Forget but never forgive

YARN | We forget, but we never forgive. | Arrested Development (2003) - S05E03 Everyone Gets Atrophy | Video clips by quotes | 0ad474c7

YARN | We forget, but we never forgive. | Arrested Development (2003) - S05E03 Everyone Gets Atrophy | Video clips by quotes | 0ad474c7 | 紗


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We forget, but we never forgive.

Arrested Development (2003) - S05E03 Everyone Gets Atrophy

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We forget, but we never forgive.


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Arrested Development (2003) - S05E05 Sinking Feelings


We can forget it, but we can never forgive it.

Jack the Giant Slayer (2013)


But we never forget...

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2017)


We can forgive, but how can we forget?

The Handmaid's Tale (2017) - S03E04 God Bless the Child


But we must never forget

Downton Abbey (2010) - S03E01 Family


Forgive, perhaps. Forget, never.

The Office (2005) - S06E12 Scott's Tots


I forgive you, but I never forget.

South Park (1997) - S13E11 Comedy


we will never forgive, never rest

The Simpsons (1989) - S26E14 Comedy

1. 7s

I'll never forget-slash-forgive,

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012)


Some kind we never forgive

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012)


Some kind we never forgive

Empire (2015) - S01E09 Music


But we forgive him.

Duncanville (2020) - S02E02 Duncan's New Word


‐ I can always forgive, but I never forget,

The Simpsons (1989) - S12E06 Comedy


- Darn tootin'. - But we must never forget...

We Baby Bears (2022) - S01E18 Panda's Family


But I'll never forget you.

Sofia Carson - Rotten to the Core (From "Descendants: Wicked World")


Forgive, forget



# Let's forgive but not forget #



About Support / FAQ Legal

Can You Forgive and Forget? I Psych Central

Forgiveness is a crucial skill, but can you also forget what you’re forgiving — and should you?

We’ve all heard the adage “forgive and forget” when someone has wronged us. The idea is that this will keep the peace, preserve relationships, and maintain a calm mind.

Sounds good, but can you really do that — forgive an offense and then forget about it? And is that the best action to take?

Because this advice has been handed out for ages, you might think it’s rooted in deep wisdom, and it must be easy to do.

Wisdom? Yes, in part. Easy? No, definitely not.

This adage that we’re all so familiar with might be more properly phrased as, “forgive, but don’t forget.”

Knowing how to forgive someone can be an essential life skill. It can save friendships, restore faith in our kids, and keep romantic relationships intact.

A 2015 study suggests that there are two types of forgiveness:

  • decisional forgiveness: making a conscious decision to let go of hurt feelings, such as anger and resentment, putting them in the past, and moving forward free of the effects those feelings can bring
  • emotional forgiveness: replacing negative emotions toward the person who has wronged you with positive ones such as sympathy, compassion, or empathy

Experts in this study suggest that emotional forgiveness can lead to higher levels of forgetting than decisional forgiveness or no forgiveness.

A 2021 study also suggests that forgetting is easier with emotional forgiveness than decisional forgiveness or no forgiveness.

But does forgiving someone require that you forget what they’ve done? Not necessarily.

“Forgiving and forgetting” implies that you’ve moved on and no longer think about the offensive act. But forgiving an offense can be hard to do.

A 2011 study suggests that forgiveness may give the person permission to continue the offense. In some cases, people who hurt others can manipulate the forgiveness process.

When “forgetting” what has been forgiven is challenging, learning from the experience may help some people cope if they encounter that behavior in the future.

Still, “forgiving and forgetting” isn’t always possible in every situation. While some can learn from the experience, others may forgive to release the past and accept that what happened wasn’t their fault and that no behavior could have changed it.

A word of caution

The concept of “forgive and forget” can be a complex and delicate topic to discuss, particularly for survivors of abuse or trauma.

Misconceptions about this topic can lead to:

  • prolonged or continuation of abuse
  • guilt and shame
  • feelings of helplessness
  • revictimization
  • isolation and social distancing

If you’re a survivor of abuse or trauma and want to discuss how this concept fits with your situation, consider reaching out to a mental health professional.

They can help guide you on the next steps as they relate to you and your unique circumstances.

If you don’t forget, can you really forgive? It can be difficult to truly forgive someone when you know how they’ve hurt you.

But no one said that forgiveness was easy. It may be extremely hard. Forgiveness may be as much for you as it is for the person to whom you’re granting it.

Forgiveness may help release emotional baggage, such as anxiety, anger, and pain. A 2019 study notes that several studies have linked forgiveness to lower levels of depression and anxiety.

It also notes that forgiveness may even improve physical health and pain, while unforgiveness may increase heart rate and blood pressure.

The study of nearly 1,000 women ages 18 to 40 found that those who emotionally forgave an offense held the person less responsible for the offense than those who decided to forgive.

Practicing forgiveness may improve your emotional health and overall happiness, according to a 2016 review.

If you’re still having trouble forgiving, especially when you can’t forget, there may be some good reasons to continue trying.

  • Forgiving is critical for our emotional well-being. By refusing to forgive someone, you may be holding on to all the anger and pain that their actions might have created. This can take an emotional and physical toll. According to a 2016 study, practicing forgiveness might help reduce stress, anxiety, and the likelihood of depression.
  • We don’t forget — we learn. Each experience teaches us something, even the painful ones. Forgetting means you’re forgoing the lesson and growth that can come from it. Instead, consider using it to better equip you for the future.
  • Forgiving strengthens relationships. All relationships have the potential to deepen and thrive because of what occurred. A 2011 study suggests that forgiving your partner may be crucial to maintaining a healthy romantic relationship. Forgiving may encourage you to become more committed to not allowing divisive and hurtful conflicts to occur in the future.
  • Forgiveness has a positive effect on your physical health. Have you heard the phrase, “Being eaten up inside”? Holding on to resentment and anger can indeed create problems within your body. Those festering feelings can increase blood pressure and inflammation leading to potential heart problems.

Convinced but unsure of how to start? You’re not alone.

If you’re having trouble figuring out how to begin the process, consider the following tips:

  • Identify and articulate the things you’d like to forgive. Too often, hurts and offenses get intertwined and knotted up. They may not even come from the same source. To start the process, try to be specific about what you’d like to forgive.
  • Understand forgiveness. Forgiveness is a process and requires effort and patience.
  • Acknowledge forgiveness. Try to think about what forgiveness will do for you, not for them.
  • Forget about forgetting. It’s not really possible to forget, nor is it necessary.
  • Find perspective. This may require putting some distance between you and someone else, talking with a friend or family member, or even seeking counseling.
  • Be ready to repeat the process. It can take more than one try to reach the point of being able to forgive.

Forgiveness is an important skill, and it can be positive. It may improve both your mental and physical health and lead to resolution and personal growth in some cases.

And even though you’ve forgiven someone, it doesn’t mean you have to forget their offense.

Forgiveness is a process that can take time and may require some effort.

If you want help, consider reaching out to a mental health professional for guidance. They can help you with the next steps and provide you with tools to cope with your circumstances.

“Forgiving and forgetting” is a choice, and if you choose not to do either, that’s OK.

Does the Bible tell us to forgive and forget?



There is no "forgive and forget" phrase in the Bible. However, we find numerous verses that tell us to forgive one another (eg Matthew 6:14 and Ephesians 4:32). The unforgiving Christian will find his fellowship with God broken (Matthew 6:15) and may reap bitterness and loss of reward (Hebrews 12:14-15; 2 John 1:8).

Forgiveness is a volitional decision. Because the Lord commands us to forgive, we must make a conscious decision to obey and forgive. The offender may not want forgiveness and may never change, but that doesn't change God's desire for His children to have a spirit of forgiveness (Matthew 5:44). Ideally, the offender should seek reconciliation, but even if this is not the case, the injured party may still choose to forgive.

Of course, it is impossible to truly forget the sins committed against us. We cannot selectively "delete" events from our memory. The Bible says that God does not "remember" our ungodliness (Hebrews 8:12). But He remains omniscient. He remembers that we have "sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23). But when we are forgiven, we are justified by the law. Heaven is ours, as if our sin never took place. If we belong to God through faith in Christ, then He does not condemn us for our sins (Romans 8:1). In this sense, the Lord "forgives and forgets."

If "forgive and forget" means choosing to forgive the offender for Christ's sake in order to move on in your life, then this is a wise and godly course of action. As far as possible, we should try to forget the past and fix our eyes on the future (Philippians 3:13). The apostle Paul says that we should forgive one another, “just as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32). We must not allow the root of bitterness to grow in our hearts (Hebrews 12:15).

However, if "forgiving and forgetting" means acting as if the sin never happened and living as if we don't remember it, then we may run into problems. For example, a rape victim may wish to forgive the rapist, but this is does not mean that she should act as if the sin never happened. Spending time alone with a rapist, especially an unrepentant one, is not what Scripture teaches. Forgiveness means that we no longer hold a grudge against the person, but forgiveness is different from trust. It's wise to take precautions, and sometimes relationship dynamics need to change. “The prudent sees trouble, and hides; but the inexperienced go forward and are punished” (Proverbs 22:3). Jesus told His followers, “Be wise as serpents and simple as doves” (Matthew 10:16). In the context of dealing with unrepentant sinners, we must be "simple" (willing to forgive), but at the same time "wise" (cautious).

Forgiving and forgetting is the ideal. Love thinks no evil (1 Corinthians 13:5) and covers many sins (1 Peter 4:8). However, changing hearts is God's work, and until the perpetrator experiences a true, supernatural change of heart, it is wise to limit the level of trust in that person. Being circumspect does not mean that we have not forgiven. It simply means that we are not God and cannot see the heart of that person.


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Does the Bible tell us to forgive and forget?

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Why not forgive everyone?


Know thyself

There is an idea in the air that we must forgive everyone. It is broadcast with good intentions, but in itself is harmful. Its essence is that forgiveness is the path to a life free from bitterness and hatred. And if you cannot forgive an unscrupulous offender, then you are a spiritually undeveloped person and you are facing serious emotional and physical problems. These myths hurt people. But there are many ways to let go and find peace that don't involve forgiveness. If you believe that forgiveness, like gratitude, is a universal healing emotion, you start to promote this idea and you can even start putting pressure on others to forgive those who hurt them.

But it often happens that the offender has not even apologized, lives as if nothing had happened, does not feel remorse and does not admit his mistake. “What your father did to you is a long time ago. I see no reason to delve into the past and harbor old grievances. Can't you forgive him and move on in peace? the mother asks her adult daughter. A mother may say this out of good intentions, but she risks turning her daughter into a victim.

And what does the offended party need to hear?

In order to be healed, the offended person needs to hear clear confirmation that their experience is terrible

People who continue to be angry and bitter are often incapable of direct judgment after being betrayed or abandoned. The child or adult may have been told that nothing bad has happened, that their feelings and perceptions are wrong, excessive, or abnormal. Maybe they even said that he himself is to blame for what happened, that this is all the result of his wrong behavior.

In order to be healed, the offended person needs to hear clear confirmation that what he has experienced is terrible, that his feelings and perceptions have meaning. To offer to forgive the offender is to make them experience even more emotional instability. He will again feel that he was betrayed, even if the offense or insults are insignificant, if they are great, even more so.

The words “Well, why should you forgive him?” - the last thing that an offended or deceived person should hear, because the one who did wrong to him did nothing to deserve forgiveness. The clichés “She tried her best”, “What happened, happened” or “It happened 40 years ago” are useless.

No one has the right to tell you what you should and should not forget

The only thing you can say in such a situation is that you hope that the offended person will find a way to cope with the weight of anger and pain.

Learn more