Remorse .. Have you ever regretted saying something to someone? especially if he/she has been a person whom one loves and has love reciprocated? Have you ever wondered why you do things...

Remorse ..

Have you ever regretted saying something to someone? especially if he/she has been a person whom one loves and has love reciprocated?

Have you ever wondered why you do things that do not make sense ?

Please express your ideas about regret and remorse.

Expert Answers
mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

When I was one-and-twenty

I heard a wise man say,

"Give crowns and pounds and guineas

But not your heart away;

Give pearls away and rubies

But keep your fancy free."

When I was one-and-twenty

No use to talk to me.


When I was one-and-twenty

Iheard him say again,

"The heart out of the bosom

Was never given in vain;

"Tis paid with sighs a plenty

And sold for endless rue."

And I am two-and-twenty,

And oh, 'tis true, 'tis true.

                          A. E. Housman

Does Housman express rue and remorse for us all?  Indeed! Youth is often the age in which we act rashly and speak without enough forethought because we have not had misfortune strike us yet.  After we have "paid with sighs a plenty," then we consider our words before we sling them into the hearts of others. 

But, friendships and love relationships are like valuable vases.  Once broken, no glue, no mending can prevent our knowing about the break.  We cannot go back; we cannot not know.  So, we must accept the sad consequences of being "two-and-twenty" and strive to live a wiser existence in the future.  "'Tis true, 'tis true."

anthonda49 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Regret is the result of remorse. I had a friend who was behaving very badly. I had ridden with her in her car to a restaurant and found myself not liking what she was doing. I had no way home, so I called my parents to pick me up. She never spoke to me again although we had been best friends for several years. I married and moved away. My friend had surgery to repair an aneurysm in her brain, and she went into a coma. A year and a half later, she died in a nursing home with the two of us still not on a friendly terms. I so regret that this happened. I felt remorse at resorting to my parents picking me up when she put me in a bad situation. I should have called a friend to get me instead. To this day, I regret not trying harder to mend our relationship, but I felt wounded by her betrayal, and she felt wounded at mine. Why do we do these things? We are only human and sometimes don't foresee the results of our actions when feelings are at stake. It is best to forgive and forget, but sometimes our emotions get the better of us.

clairewait eNotes educator| Certified Educator

No matter how hard I try to pretend like I do not care about what others think of me, I admit it bothers me immensely when I say something, usually something stupid or silly, and it is taken in the wrong way, or is said at the wrong place/time, or to the wrong person.

I do it all the time.

I always regret it.  Sadly, there are one or two moments in my life that to this day (many years later) I still blush when I re-create the moment of idiocy in my head.  I really wish I could have the sentiments of post #6.  For me, it would eliminate a lot of undo stress and worry.  I also think it would allow me to be more comfortable in new situations.  I am frequently worried about my first impressions on people, as I so often create the wrong one.

Lori Steinbach eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I, too, am unsure about what you'd like from us.  If you want to know if any of us have said things we regret and feel remorse, I'm comfortable saying we probably all have.  I have often said things I regret either immediately or later, upon reflection.  Often it's my tone of voice and/or facial expression which I regret, as well.  Most of the time, even when it's hugely embarrassing or uncomfortable, I find a way to try to make things right--or at least apologize for getting it wrong.  Remorse is different from guilt in that I want to make it right, not just feel bad about it.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In my opinion, remorse and regret are wasted emotions.  Once you have done something, there is very little point in continuing to feel remorse or regret.

I'm not saying you shouldn't feel bad.  I'm saying that you should apologize for what you did, or try to fix it, but you should not waste time looking back.  Instead, you should look forward, thinking about what you *will* do next time rather than regretting what you already did.

lrwilliams eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Not real sure what you are looking for here. I would say though that if you have said something to someone and now regret it and are remorseful you should find the person and apologize. Letting things go like that can be very harmful to a relationship or friendship, the sooner you address it the better it is.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Sometimes we say things without really thinking.  I have often said something, then immedidately regretted it.  This has unfortunately happened when I was teaching.  Things don't always come out the right way.  You say something trying to be supportive, but it sounds mean.

dalcinaye | Student

I would say that there is an important place for remorse and regret.  When we regret our actions, the memory of the incident tends to be very poignant and not soon forgotten.  It is the very remorse for the incident that may keep us from repeating the same mistake.  On the other hand, it is not healthy to dwell on the remorse for our actions.  It is healthier to make a plan in order to make right the situation and avoid the same missteps in the future.