From my friends Mirriam and Webster....
Full Definition of EXCUSE
a : to make apology forb : to try to remove blame from
: to forgive entirely or disregard as of trivial import : regard as excusable <graciously excused his tardiness>
a : to grant exemption or release to <was excused from jury duty>b : to allow to leave <excused the class>
: to serve as excuse for : justify <nothing can excuse such neglect>
Then there is the other one Reason
Full Definition of REASON
a : a statement offered in explanation or justification <gave reasons that were quite satisfactory>b : a rational ground or motive <a good reason to act soon>c : a sufficient ground of explanation or of logical defense; especially : something (as a principle or law) that supports a conclusion or explains a fact <the reasons behind her client's action>d : the thing that makes some fact intelligible : cause <the reason for earthquakes> <the real reason why he wanted me to stay — Graham Greene>
archaic : treatment that affords satisfaction
I could give you a thousand excuses why I am not writing posts this week, or explain with one reason...I'm totally stressed out. People judge if why we don't do something is reasonable by their standard. If they don't believe it is reasonable that it is an excuse to get out of something.
Yahoo suggests this difference:
Reason: A legitimate explanation for whatever the subject may be.
Excuse: As others said, a balony reason for attempting to shift blame for something away from yourself ie 'not my fault'.
But who decides if my explanation is legitimate?
Yahoo's best answer:
Best Answer: A reason is valid and usually unavoidable. An excuse is a transparent attempt to shift blame away from one's self.
"Sorry I'm late; I missed the bus"...That's an excuse because it's your own fault for missing the bus; not the bus' fault.
"Sorry I'm late; the bus broke down."...That's a reason because the mechanics of the bus are outside of your control.
Not joining someone for drinks because of an expected guest is a reason because the plan had already been made.
Not going to Vegas because "need to catch up at home"...That could go either way. After 3 weeks away it's probably a pretty good reason. On the other hand, if you REALLY wanted to go to Vegas then you'd do the home stuff later; so it's kind of an excuse. Even if a valid excuse.Tom K · 4 years ago
I kept searching and found an article by Carolyn Hax
What is the difference between a reason and an excuse?Next week will be the second week of school. Things will get better....I'll get paid.
What you’re hoping to accomplish by providing it, I guess. Reasons help the injured party feel better, and excuses help the culprit feel better.