Conversations on self-forgiveness

We are excited to present to you a series of online conversations exploring the questions, complexities and ambiguities that make self-forgiveness so very hard.

Hosted by our Programme Development Lead, Sandra Barefoot, in conversation with our storytellers, this series explores the perspectives and insights of our storytellers who have experienced prison, domestic violence and the death of family and friends.

Self-forgiveness is the hardest because it’s so bound up with regret, self-pity, shame, with guilt that it’s very very hard to move beyond that. You don’t just feel pain, in a way you are the pain. You’re the cause of the pain. – Marina Cantacuzino, Founder of The Forgiveness Project

These conversations are available fully captioned on Vimeo. We ask a small fee for each video, both to support our future work and also to afford privacy and respect to our storytellers who have been willing to share so much of themselves in these intimate conversations.

If you have any questions about the series or would like to discuss collaboration on this work, please don’t hesitate to contact us at

Watch conversations on self-forgiveness

Ruchi Singh

Ruchi Singh joins us to explore the complexities and ambiguities of self-forgiveness in her journey. As a survivor of domestic violence, Ruchi uses her personal story to empower other survivors to speak out.

Duration: 60min

Dunia Shafik and Jacob Dunne

Dunia Shafik and Jacob Dunne explore with us how guilt and grief can play an essential role in forgiving yourself.

Duration: 60min

Samantha Lawler

Samantha joins us to share her paths toward healing from life altering experiences and explores where self-forgiveness may and may not have a role in her life.

Duration: 60min

Lis Cashin

Lis Cashin joins us to explore the vital role that self-acceptance, compassion and validation for her own survival in life have played a critical part in her journey towards self-forgiveness.

Duration: 60min

Marina Cantacuzino and Dr Masi Noor

This final conversation offers a space for reflection, bringing together the ideas and common threads raised in the series.

Duration: 60min


Very well done. Outstanding session and brilliantly moderated.

Conversation Attendee
I found this so moving and deep. It is wonderful how deeply we went in such a short space of time.
Conversation Attendee
Many thanks to all for a deep and instructive discussion. Thanks too for sharing so openly your own personal experiences.
Conversation Attendee

About the host

Sandra Barefoot has worked for over 13 years leading our prison programme RESTORE. Her extensive experience in facilitating group processes exploring trauma, shame and pain led her to understand how difficult and almost impossible it feels to forgive ourselves for what we have done. In hosting these conversations, Sandra hopes to explore and grapple with the complexities, nuance and unexpected places where self-forgiveness can arrive.

Creative writing workshop

The series “Conversations on self-forgiveness” is also available as part of our online creative writing workshop “Self-forgiveness: Making meaning as a foundation for change”.

The workshop invites participants to deeply listen, reflect and explore through creative writing prompts how making meaning can support us to reconcile ourselves with what has gone before and journey toward self-forgiveness. Please follow the button below to explore more.