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chyna's avatar

What is the worst apology you have ever heard or given?

Asked by chyna (34017 points ) November 26th, 2012

My boss had to call someone today and apologize for saying something about them that they overheard and reported her to management. Her apology: I’m sorry for saying that, but you weren’t supposed to hear me.
It just made me wonder if anyone had worse apology stories.

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16 Answers

ucme's avatar

Any apology that is immediately followed with a “but” is no apology at all, stick it up your fucking arsecrack!
Oops, I apologise for my bad language, but…......

hearkat's avatar

I also had a boss make a ridiculously empty apology for insulting our whole department. It basically was to the effect of, “I didn’t mean to offend you”, rather than, “It was wrong of me to choose terminology that downplays your professionalism and contribution to our organization.”

josie's avatar

Any example you want to choose of the current trend to say, for example “I am sorry if you were offended” which puts the onus back on the offended) instead of saying “I am sorry that I was offensive” which puts the onus directly on the offender. It won’t change in your lifetime.

wundayatta's avatar

There’s something that seems to me to be like a bad apology. It’s a kind of pre-apology, as if telling people you don’t mean offense before you say something offensive makes it all right to say it.

“No offense, but….”

Or the alternate form: “blah blah blah blah blah, no offense.”

Sorry, but that’s what your question brought to mind. ;-)

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I’m sorry you’re pregnant. What are you going to do about it? A guy said this to a friend of mine after he knocked her up.

Coloma's avatar

Well….while I agree that apologies that follow up with “but” are non-apologies, I also like a saying I heard some years ago.
” What other people think of you is none of your business!”
I believe that to be true, and while this was an uncomfortable situation I have to say that, I agree with the boss.
Not that she should not show some sensitivity for her words, but… having to apologize for something said, in what seemed to be a private moment doesn’t merit an apology IMO.

It would have been best if she just said ” I am sorry you had to hear that.”

chyna's avatar

@Coloma Well I was trying to be generic, but boss is a doctor in a hospital and she was standing outside a room screaming (because she doesn’t seem to have an inside voice) “why the f**ck is this patient back? She is faking sick! (Patient is 90.)
A little compassion could go a long way for her.

Coloma's avatar

@chyna Totally agreed, and a very poor example of your bosses EQ and lack of sensitivity.
In this case I think she should be called out for being so tactless and cruel.
Clearly her bedside manner leaves much to be desired. She sounds like an arrogant bitch.

chyna's avatar

She is.

ragingloli's avatar

“I swear, I didn’t know she was 3.”

MollyMcGuire's avatar

Someone once apologized to me with “If I did anything to hurt your feelings, I’m sorry.” Well, ya know, that is no apology. If you don’t know what you did you can hardly apologize for it.

picante's avatar

Apologies can fall into two camps––expressions of genuine heartfelt regret/remorse or, as is more commonly the case, excuses for behavior. It’s the latter that are a bit difficult to stomach. In that I had a colleague who routinely offended me and routinely offered the excuse (aka, the apology), I’ve done a lot of reflection on this topic.

I’ve fallen victim to getting too caught up in the words of an apology without given proper notice to the intent. It’s easy to focus on “if I offended you . . .” or “but, I still think . . .” and lose sight of the notion that a person felt it necessary to ‘splain him/herself and make amends. I’ve tried to take the high road in hearing and accepting an apology and focus on the person’s desire to right a wrong rather than getting caught up in the words.

It’s been a real lesson for me, as I’ve become acutely aware of my apologies when I’ve offended or upset someone.

tups's avatar

When someone apologizes just because they don’t want to deal with the situation and not because they really mean it. And it’s just plain obvious to anyone with at least a little human knowledge that they don’t mean it. It happens quite a lot and I do it myself, unfortunately.

patryan's avatar

A nosy electrician at work does private PI work on the side to catch cheating partners. Well I got my drivers lic. suspended for a year so my boss drove me to work every day so this electrician got nosy found my social at the secretary desk did a back ground check so after word was out about my situation my boss had me write a letter to our plant chief operator by the end of the day after work his computer was snatch up by city police dept. from what I heard they found some really bad stuff & it just so happen our maintenance project managers computer fried earlyier that day because the good baptist he was like to snoop and compare notes with this electrician when it was all said and done the chief operator told this guy he should apologize to me so after he did he added the boss said he should apologize. To sum up the story he was allowed to put in his 2 week noticed or be fired.

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