by Rebbekah White
Some background here, I was raised in a Baptist background as was my husband and we both were taught to honor our mother, our father and our elders. For years I have been struggling with this concept, not because I don’t want to honor or “obey” those in my life who are older and wiser than me but because sometimes people in your life don’t treat you with respect or walk all over you, take advantage of you etc, etc.
So how do you deal with people who demand respect but shows respect to no one?
For instance a friend of mine has an adult male in her life who takes everything he can from those around him, always saying that everyone owes him something because he raised them or his daughter just owes him because she is his daughter HOWEVER this man is not honorable. He is mean spirited, drinks, is verbally and emotionally abusive, does things that really pushes this woman’s buttons and he does this on purpose to make her lose her temper and to start fights. He has even told people around him he likes to get her angry to start fights. He is mean to everyone around him, lazy, disrespectful to everyone, and truthfully is such a piece of work I know it is hard for her to show him any love let alone respect. He has done nasty things to the rest of the family, treats everyone around with no respect BUT DEMANDS respect from everyone that is within his circle of life whether he has earned it or not.
She asked me how to deal with a person like this short of walking away and never looking back. Truthfully I didn’t know what to say, because I have been struggling with this same question for years, till this morning when I was using Sylvia Browne’s “My Spiritual Reading Cards” a card just popped out of the deck, and from my own experience doing readings not only for myself but friends and family when a card pops out of a deck it means it is IMPORTANT!
So I pick up the card and low and behold this is what is said:
“You can only honor your mother & father -or anyone else- if these people are honorable”-Sylvia Brown “My Spiritual Reading Cards“
WOW! That hit home! Not only for my friends problem but also for situations in my own life. When dealing with people around you day in and day out, whether it be clients, family members, strangers etc don’t become a door mat because you were told to respect your elders or honor your parents. If they are not honorable, than you do have the choice of whether you honor them or not. I think sometimes those of us from the 70’s generation had the “priviledge” of having parents who were so immersed in bible reading and wanted to do what was best for their kids that maybe some things we were taught got so ingrained in our minds that we forget that we don’t have to be doormats to others! To respect others is an honor in my book, not something to be automatically given away to everyone just because of their age or position in life.
Don’t get me wrong, I respect everyone in my life, however I have come to a point in my life where if I am not treated with respect as well why should I continue to give to those around me. It does nothing but hurt you, your self-esteem, cause problems, and basically lowers yourself in the eyes of others.
I have had to deal with people in my life who thought I owed them something just because I was younger then they are, or people who thought I owed them life itself because they were the elders?! However these same people who pushed the “respect your elders” thought onto me had no respect for not only myself but other younger generations.
This is not to say we should not respect all people, however I say “If you cannot show me respect, then I do not need to respect you” Sounds harsh yes, I know even as I write this I cringe because of my own background and knowing how for years including in business I let people walk all over me because I felt I needed to be respectful, however when you give out respect I feel that should be an honor, not a priviledge that everyone receives. Some people do not deserve your respect, because they don’t care or give out respect of their own. You can still love these people HOWEVER you do not need to drop everything you are doing and take any (pardon my expression) crap from someone who cannot give you an ounce of respect back.
Ok, I am off my soapbox now, so what do you think?
Do you give everyone respect in your life, even to the ones who keep daily walking all over you? Or do you wait for someone to gain your respectВ before you give it back?
When is there a point that you have had enough of someone taking and taking that you stand up and push back?
When you push back or rather fight for your sanity, is it disrepectful to do this when someone has done nothing in return? I don’t mean money, goods, services etc just plain ole respect back to you.
How many times do you let someone walk all over you before you stand up and say “I’ve had enough”?
Your thoughts are welcome! Please post them below.