Self-help guides are quick to suggest the adoption of the "forgive and forget" mentality. Probably because that's the easiest thing to do. And in many cases, it's the mature and progressive thing to do, too. Holding grudges takes energy and resistance and can create a lot of unhealthy stress that becomes both a mental and physical burden.
But sometimes, letting go isn't the best thing to do, for you. Sometimes holding a grudge is the best way to respect yourself and stand by your decisions. Sometimes your ex doesn't deserve to be let off the hook, not every act is worthy of forgiveness. Does that mean that if your ex forgot your birthday one year that you should put energy into holding that grudge for the rest of your life? No, that would be a waste of your precious mind space. And do keep in mind that by holding a grudge, you're holding a place in your mind for your ex.
If you're willing to give up the real estate in your heart and mind to keep your ex hanging around your thoughts, you should absolutely make sure that it's worth it. Here are a few relationship crimes that might be worthy of holding a grudge against your ex.
Your Ex Risked Your Health
Whether they cheated on you without protection or lied to you about their own sexual health, that's a dangerous and selfish act that does not need to be forgiven. It's a blatant disregard for you, your body and your mental health. There's no reason to free that person of their wrongdoing.
Your Ex Sabotaged Your Career
In small ways, lots of people in relationships struggle with being selfless while giving each other advice on their career. Because at the end of the day, when you're in a relationship and your partner gets a promotion, that affects how much you see them, how stressed they are and what their responsibilities are. So while you should always support your partner's dreams, it's understandable that there might be a moment of fear and discomfort when considering how the change will affect your relationship. But if your ex actually put into motion something that jeopardized or damaged your career in anyway, they're not worth forgiving.
Your Ex Harmed Your Pet
I've actually had exes who were jealous of my dog and would show aggression towards him — played a little too rough, pushed a little too hard, reprimanded a little too intensely. No one should ever interfere with how you handle your animals, but most of all, no one should ever discipline your animal without your consent. This type of behavior is a massive red flag. If you can't trust your partner with your most beloved friend, you can't trust them with anything. Don't let this person off the hook, that kind of behavior is appalling.
Your Ex Pursued Your Best Friend
Listen, it takes two to tango, so definitely think twice about your best friend if she allowed herself to be pursued — but if your ex went after your friend while you were together, your ex doesn't care enough about you to deserve your forgiveness. By pursuing your best friend, your ex is you of two people you love.
Your Ex Used You
One might argue we all use each other. For love, for comfort, for a place to go, a thing to do. But if your ex purposefully used you to get ahead in their career, to get back at someone, or to make a statement, they deserve to suffer the consequences which should not include your forgiveness. Premeditated acts like that are despicable and show a complete disregard for you as a person. If they aren't willing to acknowledge the fact that you're a human and you have feelings, they don't deserve you.
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