Here is one of those funny times when it's really easy to say, but harder to do. For some, giving an apology and meaning it can be two totally different things all together. When I was growing up, I will honestly say that I did as little apologizing as I could. Please don't think of me as cruel or heartless, it's just that when something happened to someone else I just didn't see the need to apologize especially if I had nothing to do with the problem. There were other times when I just wasn't simply aware that an apology was needed. I can recall many times when I mom forced me to apologize for something I might have said or done. Of course, I was not very happy for two reasons, one - I didn't like my mom forcing me to say 'I'm sorry' when I wasn't; and two - I felt like it wasn't my fault so why would I apologize for something I had nothing to do with the issue.
As I've gotten older, I have learned to be a little more cognizant of when an apology was needed. When I did say I was sorry, at least I meant it. I will have to say that I did learn that an "I'm sorry" could get me out of hot water, but I may not have really meant it at the time. As a young father, there were several times when I was in the wrong when it came to scolding my children for the naughty thing they did, but the way I punished them may have been incorrect. This is where Jaimee would step in and tell me directly that I should apologize to my child for the misuse of my discipline on my kid. It's funny because the way I reacted to my wife's command and my mother's command were identical. I did apologize to my child, but I would also leave them with the idea that they were still in the wrong for what they might have done...that is what the difference was between my wife and my mom.
Since I've been more aware of my surroundings things have changed for me in the case of apologies and even accepting them too. I know that might sound a little weird, but even accepting apologies from others was just as difficult. I guess to me I feel like either their apology is an empty one, meaning that they're not really sorry or I already know they are sorry, but I really don't need them to tell me that. Usually the look on people’s faces tells me whether or not they are telling to truth or flat out lying. I admittedly have apologized to people and look like I really meant it, but I didn't. This is a really tough emotion and social protocol that I have trouble with since I have Asperger's.
As the times change, the way we apology I think is getting even worse. It seems like lately the newer catch phrase for an apology is "My Bad". At first this really, really bugged me because I felt like it was more of a cop out apology than having at least a little remorse within the slander. In some ways, I adopted "My Bad" in uses more suited for sarcasm. I can be rather unemotional when I find myself saying that phrase to someone because even though I said, there would be a lot of resentment behind my comment. Other phrases like "That's on me" or "That's my screw-up", I find rather amusing, but I wonder if the meaning behind them has lost its luster. I realize as a society that we are willing to forgive people if they admit they were wrong and apologize for their misdeeds. I wonder if they do exactly what I tend to do and say I'm sorry just to get people off my back rather than having to listen to all the rhetoric people would chime on about the wrongs I or others might have done. As a Christian, saying I'm sorry is one thing, but truly forgiving is the root of all healing for the wrongs that we do to each other.
Song of Inspiration [Check it out on iTunes or Android!]:
Artist: Matthew West
Album: Into The Light
Here's the lyrics to the selected song:
You'll noticed that I titled the posting "Hard to say I'm sorry" is an actual song sung by the group Chicago so here's the music video to this oldie but goodie!