Tag Archives: apology

The Narcissistic Apology

Narcissists are the most superficial bunch of people you can imagine.  Everything about them is a charade, right down to their apologies.

 

On the rare occasion they do apologize,  there isn’t one sincere thing about it.  Maybe they say the right words, but I can assure you, there is nothing sincere about apologies coming from a narcissist.

 

If you’re wondering how you can be sure whether or not the narcissist in your life truly means their apology, I am going to list some differences below between a sincere apology & a narcissistic apology.

 

  • Sincere apologies always include accepting responsibility for the wrong that was done & don’t shift blame.  Narcissists may say they are sorry for what they did, but then they make an excuse for it.  “I’m sorry I said that, but I wouldn’t have said it if you wouldn’t have done….”  Or, they may even deny doing what they did entirely, making you feel like you’re crazy.
  • If the behavior doesn’t change, the apology isn’t sincere.  People who truly are sorry for hurting another person do their best never to repeat that behavior.  Insincere apologies may sound sincere sometimes, but the fact the offending person’s behavior didn’t change is a big clue that they didn’t mean their apology.
  • Insincere apologies are passive/aggressive.  “I’m sorry you feel that way.”  “I’m sorry you think what I did was wrong.”  While the words “I’m sorry” are being said, it’s clear the person saying such things doesn’t believe they have done something wrong.  The person is angry about being called out on their behavior, & will apologize just to shut you up.
  • Insincere apologies are vague, rather than specific.  Rather than saying, “I’m sorry I cheated on you,” a narcissist may say, “I know I’ve made some mistakes in our marriage.”
  • Sometimes apologies can be used to hurt you.  My mother once told me she realized she made a lot of mistakes while raising me.  I thought maybe she realized what she did to me & wanted to apologize for it.  She sounded so sincere.  Instead, she continued by saying “Obviously I made mistakes.  Just look at how you turned out.”  She guaranteed I would pay attention by sounding sincere & by what she said.  Once she had my full attention, she dropped that cruel bomb on me.
  • Sincere apologies acknowledge the pain that was caused, while insincere ones ignore it.  Using the cheating spouse example again, a sincere apology would be something like, “I’m sorry I cheated on you.  I know doing that has devastated you.  I’m so sorry..it was wrong & it’ll never happen again, I promise.”  Narcissists lack empathy, so your pain that they caused is one of two things- not even a blip on their radar because they didn’t think of you in the slightest, or your pain is something they enjoyed causing you.
  • A narcissist expects you to accept their apology once they say it, then drop the topic forever.  Narcissists don’t want to discuss what happened.  In their minds, saying they’re sorry (no matter how insincerely it’s said) once is good enough.  They said that, so you should be over it & never bring it up again.
  • Narcissists love to make the victim feel that they should forgive & forget.  If you’re a Christian, have been wronged or abused by a narcissist & they apologize to you, chances are very good the narcissist will make you feel like you’re a terrible example of your faith if you don’t forgive & forget what was done to you.  This apology can make you feel as bad or worse than the original offense.
  • Some narcissists apologize for something they think you’re upset about in order to placate you.  My father has done this.  After my mother in-law passed away in 2016, my parents & I had a huge argument.   My father later apologized to me for asking if my husband & I were still together during that argument.  (He kept trying to deflect me off the topic).  Granted, it wasn’t a good thing to ask, but it also wasn’t the reason I was so angry with him.  I told him that & explained exactly why I was angry.  He looked at me like a deer in the headlights.  Clearly, he couldn’t understand why I’d be upset that he & my mother wanted to “pay their respects” to someone who had been so cruel & abusive to me.  Also, it was obvious he thought that all should be fine- he apologized.  Never mind the fact what he apologized for wasn’t the thing he should have apologized for.

 

Dear Reader, please keep these actions in mind when you must deal with a narcissist.  Remembering them will help you not to buy their insincere apology.  You don’t need that aggravation!  If you fall for their apology, they’ll see you as someone they can manipulate & do so more & more.  Who needs that?!  You don’t!  And, you deserve to be treated better than that.

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Filed under Narcissism

Accepting That Your Suffering May Never Be Acknowledged

One thing I think all victims of narcissistic abuse would love is to have their abuser acknowledge the damage they have done, & genuinely apologize for it.  In fact, some feel they can’t heal or forgive without such actions.

Unfortunately, abusers, narcissists in particular, aren’t exactly the most compassionate people you’ll ever meet.  The chances of them owning up to what they have done are practically non existent.  (The only reason I think there may be even a slim chance is because of Matthew 19:26, that says with God, all things are possible.)

You need to accept the fact that the person who abused you most likely will never acknowledge hurting you or apologize for what she did.  I know it is hard & painful, but it is easier than continuing to wait for the acknowledgement you want.  Expecting a narcissist to acknowledge what they have done will only lead to great disappointment & frustration for you.

To help you accept this ugly truth, I urge you to learn as much as you can about Narcissistic Personality Disorder.  The more you know about NPD, the more you will understand the narcissist in your life.  Understanding it will also help you to grasp why an apology or acknowledgement from that person is not going to happen.

Pray.  Tell God how you feel & ask Him to comfort you.  He will listen & comfort you gladly!

Don’t let other people define you!  If you do, not getting the acknowledgement & apology you want will devastate you.  You will feel something is wrong with you instead of the narcissist, which is completely WRONG!  Just because a person won’t acknowledge the damage they have done to you doesn’t mean you are the problem.  Some people simply refuse to do this.  They cannot handle the guilt of what they have done, so rather than fess up to it, they will pretend it never happened or accuse you of making things up.  Isn’t it obvious that you are not the problem?

On the off chance you do get an apology from the narcissist, examine it carefully!  Often narcissists use a passive/aggressive apology just to shut their victim up (“I’m sorry you feel that way”).  The expectation is that you will hear an apology, & forgive & forget.  They aren’t truly sorry if they use the passive/aggressive apology at all.  Or, they may say they are sorry, but are looking for reassurance for you, which is narcissistic supply.  If you say, “It’s ok, I understand” & they persist on saying why what they have done is bad, basically they are pushing you into reassuring them that they are forgiven, & they are looking for you to provide narcissistic supply.

And, never forget…if you confront a narcissist, you may be attacked. It doesn’t matter how valid your claims, they often turn the tables on anyone who dares to criticize them. They will do anything to protect the image they portray of themselves.

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Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Mental Health, Narcissism