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Setting boundaries


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kim42,

If anyone apologizes to you with a half ______ apology with: "I'm sorry you feel this way.  It wasn't my intention" and then trails off with only that half _____ apology,  it's unacceptable.  (Or, in other cases:  you took it the wrong way,  you're having a bad day, you're triggered, it was a harmless commentary or observation, a joke, you misheard, overreacted, you're a loose cannon / mentally ill, what is wrong with YOU?, you're an alarmist, etc because those are typical deflection excuses instead of taking responsibility and ownership of wrongdoing and offenses.  Perpetrators / gaslighters are shifting blame back onto you and away from them.)   Those types of so-called apologies or responses seem innocuous yet they're insidious.  Never be naive.

A real, sincere, humble apology sounds like this:  "I'm sorry.  I messed up or I made a mistake.  I was wrong.  I feel bad for hurting or offending you.  I'm sorry for disrespecting you.  It was unkind of me.  I hope you'll forgive me.  Thank you."  If they add, "I'll try to do better in the future,"  that would be a huge plus. 

A real sincere apology is lowering oneself with utmost humility.  Then the person who is receiving the apology can be convinced to accept the apology because attempted amends were articulated.  Moving forward by putting hard feelings behind them is doable, very realistic and healing. 

Sometimes I'll even go so far as not expecting an apology as long as the perpetrator behaves properly and honorably in the future.  I'm very forgiving.  However, if perpetrators continue their offenses, rudeness or inappropriate / unacceptable comments, then I'll put them back in their place (humiliating retorts shuts them up quickly), decrease encounters or we become permanently estranged. 

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6 hours ago, kim42 said:

So I saw this “mean” person again this weekend – it’s a group of friends and she was there, so it’s not like I was looking for her company. She tried to behave to me in a similar way like last time – she interrupted me twice as I was speaking to say something “funny” or to talk about herself. I wasn’t quiet this time – at first, I gave a sarcastic reply, and the next time I told her that I would like to finish my sentence. Then she stopped interrupting me, and later that day she texted me to apologize.

Thank you everyone for your comments, it really helped me to have more confidence in myself, and to trust my gut. I didn’t know I could speak up for myself without feeling guilty or like a bad person. I feel much better than last week when I was just sitting silently.

Thanks so much for the update !  I’m so delighted you stood up for yourself!!

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