Question about taking responsibility


I had this exchange with my husband this weekend, and would like some other perspectives. It was a minor thing, but after the fact, I have been thinking about how I could have approached it differently. Because it’s such a minor thing, it should be easy to take responsibility for it, and that makes me wonder about how I’d react to big things. It was a minor blip in the day, and an exchange that I would normally have totally forgotten, but because I’m doing TDLs now, this has caused me a lot of reflection.

Here’s the situation.
Husband was looking at the car with an odd expression. I said “what’s up”. He said something approximating….I’m just looking at the dings in the door from where you’ve hit my car while loading the dogs. I said something like they can’t be from that since because I load them while holding the doors so that I don’t. He said something to the effect that I was wrong. I said I wasn’t. It was amiable, but still… my thought was “you are accusing me of something I didn’t do”. It was over, and then I started thinking about Brooke’s “take responsibility” mantra and went back to apologize for my reaction and said I could be wrong. It didn’t really help the situation because the moment was already over, we had moved on, and then we had to discuss it a bit more. I was thinking about this more later and if in the moment I could have said something different, what would that have been? If I wouldn’t have said it wasn’t me, he would have gone on thinking I was not being responsible and careful, and he wouldn’t have been given the opportunity to think of another possibility. I think that’s OK in the abstract, but it would definitely feel unnatural in the moment, and now I’m struggling with the intentional model to help me internalize this and plan for the next time.

Unintentional
C: Husband says I dinged his car
T: He’s wrongfully judging me
F: defensive
A: Explain how I load the dogs. Disagree with him when he says that’s not possible.
R: Our little back and forth about this means that the pleasant afternoon was interrupted.

Intentional … I’m trying to figure out how I could have responded that feels authentic and
C: Husband says I dinged his car
T: …. this is where i need help… what are some possible thoughts?
F:
A: Say, I guess that’s possible. (but I know it’s not) …. this is the best I can come up with.
Say, I’ll take responsibility (but I know it’s not true) ….that feels like lying
R: Tranquil afternoon with no little spat . (but would I still feel incorrectly accused?)