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Sorry seems to be the hardest word!

(18 Posts)
SeattleGraceMercyDeath Thu 28-Aug-14 13:02:11

DD is 10 (11 next week) and I don't think I have ever heard her apologise spontaneously for anything and it's driving me bananas. For example, she was climbing on a fence whilst we were waiting in line for something, just generally being a bit of a buffoon, I'd asked her to be careful and told her to stop climbing, eventually having to raise my voice slightly to get her to stop before she hurt herself and her brother. So she jumped down without looking and landed on her brothers foot and knocked him over, so then he was in tears, I told her off and rather than just admitting she was in the wrong I got all sorts of excuses 'you told me to get down' I didn't know he was in the way', 'he was behind me' just generally - it's not my fault. It never ever is!!!!

That's just one of many examples, I've explained that sometimes a sorry can do wonders to diffuse a situation, but she never ever says it unless under extreme pressure, another example was whilst away on holiday, she had misbehaved and refused to apologise because 'she hadn't done anything' the situation escalated with more cheek on her part so I ended up taking her to the room until she could apologise. We were there 3 hours. And that was only because I virtually forced her to apologise.

Is this a big deal? It really feels like it is, I also think apologising and learning when to apologise is a bit of a life lesson that I am somebody failing to teach her. To be honest her staunch refusal to accept when she is in the wrong makes me really dislike her little personality at times and I love her so much I don't want to feel like that.

Dotty342kids Thu 28-Aug-14 13:18:56

Oh, I have one of these too! Stubborn as a mule and it's always someone else's fault. Unless she accidentally hurts someone else and can see they're upset, then she will say sorry.

We've had similar lengthy stand offs about apologies, it drives me completely mad. I've lost count of the amount of times I've said "if I have to ask you, then it's too late / not worth anything"!
I have no solutions to offer you, but can sympathise. Looking forward to seeing if anyone does have any bright ideas smile

SeattleGraceMercyDeath Thu 28-Aug-14 13:27:44

Yes!! The apology means nothing once it's been wrenched out of her mouth with force but because I've asked for it I can't back down until it's forthcoming.

Dotty342kids Thu 28-Aug-14 14:47:23


SeattleGraceMercyDeath Thu 28-Aug-14 18:08:53

Nobody else have a child as infuriating as mine?

RubberDuck Thu 28-Aug-14 18:17:10

Can I ask if you quickly apologise to her if you get it wrong?

I only ask because I'm stubborn too and not totally surprising that my kids can dig their heels in too. I've very consciously, over the last few years, made sure that I unequivocally apologise quickly as soon as I realise I've screwed up with them - something my mother never would do, even if she was obviously in the wrong. I've noticed that my dses (aged 13 and 11) have got better at apologising too as a result.

Not a miracle cure, obviously, but noticeable smile Feel free to ignore if this doesn't apply.

SeattleGraceMercyDeath Thu 28-Aug-14 18:31:52

Yes, I absolutely apologise and my mum has even commented on it as she never did and she recognises that now. Hell, I even apologise for losing my rag with her for the original misdemeanour and explain that it was because I was cross/upset/disappointed that she would not take responsibility, she accepts my apology and moves on. It makes me so mad!

SeattleGraceMercyDeath Thu 28-Aug-14 18:32:26

Thanks for the suggestion though.thanks

RubberDuck Thu 28-Aug-14 18:45:04

That does sound really frustrating sad

I'll add to the sympathy fund!

Thumbwitch Thu 28-Aug-14 18:49:01

Sympathies for you - I have a feeling DS2 is going to be like that too.

DS1 - he's always been good at apologising, he's got a very empathetic nature and doesn't like to hurt people, he always got upset when he hurt me in play or whatever.

DS2, otoh, even at 22mo, laughs when other people are hurt and it's impossible to get him to say sorry (or the baby version of it) when he hurts DS1. I take his hand and make him stroke DS1, and say "ahhh" and always have done since he was first able to hit DS1 and hurt him, but it makes no odds - he won't do it voluntarily. sad

hillyhilly Thu 28-Aug-14 22:47:54

My dd will apologise eventually but even then will say that's its only because xxxx ie it's never actually her fault - drives me mad

SeattleGraceMercyDeath Fri 29-Aug-14 09:14:59

Slightly more heartened to see that it's not uncommon. Anyone have any ideas, I just feel like it's such an important skill to have, ie when to back down gracefully to diffuse a situation, does it come in time? Any suggestions on ensuring I don't throttle her in the meantime?

RubberDuck Fri 29-Aug-14 09:33:42

This looks interesting, Seattle:

Why not apologizing makes you feel better

RubberDuck Fri 29-Aug-14 09:36:02

That article, to me, would suggest that it might be worth just backing off wanting the apology. If she does, great. If not, well don't force the issue.

Focus on consequences of behaviour, perhaps, regardless of whether an apology happens or not. If she does apologise, then worth rewarding that behaviour but not getting worked up if she doesn't as that will make her more entrenched?

RubberDuck Fri 29-Aug-14 09:38:00

I mean rewarding the apology, not the initial bad behaviour, obviously smile

SeattleGraceMercyDeath Fri 29-Aug-14 18:10:42

Hmmm that is interesting. I shall endeavour to do my best with that. Don't know how long I'll manage to keep it up for!

newrecruit Fri 29-Aug-14 18:16:44

I have this issue with DS1 and often talk to DH about it.

DH struggles to apologise for anything. Worse than that, he always looks for whose fault something was, or why it's not his. Sorrys are always followed with "but".

All his family are the same. I hate the culture it fosters and am very vocal these days that 'it's not about blame'

Heyho111 Fri 29-Aug-14 22:49:49

*how to talk to teens do teens talk to you

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