Perhaps it is me. That may be my mantra, as I examine this marriage and my own life. I at least can always be sure that I am involved in my emotions, actions and decisions yet sometimes it is so obvious that someone “else” is too blame. This is how I feel about the “over-apology”.
An over-apology is when someone, perhaps my wife, apologies every time she thinks there might be a disagreement. It compounds when she guesses that I might be about to disagree and heads off the possible disagreeing statement with a preemptive apology. Hence, assuming I am going to disagree, perhaps she see it as criticism, I hear, “oh sorry I know I shouldn’t”. Then how is it possible for me to take a stand? Instead I have to back pedal, if, of course, I was going to disagree with her.
I notice this most in public. I must admit I am a bit of a price maniac. I am all about the bargain and hate to pay “too much” for something. This is facilitated by having a number brain, and often plays itself out in the supermarket. I know, just off the top of my head, that organic peanut butter where we live comes in a few different categories, there is the O brand from Safeway which actually has cane sugar and palm oil in it, a good price for it would be $4, $3 would be grew occasionally 2 for 1 makes it about $2.70t… something more natural like Adams or fresh ground would be about $5.50 for 16 ounces so anything under $4.50 is great thus when I ask how much the peanut butter was and my wife has no idea, I will occasionally say something like, “Was it a good deal.” Of course she does not know. I then may wonder about other items, like the 5 color, specialty noodles, which I know there is a stale bag of in the back of the cupboard, which was bought 6 months ago and never used. Of course she will then apologize, “I am sorry I don’t know” and then I let it drop but my lovely wife is now feeling guilty and she thinks I am angry and the apologies keep coming. I am saying nothing so she thinks I am mad and the apologies escalate. I begin to think that those around us must assume I am an abusive husband because my wife is frantically apologizing to me. Thus, I hiss, “stop it” and she continues to apologize for apologizing. Like I said it is possibly my fault.