Remember when we were kids and we had done something mean to someone else, and our parents caught us? Usually we were grabbed by the ear and placed squarely in front of the offended child.
“Tell them you are sorry.”
Of course our mothers understood what our look was communicating immediately, and just as quickly they returned a look that WE understood immediately.
With a gulp, and a kick at the dust, we turned back and muttered “sorry.”
It’s probably safe to say that 98% of the time we weren’t sorry at all.
Well, probably sorry we got caught, but that was about it.
I’ve thought about this childhood experience as I’ve witnessed some adults offer apologies.