Women say 'sorry' more often than men according to research

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We probably all thought this already, because it sure seems that way, but now there's statistical proof: women apologise more often than men. 

According to a survey of 1,004 British adults by SerenataFlowers (the UK's leading online florist), the average Brit says "sorry" up to nine times per day. The apologies aren't even between genders though - men will apologise on average eight times a day, while women tend to do it around ten. 

That means women are 25% more likely to say "sorry" than men. 

Maja Jovanovic, Ph.D., sociology professor at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada explained why she thinks women believe they should apologise more than our male counterparts:

"If men deem an infraction egregious enough, they apologise. The problem is they find very few infractions deserving of an apology, and women are apologising for just about everything."

In another study by Chicago Booth's Shereen Chaundry and Carnegie Mellon’s George Loewenstein looked at how thanking, apologising, bragging and blaming are interpreted when it comes to competence and warmth. 

The study participants played an online math game against another participant, where them winning or losing impacted their earnings. One game was altered to be easier though, resulting in a higher score. The pairs of participants then chatted to each other after the game in order for their language use to be studied. 

It was found that 70% of the discussions involved thanking but only 15% included bragging. For the player that lost they tended to express more gratitude to make up for their lack of competence. This could explain why women apologize so much - they feel a pressure to appear warmer and will do so even if it means making themselves look less competent.

"Apologizing may include a cost to one’s competence, but apologizing makes you look warmer. So apologizing may have more benefit for women than men—but not apologizing may have more cost. The opposite is true for men," said Chaundry. 

We don't think there's anything wrong with over-apologising though - it just shows you're sympathetic to other people really. Keep doing you.