Aliveatwork's Blog


It’s a Manner of Respect …

I was raised to “respect my elders.”

I was taught that “children should be seen and not heard.”

And if I did those things I would be a well-mannered, well-behaved child.

Not saying it was perfect or right … just saying it is what I was taught.

Nowadays it appears that the pendulum has swung 180 degrees in the opposite direction.

We seem to have very little respect for our elders almost as if they don’t deserve respect. Seeing what teachers have to tolerate in classrooms from students these days is appalling.

Watching a 4 year old in a shopping cart having a melt-down because they can’t have what they want and then smacking their mother while the parent tolerates it simply seems absurd to me. Children are seen and heard so loudly that they seem to be the ones running the family.

I am not saying we should go back to the draconian ways of the past, I just think we need to find a balance, a center when it comes to manners and how we treat each other.

It all boils to respect and the golden rule:

  • You can’t be a parent who doesn’t respect yourself and then demand respect from your children
  • You can’t demand respect from the younger generations if you don’t respect them or model respect for the older generations.

Children want, need, and deserve to be taught self respect. They want, need, and deserve to know that they have self worth and value and that they can make a difference. It’s in our DNA. They need to know you believe in them and sometimes that means not giving them everything they want.

Throwing money at your kids so you don’t have to spend quality time with them or so they don’t have a meltdown is just one way of disrespecting them. It sends the message that they are not valued and they can be bought for a few bucks.

Well mannered individuals are individuals who respect themselves and therefore have the capacity to respect others as well.

So what are you modeling?

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