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  1. #1
    robinsmommy is offline Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
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    Default Somewhat BP?y question on wording of apologies

    I have had a couple of interactions recently that both ended in an apology with wording that makes me doubt the sincerity of said apology.

    One was where I called out someone for repeatedly mansplaining and/or casting doubt on my knowledge. Others also have seen the same behavior towards me and themselves from this individual.

    The second time was when someone else in our HOA complained about me raising a concern or complaint about a community cost at the last minute before it was brought to vote. I then explained that I had raised my concerns as soon as the cost was given- which was at the end of the research/discussion process, not even a week before the vote. They did admit that I had done so after I corrected them at the meeting- but only after I pointed it out. And DM?d an ?I?m sorry it felt like? apology a day later.

    Is any apology with ?I am sorry you feel/felt that way.? meaningful, or is it more gaslight-y BS from folks who don?t/refuse to see the repeating problematic patterns in their behavior and therefore can?t make a real apology that acknowledges that their behavior is the issue?

  2. #2
    ♥ms.pacman♥ is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    IMO, any ?apology? statement that is ?I?m sorry you feel that way? is insincere, and a non-apology. I fully agree with the gaslighting sense.
    The first example you made, about the mansplaining, is classic non-apology, bc they?re not taking any responsibility for their actions, they literally put it on you for ?taking it wrong.? I?d be pissed if it were me. I get beyond frustrated at this BS.

    The second one, i feel is less obviously bad, and more someone doing a bad job at trying to be diplomatic or whatever.

    But the first example, boils my blood, i guess because i used it live it ALL.THE.TIME at work and it was incredibly frustrating. Hugs to you and sorry you have to deal with such a person. The fact that others have similar complaints of this behavior is proof that it?s not just you, it?s likely some guy feeling very insecure.

  3. #3
    robinsmommy is offline Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
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    Actually, the first guy might someday be redeemable. I don't think his partner will let that kind of stuff slide as they move forward together.

    The second one is a seasoned non profit high up who works in the political arena, so he knows how to craft words to suit his purposes and surely knows the art of a non-apology. The vote involved giving his wife's cousin a paid task for the HOA. Which would be fine, if it was done transparently, with 2 other bids, and license and insurance provided, etc. mmphm.

    And both are men who are thought of as modern, PC guys who should know gaslighting when they do, er, see it. Bummed that I thought things would be better with men my age or younger.

  4. #4
    firstbaby is offline Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
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    I can’t stand a non apology apology. I would consider writing a reply to the second guy “thank you for reaching out, I want to make sure I’m understanding your intentions, are you apologizing for my feelings or are you apologizing that you didn’t follow the procurement process?”

  5. #5
    dogmom is offline Diamond level (5000+ posts)
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    I think the meaning of gaslighting has drifted a bit in the past decade. I?m a believer that English is a live language, so this might be the new definition. For me gaslighting is a concerted effort by one individual to convince another individual that their interpretation of reality is incorrect and to make them doubt themselves. What you are describing, a non- apology apology, is just garden variety someone not wanting to take a responsibility for their actions. I find it better for them to just say I think I was right and you were wrong. As far as I?m concerned that is their behavior and it?s probably not just aimed at me, but how they operate in the world. So unless it?s someone I care about and need to continue to deal with I just think, well, know I know someone about them as a person and move on.

  6. #6
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    I think the only time it's useful to reference the 'apology receivers' feelings is if you as the person writing the apology are empathizing with the hurt you caused. I.e. "I'm sorry I did X, and I can see now why that would have been so upsetting to you", etc. , vs. "I'm sorry you're upset", the classic non apology. So yeah it doesn't sound like you got sincere apologies unless you think the 1st guy is just inarticulate. End of the day people don't always say exactly what they mean, there are people who say "I'm sorry you're upset" when they really mean "I'm sorry *I did X* and that upset you", but mess it up. The first guy sounds obnoxious when reading about it here, but only w/real life context would you know if it's a true apology or not.

    I'm dealing with this with DS right now, he's got a situation with a group of kids during gym class that has escalated from an occasional remark to daily harassment and this week we had to write an incident report to kick off a no contact contract. He ended his statement with a demand for an apology from them and we talked about whether he thought he'd get a real apology or not (he agreed it wasn't likely) and how it feels to be on the receiving end of an insincere apology, it can feel worse than no acknowledgement.
    ~ Dawn
    Our little monkey (4/2011) & his early holiday present 12/12

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