Sorry, but can we stop saying ‘sorry’?

According to studies, British women apologise up to eight times a day. We apologise for being unable to attend social engagements, and for putting our health and careers first. We apologise for disagreeing with people, to avoid causing offense, and we apologise for the way we look and feel. We are apologising for our choices, every day, and it needs to stop. We don’t need to be the ‘yes’ girls all the time, and we don’t need to justify that either. We’re women, and the choices we make are our own. The mere concept of apologising for something that isn’t your fault, or hasn’t caused any wrongdoing is bloody ridiculous. It’s very British too.

There is a good explanation for our apologies too. Women are socialised from an early age to focus on relationships and nurturing. Any sign of strength can be off-putting, so we’re conditioned to soften communication that can be construed as assertive or aggressive. We undermine our decisions and choices by apologising for them, because we don’t want to seem aggressive or antagonistic, but we need to start taking charge of our decisions, and not apologising for them. Men put their careers first every single day, and they don’t apologise for it, so why should we? Emotional and financial independence is something to be proud of. It doesn’t warrant an apology. People should not be offended by your success. My point is that we can follow our heart’s callings and that’s ok. Do you think Hilary Clinton apologised for becoming the First Lady of the United States? I don’t think she did. She worked hard for it. She earned it.

There are too many pressures on women in this day and age. We are expected to reach certain milestones in a specified timeframe, but those pressures are not ok. Why shouldn’t we wait until we’re ready to have babies? Is it wrong if we don’t want babies at all? Should we all dress and act a certain way, for fear of causing offense? Should we hold back on our careers because there’s a man involved? Absolutely not. I’ve recently realised how often I use the word ‘sorry,’ and it’s a little embarrassing. I’m not taking credit where credit is due, and why not? Am I afraid of upsetting someone for the way I look, act and feel? Should my achievements be apologised for? No they shouldn’t.

In essence, we need to stand by our decisions, and believe firmly in them. It isn’t wrong to be in control of your own life. We should believe in ourselves. You won’t do any good by pretending to be anything less than you are. Let’s stop doing ourselves a disservice.

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29 thoughts on “Sorry, but can we stop saying ‘sorry’?

  1. liveloveandadventure says:

    Great post. I used to say I’m Sorry way too much just to keep peace but as I get older, I have realized that I’m not really sorry much of the time. I say how I feel and try to be respectful of other peoples feelings, but I am not sorry for feeling the way I do or expressing my feelings politely and firmly.

    Like

  2. Shanab says:

    I used to be guilty of saying sorry often too but I think it’s something I’ve gotten over with time. I think it comes with confidence in your own actions as well.

    Like

  3. jplagens says:

    I am one of those girls who used to say sorry for everything. I have stopped because I realized there was no need to apologize for some of those things you mentioned. I have the same rights as everyone else.

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  4. thebetterlyf says:

    Very true. Sometimes trying to please others puts us in an unfortunate bind.. Be yourself, look after yourself, love yourself, put yourself first.

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  5. Tara says:

    Way back in grade 10 we have someone come to school to talk to us about us girls saying “sorry” too often. It became a big joke between us to “cut it out” every time one of said “sorry”. It stuck with me.

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  6. iiipphy says:

    Absolutely, I believe people have a right to make whatever choices they deem fit and shouldnt have to apologize to anyone for it.

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  7. toastycritic says:

    I can see why women respond differently, given how they are conditioned to deal with relationships. How much of that is nature and how much is nurture is up for debate. But you are right. If you are always apologizing you are always undermining your position.

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  8. Joanna says:

    When I moved to England I was amazed by how often people say sorry: both women and man. I think it’s more of a cultural thing to be honest, and it’s expected.

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    • Evie Scott says:

      I agree. I think we do apologise more than other cultures, but I wonder if we are a nation that’s been bred to believe that we must continually apologise for our decisions?

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  9. lavandamichelle says:

    What a cool post! Back in college a group of people from Cheshire came to my college as freshman to tour and they said sorry so much. Now I just picture Brits as the nicest people on the planet. One of the girls sneezed in the middle of the guides speech and she said “sorry.” I was shocked, it wasn’t one of the “Oh, I have to say sorry so I will” type of sorry’s it was genuine. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

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    • Evie Scott says:

      Thank you for reading 🙂 I think we can be over polite at times, which isn’t a bad thing. I think it gets out of control when we apologise for our decisions and our reasons for being unable to do things. That’s when apologies become ridiculous x

      Like

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