What is the word for when someone does something extra to make up for breaking a promise

Like you tell someone you will be at their house at noon and need to leave at 5 and you don't get there till 1 so you stay till 7

Or you promise your partner you will be with them for a date night at a specific time and you blow them off for your friends so you make a new date night with your partner and the next date night you dress up extra fancy and get the check and tell them you love them and you are sorry and ask them what else they need to make up for the mistake you made

Reconciliation doesn't sound right to me Make amends doesn't sound right

I remember using a different word for this but I can't figure out what it was and the thesaurus isn't helping me

  • 1
    'Atone' means 'make up for a fault', but it's very formal / religious (or tongue-in-cheek). Commented Apr 9, 2021 at 15:30
  • 2
    'Make amends' is used in reasonably informal situations. OxfordLanguages gives the example '"Try to make amends for the rude way you spoke to Lucy"'. Commented Apr 9, 2021 at 15:35

1 Answer 1


The verb phrase make it up to someone is used here:

to do something helpful or good for (someone one has hurt or treated wrongly)

He'd neglected his children and wanted to make it up to them by spending more time with them.


  • How do I finish this sentence?: "when you screw something up you don't make _____ and just say oops and refuse to talk about it and that leaves me with a lot of unresolved upset"
    – cTurtle98
    Commented Apr 9, 2021 at 16:25
  • @cTurtle98 I would change it a little and say “you don’t try to make it up to me”.
    – Laurel
    Commented Apr 9, 2021 at 16:29
  • @cTurtle98 "amends" seems very appropriate for the blank in your sentence.
    – cigien
    Commented Apr 9, 2021 at 17:38

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