Healthy Sexuality Requires Forgiveness — and Time
In the past couple blogs, we’ve discussed ways to begin to move on and have a healthy sex life after sexual addiction. For the most part, these blogs have covered how to treat yourself while recovering from sexual addiction, from self-respect and awareness, to stress management.
Now, after months of hard work, it’s time to start working toward one of the biggest hurdles for many recovering sex addicts — forgiving yourself.
Self-forgiveness takes a long time, and it won’t always come easy. You have already admitted your mistake sought therapy and began working to re-establish trust with your partner. Now, it’s time to start letting go and stop punishing yourself. Keep in mind that forgiveness is not a step to check off a list, but something that will come when you’re ready. This applies to both the recovering sexual addict and the partner.
Partners can help with this step by reminding each other that the goal is to forgive, not to forget. You’ll probably never forget the feeling when you learned of your partner’s infidelity, but you both can continue to discuss the issue and move forward.
Forgiveness is a daily thing, and you may need some reminders. Here are some mantras you can repeat to yourself daily to reinforce your resolve:
- I make mistakes, own them, apologize and start over with more knowledge
- I let go of my judgments of myself; today, I know better.
- I give myself permission to forgive my past mistakes
- I forgive when I’m ready, and I will listen to my heart
- The opposite of forgiveness is resentment, which will make me feel stuck. I release any and all resentment I feel.
Forgiveness doesn’t happen all at once; it comes in stages and will take time. Forgive as you’re ready. Continue to work toward forgiveness with your partner, your therapist and yourself.
Are you ready to schedule your next appointment with your sexual addiction counselor? Contact us today.
For more information on healthy sexuality visit www.centerforhealthysex.com.