Case for keeping offences to myself

I have found that when I am offended by another person for any reason, I want to tell those close to me about the offence.  I want their sympathy.  Maybe I want them to be angry at the one who offended me.  Is that human nature, or what?  But I have learned that doing that—telling others about my offences—is bad.  Why?  Because it spreads the offence.  It multiplies the offence.  Now others are offended when there is no reason for them to be.  My husband wouldn’t feel offended at a person he doesn’t even know if I didn’t tell him how that person offended me.  Neither would my children.  Or anyone else who cares about me.

And that isn’t even the worst thing about sharing my offence.  After a while, I am ready to forgive the offence and make things right with the one who offended me.  But forgiveness comes much harder for those with whom I have shared the offence.  You see, I usually know the person who offended me.  Very likely, the person is a friend, because it’s hard to be offended by someone I don’t even know.  I don’t really value the opinion of someone I don’t know, so while I may not like what that person does or says, I’m not offended by it.  But it takes much longer for forgiveness to come to my loved ones with whom I shared the offence, especially if they are not friends with the offender.

It has happened that a family member or friend doesn’t even like the person who offended me even though he or she doesn’t even know that person, just because of the offence to me.  So the consequences for my sharing the offence affects others, often more than the offence affects me.  Therefore, it does not pay for me to share my offences with anyone, especially with those who care about me.  I should keep it to myself, and should not keep record of offences!  Just let it go!

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