Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Happy Hump Day!
I'll be so glad when this cold finally leaves my body. Being sick is the worst!
I think my body shut down after all the stress of my car being broken into and losing my cell phone last week. Usually I'm able to take stress in stride - especially since working out is my usual form of relief. While finding broken glass in my passenger side seat was disturbing, and taking a day to replace the glass was annoying, I think I was most annoyed by my cell phone situation.
But not because I was without a phone. I had my Blackberry as a backup, so that wasn't it. It wasn't that I was afraid someone was calling Mexico or Jamaica on my phone and I'd have to pay for the charges made before I reported it missing. It wasn't even that I had to buy a new phone.
I was angry because my coworker told me he found my phone, admitted that he didn't really look for it when I asked....and then didn't apologize for it - RIGHT AWAY.
I was trying to figure out why I was so mad at him...and that was my conclusion. He didn't seem remorseful. He didn't think that lying to me about looking for my phone was a big deal. He didn't care that I stressed over it, called to cancel my old phone and went out and purchased a new phone. He shrugged it off like, "Oh well, just return the new one." THAT is what angered and stressed me most.
While some people think I may be overreacting, an article that my former-future-baby-daddy sent me yesterday shows that perhaps I wasn't. Or maybe I was overreacting because I'm a woman.
The article is titled "I'm Very, Very, Very Sorry....Really?" and it states that women apologize way more than men do...whether they've done something "really" wrong or not. Men, it turns out, apologize less because most times they feel they've done nothing wrong or offensive - and other times it's simply pride/ego.
This was probably the case with my coworker. He probably felt it was my fault that I left my phone in his car, and that by actually searching for it for me, he was doing ME a favor. He probably thought I was careless for losing it in his car in the first place, and that I should be grateful that he bothered to look one more time for me. Fine. He's entitled.
But I wasn't angry that he found it after I bought a new one. I was angry that he lied to me about looking for it. He assured me for two days that he turned his car upside down, looking in every corner, and that it simply wasn't there....when he never looked at all. I wasn't upset that it took him three days to look, I was upset that he told me he did when he didn't.
But if I don't communicate that to him, it's possible he wouldn't know that I was hurt by the lie, not the phone. It's possible...even though I give him credit for being more enlightened than that.
The article also says that most men apologize in order to "keep the peace" or "end the drama." Most men have no idea what they're even apologizing for, they just know that their significant other is upset with them, and that they caused it...so if they want some that night, they'd better say they're sorry and figure out what they're sorry for later.
Fast forward to the end of the work day...
My coworker could tell I was annoyed with him all day. I hadn't told him why, but he could tell. I wasn't my normal jokey-joke self with him. I didn't offer to help him with anything like I normally do. Basically, he was on my sh*t list...and he could feel it.
So what did he do? He apologized.
He said he was sorry about "the whole phone thing" and that I was inconvenienced. Not that he caused it, not that it was his fault, and not even that he lied about looking for the phone. He was simply...sorry. But you know what? At that moment, when he said he was sorry, I felt instantly better.
Until he said, "but....I looked."
"I'm sorry" should never be followed with "but." NEVER. Either you mean it or you don't.
I've since returned the new phone that I bought and put the whole incident behind me. I'm not walking around stank giving him the gas face. I'm back to my lovable self :-)
All this tells me is it's possible I'm a bit sensitive. It's possible he's a bit insensitive. It's possible he really felt he did nothing wrong. And it's possible all of it was just no big deal.
But in the end, "I'm sorry" went a long way. And sometimes, that's all we need to feel better.