This is Joe and Lily. They’ve been dating for 4 years and just made the next step in their relationship a few months ago by moving in together.
The relationship has been a little rocky lately as Lily feels that Joe is not compromising as much as he used to. He is constantly putting down Lily’s dinner ideas, complaining that Lily doesn’t clean enough, and doesn’t let Lily spend any money on herself. Lily stays quiet about her feelings in order to not stir things up, but it makes her miserable keeping it inside.
I forgive you.
I'm sorry too!
One night, Lily and Joe are trying to decide on a movie to watch. Joe immediately puts down the new movie that Lily has been dying to see. Lily has finally had enough and she bursts out her feelings to Joe. She angrily explains how he never lets her make decisions, or helps her clean, or lets her spend money on anything nice for herself the way that he always does.
Joe was astounded and had no idea where the anger had come from. When Lily realized that being angry was not helping, she let go of the pent-up resentment and calmly described everything she was feeling. He felt bad and apologized and said that he had no idea she had felt that way. He asked for her forgiveness and said he would try to do better.
Lily did accept his apology and decides that she is sorry too that she didn’t bring it up sooner. She asked that he forgive her for keeping it bottled up. She realized that she cannot hold a grudge against Joe and that she needed to let go of the rage in order to grow in their life-giving relationship.
In the end, they both forgave each other and the situation was resolved. They discussed how it was good that neither got defensive and instead had an open conversation about it. By both of them showing forgiveness, they avoided a bigger conflict and it made their relationship even stronger by learning to communicate better.