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5 Responses to Seven Alternatives to Forced Apologies

  1. Sylvia@MaMammalia

    Thanks for these helpful suggestions and resources! I’m a firm believer in teaching empathy instead of forcing my kid to say things just to be polite. Because this isn’t a mainstream idea, playground interactions can be awkward…the other kids seem to get the difference, but I’m not so sure about the other parents.

  2. Momma Jorje

    Yeah, empty apologies are worthless. Great suggestions.

  3. Cynthia

    Excellent list.

    The one additional thing we do is to have our child make amends for his wrongdoing. He may not “feel sorry”, and that’s okay, but when we hurt someone we should always try to right our wrong. We gently assist him in brainstorming ways he can help – from a simple apology, to a hug, to a letter or shared toy – and then help him to follow through.

    Having practiced this for the past year or so, it now comes naturally to him (most of the time). When he hurts his brother, he stops, gives him a hug, and asks him if he’s okay. Sometimes he kisses the “owie” or offers him a toy. I hope this helps him to not only accept responsibility as he grows, but be willing to take steps to make the situation right again.

  4. Charise@I Thought I Knew Mama  

    This is such helpful advice, Dionna! Thank you!

  5. Tabetha Smelser  

    That is just incredible advice! I don’t have kids of my own yet but my husband and I have talked a lot about wanting to do positive parenting and this just sings to me. I love the part about taking cues from the hurt child to help your child understand how the other child is feeling, like crying. Also, I’m definitely going to check out those two books that you suggested!