Forgiveness is never easy, especially when you've been hurt, but as a parent it's a hugely important thing to teach your child.
Your teen will unfortunately get hurt and be let down by others - it’s something that you can't prevent and is a part of life. But by teaching your teen about forgiveness, you will not only enable them to let go of past hurts but also have a more positive perspective when it comes to the future.
Acknowledge pain
Talk to your teen about what is bothering them and why they feel hurt by what has occurred; only when your teen acknowledges what is going on they will be able to move on. Explain to your teen that it is perfectly ok to feel upset and angry, especially if someone close to them has caused them pain. It is important to encourage your son or daughter to express their emotions in a healthy way and to make sure they are not bottling up their emotions.
Forgiveness can be freeing
Once your teen has expressed their feelings about the situation that has occurred, it’s time for the next step - to forgive. It will not be easy for your teen to let go of things that are causing them pain and it can be even harder if the person in question has never apologised to your teen for their actions. But as a parent explain to your teen that by forgiving, they will be finally able to let go of any unresolved emotions that are only holding them back.
An opportunity to grow
Even though your teen will find it hard to believe, it’s important to explain to them that what they are feeling right no matter how much it hurts now, it will pass. Explain to your teen every hurtful experience is an opportunity to turn something bad into something good. It is also important that your teen realises forgiveness doesn’t necessarily mean taking someone back. Forgiveness is often the realisation that what has happened cannot be changed but your teen doesn’t have to be defined by the pain that has occurred. Your teen may not see it straight away but by learning to forgive not only creates an opportunity for them to grow but they will become stronger as a result of it.