Although it’s sometimes way more practical to apologize face to face, times will sometimes come when writing a reconciliation letter is the best option, but writing remains nontheless a delicate business, it requires a few reflexes and precautions, you won’t be present when the letter is read, and you wish to avoid any misunderstanding, so here are our guidelines for writing a letter of reconciliation!
How to write a reconciliation letter : Guidelines for writing a letter of reconciliation
Where to begin when writing a reconciliation letter?
The basis of writing a reconciliation letter is admitting your wrongs at the beginning of the letter : showing that you’re aware of having hurt the other’s feelings and taking your share of responsibility. You then ideally offer a solution to repair what was damaged in your relationship. You want to be sure your reconciliation letter has the wanted effect? Then try to be as clear and sincere as possible when writing it. It’s a good idea to specify, at the beginning of your letter, that it’s an apology and reconciliation letter. That way your partner will be in the best disposition before reading the rest of it. Clarity is paramount in writing, I can’t say it enough!
So the first step is admitting your mistakes. Explain why you want to apologize as well as your motivations for seeking reconciliation. Be precise and factual. And most importantly speak with an open heart. Admit to having hurt your partner, and explain, without hatred nor grudge, how he/she has hurt you. But don’t simply apologize for your misdeeds, explain them in further detail. Develop what you have done, and the reason for behaving thus, it will make the situation clearer : don’t justify yourself, explain simply. To make things clear between you. Then specify that it was never your intent to hurt him/her.
Break the formal codes of an apology letter
You are not writing a simple apology letter. No, the goal of your letter is to bring you both back together. So express your gratitude! Maybe it seems out of context to you, but no, it’s never trivial in a reconciliation letter! You can give her/him credit in your letter for all the good things that happened to you thanks to her/him in the past. It will show you love he/she for what he/she is as well as good faith to get back together.
Offer a solution that will prevent the situation from arising again : simply saying you’re sorry won’t cut it. Coming up with a way of difusing possible conflicts in the future will give strength to your apologies, and will show your will of making your relationship better by seriously committing to it. Express you desire of having better interactions in the future : because this is a reconciliation letter, not one of mere apology.
Concentrate on substance as well as form
Be sincere and authentic. Cheating is easy when writing, but sooner or later, you would regret it and have to accept the consequences of what you have written, so :
- Avoid clichés at all cost, as well as ripped off sentences that have already been seen way too many times!
- Don’t promise you’re going to change if you’re not 200% sure you can keep it. Really. Otherwise you’ll lose all credibility in the future.
- Add personality to your letter! Don’t be content with copy/pasting a letter found on the internet.
Watch out for your language, your tone, your spelling. A reconciliation letter requires even more care than an apology one, which already requires a lot! Feel free to write several drafts, to read it and reread it. And to start over several times in order to avoid making things worse. And know how to take a step back! Because some words, some phrases can, consciously or not, provoke the situation to escalate. Spoken words may fade away but what’s written remains… Constant vigilance!
Keep a humble tone, don’t be insolent nor obsequious nor overly formal. Don’t interpret your partner’s every word or attitude. And don’t formulate a list of requirements. Don’t seek at all cost to take control of the situation. You and your partner are both equal. Because a true reconciliation is a two way street!