Do I reach out to someone I've hurt but doesn't want contact from me?
May 29, 2014 1:55 PM Subscribe
Would it be upsetting to have someone who wronged you--really, really, really wronged you--to contact you out of the blue to apologize? Over a decade ago I was a stupid, histrionic, selfish, needy and endless pit of WANT and ME-ME-ME kind of a person. I alienated everyone I knew and ended up moving away from my hometown. It took me a long time but I grew up and I realize how terrible I was then. Now I want to apologize to some people I wronged. Is it out of line for me to send a letter when I was asked to make no further contact over a decade ago? I don't deserve or desire a reconciliation but I do want to apologize and thank them for putting up with me--instead of just being a destructive person, I'm sure I would have ended up a dead person had it not been for them.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (56 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
I was a despicable teenager towards my foster parents. When I came of age, they and my foster siblings sent me a letter (I was at college) stating that while they loved and cared for me and always will, they'd rather not have any further contact with me.
I obliged, and in the years since I've straightened out. I'm ashamed of the drama and pain I caused; while I'm not looking for absolution or to reconcile, I do want to apologize and thank them for taking care of me over those turbulent years. Can I reach out since it's been so long? I really don't think it's in our interests (either party) to meet or anything; I'm thousands of miles away anyhow. I just want to send a letter and say: I'm so sorry and thank you for being good to me--I hope my crapping all over your goodness didn't keep you from extending that same kindness to others. Again, I'm so sorry.
Is this wrong to do?
Am I just bringing up bad memories for my benefit? Have you ever received an apology you didn't ask for? I'm conflicted because I feel that apologizing is the right thing to do but I don't want to be intrusive, which I believe any contact from me would be. However, if part of my growing up and paying for my actions is the fact that I don't get to apologize, I'm willing to accept that too. I'd appreciate any insight anyone has to offer.
Thank you for your thoughts.
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