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The meaning of the lived experience of the struggle to forgive Milley, A. Tyler

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to explore the meaning of the lived experience of the struggle to forgive. Six people currently engaged in the struggle to forgive described their understandings of their experiences in written and semi-structured interview formats. The orientating questions used to guide participants was, "What can you tell me about your struggle to forgive?" and, "What have you learned about forgiveness based on your struggle?" A qualitative, interpretive phenomenological approach was used to collect and analyze the testimonies provided by participants and to construct hermeneutical statements based on their written and spoken stories. The six participants varied in gender, age, ethnicity, spirituality, and experiences. Five themes emerged as a result of the phenomenological analyses: struggles with forgiveness, struggles with oneself, struggles with the offender, struggles with outside influences, and struggles with reconciliation.

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