Understanding and forgiveness are two way streets. Unless you’re a jerk.

I said it before, and I stand by it: the most important question on OKCupid is 

Would you rather date someone who almost never made a mistake but
doesn’t admit their flaws, or someone who often messes up but takes full
responsibility for their mistakes?

There is only one correct answer to this question.

Because we all fuck up. Fairly regularly. We may have had the facts wrong at the time. We may have misunderstood something. We might have had emotional baggage getting in the way. Hell, we might have simply misremembered something – our memory is pretty fallible and easy to outright manipulate (yes, even yours, yes, even if you’re aware someone’s going to try).

Sometimes the best you can do is to acknowledge, to the best of your ability, what was going through your head, what led you to the actions and decisions at the time, and then apologize.

This quality doesn’t make you better than someone else. It’s not about the quantity or quality of your reasons.

Bonus protip: If someone calls your reasons for a behavior an “excuse” while you’re still taking full responsibility for your behavior, that both says something awful about them and their basic understanding of English.

What does matter (aside from both you and they trying to improve yourselves, but that’s a bloody given by this point) is that you extend that same understanding to other people and their reasons for their behavior. Particularly the behavior that made your life more difficult.

Let’s sum up.

Do a bad thing, explain why you did the bad thing, take responsibility, and try to improve?  Good, welcome to being a flawed human being.

Someone else then does a bad thing, explains why they did the bad thing, takes responsibility, and tries to improve … and you are mean to them?

Then you’re the awful one.