What is Fauxpology? Understanding the Complexities

Nearly everyone periodically makes mistakes that have an impact on other people. Nevertheless, a sincere apology may bridge rifts, restore faith, and repair relationships. However, narcissists rarely express sincere, genuine remorse.

Narcissists usually lose faith in people because they consistently ignore their demands. Because they lack the humility to accept responsibility for their mistakes, narcissists put safeguarding their reputation and averting pain above all else, regardless of the agony they cause others.

What is Fauxpology

Fauxpology meaning is that when an apology is offered in a fauxpology, the perpetrator is not sincerely sorry for their acts. It is sometimes used by those who don’t want to apologize but must do so due to circumstances or to protect their dignity. When the words’ apparent apologies are removed, justifications or manipulation are all that’s left.

Narcissists are adept at diverting attention; thus, they frequently use phony apologies as a tactic. When someone apologizes, they usually want to take responsibility for their incorrect behavior, transfer responsibility, or make you feel guilty for being offended.

In other words,

A non-apology apologetic is a comment that makes an attempt at an apology but does not sincerely convey regret or lay blame on the parties who should be receiving it. It is also known as a backhanded apology, nonpology, or reverse apology. It is typical in public relations and politics.

Fauxpology examples

How to spot a fake apology? How do you know when an apology is not sincere? Here are the top eight examples of fake apologies:

  • I’m sorry. If you think I acted improperly, I’m sorry. If you believe I’m wrong, I apologize.
  • If I did anything wrong, I apologize. If I offended you, I’m sorry.
  • I’ve already apologized and expressed my regret a bunch of times.
  • I know I shouldn’t have done that, and I probably should have asked you first.
  • I regret your dissatisfaction. I’m sorry that problems occur.
  • I apologize, of course. I pledge never to hurt you intentionally again.
  • I suppose I should apologize. I guess I ought to apologize.

How to respond to a fauxpology


It is crucial to state your case concisely when you receive a poor apology, whether for a little mistake or using cruel words that were misinterpreted as humor. Remember that not everyone is deserving of your forgiveness.

If you’re wondering “how to respond to a non apology?” look no further. Think about the following advice:

Identify the error in their apologies

A sincere apology must involve a promise to not repeat the same error in the future, acknowledge the offender’s responsibility for their acts, and be genuine.

When you apologize, use an honest tone; if it seems forced, don’t apologize. It might be sincere if it shows regret and feels repentant, but only you can determine that.

Give them another chance to apologize

The person who needs to apologize might not have heard what you said or understood how insulting or hurtful they were to you. Some faults shouldn’t be that difficult to comprehend, but if they genuinely appear unaware of what they did incorrectly, you might want to allow them to make it right.

While it doesn’t always happen over the phone or in a single conversation, remember that you should give yourself some time to think about forgiving someone. Therefore, don’t feel pressured to resolve a disagreement right away.

You’re not obligated to forgive them

No matter how genuine or insincere someone’s apology, you are not obligated to accept it. You are not supposed to take someone’s apology for a less severe offense if they have a habit of making jokes that use offensive language. Additionally, you get to decide when to give it.

Narcissist fauxpology

A fauxpology or narcissist apologetic attempts to offer some sort of assistance to the narcissist while absolving them of all responsibility. You can avoid assuming that someone has learned from their mistakes and is capable of improving, as well as the illusion that they accept responsibility for their acts, by being aware of what a fauxpology from a narcissist looks like.

Narcissists struggle with taking accountability for their actions. The narcissist must give up the notion that they are superior to others and trouble-free to accept responsibility. Accepting responsibility might cause the narcissist to place blame, which would then be followed by humiliation. To avoid these feelings of shame, the narcissist will enter self-preservation mode and become angry. They take steps to stop the spread of information that they believe could one day be used against them.

Narcissists make up untrue excuses. The purpose of the apology is to divert your attention from the wrongdoing or the narcissist’s trail and onto something else. The fauxpology is a trick narcissists use to escape responsibility and return things to normal as soon as possible. Narcissists apologize not because they have developed empathy or guilt but because they desire to restore control over a rapidly losing situation.

Bottom line 

People who fail to apologize frequently may lack empathy, have low self-esteem, or have a psychological disorder. Some people’s sense of self-worth depends on very shaky foundations. They don’t want to take responsibility for the harm they have done because they might have to adopt a worthless and dishonorable persona. A refusal to apologize straddles the line between low self-worth and self-preservation.


What isn’t an apology?

An example of a non-apology apology is saying, “I’m sorry you feel that way,” to someone who has been offended by a statement. It suggests that the aggrieved party was unduly sensitive or overreacted as opposed to acknowledging that the stated words were disrespectful.

What is an insincere apology?

I’m sorry you feel that way would be a fake apology. If I insulted you, I apologize. Sorry, but don’t you seem overly sensitive?

How do you apologize without making excuses?

Components of the Ideal Apology:

  • Say you’re sorry. 
  • Own the mistake.
  • Describe what happened. 
  • Have a plan. 
  • Admit you were wrong. 
  • Ask for forgiveness.

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