Keeping the Romance in Your Relationship Part 6


Dr. Chapman also puts forward the idea of  five Apology Languages in another of his book’s, titled: Five Languages of Apology in the Workplace.  These 5 are:

Expressing Regret: I am sorry
Accepting Responsibility: I was wrong
Making Restitution:
What Can I do to make it right?
Genuinely repenting: I’ll try not to do it again
Requesting forgiveness: Will you please forgive me?

While the book mainly deals with the topic of business relationships, all of our relationshops at the end of the day are human ones with an underliying need for being liked, connection, and our needs being served and met as fully as we feel we need to them to be.

In the Five Languages of Apology, Dr Chapman puts forward the idea that disputes can often get out of control because we speak different apology languages,  just like we speak different love languages.

So, his argument runs, if the person does not hear what they want to hear in terms of a seemingly genuine expression of true contrition, they will continue to feel aggrieved no matter what apology is offered.

It is also a question of perspective.   Sometimes an offence which may seem slight to one person is a huge dealbreaker for the other person.  We also have to try not to blow things out of proportion. Ask yourself: Am I still going to be worried about this issue 6 months from now? If not, then let it go.


Thus, in the same way that we can mis-communicate with our partner in terms  of love, we may also do that in terms of dispute resolution, apologizing, learning from the incident, and making sure both parties don’t have any cause for lingering resentment.

Resentment and grudges are total passion-killers in a relationship.  So is talking a mistake to death.  Offering forgiveness doesn’t necessarily make the issue go away, but it does give you more freedom, because you have less to hold onto and begrudge.

You also need to look at intention-was it deliberate? Yes, you were hurt, but if you were in the kitchen with your partner, and a pot fell on your foot, would you assume they dropped it on your foot on purpose to cause you pain?  For the most part, if a person is in a relationship with us, they do actually WANT to see us happy, not hurt.

Read more in:
Keeping the Romance in Your Relationship Part 7


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