I’m sorry

How old should a child be when they learn, “I’m sorry”?  I’ve told Levi sorry when I’ve made mistakes or blamed him for something he didn’t do or didn’t mean to do.  I’ve tried to tell him whenever it was appropriate, whenever I was sorry.  Levi is now 2 years and almost 9 months old… 33 months, almost 3 years.  Shouldn’t now be a good time for him to learn to say, “I’m sorry.”

Well, it better be.  He has a bowling ball for a head, or rather it’s that hard.  He tripped and fell today, and while I was consoling him on my lap, he whacked his head back and smacked my nose.  This was the hardest he’s ever smacked it before.  Instantly I cried, it hurt that bad.

I made him stay in his room until he said he’s sorry. He came out every so often, which we allow, but wouldn’t apologize, so I sent him back.  By the third time, we had a short (as in low to the ground) eye-to-eye chat and he mostly said sorry.  By mostly, I mean he said it and had some eye contact.

Is this the right time?  It seemed effective 2 days ago.  He’s got to learn, sooner rather than later, how his actions affect others.  So, now seems like a good time to me.