The Art of Apology

Once upon a time, I was awaken by a text at 1:30 AM, this was no ordinary late night text, it was a call to arms over a friendship. Wake and fight or sleep and let 10 years go. I chose the latter (though if I’m being honest I didn’t sleep and I didn’t let it go) but I did turn to unfriending people on Facebook and archiving texts to prevent a weak moment of reconciliation.

Six months to the day of this act of war, I had a dream, one that suggested the owner of the phone the text came from was seeking to reconnect and solidifying the notion that I have nothing left to give (what else would the tedium of a dream handjob represent?). And fair readers, my little psychic moment came to pass, via a message sent through Messenger. It was an apology that made me cuss aloud in my office while clients were present (which I am not sorry about so I will not apologize for, it was unprofessional but at this point who expects that from me?)

At one point or another you’re going to totally bungle something up. Be it major or minor its best to own up to your eff-up, lest it blow up. A bit of help for handling your apology when that moment comes, can be found below.

Admit it

I know it’s hard to own your shit, if it wasn’t I wouldn’t successfully spend my free time in coffee shops shelling out life advice to strangers over the internet. The best way to start an apology is knowing that you’ve done wrong. It may take the silent treatment  or some bitch burning everything you own in the street for you to even know that something is up. But as you stare at you fourth set of slashed tires (I only know of one case of repetitive, unwarranted tire slashing, don’t drive the same car as some unapologetic douche-hole) and the profanity spray painted on your garage door, reflect on what you could have done to set this in motion.

You should start this reflection before you’re sifting through the ashes of your home finding artifacts that will point you toward the events that garnered this kind of reaction.

Time it

A decent apology is a well timed apology. You want it to hit that sweet spot that comes after rage and before indifference. And this is super tricky, because you need insider information for that one.

Use the internet to stalk the person you need to apologize too. Facebook will tell you whether or not they’ve given up telling everyone you know what a garbage human you are (cross your fingers they don’t block you so you can still do this!). You need to nut up as soon as this happens because by the time bars are following them on Twitter for being the life of the party, you’re too late.

Mean it

You can convey sincerity with words like so, really, or very. They carry a tremendous amount of emotional weight. If you want the person you’re apologizing to know how deeply sorry you are maybe toss in a “so very” or a “really really”. Double down. They’ll know that you super-duper mean it.

Send it

The medium in which an apology is delivered is important. It can reinforce sincerity or let them know that you know that they deleted you on all of the social medias (and maybe you also deleted their phone number). If they are the deleter send it via a formerly tight social media medium, nothing says I’m sorry for being a bag of dicks more than a Twitter DM. If you are the deleter, go the same route, make it look like its their fault you can’t reach them.

You’re grandma would tell you to apologize in person, but she doesn’t know how bad it hurts to apologize to someone who has a weak left hook. And a letter would take time and effort, plus there isn’t any spell check on paper so you could look dumb.


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