What is it all about? Lately the word Respect has been bandied about me quite a bit and I’m curious to explore it more…..

According to the dictionary it means : “a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements.”

But so often respect seems to be demanded of people before they have even proven themselves worthy of it. Is this right? Must I respect people in authority just because they are in the position they are in? what if they don’t deserve the position? What if they don’t fulfil what is required by them in that position or they use their position to belittle or even abuse others? Surely not!

Obviously we should aim to respect our elders and parents but who does this include…. A boss that is bordering on sexual harrassment? A parent who disappeared after a divorce only to reappear years later? An emotionally abusive partner?


What about respect within a family – are you born into a position that demands others respect you, such as being the firstborn? I am the firstborn and as far as I can tell (but check with my siblings) I have never demanded or expected to be respected by them because of my position in the family? If that is what is expected – then what about the youngest? Who respects them?

Isn’t respect something that is earned? If you read the definition above again it makes be think that respect IS something that is earned!

The Bible teaches “husbands love your wives and wives respect your husbands” with no disclaimers so maybe in that instance I ought to automatically respect my husband (and my parents for that matter.)

An interesting study I once read regarding husbands and wives was when a variety of men and women were asked the same question. If you could choose only one option would you rather be alone and unloved in the world or inadequate and disrespected? Most men answered that it was far more important to them to feel respected than loved! Why is it so important to them? maybe that’s why rappers always go on about it!!

In my mind I always have been on track with these – husband and parents. But when it comes to others out there I find it hard to automatically respect without proof that it is deserving. For instance our woeful government. I respect the law but find it hard to respect individuals who squander funds meant to enhance the lives of the poor on new cars, lavish parties and trips on private jets….

What are your thoughts? Am I right or wrong???

Who do you automatically respect? Who don’t you respect? Who has to earn your respect? Do you feel like you should be more respected?

Kathryn Rossiter

Kathryn is a South African lifestyle blogger and mom of 2 who has been blogging daily for over 9 years! She writes about travel, health, beauty, fashion, decor and family... but not food (unless it's food she's eaten made by someone else) as she is a hopeless cook. She only wakes up early for 2 things... a red-eye flight to somewhere exotic and early morning game drives. She has just finished an extensive home renovation and would prefer to never see another box again. She's never met a chocolate or glass of bubbles that she didn't like!

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