Holding Grudges

I have to admit that I have a tendency to hold a grudge.  I “say” that I don’t.  I say that I forgive and all of that but in reality it hit me smack in the face that I have been very guilty of not forgetting and forgiving.  Today I read an article about a man who had said something to me in the past that really hurt me.  It was a conversation that happened the day after we had to put my father in law into a care facility because we were just not able to handle his care on our own.  It was a hard decision.  Very hard.  And one that we felt had to be made.  So maybe I was particularly raw that day when I had this conversation with this gentleman—I am sure I was but his words cut to my core.  He suggested that we were wrong in doing what we were doing and compared his care of his mother to how we were caring for my father in law.  He said that they were keeping her in her home—arranging it all so that she could stay there and that we should do the same.   Now remember that I really did not have a relationship with this man.  I was in his business to browse and the conversation started and is usual in my case evolved into quite a long and detailed account of his life and mine.  I left the business hurt and upset and vowed to never go back there again and I haven’t.  And I have not forgotten that conversation.

So today I read an article about this same man.  About an operation that went south.  It went REALLY south and he ended up losing a limb and fingers and all because of a surgery that was in no way related to what eventually happened to him.  It is very sad.  And I thought about that encounter months ago and how upset I was at his words and his insistence that we were doing wrong by my father in law. The words still sting.   The advice he gave me was unwanted.  But do I wish that he had horrible things happen to him later?  No way.  I read the lengthy article about this man and was caught up in his struggle and even though it does not excuse his words to me maybe it is softening my heart a bit.   He is a fighter and I am convinced after reading of his spirit and of his determination that he will handle this tragedy with grace and dignity and come out very well in the end.

It makes me think about my words and how often I may have been guilty of the same things.  I try to not offer unwanted advice and am very careful with my opinions but I am sure this man had no idea how his words affected me at the time so perhaps I have been guilty of the same.   I am trying to not hold a grudge.   There is so much I need to work on.


  1. I used to always hold grudges…. And take things very personally. But as I got older, I lightened up a lot… I realized that by holding the grudge, and getting so upset, all I did was hurt myself…

  2. I try not to hold grudges but I think, in a way it’s human nature and sometimes I just can’t help myself. I believe in “to each his/her own” and try not to judge. Not always easy and definitely something I’m continually working on. It’s so not worth it to waste our lives worrying about petty things.

  3. We all have a lot to work on. Realizing it puts you way ahead in the game.

  4. Helen Brown says:

    As you get older I think it is easier to just forget what was said and go on. Around here we have a couple (maybe more) that think they know what everyone else should do. You have to just take some time and do what you think is best and move on. It isn’t always easy but it is necessary.

  5. I’m with your mom, you have to decide what is best for you and your family, no one else knows the day-to-day struggles of another. And as Christine says, knowing puts you way ahead. Healing is a process, doesn’t happen overnight. Hugs!

  6. Leann Palm says:

    I appreciate reading your posts and just wanted to let you know that. I find your insight sometimes entertaining, sometimes thought provoking, sometimes interesting, and always honest. I know of another blogger who seems to use their “space” to whine and complain and generally say “look at me”. I enjoy reading your space because I enjoy your outlook on life! Keep it up!

    • Leann, thank you so much for commenting! I had no idea you read my blog and am thrilled! I write about life and whether it is always inspiring it is what is on my heart at the moment! Thanks again!

  7. There is really no point in holding grudges. I try to keep my advice to myself too unless it is asked for. I’m glad I didn’t have to see either of my parents put in a care facility because I knew it’s not what they would want. Sometimes, you just don’t have a choice though and I feel bad for anyone having to make such a difficult decision.

  8. I try to blow off any kind of negativity. There are many times I don’t even remember what caused it to begin with. That really ticks off someone who does hold grudges against you though! lol

  9. I would never have guessed this of you Beth Ann, you always seem so sweet. I have been guilty of this as well, but I tend to hold grudges less as I get older (just like everyone else in your comments). I have nothing new to add, except to be kind to yourself, no one can be perfect. If you realize what your faults are, you can always work on making them better.

    • Thanks! It was just one of those realizations that I was still upset about something that happened months ago!!! Silly! One of those life learning moments that was good to blog about!

  10. To err, is human, to forgive…you know the rest.. And as you are a divine human, just let it go..It would have been much worse if you had wished something bad upon him..

  11. Beth Ann, if holding a grudge was an Olympic event, I’d be a gold metalist! Great post..Thanks.

  12. Hi Beth Ann! I am sure you know I have something to say about this whole thing. 🙂 I got a ton of unwanted advice when I was considering long-term placement for my mom and I am sorry that you were hurt by the same ugliness. People think they are helping and probably don’t think too much on how their words can come across in an emotional situation.

    Since I was the President of the Grudge Holder Club of America I know first hand that it hurts me way more to hold the grudge than the people I am fussing with. This year I am really trying to focus more on giving the feelings up to God and letting Him help me through it. Long road ahead but it is helping! 🙂 xoxo

    • Thanks, Paula! I am sure you know way better than me how people can say things without realizing the impact. And like I said—i was in a pretty raw state so that did not help any!!! It was helpful to write the post—as it is so often I work through things when I write them down!

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