My wife and I came up with five solid fight rules that we put into practice within our marriage. I wanted to share them with you for you to agree with, disagree with, or maybe even put into practice.
Here is the second couple’s fight rule that we have established in our home.
Couple’s Fight Rule #2: Can’t Use a “Sorry, But…”
No, this rule has nothing to do with your spouse’s derrière. It actually has to do with insufficient apologies that can often be rampant in someone’s marriage. I used to apologize in this manner very often.
Here’s what it sounded like:
“I admit that I hurt your feelings by what I said. I am sorry, but I never would have said those words had you not have said those things to be yesterday. “
Do you understand what a “sorry but” is now?
It’s an apology intended to appease someone while actually blaming them for your actions.
One day, when I used a “sorry but,” Amanda stopped me and said “Why don’t you just take your apology back if you are going to justify it? You’re really not sorry because you just blamed me for what you said.”
She couldn’t have been more right.
That’s why we came up with this rule. If we are going to apologize to each other, we are sorry, period. No one’s actions or words can cause us to say something wrong. No amount of sleepless nights or long days gives us the right to mistreat one another. No amount of prior hurts gives us a pass to hurt back.
If I did something wrong, I need to acknowledge my responsibility regardless of the circumstances.
So watch yourself this week. See how many times you apologize with a “sorry but.”
Travis Agnew serves as the Lead Pastor of Rocky Creek Church in Greenville, SC. His most recent book is Just (About) Married.