Everyone should apologize when they hurt someone. The Asperger’s Disorder child is sure to hurt the feelings of more people than the average person over his lifetime. One of the best relationship tools you can give him is the skill of making a good apology. A well thought out and sincere apology can go a very long way in repairing a relationship. Your child will be able to find more tolerance and forgiveness for his repeated social offenses if he readily makes apologies.
A good start is to simply help your child to say he is sorry. The more he learns about empathy the easier it will be for him to add more to his apology. Expect this to be a long-term project that you will work on throughout his childhood and adolescence.
A meaningful apology includes the following elements:
• You are sorry: “I am sorry, Grandma.”
• You admit you did something wrong: “I should not have said I hate you.”
• You explain what you did: “I just got so mad that I forgot to control my words.”
• You understand that they were hurt: “I know I hurt your feelings.”
• You understand how they feel: “I know you probably feel mad at me.”
• You did not intend to hurt them: “I did not want to hurt your feelings.”
• You want to fix the hurt: “Can I do something to stop your hurt feelings?”
• You want to keep the relationship: “I love you and appreciate all you do for me.”
• You want to be forgiven: “I hope you can forgive me.”