On Apologizing

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SilentDawning
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On Apologizing

Post by SilentDawning »

I was in marriage counseling with my wife a year or more ago. I shared something my wife did that really hurt me early in our marriage, and he looked at my wife and said "Do you apologize? Some people don't".

This was a revelation for me because my wife doesn't tend to apologize, and apologies mean a lot to me. I noticed that a person I worked with in the community also didn't apologize. I wrote to her once about something she did that really hurt me and she responded with a one liner fact, not at all acknowledging that what she did was perhaps insensitive. In fact, later, I reached out to her to repair the relationship, and she called my statement of hurt a "nasty note".

To me, apologies mean a lot. And I tend to apologize profusely and regularly.

Do you apologize? If not, why not? If so, why? Are apologies from others important to you when they hurt you?
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young
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PazamaManX
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Re: On Apologizing

Post by PazamaManX »

In general, no, with an exception.

In the past, having a more agreeable personality, I was pretty generous with apologies. Within the past few years though, I've adopted a rule of not apologizing unless I have genuinely done something wrong. If someone has taken what what I've said or done the wrong way or is unhappy/offended for some reason, but I honestly feel I haven't wronged anyone, I don't offer an apology to simply please someone.

The exception to that is people I truly care about. For those whose relationships I value (my wife for example), I am more considerate of their feelings.

As for how I feel about receiving apologies, it depends on the reason for it. If someone truly means it, of course I appreciate it. If someone is doing it for less than caring reasons, then it's almost worse than if they didn't.

I once had a guy come out of the blue and message me on Facebook, apologizing for something years prior. I politely responded in kind and never heard back from him. I got the sense that he was doing a personal apology tour, cleansing his conscience and not actually caring about the recipients of his apologies. That bothered me more than the thing he apologized for.
"Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call to her tribunal every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness, even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear." ~ Thomas Jefferson
Roy
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Re: On Apologizing

Post by Roy »

I agree that apologizing can be more or less appropriate depending upon the relationship and other factors.

I like to think that I apologize frequently to those that are closest to me to both build the relationship and demonstrate behavior that I would like to see emulated.

DW has pointed out to me that I sometimes start with an apology and then turn it into a justification of my actions. As in, "I'm sorry for what I did. I'm sure if you take the time to understand my perspective you will agree that my action seemed appropriate at the time." I have had to curb this impulse and leave the apology to stand on its own.
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

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SilentDawning
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Re: On Apologizing

Post by SilentDawning »

Interesting perspectives. I just finished reading a book called "Feeling Good Together" by David Burns. He commented that apologizing shouldn't be a way of ending a conversation when someone is unhappy with you. I think I have expected this outcome to happen when I have apologized in the past. Often the person continues berating me after I apologize, and this only disturbs me. I realize that an apology can be important, but it can't curb the other person's "rant" or expression of their displeasure. It's easy to think, as the angry person, that the person apologizing hasn't yet heard what you feel and empathized.

So, I think there is definitely a place for apologizing, but it's after the person has said their peace, feels understood, and is ready to move on to more productive pastures. At this point, and apology can be meaningful, but not before.
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young
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DarkJedi
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Re: On Apologizing

Post by DarkJedi »

While I think apologies have some value, I have also experienced situations where apologies aren't received with grace. I suppose there could be multiple reasons for that, including that the person or group just aren't used to getting apologies and don't know how to handle them. And sometimes an apology isn't enough. And, sometimes the person apologizing isn't the person responsible - I see little value in apologizing for someone else except in certain limited circumstances. And apologies which aren't sincere and/or demonstrate no remorse are also worthless IMO.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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Minyan Man
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Re: On Apologizing

Post by Minyan Man »

Have you ever tried to apologize in writing? The few times I've done it, it worked out well.
I usually included whether I would like to hear from them again or not.
I do it in writing because I need to get it off my chest. In most cases like this, I don't
want them to reply.
Old-Timer
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Re: On Apologizing

Post by Old-Timer »

I believe it is important.

Regularly, when appropriate

I did it when our kids were in the home partly to set an example.
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Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

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Watcher
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Re: On Apologizing

Post by Watcher »

SilentDawning wrote: 11 Aug 2022, 12:55 I was in marriage counseling with my wife a year or more ago. I shared something my wife did that really hurt me early in our marriage, and he looked at my wife and said "Do you apologize? Some people don't".

This was a revelation for me because my wife doesn't tend to apologize, and apologies mean a lot to me. I noticed that a person I worked with in the community also didn't apologize. I wrote to her once about something she did that really hurt me and she responded with a one liner fact, not at all acknowledging that what she did was perhaps insensitive. In fact, later, I reached out to her to repair the relationship, and she called my statement of hurt a "nasty note".

To me, apologies mean a lot. And I tend to apologize profusely and regularly.

Do you apologize? If not, why not? If so, why? Are apologies from others important to you when they hurt you?
For the record I apologize whenever I am given an opportunity. It does not matter if I am at fault or if the mistake was someone else’s. I have not always been so willing. However, whenever I have taken the time to pray and ask for guidance in disagreements or whatever, where someone has decided to be emotionally stricken – I have always been impressed to apologize. I have also observed that when I apologize things are more likely to turn for the better. I am convinced that when things do not turn for the better that there is nothing that I could have done in addition to make a difference.

I only regret that it took me so long to learn this lesson and if I can pass on any “wisdom” concerning this matter – I seriously wonder why apologizing is made out to be so difficult. If anyone is in any way dissatisfied with my posting – I apologize and ask for your forgiveness.
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SilentDawning
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Re: On Apologizing

Post by SilentDawning »

I apologize if this post isn't full of inspiration...:)

Anyway, one reason people don't apologize has to do with liability. For example, in an at-fault state for car insurance, if you admit fault then it becomes an at-fault accident on your record and money is involved. Legal liability also can follow. So that is one reason why people don't apologize for things in business settings. I also think our highest leaders have a hard time apologizing for things because to do so might weaken members' faith in their inspired, larger-than-life leadership. Rarely have I heard church leaders apologize:

1. Uchdorft indicated that past leaders have made mistakes in a past Conference talk.
2. Dallin H. Oakes, in a PBS documentary admitted that "members of our church" were involved in the Mountain Meadows Massacre, and that his heart went out to the families and that the Lord would forgive the people involved. He stopped short of a church apology though. In my view, official church leaders had to be involved -- or at least someone in a leadership capacity because you don't get so many moral people to murder so many people without a belief in inspired leadership involved.
Last edited by SilentDawning on 25 Aug 2022, 01:53, edited 1 time in total.
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young
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DarkJedi
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Re: On Apologizing

Post by DarkJedi »

SilentDawning wrote: 15 Aug 2022, 21:20 In my view, official church leaders had to be involved -- or at least someone in a leadership capacity because you don't get so many moral people to murder so many people without a belief in inspired leadership involved.
Not all of our "pioneer ancestors" were as noble as they're sometimes made out to be. The persecution complex in its present form does not compare to theirs.

Wasn't it Oaks who also said something to the effect that the church doesn't apologize? I agree with what you said as to why. I also kept track of the Pope's trip to Canada and his apologies to the native peoples. While not well received as a whole (some apparently want more or think an apology is not enough) at the same time it did gain him and the Catholic Church some mileage and it was accepted by some. I wonder if our church leaders took anything away from that?
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction
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