Do sins really hurt anyone?

The following true story is taken from The Incarnation, Birth, and Infancy of Jesus Christ, by the great Doctor of the Church, St. Alphonsus Liguori.

A man by the name of Pelbart relates that a certain soldier was very sinful; but he had a devout wife, who, not being able to change him for the better, recommended him at least to say every day a Hail Mary before some image of Our Lady.

One day, as he was going to commit sin, he passed by a church, which, by chance, he entered; and seeing an image of Our Blessed Lady, he knelt down and said a Hail Mary; and what did he then see? He saw the Infant Jesus in the arms of Mary all covered with bleeding wounds. Upon which, he said, "O God, what barbarian has thus ill-treated this Innocent Babe? "

"It is you, sinner," answered Mary; "it is you who thus ill-use my Son."

Then, full of contrition, he begged her to obtain for him pardon, calling her Mother of Mercy.

She replied, "You sinners call me Mother of Mercy, but you do not cease to make me Mother of Sorrows and of Misery."

But the penitent did not lose courage, and continued to pray to Mary to intercede for him. The Blessed Virgin turned to her Son, and asked Him to pardon this sinner. Her Son seemed reluctant to do so; but then Mary said to Him, "O my Son, I will not leave Thy feet if Thou dost not forgive this afflicted man, who has recommended himself to me."

Then Jesus said to her "O My Mother, I have never refused you anything; do you desire the pardon of this sinner? Let him be pardoned; and in token of the pardon which I grant him, I desire that he should come and kiss My Wounds."

The sinner went up to the image, drew near, and while he was kissing them, the Wounds were closed.

Immediately upon leaving the church, he asked pardon of his wife, and with mutual consent they soon both left the world. They became members of religious communities and at the end of their lives died holy deaths.