To say sorry to your boyfriend, you want to keep it sweet, sincere and simple.
You know how many times I have majorly messed up with my boyfriend? A lot!
Each time I have apologized I have learned what works and what doesn't.
The first thing I realized was that my boyfriend hates it when I apologize insincerely. He can see right through my fake apology.
So my first recommendation is to:
There have been so many times that I was still angry and resentful and I wasn't really sorry, but I just wanted the fight to get resolved so I would apologize. This actually made things worse. So I have learned not to say sorry while I am still angry.
I wait until I really know what I did wrong, or what I did to offend him. Sometimes that takes me some time to figure out because it's not always clear how I hurt him.
What EXACTLY did I do to upset him? I have to look at myself and see the error in my ways. This part is not so easy. It takes a bit of humility.
It's so easy to point my finger and make my boyfriend wrong. But this does nothing. It only creates more adversity.
In one sentence, articulate what you did wrong. Here are some simple, one-sentence apologies I have given before:
These are very simple and direct apologies.
This type of short apology can be effective, but I find that it is also important to add a bit more so he knows that I understand him and that I am really sorry.
This is the point when I get into his shoes.
I think about his perspective. I think about how I affected him. How did my actions make him feel? What thoughts is he possibly thinking about me right now?
Let's take one of the above examples. Here's how you can acknowledge his perspective:
"I'm sorry I interrupted you. I know that you needed to focus to meet your deadline. I know you get frustrated when you get sidetracked. I'm sorry."
"I'm sorry for raising my voice at the coffee shop. I was not showing you respect in public. I know you feel embarrassed when I act like that. I'm sorry.
My boyfriend appreciates this type of apology because he believes that I understand him now.
But because I want my boyfriend to feel respected as well as understood, I add one more element to my apology.
The next key step I take in my apology is to:
This is the time where I actually make a promise. This is a promise that I actually want to keep. I don't just make a promise that I think he wants to hear. A simple promise shows that you actually want to change and you don't want to make that same mistake again.
Let's revisit the above examples:
"I'm sorry I interrupted you. I know that you needed to focus to meet your deadline. I know you get frustrated when you get sidetracked. You can count on me to respect your need to focus from now on. Next time we are in a similar situation I will wait until you have completed your work before I seek to have a conversation with you. I'm sorry."
"I'm sorry for raising my voice at the coffee shop. I was not showing you respect in public. I know you feel embarrassed when I act like that. I'm sorry. If I am ever upset about something and we are in public, I will wait to discuss it with you in private. I promise to never do that again. I'm sorry."
With this type of apology you can say sorry to your boyfriend in six sentences or less. He will really appreciate it.
The simpler the apology the better. When I ramble on and on about my feelings and the incident he tends to lose interest. My true intention of him receiving my apology gets lost.
By keeping my apologies short, sweet and sincere he easily forgives me.
Here's a quick recap on how to say sorry to your boyfriend:
P.S. If for some reason he is still upset after you apologize, just give him some space. Sometimes my boyfriend just needs some time to forgive me.
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