Respect is often talked about in schools and business, but rarely is it tied to love. In my opinion, they are mutually dependent. I have seen people that claim to love someone and show no respect. Is that love? I think most of us can agree that love shows respect. As Mom used to say, “The proof is in the pudding.”
People have a confused view of love when they say one thing but do the opposite. Love has to have integrity and trust, does it not? My wife and I are not perfect by any means. We have our issues that we both have to work on, but one thing I think we do pretty well is show respect. In fact, the few times we have had a spat it typically involved a lack of respect by one or both of us.
Love is a fragile thing. It has to be nurtured and cared for. If you choose to disrespect someone, just be ready for the negative consequences. Lack of respect has cost people marriages, jobs, and even their lives. The question is, “If respect is so vital to our having a loving relationship with others, why don’t we freely give it?” Well, I don’t have a simple answer, but here are a few reasons I think people don’t give respect to others:
- They have the attitude that they are right and others are wrong. People that have a need to be always right are some of the most difficult people in the world to work with and live with because you can’t reason with them.
- They have a pride issue and can’t seem to bring themselves to a point of admitting that others deserve respect too. They don’t feel like the other person is worthy of their respect, so they simply choose not to give it.
- They really don’t know how to show respect. It was not modeled for them growing up and they chose to be self-absorbed somewhere along the line. The rebellion has become their identity.
- People who are unwilling to respect others have a deep wound that has never healed and in some cases has consumed who they are. The wound has become their identity, so they refuse to respect others in order to keep from hurting themselves again. Of course, the problem is only exacerbated with this attitude.
The next time you feel like disrespecting someone, count the cost.