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Ani Vrabel – Huffington Post – Friday, 04 April 2014 (originally published 31 Mar)
Plenty of undesirable words have worked their way into my vocabulary. “Like” certainly slips out more than I care to admit, I’m quite sure I’ve obnoxiously said things along the lines of “BRB” out loud and I routinely use curse words as nouns, verbs and adjectives (sometimes all in the same sentence). But over the years, no word has become such a stubborn but undesirable addition to my lexicon as “sorry.”
I’m certainly not alone in the habit. Report after report show that women overuse “sorry,” and my own ad hoc research confirmed this. For a couple of weeks, I took notes on when people told me they were sorry. Women offered apologies all the time, and hardly ever for reasons that merited one: They were washing a dish in the office sink while I waited to fill my water bottle; their food was in a microwave I’d tried to use; they nearly bumped into me walking out of a room I was trying to walk into. Men, on the other hand, were apt to say things like, “Sink’s all yours!” And, “Let me get that out of your way.” And, “Excuse me, go ahead.” None of these things are any less polite than a submissive “sorry.”
I decided it was time to cut it out: no more frivolous use of “sorry” for me. I could be a polite and effective communicator without apologizing for things I had every right to be doing . . .