Respect.

     

          Respect can be shown in many ways.  Conversely, the lack of respect can be just as obvious through your actions.  For me, respect means that when you call the home that DH and I share, you address me if I answer the phone or you have to leave a message.  When you are invited into my home, you show up on time.  If you must be late, you call and tell me why you aren’t here and what time we should expect you.  When you do arrive, you don’t drop some things and run, either.  You come inside, say hello to DH, myself, and my children.  If you are truly in a hurry, perhaps you should offer to reschedule, or change your plans that follow the event that was scheduled at my home. 

          Even if you don’t like someone, you can respect them on various levels.  You can respect them as someone else’s choice as a spouse.  You can respect them as a mother.  You can respect them as a co-worker, or colleague.  You don’t have to be friends with someone to respect them.  You can be civil and polite and never come close to being friends and still be very respectful.

          While I understand that some people may not feel as though they have been disrespectful on certain occasions, surely after some time, you must catch on?  Even if you do not believe your actions to have been indicative of a lack of respect, if I tell you that I felt otherwise, if you truly did feel otherwise, wouldn’t you try to make amends?  Why risk leaving someone with a feeling of having been wronged? 

          Does family get special privilege when it comes to acts considered respectful and disrespectful?  In some instances, I think so.  If you know your cousin loves and respects you, but she is always late by nature and calls apologetically every time, would you take it personally?  I would not.  But if your cousin is always offering ways to "make your life easier" that you find insulting, and she continues to offer her "suggestions" even after you have told her you find them offensive, would you feel intruded upon?  I would.  So while there are some exceptions for family and close friends, there is still a line. 

          I did not realize that perhaps I had been vague about where that line is for me.  I thought that I had expressed my feelings very clearly on numerous occasions.  Well, fear not She Who Has Been Dealt A Shoddy Hand And Therefore Feels That The World Owes Her.  Everything is illuminated. 

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