Forgiving Someone Else

I think I’m pretty good at forgiving people for things, I’m still close friends with several people who bad shit has gone down with. I do, however, have a hard time forgetting and moving on. I may not speak up or say anything but in the back of my mind it’s always there.

The one person in my life who has hurt me that I don’t think I can ever really forgive is my grandmother. She’s the only grandparent I have left and she’s in a home, I haven’t seen her in years. She asks to see me but I can’t go.

For the first several years she doted on me, telling me how beautiful and perfect I was. She adored me, this I can say for sure. The problem was I didn’t stay that cute forever, puberty came and weight came along for the ride.

That was when my grandmother started to tell me how pretty I could be if I lost weight. She would tell me how no man would love me unless I was thin. That was about when I started to obsess about my body and went into a downward spiral of self-loathing and unhealthy habits.

Everytime I would see her after that I’d go into a depression. It didn’t help all the nasty bigoted/racist things she would say or how she’d say horrible things about my mother.

She’s someone I need to forgive but given that she’s so incredibly mentally ill I’m not sure how to do that except what she put me through other than to accept that she didn’t know what she was doing. It’s terms I want to come to but will have to on my own.

10 Comments

  1. Grant

    October 28, 2010 at 9:30 am

    My mother was like that. Of course, they always claim they’re making their comments for your own benefit, as if they can shame you into having a better life, but I think it’s just an excuse for their own bad behavior. So far I’ve never heard of anyone’s life improving because they were nagged about their appearance.

  2. Chibi Jeebs

    October 28, 2010 at 11:16 pm

    She sounds very similar to my grandmother (mine just hasn’t officially been diagnosed with a mental illness – or, at least not that we’re aware of, anyhow). It’s a tough position to be in, for sure. I’m not sure if I’ll ever be able to forgive my grandmother.

    1. Robin

      October 28, 2010 at 11:18 pm

      It’s amazing how we find people online who have dealt with situations like our own, thanks for sharing that, it helps to know I wasn’t the only one who went through this.

  3. nancy@ifevolutionworks.com

    October 29, 2010 at 3:12 am

    Been there. Will always have something similar in my life. I’ve learned to just ……let go of it. When someone you are dealing with is chemically not built right, it’s all you can do.

    It gets tough when you have to deal with them, but you deal and exhale the first chance you get.

    1. Robin

      October 29, 2010 at 11:50 am

      Yeah luckily I don’t have to deal anymore, not since my grandfather died. I wish I could have had some time with him and not her. I think as time goes by I do let go, it has a lot to do with how much I’ve proven to myself and how much love I’ve found.

  4. Trina

    October 29, 2010 at 11:10 am

    I know how this feels, except I feel it with my parents. My Dad used to call me his ‘flaca’ which is ‘skinny girl’ in Spanish. Now, he only tells me that I could stand to lose a few pounds. My Mom, to this very day, encourages anorexia. I am not joking. “It won’t hurt you to NOT eat, y’know.”. It doesn’t help that she struggled with bulimia for a few years after my brother was born, and I think I’m the only person that knows. I still remember as clear as day how after gorging herself with dinner, she would be in the bathroom for an hour or more. I could hear her. All I remember saying in my 9 year old head is ‘I will NEVER be like her’. Now, she’ll try to go 2, 3 days without eating, only to eat and perhaps throw up. I’ve approached her several times how HER way is actually a disease and not a way to lose weight. But that’s the funny thing with Hispanic people, if you’re not hemorrhaging, losing an arm, there is no reason to see a doctor of any kind. Ok, perhaps not just HISPANICS, but stubborn, ignorant people.
    It sucks that whenever I see my Mom, she’ll say “Y’know, you were so beautiful when you were thinner.”. Oh thanks Mom! Then she’ll hand me the latest diet pill she found. That lady loves her some diet pills.
    It hurts. It really truly hurts. Because they’re not to thin to begin with. My Dad’s got a beer gut, and the only thing going for my Mom is her breast implants. I’ve learned to just let it go. I can sit here and pull my hair out in sheer frustration, but it won’t do me any good. But when you have friends and family that tell you ARE beautiful, it gets you through. Sometimes, some people’s opinions don’t matter, because they’re going through something way worse and just have a need to bring people down with them. All you can do is forgive them and wish them the best. Easier said than done, but it’s do-able.

    PS You are beautiful. Creative. Smart! Caring. Just thought I’d let you know 🙂

    1. Robin

      October 29, 2010 at 12:00 pm

      Thank you, you are too. I actually had trouble with my dad (I think a big part is that he was raised by my grandmother) for years telling me not to eat this or that or saying I needed to lose weight. Looking back I think, why couldn’t my parents have just incorporated healthy food into my life?? It took me years (and still it’s work) trying to learn how to properly eat. My dad stopped talking to me the way he did when I started starving myself but that is all in my past. Funny, health-wise I am at my worst right now but I’m so far beyond the girl who thought she could starve away her problems.

  5. Shelli

    October 29, 2010 at 2:41 pm

    I think that you have to realize her ignorance, like you said, she doesn’t/didn’t know any better. If you can get there, it should be easier. The harder part might be the smack she talked about your mother. I will have to remember that when I’m talking to my own granddaughter. I will have to let her come to the realization herself that her mother is an self-absorbed idiot. (It’s 25 degrees here today and she sent her without a coat!! Sorry. I’m aghast about it.)

    1. Robin

      October 29, 2010 at 2:52 pm

      My husband and I both agreed if we were to ever have any visitation with his daughter we would never talk down about her mother, no matter how hard that may be.

  6. Jen

    November 3, 2010 at 7:06 pm

    sometimes it is better not to have poisonous people in our lives.

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