Thordis Elva began a teenage romance with foreign exchange student Tom Stranger who came to Iceland from Australia. However, the romance turned into a horror for 16 year old Thordis when Tom raped her after a school dance. Nine years after the incident,Thordis wrote to Tom about the affect this incident had on her and what came back from Tom, was an extremely apologetic reply.

The two spoke on Ted Talks about their situation and their life and their talk is taking the Internet by storm.

Thordis said, “My head had cleared up, but my body was still too weak to fight back, and the pain was blinding.
I thought I’d been severed in two. In order to stay sane, I silently counted the seconds on my alarm clock. And ever since that night, I’ve known that there are 7,200 seconds in two hours.”

Tom said, “I have vague memories of the next day. The after effects of drinking, a certain hollowness that I tried to stifle. Nothing more. But I didn’t show up at Thordis’s door. It is important to now state that I didn’t see my deed for what it was. To be honest, I repudiated the entire act in the days afterwards and when I was committing it. I disavowed the truth by convincing myself it was sex and not rape. And this is a lie I’ve felt spine-bending guilt for.”

Well, once Thordis wrote to Tom, they continued their regular correspondence and finally agreed to meet up. They found forgiveness and peace and also went on to write a book together, South of Forgiveness.

You can watch their talk here.

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