There is an expression, “It is easier said than done.”  My question centers on parents who model a hot temper and bad behavior that then can be passed to the children.  Under these circumstances, if parents then start asking children to forgive each other, will this just lead nowhere because of the bad habits already learned from these parents?

It never is too late to forgive.  If the parents have modeled anger and unforgiveness, then it may be harder for the children to learn to put the anger aside and to forgive.  This does not imply that the children’s learning to forgive will be impossible.  It does mean that the parents first need to gain insight that their own behaviors have led the children into anger and possibly revenge-seeking. Further, the parents may have to work harder at the forgiveness lessons and, at the same time, change their own behaviors so that they become models of forgiveness for the children.  The moral virtues are not set in stone for any given person.  We all can grow in those virtues with both support from others (in this case, the parents) and practice.

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