Parents and children argue, and this is a normal aspect of everyday life. Nevertheless, the important thing is what happens following the argument. Unresolved arguments lead to additional stress and can also strain the parent-child relationship (Healthwise, 2021). Thus, this blog seeks to explore the advantages of forgiveness in resolving parent-child conflict.
At times, forgiveness is not easy, and this is because both parties tend to question whether one’s forgiveness is being taken advantage of. Additionally, one might think that they are always the ones who need to forgive and hence are done with forgiveness (Samudio, 2016).
The advantage of saying ‘sorry’ as a parent
Apologizing to one’s child for one’s actions and reactions will normalize the idea of forgiveness. Thus, this enables the child to understand that even grown-ups make mistakes and that it is safe to own up to them (Samudio, 2016).
Freedom of the soul
As mentioned above, arguments make one feel preoccupied with what went on during the particular argument. Forgiveness is the only way to free oneself from such thoughts and stress, and it creates a sense of peace and freedom (Wu, 2023). Additionally, forgiveness also improves one’s mental health by reducing anxiety and decreasing the probability of experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder (Sunshyne, 2020).
Forgiveness enables one to be the ‘bigger person’ allowing one to feel a sense of satisfaction and providing room for personal growth. Forgiveness dismisses the notion of victimology and empowers the individual to rise above it (Wu, 2023).
Preserving the parent-child relationship
Forgiveness from both sides can help one’s relationship be stronger. It enables the parents and the children to understand that both individuals might have been in the wrong and can open lines of communication. Thus, this makes the parent-child bond stronger.
In conclusion, one as a parent needs to acknowledge that forgiving one’s children will not only teach their children by example, but it will also provide them with peace and a happier lifestyle. Moreover, when children forgive their parents, they realize that by holding grudges, they are in reality inhibiting themselves from living a happy and peaceful life.
If you think that you can benefit from professional support on this issue you can reach out here.
Yasmine Bonnici graduated in Nursing and also completed her Masters’s in Counselling. She has worked with victims of domestic violence, clients dealing with suicidal ideations, bereavement, separation and anxieties. She is currently working with Willingness Team as a counsellor seeing clients who would like to explore their own identity and deal with any surfacing issues.
Healthwise (2021) Parent-child conflict: Care instructions, MyHealth.Alberta.ca Government of Alberta Personal Health Portal. Available at: https://myhealth.alberta.ca/Health/aftercareinformation/pages/conditions.aspx?hwid=ut3171 (Accessed: 17 May 2023).
Samudio, M. (2016) Forgiveness and your relationship with your child, Shameproof Parenting. Available at: https://shameproofparenting.com/forgiveness-with-your-child/ (Accessed: 17 May 2023).
Sunshyne (2020) 7 benefits of forgiveness, Christian Counseling. Available at: https://sunshynegray.com/benefits-of-forgiveness/ (Accessed: 18 May 2023).
Wu, L. (2023) 3 key benefits to forgiving and why I thanked my imperfect parents, Tiny Buddha. Available at: https://tinybuddha.com/blog/3-key-benefits-to-forgiving-and-why-i-thanked-my-imperfect-parents/ (Accessed: 17 May 2023).