Midlife Mom

Navigating the teen years… and beyond

The lost art of the apology


Everybody makes mistakes, but it’s those who step up and take responsibility for them who earn respect.

In my opinion, this is one of the most important lessons a parent can teach. So it’s discouraging when I see the younger generation — especially teens and twenty-somethings — refuse to admit to mistakes, much less take responsibility for them.

Granted, I apologize way too much, for things that aren’t even my fault. But it bothers me when I notice young people having a hard time using the phrase “I’m sorry.” I’ve seen it in a lot of different situations and no, I’m not generally referring to my own children here. Sure, there are times when they need to apologize and they don’t, but I wouldn’t consider them among the worst offenders.

So what does a refusal to apologize mean? Are they afraid of something? Being judged; having an authority figure be angry with them; that mistakes make them failures?

I’m not sure, but I hope it’s a habit that’s outgrown.

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