There are few words more powerful to hear when you have been wronged, or to express when you yourself have done something regrettable. But have you done something wrong? Are you sorry? If you stop to think about it, a lot of time the answer is “no.”
Women in particular tend to over-apologize, whether in an effort to be nice or in order to be liked, or even worse, to make amends for a mistake that’s only perceived. Women apologize a lot. We give off this guilty vibe, like, “I’m sorry for taking up space in the world,” or “I’m sorry for having a vagina,” or more accurately, “I’m sorry for being me.”
Well, screw that.
Here are a few things we need to stop apologizing for. Immediately.
1. Being a Bitch
This is not the same as being an asshole. An asshole operates solely from ego, uses others, and often feels threatened by anyone with confidence. Being a bitch is all about confidence and power. Surrounding yourself with other confident bitches is exactly how bitches get stuff done. Being direct and commanding respect from everyone you encounter is the boss bitch way. You’re no doormat. If someone calls you a bitch, don’t apologize—thank them.
2. Taking Care of Yourself
Sometimes all we need is five freaking minutes of me-time behind a locked bathroom door. Sometimes we need a whole weekend on a distant island where cell phones don’t exist. That’s cool. Take it. Take the time to recharge your batteries so you have energy to give everyone else.
3. Offending People
It must be exhausting to be offended by everything all the time. It’s even more exhausting to try to avoid offending the people who manufacture outrage for fun. Voice your opinion without apology. You are not responsible for how others interpret your words, actions or hand gestures. Get the fuck over it, pearl clutchers.
4. Liking What You Like
So you’re addicted to sardines and never miss an episode of Alaskan Bush People, or you blast Nickelback and own seven pairs of Crocs, which you wear with striped toe socks. Don’t be sorry. Let it fly, freak.
5. What You Feed Your Babies
Breast or formula, chicken nuggets or kale smoothies—is your child fed? Good job, Mom. The end.
6. Your House, Your Hair, Your Clothes…
My house always looks like it was ransacked by wolverines. Come to think of it, so does my hair. And yes, I’ve worn these yoga pants for three straight days. Who cares? My real friends don’t.
7. Saying No
“No” is a complete sentence.
8. Having Feelings
Expressing emotions, even if it makes others uncomfortable, is healthy and necessary. You are (probably) not a robot. It’s OK to feel things; it’s what makes us human. And yes, crying in the frozen food aisle when they are out of butter pecan ice cream is totally normal.
9. Having Non-Parenting Related Interests
Somebody call CPS! There’s a mom over there who stopped looking at her little cherub for 10 minutes to play Candy Crush! If anyone claims to be fully engaged with their offspring 24/7, they are a lying liar. Kids can be mind-numbingly boring. It’s OK to have hobbies and interests that have nothing to do with your child.
10. Sending Food Back in a Restaurant
Does your $9 bisque taste like tepid sewage? Why the hell are you still eating it?
11. Unfriending or Blocking a Nutjob on Facebook
The duck-faced selfies, the incoherent rants, and sharing that article on Donald Trump’s many virtues made your decision for you. Bye, Trollicia!
12. Not Having a Thigh Gap
Anyone who cares about this bullshit has a serious gap between their ears. The only thigh gap I notice is when Popeye’s gets my chicken order wrong.
13. Asking for More
Whether we’re talking salary, tortilla chips or orgasms, you deserve it.
14. Telling the Truth
Tom Cruise can’t handle it, but it might just set you free.
15. Getting Divorced
Your mother will get over it. Your children will come to understand you are making sure everyone is happier and healthier—especially you.
16. Having Tattoos
Your body, your choice. Go on and get that full-back tat of Judge Judy. Only she can judge you. No ragrets!
17. What Turns You On
What you like between the sheets (or on the floor, in the shower, or on the hood of your neighbor’s new Buick) may feel totally wrong for someone else, and that’s OK. Whatever and whoever gets you there is the right way for you. Tell your neighbor those scratches will buff right out.
18. Being a SAHM/Being a Working Mom
Why is this still a thing? Both groups are constantly being judged, and it needs to stop.
19. Treating Yourself
Every once in a while, a little indulgence is called for. Clothes, fragrances, mimosas, fine leather goods, treat yourself.
20. “Bothering” the Pediatrician
You are your child’s only advocate. Answering questions about your baby’s well-being is your doctor’s job, so if they seem annoyed, find a new doctor.
21. Having a Past
We all have one. The things you’ve gone through have made you into the badass mofo you are today, so be grateful for the lessons learned and go on with your bad self.
22. Changing Your Mind
Yes, you’re wearing the white dress and there are 25 pounds of jumbo shrimp marinating in a caterer’s van, or maybe you just really wanted the bacon cheeseburger instead of the spinach salad you ordered. So what? Go with your gut. Speak up. Don’t do something you’ll regret later just to save face now.
23. Calling Someone Out
Confrontation is never pleasant, but neither is suffering in silence. Stand up for yourself, your child(ren) and your friends. Stick to the facts and remain calm, and disengage if the conversation starts to go south. Cursing someone out is fun, but ineffective—usually.
24. Your Beliefs
There is no need to debate or defend your devotion to religion, atheism, veganism, bacon cheeseburgers, the NY Jets, or Bigfoot. You do you.
25. Shit You Are Not Sorry For
The hashtag #SorryNotSorry sure is cute, but why even include the first sorry? Don’t apologize for things you aren’t sorry for, and more importantly, things you know you will continue to do without remorse. As the great writer Paulo Coelho says, “A mistake, repeated more than once, is a decision.”
Got it? Own it!