the right length, with correct punctuation. It came from the heart, too.
It made me feel good, really good.
You meet with a counselor for 45 minutes. He brags about his education and counseling expertise for 30 minutes, he listens to you for 15 minutes, and then he suggests that you write a letter. He charges you $150. You write the letter, and tear it up.
You re-write the letter, and tear it up again. You re-write it again and again. You really don't know what to say. So, you destroy it. That makes it all well and fine.
You feel better. Much better.
You did the right thing.