Sorry Syndrome: Why Do We Apologize So Much?
Start writing a post
Health and Wellness

Sorry Syndrome: Why Do We Apologize So Much?

Why do I feel the need to apologize so much?

34315
Sorry Syndrome: Why Do We Apologize So Much?
unsplash.com

In my friend group, I am known for saying, "sorry" so much that I say it when someone bumps into me, when someone interrupts me when I'm talking, and at multiple other times when I should not feel the need to say sorry. For a while, it has been a joke between me and my friends, but I have been noticing it more and more recently and I wanted to really understand why I feel the need to apologize for basically existing.

The 'Sorry Syndrome' I'm talking about stems from a sense of insecurity, experts say. It is also said that women, more than men, will often apologize for things they do not need to or start a question with 'sorry' so they do not seem too demanding.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2017%2F03%2F10%2F6362476682862412971846442799_200w.gif%2374&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=136&h=9f3eb84e401aba403c3aadb5d83b915595c44558a285cd555059cf4a2a7f2be6&size=980x&c=1814676638 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2017%252F03%252F10%252F6362476682862412971846442799_200w.gif%252374%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D136%26h%3D9f3eb84e401aba403c3aadb5d83b915595c44558a285cd555059cf4a2a7f2be6%26size%3D980x%26c%3D1814676638%22%7D" expand=1]

Now, I didn't realize I was doing this to myself by saying 'sorry' so much, but I want to understand more about why I feel the need to create conversation when there is none or just apologize for being in someone's way.

Low self-esteem can also be a big reason that people say 'sorry' so much. This makes sense to me because when I say 'sorry' in unnecessary situations I am usually avoiding eye contact and just trying to get out of a situation where I have made it awkward or someone else has. When I am trying to open a door and walk through and someone else walks through, preventing me from doing so, I say 'sorry'. I do this because even though I was just trying to walk through the door, I feel like I am in someone's way and feel the need to apologize for it.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2017%2F03%2F10%2F636247669055609028-1673693984_giphy.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=983&h=5abdb2447512293a7f8850241f5e6632b8e66e0c552785d71fdadd810a232d51&size=980x&c=1814191698 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2017%252F03%252F10%252F636247669055609028-1673693984_giphy.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D983%26h%3D5abdb2447512293a7f8850241f5e6632b8e66e0c552785d71fdadd810a232d51%26size%3D980x%26c%3D1814191698%22%7D" expand=1]

Saying 'sorry' a lot can also be a tool to get people to like you, like how Dr.Samantha Boardman explains in her article, "Sorry Syndrome": Do You Apologize for the Rain?": "Superfluous apologies represent a powerful and easy-to-use tool for social influence. Even in the absence of culpability, individuals can increase trust and liking by saying ‘I’m sorry.’" Dr.Boardman also goes on to talk about ways that you could possibly change the bad habit of apologizing so much. She says, "instead of saying, “Sorry for rambling” you can say, “Thank you for listening.” Instead of saying “Sorry” when you move past someone on a train, you can say “Thank you for making room.”" This sounds like something I should try.

My roommate and I have taken to trying to replace 'sorry' with other words to get the submissive, powerless behavior out of our systems. We say 'Sookie' (Gilmore Girls character) or we simply just say 'I'm not sorry' in a way that doesn't seem mean.

This idea that saying sorry can make someone see you as submissive and powerless is really interesting and it has made me question every time I say the word now. I have to double check before I say it to make sure it is validated. When someone talks about not being able to talk to their parents about something important, not knowing what to write about for an essay for class, or not understanding something, I can apologize because I feel bad and I want to comfort them. But, when someone bumps into me, interrupts me while I'm talking, or does something that merits no sympathy from me, I will not say 'sorry'.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2017%2F03%2F10%2F636247668651750714942162409_636247667502332176-1331765446_giphy.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=53&h=d89076323783413dacf7955379c6283656ecd0bc87d45734a1d5dc361f64063f&size=980x&c=454760820 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2017%252F03%252F10%252F636247668651750714942162409_636247667502332176-1331765446_giphy.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D53%26h%3Dd89076323783413dacf7955379c6283656ecd0bc87d45734a1d5dc361f64063f%26size%3D980x%26c%3D454760820%22%7D" expand=1]

Anyone who does this all the time would agree that I may be hard but, like it is said in the article, Why do I say 'Sorry' all the time? Experts call it the 'Sorry Syndrome', by Monica Drake, "learn to accept yourself and the decisions you make without apologizing for it. And learn to accept the fact that it is impossible to make others happy all the time."

I really hope that all of this information can help people who are in a similar situation because I think we all could use a bit more self esteem, confidence, and assurance that we matter and we don't need to apologize for it. And if that didn't help, hopefully this gif of Joey from Friends will:


[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2017%2F03%2F10%2F636247667211392901-608186779_giphy.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=338&h=cd979712e65f389f7d59f9974ac19cae6b5a584b8f141deaf11373f345a0f48c&size=980x&c=1769140754 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2017%252F03%252F10%252F636247667211392901-608186779_giphy.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D338%26h%3Dcd979712e65f389f7d59f9974ac19cae6b5a584b8f141deaf11373f345a0f48c%26size%3D980x%26c%3D1769140754%22%7D" expand=1]




Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Featured

10 Holiday Drinks to Spice Up this December's Movie Binge

After all, isn't it the season of drinking...?

828
10 Holiday Drinks to Spice Up this December's Movie Binge
https://unsplash.com/photos/d-SeLxF_QF0

Thanksgiving has officially ended which means we are in preparation for the final holidays of the year. December is a busy month, filled with shopping and sales, wrapping gifts, planning family gathering and parties, cooking and baking, holiday movies, and of course, lots of drinking. I know that I will be spending a lot of December watching the ABC Family's 25 Days of Christmas,

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Planning Another Christmas Party

Don't just plan another plain party but get creative to have everyone wanting to come back next year!

9603
Getty Famous

You know it's Christmas when the radio stations change to all of your favorite holiday tunes, the air is still, and stores have the best sales. With all my favorite things from Christmas happening my least favorite probably has to be when I have to go to another same old boring Christmas party that I get invited to every year. Here are some Christmas party ideas so that you won't have another sad Christmas party.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

High School Soccer is Wildly Important

For Young Players Who Want to Succeed at The Next Level

14470
High School Soccer is Wildly Important

Whose choice is it? The parent? The player? There are a number of reasons that a kid may sit out of high school soccer, and to be completely honest; It is a huge mistake. High school soccer is the final piece in the puzzle that takes a player from above average or elite, to college ready by the end of their senior year. Every year thousands of talented athletes don't play for their high schools. Why though?

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

8 Things That Should Be On Everyone's Holiday To-Do List

December is around the corner, are you ready?

11162
8 Things That Should Be On Everyone's Holiday To-Do List
Unsplash.com

As they tend to say, its the most wonderful time of the year! People have begun to compile their Christmas to-do lists in anticipation for the season of sugarplums and gingerbread.

The history of the Christmas to-do lists goes back hundreds of years, almost as old as the holiday itself, however, people tend to fall out of this habit as they get older. This is unfortunate, as the theme of Christmas tradition can add bundles of the spirit of joy to your families.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Fall Weather Must-Haves

Put away the swim suits and your favorite high-waisted shorts!

10635

The transitional months of fall can cause some fashion headaches as you try to figure out what clothing to keep in your closet. With limited amount of college living space and the ever-unpredictable Nebraska weather, sometimes it’s difficult to know what should be taking up that precious closet space as you transition into winter. As you pack away those tanks and shorts for the chilly months ahead, get your closet ready with a few Fall must-haves. 

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments