My wife and I have been married for a long time and are in a loving relationship.
Unfortunately I have memory issues (ADHD, dyspraxia and similar co-morbid conditions) as does she from both similar and different conditions (things like chronic fatigue, but also CPTSD which causes memory blanks).
Twice recently I've upset her very badly.
Once when she was trying to help me wake up for work, and I accused her of something. By her account I was awake, but she was so shocked by what I said she blanked the memory - possibly as a unconscious coping strategy developed from her CPTSD. I have no memory of that event, but I trust her recall. She was left with an overwhelming feeling of hurt from what I said without knowing what was said. She finds inability to remember intensely distressing.
Once this morning, again when she was attempting to help me wake up. I remember something happening and some careless words on my behalf and her anger. I'm going to roll the dice and see how much she remembers when I wake her up soon for her morning medicine.
For context neither or us get a healthy amount or quality of sleep, which we're both working on. We both feel guilty about not helping each other more.
I feel like I should apologize, however in the past when I've apologized without knowing what or why, it's made things worse because of the perceived insincerity. She has experienced a lot of trauma from insincere people manipulating her and can't shake that impression in these scenarios.
For my part, whether I was asleep or awake, or I do or don't remember, etc. I want to take responsibility, improve and change in a way that would prevent this from happening, however in the past I've been ineffectual in this regard.
So how can I apologize sincerely when I am not sure what was done wrong? How can I express that I am trying to improve when I can't prove it with my actions?