The Narcissistic Apology

Narcissists rarely apologize for anything, but when they do, you can be certain it isn’t a genuine apology.

A genuine apology doesn’t include excuses. Someone who is genuinely sorry for their actions won’t say you made them act that way. That person also will try to change their ways as they don’t want to hurt you like that again.

All of these are foreign concepts to the narcissist.

Narcissists hate to admit they are wrong, & will go to great lengths to avoid it. They will offer excuses as to why what they did was not their fault, or even blame you for making them do what they did. They love to offer the passive/aggressive type of apology- “I’m sorry you feel that way.” “I’m sorry you think what I did was wrong/unfair/hurtful.” All of these actions show that the narcissist is not genuinely sorry for what she did. Most likely, she doesn’t care that she hurt you & only cares that she accomplished whatever it was she wanted to accomplish.

I also realized recently another trick of the narcissistic apology. My father has done this one many times & it wasn’t until recently I caught onto it. He recently apologized to me for not being there enough for me in my life. I was touched- there was no blame or excuses so I assumed it was a genuine apology.  He apologized for missing my fifth birthday because he had to travel for work. I told him it’s fine- not a big deal, it was just a birthday. He went on to say how terrible it was of him, he shouldn’t have gone on that trip. Again I said it was no big deal. I pointed out how many other birthdays he was there for. It was only one birthday. Plus he did other things for me. By the end of the conversation, he was happy.

While there are times I am more than willing to reassure someone who hurt me, this was not one of those times that was a good option. If someone accidentally hurt me once, fine. Bad things happen sometimes. But this was different. My reassurance would have been providing narcissistic supply.  Unfortunately, I realized this after the conversation, & then I felt conned into telling him he was a good father.

Whenever you hear a narcissist apologize to you, remember- it is NOT a genuine apology! Don’t get your hopes up thinking they might finally see the error of their ways & change. The narcissist’s apology is like every other thing they do- it’s only about narcissistic supply.


Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Mental Health, Narcissism

5 responses to “The Narcissistic Apology

  1. lynettedavis

    This is so true Cynthia. Their apologies are false and so are their “tears.” They’re tears are only used to manipulate.


  2. Margaret Morris

    I did force my mother to apologise to me after she got caught out by a stranger who witnessed her yelling at me. After my mother’s lame apology she very quickly forgot all about it because she was not sincere.

    However, the stranger happened to be the Manager of the aged care facility my mother lives in. This was a huge win for me because since then the Manager nods knowingly towards me with an ironic smile each time she sees me. This is very apparent when she has heard my mother spouting off at the top of her voice “how everyone at this place absolutely loves her because she is such a wonderful person”!!! The Manager then looks at me and smirks.

    It is the best feeling ever to be acknowledged by this lady who knows the ‘real truth’ about my mother’s behaviour. It’s 100% better than a lame apology from my mother who will never admit she is wrong or that she hurt me.

    Cheers and thanks again Cynthia for a subject that I can relate to very well.

    Liked by 1 person

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