Is it okay to not say sorry to your significant other ?

My husband literally refuses to say sorry for anything. It is like pulling teeth for him to apaologize and make things better. He would rather be silent for hours than apaologize. Does anyone else have this problem and If so, how did you fix it.

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  • No, it is not normal to have the communicative skills of a sulky toddler.

    Is he willing to go to counselling with you? Sounds like you'd both benefit from him learning some communication skills.

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    • I never had the thought of going to therapy because things are usually back to normal in the morning.

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      • Perhaps in the short term, but this is going to build resentment on both sides.

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  • A lot of men are like this. So-called macho men who aren't strong enough to admit they are human and can err. I had a family member who would do this, and it annoyed me a lot. Later on he would apologise just for the sake of it and just say sorry, but never talk about the fact that what he did was wrong. He would use apologies to brush things under the carpet. So while being able to apologise is golden, don't be fooled by someone who keeps apologising without sincerity either. Giving an apology doesn't always mean the hurtful action was regretted.

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    • Yeah I guess cause it just happened again. I asked him a question and he was super rude replying then just went upstairs.

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      • Only you know the severity of the mistakes he keeps committing without any sign of regret. Don't let another person, especially someone who is supposed to love you and be the closest to you, treat you like a punching bag. You don't deserve that. He isn't a child anymore and needs to get a grip.

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  • Others have referred to this as the silent treatment; it's also known as stonewalling. Have a look at this for some ideas of what's going on, what you can do about it, and the prospects of change:

    https://www.relate.org.uk/relationship-help/help-relationships/communication/stonewalling

    You say he's back to normal in the morning. Is he willing to calmly discuss the cause of the tension once he's calmed down? Or is it all down to you do modify your expectations and allow him to do whatever he wants?

    Narcissists never apologise (the current occupant of the White House provides a good example of this behaviour), because they are unable to accept that they can ever be wrong. Every time something goes wrong, it's always someone else's fault, and narcissists are capable of twisting and denying reality and creating their own "facts" in astonishing ways in order to justify their behaviour and reinforce their delusion that they are perfect. You might consider some online research into narcissistic partners to see if that's what you're dealing with.

    As others have said, some people have huge problems with actually apologising for anything they do that causes hurt or annoyance. I'd find it very difficult to live with someone like that, but I might be able to accept it if they were able to acknowledge that their actions (or lack of action) had caused me problems, they promised to change their behaviour, and they stuck to that. Still, as Ellenna says, it suggests he's insecure. If he doesn't understand why apologising is so difficult for him, that suggests he's either deliberately hiding from you stuff from his past that he finds painful to talk about, or he's emotionally immature and hasn't spent any time reflecting on why he behaves as he does in his relationship with you.

    I bet there's a good chance he either grew up with a father (or father-figure) who dealt with disagreements in the same way, or he grew up without a father and so didn't learn how a man should behave in a healthy relationship.

    As for you, I think you need to do some work on your self-esteem, and you need to stop apologising when you're sure he's done something that's inconsiderate, stupid, or even deliberately cruel. What you're doing isn't that uncommon, since girls are brought up hearing all sorts of messages that their prime role in life is to make others (particularly men) happy, and they should do whatever it takes to keep things running smoothly. So you end up with women who feel the need to take the blame and even apologise when their men have chosen to do the most appalling things.

    I also agree with Lorna: this isn't a trivial issue. If you two can't learn to honestly and lovingly communicate about things that each of you do that bothers the other, and if you can't learn how to resolve your differences, but instead bury the problems to fester away, while you become increasingly resentful about apologising when you're confident that you're in the right, then your marriage is heading for a very bad place.

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  • Yup, but mine was worse. He'd gaslight me and make ME apologize.

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  • Sounds like you married an emotional abuser.

    I understand that using labels suck, especially words like abuse, but... it's what he's doing. He's giving you the silent treatment until HE feels better. He gaslight you enough until YOU apologize even though you shouldn't; and probably many more things. That's apart of emotional abuse, it's meant to drive you crazy and make you more submissive/controllable.

    However, bad relationships are so complicated, cause you love him therefore you justify his actions a lot without even realizing it. Like, I hate it when I was mad at my abusive-ex (boyfriend at the time), and spoke about him angrily with friends/family, but when others agree that he's a piece of shit, I suddenly remember all the nice things he has done for me and start defending him in the very same conversation. It's a confusing mess. Eventually, your husband is going to do/say something that's going to wake you up from his control and make you leave him, but until that day comes, I suggest keeping a journal of your day-to-day life with him (good and sad moments that seem significant to you).

    Also, my ex never apologized in our relationship either. ☹

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  • I had a husband like that a very long time ago and never worked out how to "fix it". You can't fix it anyway, it's up to him: if he's too insecure to ever admit he's wrong or done something he regrets you'll have to learn to live with it or not, as the case may be

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    • Yeah that’s our only issue as a couple and I am just hoping he’ll learn that it is key to communicate and say sorry sometimes.

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  • A lot of people, myself included see apologies as a sign of weakness. It sounds like your husband grew up in a tough environment or comes from a culture where we dont say we are sorry over little things. Or big things. It's mostly an American thing to constantly apologize. I hate it, such a turn off.

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    • PS: Actually, apologising isn't a sign of weakness but a sign of strength, because it indicates the person is mature enough to admit they're not perfect and own up to something they regret saying or doing.

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    • There's an obvious difference between constantly apologising (not confined to the usa, by the way, a lot of Australians do it too) and seeing any apology as a sign of weakness.

      Glib apologies to shut someone up annoy me too: this is a paraphrase but someone wise once said something like "An apology without a clear statement of what's being apologised for and a genuine commitment not to repeat whatever it was, is not a true apology".

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    • I mean I can see that but he wont even tell me why he won’t say sorry. He just shrugs his shoulders and says I don’t know.

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  • Its alright, some ppl are like that, avoid him.

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  • My mother is like this. She never says she's sorry, and never admits when she is wrong. My mother would rather gaslight me, than admit the truth about herself. My father, and my sister choose to believe the shit she says. My mother acts horrified, and insists that I'm a liar when I remind her of what she was like when I was a teenager. I really hate that she denies, or doesn't remember the time she chased me around the house with a knife.

    I really have a problem with people who can't admit when they are wrong, or apologize.

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  • Perhaps he feels he is right and you are wrong and thus he has nothing to apologize for. Then yes, it is normal.

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  • He sounds like a bitch to. I’d tell him to man the fuck up.

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