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Wellness > Sex + Relationships

Learn Your Apology Language: It’ll Be Helpful, I Promise

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at RW chapter.

I’m assuming most of us have heard of love languages by now, but if not, I’ll give you a quick overview. 


There are five love languages, and yours correlates with how you give and receive love. An author named Gary Chapman wrote a book called The Five Love Languages in 1992, which detailed each of the five categories: physical touch, words of affirmation, quality time, acts of service and receiving gifts (I’m a big words of affirmation girl myself). This book became wildly popular and helped many people communicate with their partners in a successful way about what they need to feel loved in a relationship. However, I just learned that Chapman also wrote a book about the five apology languages as well, with another author, Jennifer Thomas. 


Learning what your apology language is (aka how you show or tell someone that you’re sorry when you mess up) is really important to maintain successful relationships, whether they be romantic or platonic. Genuinely apologizing for your mistakes is essential to the growth of your relationships with anyone. So, knowing how to do that in the best way possible for that person is important. 


Here are the five apology languages that Chapman and Thomas discuss in their book:


1. Expressing Regret

      ex. “I am embarrassed about how I treated you”


2. Accepting Responsibility 

     ex. “I know that it was wrong to do that”


3. Genuine Repent 

     ex. “I can’t even imagine how you feel right now, I will never do that again, I am so sorry”


4. Making Restitution 

      ex. “I am really sorry, I’ll make it up to you by _____”


5. Requesting Forgiveness 

      ex. “Can you ever forgive me?”


Learning what your apology language is equally as important as learning what your love language is in my opinion because it is imperative that you know how to effectively communicate not only the good feelings, but the not so good ones, too. I took the quiz to see what mine is, and it honestly makes a lot of sense. According to the quiz, my apology language is Expressing Regret, which seems right on the money for me; usually when someone screws me over, I don’t really like excuses or talks about how they’ll be better in the future, not that that isn’t important too, but I just prefer to know that person is truly sorry and regretful. 


Once you find out what your apology language is, encourage your partner, friends, and family to take the quiz, too. Knowing how the people that are important to you prefer to receive an apology will save yourself a whole lot of stress in the long run. Think about it, if you do something wrong and hurt someone you care about, and then try to apologize in a way that they won’t respond positively to, you’re pretty much just wasting your breath at that point. So, put in the effort to learn about how your inner circle communicates. While you’re at it, if you haven’t yet, take the Love Languages quiz, too; it can’t hurt to know both sides, right? 


It seems like one of those annoying things that everyone just tells you, but communication is KEY when it comes to a successful relationship with anyone: family, boy/girlfriend, friends etc. You gotta gotta gotta know how to communicate your feelings in an effective way in order to make any realtionship work. So, start here, take the quizzes and learn a little bit about yourself. 

Hi, I'm Jessie, the Campus Coordinator and Founder of Her Campus at Roger Williams University! I am a senior majoring in Communication and Media Studies and minoring in Marketing and Graphic Design. When not in school, I love to work out, shop, listen to music and spend time with my friends!