Have you ever been in an argument and decided to concede? You offer an apology but it feels like it fell on deaf ears? The person didn’t offer forgiveness and continued to fight in a war when you had already surrendered? Gary Chapman and Jennifer Thomas describe this disconnect may be due to you and that someone may speak a different language of apology. In their book, “The Five Languages of Apology,” they discuss these apologies:
Love Language #1: Expressing Regret — I AM SORRY
When offering an apology, concentrate on how your behavior caused the other person pain.
For example, “I’m sorry I disappointed you,” “I’m sorry I violated your trust,” or “I’m sorry I hurt you.”
Love Language #2: Accepting Responsibility — I WAS WRONG
When offering an apology, admit that your behavior was wrong.
For example, “I made a mistake,” “It was my fault,” or “There is no excuse for what I did.”
Love Language #3: Making Restitution — I WANT TO MAKE IT RIGHT
When offering an apology, make right the wrong you committed.
For example, “I want to make up for what I’ve done.”
Love Language #4: Genuinely Repenting — I WON’T DO IT AGAIN
When offering an apology, make a plan for change.
For example, “What can I do to rebuild your trust in me?”
Love Language #5 Requesting Forgiveness – I SEEK FORGIVENESS
When offering an apology, ask for forgiveness to show you understand that you were wrong.
For example,” I’m sorry that I yelled at you. It was wrong, and I ask for your forgiveness.”
So, how do you figure out what someone else’s primary apology language is — ask them!
Ask them – Describe when someone gave you an apology that you felt was unsatisfactory. What was lacking?
Ask them — Describe what you think is the most important part of an apology.
Ask them — Describe what you thinks needs to be said in order to offer forgiveness.