We don't like to admit it, but parents make mistakes all the time. Sometimes the mistake you make involves your child. Apologizing to your child when you make a mistake doesn't make you weak. It models appropriate behavior and teaches your child how to behave when he's in the wrong. Whether you've accidentally bumped into your child when walking by or completely lost your temper, an apology will help make things right.
Position yourself at the same level as your child. Get down on your knees or lift her up. You want to be eye-to-eye for an apology.
Use the words "I'm sorry." Complex language might go over your child's head, and it's important for him to understand what you're saying.
Admit that you were wrong. Being specific in telling your child what you did will help her understand why you are apologizing. For example, you might say, "I shouldn't have yelled at you," or "It was wrong to eat your cookie without asking."
Validate your child's feelings. He may be hurt or sad because of your actions. Let him know that you recognize this and that it's OK to have these feelings.
Comfort your child if she needs it. Some children can easily shake off bad experiences, but others need a little more help. Let your child know that you love her with some cuddles or extra attention.