“Sorry” is such an omnipresent word in my vocabulary and not just since I  first traveled to Canada (heyo stereotypes). I use it in abundance, daily, in my head while speaking to myself but also, mostly at work.

“I’m sorry I’m interrupting you.”
“Sorry to be bothering you.”
“I’m sorry for my stupid question but can you answer it anyway?”

The thing is, my questions usually aren’t even stupid, I don’t think so. It’s simply me not being paired up with another engineer but instead sharing an office with a secretary and me having to always actively seek someone out for help.

There are so many more variations of sorry, the three lines above are just the tip of the iceberg.  It’s gotten bad enough that I feel like I’m apologising for my existence lately and it needs to stop. In the beginning it felt like it was the polite thing to say but I’m not so sure anymore. Prefacing everything with “sorry” isn’t polite but worrisome. And it seems to be an inherently female thing to do. Maybe I’m wrong but my friend Sheryl wrote a similar post not too long ago. (I had already started writing this one before I came across hers again.)

I’ve read almost exclusively Maria Hill/Natasha Romanoff fanfiction over the summer because that’s what I do when I’m feeling shitty but that’s a different topic. Why I’m mentioning this, sometimes Pepper Potts is a character in those stories, especially those set after Captain America: The Winter Soldier because Maria works for Stark Industries. (This is a very long winded explanation and I swear I’m getting there, stay with me, non-MCU followers.) Pepper, CEO and all around badass businesswoman is described as impeccable and über-competent and most importantly, she doesn’t say sorry. Not when she is running a little bit late for a meeting or anything else because she is freaking Pepper Potts. I find that delightful.

I don’t think male executives even think about this, I don’t see my male colleagues preface everything with “sorry” so why should I? Maybe it’s not so much a female-problem but a me-problem, who knows. Either way, I’m working on it. I’m trying to think before every “sorry” if it’s really necessary. Because most of them aren’t.

I’m not saying that I’ll be banning “sorry” from my vocabulary completely but it should play a lesser role in it. After all, striving to be a little bit more like Pepper Potts can’t be a bad thing, can it?


I could have prefaced this post also with sorry for having been away so long. It seems I had nothing to say over the summer. Not really. I still don’t. Not really.

My head is running an infinite iteration loop of the same stuff. At least it used to. Now, it’s not running anything. I’m making it sound worse than it is but that’s what’s been going on here. Or not going on. I leave you with this song that’s currently stuck in my head.

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  • sheryl

    It’s nice to read someone else’s take on their constant apologizing. I, too, would like to stop apologizing less. Hopefully it works out for the both of us!