So a few months ago I caught my girlfriend cheating (and a few other things I won’t go into) and so I broke up with her. I was mad, really mad, I felt hurt, I felt used, and wanted revenge.
I deliver newspapers and while I was waiting for my papers I was talking to a fellow driver who is a former 1%er motorcycle club member and telling him what happened and how I wanted revenge. He listened and let me rant, then after a few minutes of my ranting and talking about getting revenge he very quietly said “have you ever gotten revenge on someone?” to which I replied I had and he asked “when you look back on it, how do you feel about what you did?”, and it was at that moment that I realized that I regretted ever taking revenge. Sure it made me feel better at first, but in the end I regret ever doing it and regret the hurt that may of come from it.
When I told him that I regretted it he looked at me and said “I’ve taken revenge on a lot of people, and you know what it’s got me? Life long regret, lost relationships, and once other people suffered because of it”. And as he said these words to me I could see the pain in his eyes, and I knew he was right. After a moment he looked me right in the eyes and said “I had a cellmate in prison tell me something and I wish I had listened to him sooner, he told me “a weak man seeks revenge, a strong man forgives, but a wise man try’s to figure out why he was hurt” you don’t have to actually figure out why you were hurt, but it’s the act of trying that can help you forgive and move on”.
These gentle and wise words, from a man who in another life would have put you in the hospital for looking at him wrong, made me step back and really think. For the rest of the night I just thought about what he said, and by the end of the night I had calmed down and knew seeking revenge would only hurt me in the end. And yes I was still mad, and feeling hurt, but the blood lust I felt was gone and I felt more at peace.
At first I didn’t really try to figure out why she hurt me, I just dealt with the pain and tried to get over that first, but once I had gotten over the pain I started to think about why she had done what she had done. I’ve never come to an answer, I have some theories but I know I’ll never know for sure, and that’s alright because I realized that the simple act of trying to figure it out helps you forgive and move on. I’m not trying to tell you that you have to completely forgive the person who hurt you, I know I never will never completely forgive my ex, but I’ve forgiven her enough to move on with my life, and in the end being able to move on is what you really want, because really what good would knowing why they did what they did do for you? And even if they told you why they did it, would you really believe them?