Resentment is the "number one" offender.
Have you been wronged? Life has just not been fair?
Resentment hangs up newly divorced for months, sometimes, even for
years, more than just about anything else.
You are going to be instructed in this article to list on a sheet of
paper, all people, institutions, or principles with whom you are still
angry or have resentments.
FIRST...Lets define it......What is a resentment?
Webster's Dictionary defines "resentment" as "indignation or ill-will
felt as a result of a real or imagined offense."
Webster's then refers the reader to the word "anger" ......and gives
of this thought or feeling, which includes rage, fury, wrath,
resentment, and indignation.
These words denote varying degrees of displeasure from anger (strong,
intense, and explosive) to the longer lasting resentment ill-will and
suppressed anger generated by a sense of being wronged by another or
From this resentment, stem all forms of bitterness, for you have been
not only mentally and physically ill, you have been spiritually sick
about the whole matter.
When the "resentment" malady is overcome, you will straighten out
mentally and physically.
In dealing with these resentments, you need to set them all down on
Doing this exercise on paper is an important part of the step to move
on that we are explaining here.
To cheat and not do the "on paper" exercise is to cheat no one but
yourself and your moving on to a new life.
You list on this sheet of paper, not only your STBX (soon to be ex)
other people involved in your divorce, institutions or principles with
whom you are still angry AND all those from the past you still cling to.
Do not concern yourself with whether you should or should not have the
anger or resentment, just make the list.
EXAMPLES OF RESENTMENTS
Former Wife, or/ husband, boyfriends, girlfriends, mother, father,
siblings, offspring, grandchildren, yourself, grandmothers,
grandfathers, aunts, uncles, cousins, friends, bosses, fellow workers,
employees, business partners, lovers, neighbors, cops, judges, teachers,
classmates, attorneys, celebrities, landlords, preachers, God,
Government, schools, businesses, hospitals, prisons, workplaces,
religions, churches, cultures, marriage, organizations, societies.
Religions, laws, beliefs, practices, codes, doctrines.
If you can remember the resentment, you should write it down, even
though you think that you are over it.
Go back through your life; "thoroughness and honesty" are of utmost
A review of PEOPLE, INSTITUTIONS and
will bring up a long
list, not just your stbx. and not just the people, institutions and
principles involved in your divorce.
Include way, back, long before your divorce.
Sure you are sore. You are "burned up."
Lets face it....you are
really, really pissed
On your grudge list, you set opposite each name all your injuries
attributed to them.
Is it your self esteem, your security, your ambitions, your sex
relations, which have been interfered with?
You work with four columns:
The first column will be the person,
place or thing
in which you have a resentment against.
The second column will be for why you have the resentment. What injury
or hurt did they do to you?
The third column is for entering what was affected as a result of the
you have done thus far. What have you lost or what has been
Is it now apparent that these resentments have led you to unhappiness
Have you indeed, squandered away many hours reliving these events?
Are you still very angry over these injustices to you?
Do you realize that your new life is frozen in time if you continue to
harbor such feelings?
Do you now realize the power over your life that you have given this
hate, anger, and resentment?
Putting out of our minds the wrongs others have done, we look now for
your own mistakes.
The fourth column is for entering in what your part in the deal was, fill in the answers to the questions:
What was my part in this event and how was I at fault?
Where did I go wrong?
The first thing you will see that becomes apparent is that this world
and its people are often quite wrong.
To conclude that others were wrong is as far as most of us ever get.
The usual outcome is that you will figure out that people will likely
continue to wrong you, that you will continue to be on the short end of
more injustices and you will therefore continue to stay pissed.
Sometimes it turns to remorse and then you will even be sore at
And the more you fight and try to have your own way, the worse matters
As in war, the victor only seemed to win. Our moments of triumph will be
It eventually will become plain to you, that a life which includes deep
resentment leads only to futility and unhappiness.
Turning back now to the list, for it holds the key to the future.
You are prepared to look for it from an entirely different angle.
You began to see that the world and its people have really dominated and
controlled you thru your resentment.
In that state, the wrong doing of others, fancied or real, has the power
to actually ruin your new second chance for a great new life.
How can you escape these clutches that hold you back?
You see now that these resentments must be mastered, but how?
You can not wish them away any more than you can wish away your divorce.
You realize now that the people who wronged you were perhaps a mixed up
mess with their own very serious problems.
Though you did not like their symptoms and the way they distribute them
to you, you understand their imperfections and hereby forgive them.
Realizing that they, like yourself were far, far from perfect and likely
will remain so.
To the precise extent that you have permitted these resentment to
continue, do you squander the hours, the very hours that your life is
made of and that might have been exceptionally worth while.
But with the newly singled, like yourself, experiencing what is often
100% in charge of their own life for the first time, this business of
resentment is infinitely grave.
You will find now, that it is crucial, to ever gaining full control of
your new life.
For when continuing the harboring of such feeling you shut yourself off
from the sunlight of growth and this second chance at a great new life.
By forgiving them and letting
go of these resentments and anger, you free yourself to move on to a
great new life and leave them to their self imposed prison of mediocrity.
Related Article: Overcoming the Fears of Divorce,
Related Series: Adjusting To Single Life;
Divorce, Tragedy or Opportunity, click here
"Forgiveness does not mean condoning what has been done.
Forgiving means abandoning your right to pay back the perpetrator in his own coin,...but......
..... it is a loss.....
Desmond Tutu, Anglican archbishop of
Johannesburg, and Nobel laureate
All blame is a waste of time. No matter how much fault you find with
another, and regardless of how much you blame him, it will not change
you. The only thing blame does is to keep the focus off you when you are
looking for external reasons to explain your unhappiness or frustration.
You may succeed in making another feel guilty about something by blaming
him, but you won't succeed in changing whatever it is about you that is
making you unhappy."
Psychotherapist, Author and Speake
The article was inspired by, derived and modified from Alcoholic
Anonymous's dreaded Step Four in the AA Big Book which is on overcoming
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