I’m sorry, but… (DW#424)

Today’s phrase is closely related to yesterdays one which was "You made me do it".

I’m sorry but . . .in this phrase we appear to be taking responsibility and saying sorry. However, the "but" in the apology negates everything that comes before it. The end purpose of such an apology is to effectively promote ourselves as the good guys and to blame someone else as the real responsible party.

Consider these examples:

I’m sorry Mummy yelled, but your behavior was so bad I had to do something to get your attention…

I’m sorry I laughed at you but you were looking kind of ridiculous . . 

I’m sorry I flirted with your best friend but you were ignoring me . .

I’m sorry but aren’t you being a bit too sensitive . . .

I’m sorry I forgot but you should have reminded me . . .

I’m sorry but can you see how the above are not apologies! 
A true apology does not contain the word "but". It is an unconditional apology which does not attempt to blame the aggrieved person in any way.

Next time, you mess up and want to apologize, resist the temptation to spoil it by saying "but".

Try these instead:

I apologize for my behavior. You deserve better from me.

I am sorry I yelled at you. There is no excuse and I apologize for my overreaction.

I am sorry I flirted with your best friend. Please forgive me. How can I make it up to you?

I am sorry I forgot to pick up the dry cleaning. I will make a note in my calendar so that I do not forget again.

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