Kids (4-12)

6 Ways to Get Your Kids to Respect You

The bad news: respect can’t be commanded or demanded—yet that’s exactly what we often try.  The good news: there are things you can do to earn your children’s respect.  Here are 6 ways to get started.

1. Respect your children.

This is going to look different from child to child, but you know when you’re disrespectful—and so do they. As the parent, this is something we can teach by doing.

2. Respect your husband.

This is huge. The relationship between parents sets the tone for the greater family dynamic. When children see mom and dad treat each other with love and respect—despite their differences—the standard has been set.

3. Spend more time teaching love than teaching rules.

Children who are taught the connection between love and discipline can accept consequences more easily than those who are governed exclusively by “do it because I said so” and “chapter and verse.”

4. Live with integrity.

Children are master observers. Personal work ethic… Paying bills… Charitable giving… Helping others… Generous with tips… Talking positively about others behind their backs… All of these are areas where we build and sustain the kind of character our kids will respond to with respect.

5. Don’t be a pushover.

If you let your kids walk all over you (you don’t follow through on discipline, you give in when they pitch a fit, you let them treat you disrespectfully) why will they respect you?

6. Don’t stoop to their level.

Kids will be kids.  They’ll whine, they’ll have temper tantrums, they’ll pout.  If you’re acting that way too, they’ll likely have little respect for you.  Keep your cool.  Instead of yelling, “Don’t you say that to me, it’s disrespectful!”  Calmly respond to their misbehavior.  “You know, we don’t talk to each other like that in our family.  We treat each other with respect.  Go to your room and think about what you said.

© 2011 iMOM. All Rights Reserved. Family First, All Pro Dad, iMOM, and Family Minute with Mark Merrill are registered trademarks.

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