Forgiveness and the Healing Process: A Central Therapeutic Concern

By Cynthia Ransley; Terri Spy | Go to book overview

Chapter 8

My journey towards wholeness and forgiveness with the aid of therapy

Joy Green

Everyone says forgiveness is a lovely idea, until they have something to forgive.

(Lewis 1996)

At 50, after working for 30 years in children's homes, I started a social work training course and found myself in a place of fear and depression, questioning my abilities. My self-esteem plummeted and my Christian faith, somehow, became less fulfilling and available to me. Psychotherapy started me on an unexpected journey to self-discovery and ultimately forgiveness. In this chapter I will offer my journey in order to encourage others to find what is hidden within their lives and to give therapists an understanding of the complexity of any process towards forgiveness.


Background

My father was an officer in the air force, and spent more time overseas than at home. I have a brother two years younger than me. Because of the war, he was 3 years old before he met my father for the first time. My grandmother lived with us, so we were raised by her and my mother. My mother was a powerful woman who ruled us with a rod of iron. I seemed to take the brunt of her wrath. I don't really remember much affection being shown but I do remember the cane kept at the side of the kitchen cupboard. My grandmother shared my bedroom. She was a gentle soul who said very little and did not argue with my mother. My father retired from the services when I was 14, and it was only

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