I'm a bit of an unusual PA in that in my relationship i'm the one primarily suffering with hurt from my spouse. I spent several decades feeling unimportant to my wife, especially sexually, where she just had little interest. i was too immature to deal with it directly, so i stuffed it and build a huge reservoir of resentment. to move on i need to be able to forgive that behavior. so... i've been thinking a lot about forgiveness... especially in a relationship. it's a much harder topic to understand than i first thought... here's my random streams of consciousness, would love input, crtique and other's experiences What forgiveness cannot be: just forgetting the offense ever happened or going on as if it never happened the goal of forgiveness to heal a realationship after some offense, such that the offense isn't what drives all the realtionship dynamics to reach a place where the thoughts of the offense aren't in the top 10 list of "items about the other person" to not continue to hurt from the offense if a continued intimate relationship is desired, then a goal of forgiveness is to enable the ofended person to feel safe that the offense won't occur again prerequisites to forgiveness (maybe these are only required to maintain an intimate relationship?) acknowledgement from the offender of the offense an attitude of "I screwed up, i'm sorry" from the offender a genuine demonstration of change by the offender offended party being willing to forgive - sometimes i just want to be and stay mad how forgiveness is carried out (when a future intimate relationship is desired) at some point the offended person has to be willing to say "xyz happened. it hurt me a lot. if it happens again i will be hurt a lot again. i feel safe enough to take that risk" the offended person has to be willing to give up the desire to be mad the offender has to be willing to care for the wound caused in the offended person. it is real - but like any wound, if cared for it should heal if the wound doesn't heal then: 1) the pre-requites weren't met 2) the offended doesn't yet feel safe 3) the wound is enmeshed with other, possibly unrelated, wounds in the offended person so i wonder - if my wife has made real apologies, and real progress were being made to correct the earlier problems- then at some point it seems I just need to decide to quit making the wound such a big deal. to decide to not stuff it, or act like it never happened, but to move up a level and being smarter now, sorta try again with no malice. it may be that the recurring OCD-like obsession with the offense is an unhealthy coping mechanism i need to jettison. so while this is obviously all about me - i think the topic applies pretty widely here on NF thoughts?????