Non apologies are common among narcissists & their enabling flying monkeys, so you need to be aware of them.
A non apology means someone says they are sorry but it isn’t a genuine apology. Some examples are:
- I’m sorry you feel that way.
- I’m sorry for whatever you think I did.
- I’m sorry if I did something that upset you.
- I’m sorry I said/did that, but if you wouldn’t have said/done what you did, I wouldn’t have said/done what I did.
- I was just upset when I said that.
While these apologies do contain the words “I’m sorry”, they certainly aren’t real apologies. They accept no responsibility for the bad behavior or make any promises this will not happen again or of better behavior in the future.
They also imply something is wrong with the person on the receiving end of the apology. If someone tells you they were just upset when they did something bad, the average person with empathy will feel badly for being upset in the first place because the abuser was upset for what they did & can’t be held accountable for their actions. If the abuser blames you for upsetting them enough to do something bad, the average person will feel badly for doing what they did that “made” the abuser do what they did.
A genuine apology is very different. Even if the person making the apology doesn’t understand why the person offended feels as they do, the offender will promise not to do whatever they did again. They will admit they were being insensitive or thoughtless. They promise to amend their behavior & do it. There isn’t judgment or criticism because someone is upset. There isn’t blame. There is simply love, concern & a desire not to hurt a person again.
When a narcissist or flying monkey gives you a non apology, look out. They are going to resent you for “making” them apologize & you will be punished. They may do the behavior again or do something worse. They may act like nothing happened, which can invalidate your feelings or make you wonder if you imagined what happened or exaggerated how bad it was. When this happens, focus on the truth & what you remember. Keeping a journal can help you, because you can look back on the events which helps you focus on the truth rather than the narcissist’s version of it. And as always, pray. Ask God to help you to stay focused on the truth & to help you act accordingly.