Wednesday, June 22, 2005 People | How to say you're sorry: A refresher course

"Just say you're sorry. Never say you're sorry 'if.' Say you're sorry.

'I'm sorry I was rude' is good.

'I'm sorry if I was rude' is not. It weasels. It implies that maybe you weren't rude. It implies that the person being apologized to has a twisted little worldview if they think 'Oh, shut up, frog-lips' is rude.

An apology should give the sense that you actually feel some form of regret. 'Sorry if' is a conditional apology. Conditional apologies make things worse, not better."