And, seeing as I'm a man, I can help you with the right words and phrases that will send the right message to him.
So let's dig into a few tips to help you get that apology out.
FIRST: The best place to begin is to figure out where you are with him right now.
Have you just had an argument or disagreement?
Is he cold and distant?
Did you send him a text and got nothing back?
Are your emotions still raw and tender?
Are things so bad that you need to see a counselor or therapist?
Wherever you are starting from, take a moment to really consider your situation. Wherever you are starting from, simply resolve to let go of your own hurt first. Because if you're just seeking an apology from him with your own apology, you could come across as being cold.
From here you can take the steps to open up communication and get back to being a couple. But you have to be willing to look at your own behavior first before you get into making a list of all his faults.
The reason most people let a small argument get out of hand is because of pride. It's tempting to try to get satisfaction by squeezing an “I'm sorry” out of him. But no one will really benefit if you're just looking to install guilt at the first opportunity.
To make a relationship work you both have to be willing to make amends and admit your part in the disagreement.
Of course this always starts with you.
If he's not admitting his own problems and just gives you excuses, your problem might not be in the apology. It might have to do with your partner's attitude towards relationships.
But let's stay focused on what YOU can do right now.
How To Apologize to Your Boyfriend - TIP 1: Seek first to understand his position.
There's an old saying that goes:
“Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”
Which simply means that if you are more focused on getting him to see your point of view and your perspective, you could risk pushing him even further away.
Patience and understanding...
Healing the rift between you may require some growth on both your parts. If you're still stuck in your blame, apologies won't do much for you. So you've got to be patient.
Once you understand his position, then you can start to work on getting him to see your point of view.
So pay attention to what he says he's feeling. The more you know about why he's angry or disconnected, the easier it will be for you to fix the situation.
It takes a lot for man to communicate his emotions. You may even have to ask his friends to really find out what he's feeling and what pain he's going through. (Just be delicate.)
To be honest, most men experience that a woman has an emotional reaction, which then shuts out talking about his feelings. And of course men are more likely to retreat into silence, where he can feel comfort and safety. So he won't always speak up.
Which now leads us to…
How To Apologize to Your Boyfriend - TIP 2: Just because he's distant doesn't mean he's leaving!
Very often a woman will panic and think that a man's distance means he is leaving the relationship. Or that he's falling out of love.
Give him space.
In reality, his process of getting over your fight simply means he will turn inward - toward himself - while he figures it out. Just because he's quiet doesn't mean he isn't thinking over what happened. Or thinking about his responsibility in the relationship.
Most men become very reasonable after their emotions calm down. And yours calm as well!
So when a man disconnects after an argument, he may not be leaving you. But you should check your instincts just in case. You don't want to ignore the distance either.
Stay cool, stay patient. But keep a close eye on him just the same!
TIP 3: Make sure you are cool and composed
You don't want to go back to him with a lot of heated emotions. You gotta stay calm, cool, and collected.
This is the one thing that will not change his mind: If he thinks you are trying to smooth everything over just to get him to like you again.
The last thing you want to do is go apologize to him and then slip into anger and blame all over again and reopen the old wound.
Your intentions are to face and let go of your own pain is much as you can. This way he will pick up on your willingness to heal the wounds and reestablish your intimacy.
HINT: Your apology should focus on him, not on you. The last thing you want to do is start your apology with: “I'm sorry … but you made me do this!” NOT a good way to make him forgive you.
All he's going to hear is that you're not taking responsibility, and his frustration will return. (And probably another argument.)
By staying as relaxed as you can, he will also keep his cool. This will keep him open to you - and get him talking as well.
And then, after he feels like he's been heard, you can delicately begin to address anything that you may still feel hurt about.
TIP 4: Review the damage
Spend some time with your journal and review what happened.
Very often you lose perspective of how your argument may have crossed boundaries or hurt your mutual respect.
Take a moment to reflect on the words that were said.
Is it possible you misheard or misinterpreted him?
Is it possible you were blinded by some emotional panic and you couldn't hear him?
Is the issue a difference of opinion?
What do you think his reasons were for what he said?
Really take a look at the statements each of you made. It's possible you jumped to a response which made it hard for you two to hear each other.
And make sure you review what he said to you that you may not have heard completely the first time. Chances are he gave you plenty of clues as to what's really bothering him.
One of the best ways you can turn the damage into a stronger relationship is by simply explaining where you're coming from.
Explain to him why you have the reaction you did. Tell him why you said the wrong thing or did the wrong thing.
Helping him understand you is how to apologize to your boyfriend without having to say you're sorry.
TIP 5: Be careful of makeup sex
This may seem a little bit out-of-place, but be very careful about jumping back into bed with him too quickly.
It's very tempting to get back to physical intimacy so you can feel like a couple again. Don't rush it. If you don't solve the situation that got you here, you'll probably find yourself here again.
It can be fun, BUT...
Once you feel the relief that comes with dropping your intense emotions, your apology might not serve much more than a way to rush into physical intimacy again.
Even if you know how to apologize to your boyfriend, if you don't get to the core of your conflict, the truth is it could come up again and again.
Be on your guard against jumping into sex too quickly. It might feel like a relief, like you healed something, but this tactic could backfire on you.
TIP 6: Switch over to gratitude and appreciation
The fact is that it's nearly impossible to have an argument with someone that you are feeling gratitude for.
If you're appreciating your boyfriend or husband, it's hard to keep up the tension. You have a different tone of voice, and you will communicate with much more warmth and empathy.
That's why I encourage you to express your feelings of gratitude in your conversation when you apologize to him. A simple statement of how much he means to you is a big deal. It can really shake a guy back into remembering that it doesn't matter who is more right.
The priority is healing the damage.
TIP 7: Use touch with your loved one
One of the best ways to open the door to love again is to use some touch to reconnect with him.
The healing power of touch...
It can be difficult, but if you can put aside your anger and frustration to give him a quick hug, or a small amount of touch, you can bring the emotions back down.
Men are especially responsive to a woman's touch. It helps bring his heated emotions back down to room temperature.
Try placing your hand on his arm or on his back at some point. Reconnecting physically will also reconnect you emotionally.
TIP 8: Should you say you're sorry with a gift?
Of course you could get him a small gift as a token of apology. But gifts often lack sincerity.
I recommend staying away from purchased gifts as a way to say you're sorry. It doesn't feel genuine. They also don't take any real effort.
And they can seem like bribery.
Think of how you might've felt if your man bought you a gift as a way to soothe the anger. Most women can smell this as manipulation instead of remorse.
A small token...
If you want to get him a gift, you want to pair it with words of affection. Keep the gift small and sentimental.
For example, if he likes cars, maybe get him a small hot wheels version of his favorite sports car. It's fun, inexpensive, and it's an expression of a bigger statement that you “get” him.
Even better, if you can tie your gift to your apology. You could add a note with the car gift: “You make my motor run, and my heart is always hot for you…”
But that's the kind of thing that the best apologies are often made of.
TIP 9: Actions speak louder than words
The best kind of apology is the one that shows him the promise and benefits of your new level of character.
We all know that anybody can say they are sorry, but it's rare to see someone make a change for the better. It's this kind of action that will speak volumes to him.
He really needs to know that you intend to make some changes.
Step up to the plate and show him those changes. Show him that you're a better girlfriend than you used to be.
If he really means something to you, and you want to make it work, demonstrate your commitment.
TIP 10: Consider counseling or therapy - but…
You should consider bringing in a professional if it will help you get past any of the issues in your relationship.
But only as a last resort!
You want to go here only if you know he is willing to work on the relationship this seriously. Treatment doesn't usually help if you have a hostile partner that isn't ready to dig into the relationship issues.
He has to have a huge commitment to your love to begin with.
The problem with most professional counseling is that the couple seeks it out way too late. Which is the reason that it rarely works to heal a relationship.
Just remember the both of you have to be equally committed to the hard work. Without it, resentment will usually outweigh the good feelings.
TIP 11: Be careful with your texting
When you're communicating with a guy using electronic methods - texting or email, typically - you're more likely to want to use that method to avoid the discomfort and awkwardness of face-to-face communication.
You might think that you can send your apology in text.
Certainly, you CAN do this, but is it a good idea? Usually, it's not.
First of all you don't get to see his expression, or read his body language. Which is critical for you to make sense of his behaviors. If he responds in anger or in some other manner, how would you know?
And how would you adjust your message?
Second, in a text you can't answer his questions with your emotional energy. Sometimes words on the screen are just not enough to communicate your feelings. There is no tone in texts.
And third, if you do make up, don't you want to be there to hold him and share your affection?
If you do decide to use texting to send him an apology, you want to send something like this:
"Hey babe. I'm really sorry for how I behaved yesterday. I've had some time to cool down. Look, you don’t deserve that kind of treatment. I'm going to spend some serious time working on understanding why I lash out and change my behavior."
Be very careful about promising that you will “never do it again.” This can sound like an empty promise. And if you are talking about a behavior that you fall back on a lot, you may be making a promise you just can't keep.
Keep the text sincere and simple. And then follow it up with a face-to-face conversation.
If you chicken out and do it only in text, he may not believe you. You've got to check in and make sure he's hearing you and believing you.
TIP 12: Get Working On Solutions
If you had a fight, or a disagreement, and you know you want to apologize - then you need to also work on solving the problem that came up. Especially if he came up with some legitimate concerns that you need to address.
Recognize your patterns.
Yes, this means a little bit of work. But unless you want to keep apologizing every week for behaviors you won't control, you have to get to work on them.
Relationship problems don't solve themselves.
That may go without saying, but most couples act as if their problems will just magically disappear over time.
Let's put it this way - relationships that break up typically follow this pattern:
Everything starts out great...
Eventually there is a disagreement or argument
There is an apology from one or both people just to get back to the love...
If the cause of the fight isn't fixed, it repeats
and eventually the relationship breaks up
Spend a little time thinking about what it would take to change some of the behaviors that are causing the problems. Make small changes each day.
Eventually, you will work through some of your issues. And you'll find unnatural rhythm of forgiveness in your relationship.
When you understand each other well, apologies aren't as necessary anymore.
TIP 13: Commit yourself to working on the relationship
This one goes hand-in-hand with tip # 11. If you have an action plan for making your relationship better, that's the secret for most couples' success.
Weathering the storm...
Eventually this commitment becomes a kind of faith in each other. If you're just willing to make small improvements every day, you'll find that you become much more secure in your relationship.
Just tell him what you plan to do, whatever solution you came up with from the last step.
You might say: “I decided I will stop using those kinds of words because they hurt your feelings.”
Or: “I will make a commitment to change my schedule so we can see each other more each week.”
Just tell him exactly what you plan to do and that will often be enough of an apology for him. A man just wants to know that this won't keep repeating over and over again.
The more solutions you can bring to the table, the happier he will be. And the faster you will forgive you.
Every relationship runs into its share of problems.
But if your relationship is on the rocks right now, you may be at risk of losing him.
If he's growing distant or pulling away, it's time to get him back.
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