Apology Letter To A Friend: Tips To Write A Heartfelt One

Let go of your ego and say sorry to your bestie through a beautiful letter.

Reviewed by Amira Martin, Licensed Clinical Social Worker & Psychotherapist Amira Martin Amira MartinLicensed Clinical Social Worker & Psychotherapist facebook_iconlinkedin_iconinsta_icon
Written by , MA (English Literature), Certified Relationship Coach Shivani Chandel MA (English Literature), Certified Relationship Coach Experience: 4 years
Edited by , BSc Shatabdi Bhattacharya BSc Experience: 2.5 years

Sending an apology letter to a friend is a great way to express your sincere regrets if you let a loved one down. Honesty and straightforwardness can heal even centuries-old wounds. When you have a heavy heart and know that merely saying sorry will not be enough to convey that, apology notes are a great solution. Tell them what went wrong and explain the reasons behind your actions, as well as that you feel the deepest regret and remorse and wish to go back to the good old days. However, it can be tough for all to put their feelings across words. You may find it hard to collect your thoughts and feel puzzled over where to start. We understand, and that is why we are here to help you say your sincerest apologies and persevere. Go ahead and check out the tips to write an apology email/letter and a few samples. Scroll down.

protip_icon Quick Tip
If you’ve made a mistake and hurt your friend, it might be very difficult to reach out and make amends. You may also fall short of words while talking face to face. Hence, writing a letter is the ideal alternative that conveys how much you miss them and how much you regret your actions.

Samples For Heartfelt Apology Letter To A Friend You Hurt

Woman writing apology letter
Image: Shutterstock

Well, the relationship dynamics, situations, the mistakes committed for which you want to apologize may all vary, unquestionably. But we have made a list of examples and categorized them under some of the most common situations that you can put to use while drafting an apology letter to your friend. Get inspired:

  • How To Write An Apology Letter To A Friend You Misunderstood

1. To
[Recipient Name]

Dear [Your Friend’s Name]
I’ve been thinking a lot lately, and I realize I made a big mistake. I misunderstood you, and I’m really sorry. I can’t believe I let my own insecurities and doubts cloud my judgment, and I’m truly sorry for the hurt I’ve caused. The thought of losing you as a friend because of my stupid mistake is tearing me apart.

I’ve replayed our conversations over and over in my head, and I can see now how wrong I was. I miss the fun times we had together, and I hate that I messed things up. I know I can’t change what happened, but I hope you can forgive me. I miss our friendship more than words can express, and I’m willing to do whatever it takes to make things right again.

Please know that I’m here whenever you’re ready to talk, and I’ll be waiting with open arms and a sincere apology.

Take Care,
[Your Name]

2. To
[Recipient Name]

Dear main man of mine,
I have been sinking deep in embarrassment for a week now, and the reason behind it is quite apparent—misunderstanding you. Believe me when I say this: I was so wrong! For all the love, support, togetherness, good and bad times that we have shared since childhood, there is no excuse for me misunderstanding you at any cost. I am so so sorry, my mate. I do not want to go about giving excuses that led me to think wrongly of you because then it will not even be a genuine apology. I should have thought straight before blaming you for anything at all.

I have come to realize that you were really trying to salvage my situation. How could I not believe in you? I could go on and on and on but will barely ever find an answer to this question. But one thing is for sure; I have to clear my mind ASAP. I have been repeatedly hurt in the past, with people betraying and just leaving me.. I lost track and began to think that you’re on the path to leave me alone too.

I promise you that I shall keep my promise in check. But please forgive me and allow me to better myself. I will hold this gesture with great admiration in my heart.

With the hope of receiving your apology, I am concluding this letter.

[Your name]

  • An Apology Letter To A Friend You Hurt By Being Rude
Apology letter
Image: Shutterstock

3. To
[Recipient Name]


I hope you are doing okay. I have been reflecting a lot lately, and I realized I owe you a heartfelt apology. The way I acted the other day was totally out of line, and I feel terrible about it.

You mean a lot to me, and the thought of losing your friendship is pretty scary. I cherish the bond we have and the moments we share, and I don’t want one mistake to mess that up.

I am committed to making things right and being a better friend to you. I hope you can forgive me and give me another chance.
Take care.


4. To
[Recipient Name]

My special friend,

This is my apology letter to a very special friend. Yes, it’s you. I am writing this letter with a strong hope to receive forgiveness from you for what happened the other day. I cannot emphasize enough how rude my behavior towards you was for absolutely no fault of yours.

I have been thinking about the incident ever since it occurred, and I find no other perfect way to apologize to you other than this letter.

Please allow me to express how unimaginably important you are to me and that I can never imagine my life without you. Losing you scares me big time. As selfish as it may sound, I really want to share every good or bad moment with you, my pal, just like we have been since forever.

Also, I promise this won’t happen ever again.
Please forgive me.

Yours sincerely,

  • An Apology Letter To A Friend You Betrayed
Woman feeling sorry for betraying her friend
Image: Shutterstock

5. To

[Recipient Name]

Hey [Name],
I hope you are doing alright. I have been feeling pretty awful lately, and I just needed to get something off my chest. I messed up, big time. I betrayed your trust, and I am really sorry about it. I know I let you down, and I feel terrible about hurting you like that.

I wish I could take back what I did, but I can’t change the past. All I can do is apologize and try to make things right. I hope you can forgive me, even though I know I don’t deserve it. You are an important friend to me, and I hate that I hurt you. I will do whatever it takes to earn back your trust.
I understand if you need some time and space, but I hope we can talk about this eventually. I miss our friendship, and I don’t want to lose it because of my stupid mistake. Let me know if there is anything I can do to make things better.

Take care,

[Your Name]

6. To
[Recipient Name]

Dear companion,

I am writing this apology letter to you for hurting you last weekend. Words cannot express how deeply ashamed I am for my behavior. For some reason, I was lost those days and had almost gone astray, which led me to betray and hurt you. Now when I think of it, I cannot associate myself with that estranged soul I was when I even thought of knowingly betraying you.

I know, for me, getting your forgiveness is no less than a luxury now. What I did to you, no friend should ever do. We promised to be together through thick and thin, and I am incredibly sorry for breaking that promise and hurting you so bad.

I am not even in a position to beg you to stay, for you have every right to discard me from your life. But, I am still hoping you would give me a chance to mold myself into a better person, a better friend to you, most importantly. But my betrayal has, without that shadow of a doubt, has caused you to lose all the trust you had me before. And I barely see any light on reconciliation but I’ll still hope that someday we make amends. I am solely at fault for this unsettling situation between us. And I take full responsibility for my actions.

Please forgive me, my friend. I am desperately trying to learn from my mistakes and be a trustworthy friend to you.

[Your name]

  • Apology Letter To A Friend For Being Mean In A Fight
Upset woman writing apology letter
Image: Shutterstock

7. If I say that I blame it on my temper, I would not be entirely honest. It was clearly me; I should have behaved well. I know I need to keep my temper in check too, but before anything else, I should know the difference between right and wrong; and what I did yesterday was undeniably wrong!

Being my best friend ever, you have always stood by me without a second thought in mind, but I failed to reciprocate the same, and I am extremely sorry for it. That huge fight we had was unnecessary, and I know it now. I understand if you want to stop being my friend now, but I really want you to know I am regretful of whatever hurtful things I said to you and how I behaved with you. I might be accountable for any penance you want to impose. I deeply feel compunction and sorrow for my deeds and will work towards my repentance.

But I really must let you know here that I was not angry at you when the fight occurred. My reasons were completely unrelated to you, yet you had to bear the brunt of something you didn’t even know. This knowledge makes me faint over and over.

If you wish to grant me another chance to correct myself, it would be a blessing. I give you my word; I shall never ever ever be rude to anyone going ahead. I will train myself in such a way that I can accomplish conducting myself well. I am learning from my mistakes now, and I will continue to do so until I stand successful in it.

I hope you will forgive me this time. Please take your time and let me know your decision.

Your Friend,
[Your name]

  • Apology Letter To An Ex-Best Friend
Apology Letter To An Ex-Best Friend
Image: Shutterstock

8. To
[Recipient Name]

Dear [Name],

I wanted to take this opportunity to express my sincerest apologies for the way things ended between us. Looking back, I realize that I made some mistakes and acted in ways that were hurtful to our friendship. My insecurities and emotions drove my actions, and I deeply regret the pain I caused you. I have realized that not everything was your fault. Our friendship couldn’t survive the test of time because I was busy blaming you for everything that happened.

I wish I could turn back time and fix things up, and I wish from the bottom of my heart that we could become friends again. I will completely understand if you don’t want to. But I hope you will accept my heartfelt apology.

Your Friend,
[Your name]

Three Impactful Tips On “How To Write A Sincere Apology Letter To A Friend”

How to write a sincere apology letter to a friend
Image: Shutterstock

Still wondering why your bestie has not responded to that apology note you wrote to her last Friday? Don’t worry; we will help you find out why because while apologizing and reflecting penitence, and asking for conciliation is clearly subjective and should come from within, here are some essential things one should follow while apologizing. Check out the below points to find out:

  1. Simplicity wins the race: You must know that you are writing an apology letter which implies that you do not have to bombard it with jargon. Keep it simple and honest. Incorporating complex words, complicated sentence structures, and overly flowery language will only make you appear insincere and not genuinely sorry. Keep your letter as simple as you can.
  2. The tone: Most people put across a never-ending string of excuses before even beginning to apologize. This is not how it is done. You are here to offer a sincere apology and not the reasons that justify your actions. You can let the person know those reasons once you have established that you are sorry for hurting them and gradually shift towards subtly giving them the hint of the reasons that led you to behave the way you did. This sincere tone should be maintained throughout.
  3. Cut to the chase: Keep your primary agenda at the forefront of your letter, which is—an apology. Your friend is hurt, and in a situation like that, they are not ready to listen to what you did the previous weekend. If there’s anything that concerns the fallout, then, sure, go ahead and say it. Otherwise, stick to the point. If you are still wondering how to start an apology message/letter to a friend, begin with the three life-changing words, “I am sorry.” This will lead you to a smooth ride while writing an apology letter to a friend.
protip_icon Quick Tip
In your letter, let them know you plan to fix the relationship and you can suggest a way like talking more or telling them that you are ready to make a public apology.

Infographic: 3 Things To Keep In Mind While Writing An Apology Letter

Conflicts are common in all long-term and close friendships. It could be just one person’s fault or both people becoming hostile to each other. But it is crucial to apologize so that you do not lose valuable friends over momentary anger. Learning how to apologize can help you nurture and sustain your friendships. But when it is too difficult to do it face-to-face, you can always turn to a letter. Here are a few things to keep in mind that can help you craft that letter better.

3 things to keep in mind while writing an apology letter (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Writing a sincere and remorseful apology letter to a friend should be uncomplicated, but it may not seem so at the get-go as there are certain things to overcome before you can pen down your unbridled apology. After all, to apologize, you need to find the courage in your heart to show your vulnerability and the strength in yourself to accept your mistakes. Finding these is the first step. Once you are ready, you can draw some inspiration from the templates shared in this article to draft your letter. Remember to keep it simple and honest, avoid justifying your mistakes, put forward your sincere apology, and get down to the point without meandering or beating around the bush in your letter. If you have poured your heart out and apologized sincerely, the chances are that your friend will forgive you.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apologize for hurting my friend?

We all get into disagreements and say things out of anger and hurt. It is only after the fight is over do we realize the impact of what we have said and done. You can keep these simple tips in mind while apologizing to your friend:
• Acknowledge your actions and accept responsibility for them.
• Express your remorse openly and ask what you can do to make it up to your friend.
• Reassure your friend that you want to heal things between you both and strengthen your bond.

How do I apologize to my best friend over text?

Keep these points in mind while writing an apology text:
• Reflect on your mistakes before approaching them.
• Understand where your friend is coming from and validate their feelings.
• While you cannot take back what you said or did, you can tell them you will do your best to be better to them.

How do you end an apology letter?

You can end your apology letter with a request for their response, repeating your apology, asking for forgiveness, or a promise that you will not repeat the deed.

How can I show sincerity in my apology to my friend?

You can show sincerity in your apology by doing away with any excuse or justification for your actions and simply asking for their forgiveness, with a promise of doing better in the future.

How long should an apology letter to a friend be?

Although there is no strict rule about the length of an apology letter, you should try and keep it simple and within 500 words.

Should I send the apology letter through email or mail it to my friend?

It is convenient to send the letter through an email as it saves time and you don’t have to wait days for their response. However, you should go with the method your friend prefers.

Is it appropriate to apologize for the same thing more than once?

If you or the other person is not satisfied with your apology, and you think you were not sincere enough, it is okay to apologize for the same thing more than once to make things right.

What can I do to make sure my friend forgives me after receiving the apology letter?

After offering a sincere apology, all you can do is wait for your friend to process the situation. Give your friend time and space to come back to you.

Is it better to apologize in person instead of through a letter?

Communication in person is considered better as it leaves almost no scope for confusion or misunderstanding. However, if you are too nervous, shy, or uncomfortable, or an apology in person is not possible, a written apology is the next best thing.

How do I avoid being defensive in the apology letter to my friend?

To avoid being defensive in your apology letter, do not attempt to justify what you did. Take full responsibility for your actions and promise better behavior in the future.

Key Takeaways

  • Apology letters are a great solution to express your sincere regret if you let a loved one down.
  • Keep your primary agenda at the forefront of your letter, an apology.
  • Avoiding complicated sentence structures and overly flowery language can keep you from appearing insincere and pretentious.
apology letter to friend_illustration

Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

If you had a fight with a friend and want to make up, take a look at this video. Learn how to write an informal letter to apologize to your friend and make things right.
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Amira Martin

Amira MartinLicensed Clinical Social Worker & Psychotherapist

Amira Martin, LCSW-R, is a licensed clinical social worker with over 20 years of experience. She obtained her master’s degree from the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College in 2002 and specializes in treating children and adults. In addition to being an adjunct lecturer at the Columbia University School of Social Work, Amira is the founder of Amira...read full bio

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