Respect is Expected

I’m not the nicest person. I don’t let people in front of me when I am trying to get out of the

parking lot. I don’t really smile at people. I laugh when somebody falls down. I don’t apologize to

people in the hallway when I run into them. However, I do apologize when I hurt somebody’s


Sometimes it seems as if people are always apologizing. Whether or not there is something to

apologize for, they seem to always say, “Sorry!” I think if you apologize too much, your apologies

seem to mean less to the person you are apologizing to. Some people feel as if it is their own

responsibility to make everybody around them feel as comfortable as possible, even if it means

apologizing for something they didn’t do. Samantha Fitton says, “Sometimes it is easier to apologize

when you aren’t wrong just to avoid a fight, but don’t apologize if your apology won’t even make a

difference.” Don’t apologize if you didn’t do anything wrong!

We’ve known this rule since the first grade: apologize when you hurt someone’s feelings. Though

we have known this rule for years, we don’t always exercise it. If something is your fault and you feel

bad, of course you should still apologize, but be sincere! People know when you aren’t really sorry.

You won’t sound sorry, and you won’t look sorry. Bingham High School student Sarah Russell

suggests cooling off and thinking things through before you apologize. This seems like a good

approach. Take some time to realize what you have done wrong so that you are able to sincerely


If something is your fault and you don’t feel bad but you made somebody else feel bad, then you

should apologize. This rule took us a little bit longer to learn, but apparently we learned our lesson

and now we apologize all too much. Student Stephanie Golbraa says, “I don’t think it’s necessary to

apologize when someone needs to hear the truth. Like if they are in denial or if you are standing up

for something that you believe in.” You don’t need to apologize when you stand up for something.

Those are your beliefs and you don’t need to apologize for them. If somebody needs to hear the hard

truth, tell them. Tell them what they need to hear and don’t apologize for it. Your comment is

helping them whether or not they want to hear it.

Apologizing is an art. Don’t apologize if you aren’t sorry. Only apologize when you are truly sorry,

when you are truly sincere. Never apologize just to mitigate a tense situation. Most importantly,

don’t expect an apology from somebody who has made you feel bad because while some people

apologize too much, others never apologize, even when they should. Be sorry and sincere, but never

be unapologetic.