To be honest, it surprised me somewhat.
The way the little guy was throwing himself at his mom.
His mom didn’t seem to mind it much and brushed it all off. He was young and cute and it was all harmless now.
And it’s true, her son was adorable.
But smacking at your mom? Not so cute.
Not ever in my book.
I’m not saying that I’d get all worked up over it. I’m just saying that I wouldn’t allow it.
But there are other ways to show disrespect to your mom. More subtle, but equally unacceptable.
Like the young girl who was mocking her mother for having forgotten an item at home. All said with a slight sneer.
She was another cutie, complete with pigtails and bouncy air.
But darlin’, there’s nothing sweet about sassing your mom like that. No ma’am!
Please don’t misunderstand me. I’m not an uptight mom and I have lots of fun with our kids. We often play and joke around together!
But I do expect our children to show me respect—and they know it.
“Respect” has somehow fallen out of favor in this present generation. With the emphasis on freedom and feeling, there’s just not a lot of teaching on courtesy and respect for parents. Yet honoring your father and your mother is a timeless truth and shouldn’t be based on the current cultural trend.
Our children need to learn how to respect us, for their own sake as well as our own. And here’s why . . .
3 Good Reasons I Won’t Let Our Children Disrespect Me
1. The Bible says that our children are to honor their mother (and father). So when I’m teaching them to show respect to me? I’m helping them obey God and enjoy the blessings that come with obedience.
“Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise)…. (Eph. 6:2)
2. By respecting me, our children are learning to respect others in the future. Showing respect is such a beautiful and powerful skill that will benefit them – and others – for the rest of their lives. They’re also learning how to respect their bosses at work someday, their future spouses, and their neighbor next door.
3. Respect does as much for the child, as it does for the parent. Teaching our children to respect me is less about what I need or want, than it is about teaching our kids the security and strength of respecting others. This value for respect was confirmed when our oldest son mentioned it as one of the best things he’d learned at home: 9 Things I’d Say My Mom Got Right. This lesson is one that will help our children far into the future.
Some Questions Answered
* What would you consider as “respectful”?
While everyone’s definition might vary a bit, in our home that means no smacking, striking, or swinging of any kind. Also, our kids need to use a tone that is in keeping with my role as their mom, such as no yelling or sassing or snarling. They’re required to use respectful vocabulary and refrain from insults or inappropriate language of any kind.
* How do you handle disrespect when it happens?
First, I’d correct , such as, “No, that’s not how you talk – or treat – your mom.” Then I’d give instruction as to what needed to happen instead. I’m a big fan of Try It Again which means giving the child a chance to say what they want to say, except this time in a respectful voice or manner. If this doesn’t work, or the problem is ongoing, then I’ll hand out consequences—-which vary depending on the situation and age of the child. But we do consider disrespect as a serious matter and, in our family, Dad will make sure that situation is made right. 😉
*What do you do to encourage your children to show you respect?
Good question! For one, I try to be someone who merits respect – not perfect or amazing – but simply a person who takes to heart her position as mother. Also, I try to make it a point of not getting “down to their level” if they choose to act or speak disrespectfully. Yelling back at them or being ugly in return doesn’t help them to respect me more, but rather less. Keep your tone civil, and even gracious, as you insist they address you in a respectful manner.
So what do you say? Let’s pass on to this next generation the beauty – and blessing – of showing respect to parents!
*Any further thoughts or questions about children respecting their parents? I love hearing from you!
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Lisa is the happily-ever-after wife of Matt Jacobson and together they enjoy raising and home-educating their 8 children in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She encourages women to embrace the rich life of loving relationships and the high calling of being a wife and mother. Lisa is the author of 100 Ways to Love Your Husband and her husband is the author of 100 Ways to Love Your Wife. Matt and Lisa are also the co-hosts of the FAITHFUL LIFE podcast where they talk about what it means to be a biblical Christian in marriage, parenting, church, and culture.