“This is what is hardest: to close the open hand because one loves.”
– Friedrich Nietzsche
I have a rather extreme suggestion to make on how to respond to a cheating partner who seeks forgiveness. I believe my proposal ideal for romantic commitments in which exclusivity is understood and agreed upon. But since our relationships are different from one another just as we are different, applicability may differ.
But before I state my seemingly outrageous recommendation, I would like you to know upfront that my source of inspiration is actually Love, not a sense of retribution, although the love I speak of here is of a less favored aspect and hue.
So, let’s begin.
Contrary to the assumed belief that love is particularly emotional and mushy and can be nothing else, there is a side of love that is resolute and principled. It is, I believe, what some folks mean when they use the term “tough love”.
Though largely used in the context of parenting, I believe this facet of love should be well extended to relationships between grown-ups devoted to building a meaningful connection. This is important because we often let our feelings run wild, in a way that we spoil one another and make allowances that potentially harm rather than make stronger our relationships.