If you're to blame for a falling out with your boyfriend, the only way to start the process of making up is to apologize. However, not everyone finds it easy to ask for forgiveness. Some people equate apologizing with groveling, explains therapist Dr. Cat Saunders, who holds a Ph.D. in psychology, in the article "Four Principles of Effective Apology" on her website. However, asking for forgiveness provides a valuable opportunity to learn from your mistakes and strengthen your relationship.
Give your boyfriend time to calm down. He may still be angry or hurt. Wait until he has had enough time to think rationally about the situation before approaching him. Think of forgiveness as a process rather than an event, advise relationship counselors Linda Bloom and Charlie Bloom in the "Psychology Today" article "Read This Before You Apologize to Her (or Him)." Your behavior during and after the process is more important than the words you choose to communicate your remorse.
Use this time to really think about what you have done. Ask yourself how you would feel if the tables were turned and he was the one who had hurt your feelings. A genuine apology involves taking full responsibility for your mistakes, says Saunders. Your apology should be motivated only by a desire to ease his pain and reassure him that you care for him. Think about how you can avoid getting into this situation again.
Tell your boyfriend you are sorry. Mean it when you say it and back it up with an explanation for what you did. Speak from the heart and be honest. Tell him you have taken the time to reflect on what you did and have learned from your mistake.
Ask him what you can do to make amends. Let your boyfriend express his own feelings without getting defensive or interrupting him. Show him that your apology is sincere by listening to what he has to say. This will give weight to your words and prove that you care about making things right.
C. Giles is a writer with an MA (Hons) in English literature and a post-graduate diploma in law. Her work has been published in several publications, both online and offline, including "The Herald," "The Big Issue" and "Daily Record."