Have you ever met someone who seemed incapable of apologizing about anything? I think we all have. There are truths about people who can’t apologize, and it may surprise you.
Okay, here’s the truth about all of us. We all, every single one of us, have instances where we do not want to apologize to someone. This could be simply because we dislike the person we’ve slighted, or we see no point in an apology.
If we don’t like someone we bump into, some of us will just keep walking. If we make mistakes on paperwork, and our employer makes us aware of this, we may not see a need to apologize – we just fix the mistake.
People who can’t apologize: The truth
However, apologies do not mean we are weak. They show that we are strong enough to take the hit to our self-esteem. Let’s take a look at a few truths about people who cannot say they’re sorry.
1. Fear of imperfection
Many people choose not to apologize because they have a fear of not having a flawless character. First of all, none of us are perfect, but some people want to be seen this way. This is because they have horribly wounded self-esteem. And when the self-esteem is this low, the more the image will need to appear perfect. Apologizing for a mistake means imperfection.
2. Fear of weakness
Slightly different from the fear of perfection, the fear of weakness can cause people to lash out as well as refuse to apologize. The idea that they’ve made a mistake, to them, means they are weak. So, to remain strong, they must hold back the apology and continue as if nothing happened.
3. Create a chaotic environment
There are those who enjoy living in a chaos-filled environment. These individuals will not apologize as this creates peace and harmony after wrongdoing. Many people who suffer from a narcissistic personality disorder or sadism revel in leaving out apologies. It isn’t much you can do to convince these personalities that they should apologize. Only they can change their actions.
4. They are oblivious
You have some people who lack social cues, and these individuals may fail to apologize when they should. Maybe they weren’t taught in childhood that it’s wrong to interrupt people constantly during conversation and then not recognize their fault.
Maybe they failed to learn that being blunt takes tact, and feelings can be hurt. Listen, some people just have no clue when to apologize. But this still doesn’t make it your job to teach them. If you notice it and feel like helping them, you can, however.
5. Neither party wants to be first
Sometimes people don’t want to apologize because they don’t want to be the first one to admit guilt.
Let’s say an incident happened at a party and more than one person was involved. It would seem to someone with healthy self-esteem that all parties should be upping an apology, right?
Well, sometimes, no one wants to be the first one to admit their mistakes and so apologies fail to happen. Eventually, one person within the group will offer an apology, and this will be the strongest in the bunch.
6. Separating the character from the action
Here’s an interesting take on the matter. Did you know that non-apologists have trouble separating what they’ve done wrong from who they are? It’s true, some people fear that if they’ve done something bad, then they must be a bad person. And, of course, most of us know that this is far from the truth. We’ve all done ‘bad’ things.
7. Fear of revenge
Apologies will not come from someone who is afraid of retaliation. Believe it or not, some individuals think that if they lose something belonging to a friend, that friend will do the same to them in return.
But mentally healthy people do not retaliate. Something inside the non-apologist’s head tells them to not only refuse an apology, but try to hide what happened, pretend it never happened, or blame it on someone else.
8. Fear of loss
Sometimes people will not apologize out of the fear of losing a friend or loved one. And, of course, this is the opposite of what you should do. However, in the non-apologist mind, they see apologizing as further hurting the victim. As, apologies, in a sense, replay what happened.
9. Some are just plain stubborn
When it comes to apologies, some people are just too stubborn to admit mistakes. It could be about shame or resentment, or it may even be about an inflated ego – some people refuse to humble themselves. In this case, it’s best to leave them alone.
10. Apologies and toxicity
There are instances where people don’t apologize because they are afraid it will bring up other things they’ve done wrong. This dynamic sounds strange, but it happens.
Not all people who can’t apologize have low self-esteem or chronic issues. Sometimes they stop apologizing because it gets them nowhere with the other person. Sometimes the victim of wrongdoing has toxic traits and uses apologies as leverage. Many people stop apologizing to those who use them.
Let’s appreciate apologies
Although there are many reasons why people don’t apologize, there are facts and experiences that may even question whether saying your sorry is even worth it. Well, it is.
Being able to say you are sorry for something you’ve done wrong says so much about your integrity. You are strong, you have healthy self-worth, and you’re willing to put others first. So, keep apologizing, even if it’s difficult. You will be rewarded for your good heart.
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