Call me analytical if you will but things in any relationship do not simply occur. They happen out of resentment and unmet needs. Things start out one way and somehow a conflict occurs. Then the apology. That is where the problem lies. How many people have a clue about what they are apologizing for? “I am sorry for saying what I said”. Thus is such a derailing of the “why” behind what was said. Obviously to anyone who has a modicum of insight, something from the past triggered an intense over the T-O-P comment and there, out in the open in all its ugly attire with a stench that could fill Yankee Stadium never to be able to be erased or withdrawn again is “The Comment”. Cannot take it back or sweep it under any Persian rug, its out there as indellible as any tatoo, forever inked into the flesh of that relationship. Then there is the subsequent scrambling to blame or displace ownership for the strench onto the other person who is now bestowed the title as “provocateur” minus the agent since this is not the KGB. Alternatively , it might as well be because one must be quite the secret agent to uncover the real reason for the comment.
And so it goes. Do we need a 12 Step program for people to take responsibility for what they say out of some archived parental disappointment? It would appear so.