Give Up The Grudge

The more time I spend with people, the more that I think half of the universe is bitterable.

Bitterable is a word that I invented which is a hybrid of bitter and miserable. It makes me sad to see so many people that I love so unhappy with the state of their lives and yet, I can’t do anything to help them out with it.

I often get questioned by the people in my life by my ability to trudge along when things get sucky. A recurring conversation between myself and my beau is my indifference towards a former friend who stopped talking to me abruptly (and even took my copy of the Hunger Games and never returned it!), but I never say anything negative or show any distress at their departure. I simply have more important things to focus on than someone who obviously didn’t care enough about the friendship to have a conversation. This applies to many things in my life. I’m quick to forgive and move on because once someone has apologized for said wrong doing & we’ve talked about it, we should probably go forward.

Several people I know are still angry with their partners for things that happened months, even years ago. Things that should have been resolved at the time. I’m not talking about the residual hurt or the rebuilding of trust, those linger for months on end. Mentioning residual hurt doesn’t have to involve throwing it back in the person’s face, simply expressing that you were hurt and that’s why you do certain things or get emotional about certain things is well enough. If someone cares enough about you (and has any self awareness at all), they should have some patience for your concerns. I’m one of those people that will annoy someone with questions such as; are things fine, are we good now, do you mean it, etc. and chances are I drive the other person absolutely bonkers, but it’s my way of feeling secure again after something goes wrong. There’s nothing wrong with needing reassurance, or even with feeling hurt long after the action/infraction is over.  However, holding on to the residual anger, or worse, stewing for years is just a ticking time bomb. If you’ve said you’ve forgiven them, then drop it and try to overcome the hurt, because they’ve acknowledged their wrong doing, why make them suffer? If they were truly sorry, then they’ll demonstrate the appropriate behaviour and you’ll feel better and more secure eventually, but it’s up to you to feel better, not the other person to make you feel better.

Holding a grudge is like drinking poison and hoping the other person will die; you’re only hurting yourself. The person you’re angry at likely doesn’t know or care that you’re still pissed about the infraction from years ago and that’s why you end up bitterable. I think about people who are still angry about things that happened in high school, even though they graduated 10 years ago, or are still mad at their relationship crumbling a year later. I can understand hurt, or not ready to open oneself up to a new relationship, but to still be angry is a little silly.

My foster father once said that if it won’t affect you three days from now, or an apology can fix it, it’s not worth being angry about. It’s a lesson I’ve tried to adopt into my daily life. I still get hurt and angry, but I try very hard not to let it impact my relationships with other people. I’m simply too busy to end up bitterable & I would be very upset to learn that people were still angry with me for things that I had done and apologized for.