How to regain the respect of her husband?

Where has the respect disappeared and how to get it back?

My wife does not respect me! I have lost respect for my husband! Respect for each other has disappeared in our relationship. – This is the kind of complaint a family psychologist hears every day. If you ask anyone what they would want from a relationship with other people, I am sure you will hear the word “respect” most often. The need for respect is one of the top priorities for most people. Regardless of the nature of the relationship, age or gender, we are very sensitive when it comes to respect. Why? What gives us respect? To answer this question, let’s try to define respect. It is difficult to give a simple and clear definition right away, so let us try to construct a definition.

1. 1. Respect is an attitude of one person (group of people) to another person (group of people).

This attitude is based on mutual recognition of personal qualities of each of these people (groups of people)

3. Recognition of the priority of their safety and non-damage: physical, psychological and moral

4. Recognition of their basic rights to freedom, self-expression, religion, etc.

As we can see from our definition, respect is a whole complex of concepts, affecting, strangely enough, our instinct for self-preservation! It now becomes clear why in personal relationships the problem of losing/restoring respect becomes one of the central issues. In order to understand what gives us respect, let’s look at a chart:

As you can see from the diagram, for men (highlighted in blue) and for women (highlighted in red) the priority qualities in the concept of “respect” are different things. If for women the concept of “respect” lies in the emotional sphere, then for men it has a more practical meaning. Understanding these differences becomes especially important when trying to analyze what kind of behavior and actions inevitably lead to a loss of respect in him or her. Before we talk about the causes of the disappearance of respect in relationships, let us think about how this concept is formed in a person in principle.

For a person to be able to respect others, he must have had an appropriate upbringing based on mutual respect of a man and a woman, children to parents, parents to children, as well as to other people. And one more important addition – this person must respect himself!

There is a very close connection between self-respect and respect for other people. Surely many people know the axiom that it is impossible to gain the respect of others without respecting oneself. It is believed that a person’s self-respect is divided into two components:

  • Emotional – how I treat myself from the position of “good and evil”. My assessment of myself as a “good” or “bad” person, and
  • Rational – an indicator of my competence, professionalism and success. Let’s note that both components, which form self-esteem in men and women, are different.

From the figure it becomes clear that we call respectful such an attitude towards us, which strengthens or, at least, supports our self-respect.

Accordingly, “unfriendly” behavior that calls into question my competence or my assessment of myself will be considered disrespectful. In the relationship between a man and a woman, respect is closely linked to gender-role behavior, or rather to the expectation of certain behavior.

Let’s look at a simple example. A man and a woman are driving in a car. They stop. The man got out of the car, opened the door on the woman’s side and helped her out of the car. The man showed respect for the lady (he helped her out of the car), the woman showed respect for the man, waited until he came over to help her out and thanked him, thus showing that she was confident in his good manners. Respect breeds respect.

Unfortunately, manifestations of disrespect start with “little things”, the most typical of them are: lack of basic gratitude at the level of thank you,” inattention, failure to fulfill his promises, raising his voice. Of course, some will respond to this, and some will not. I’m sure you know the saying that “a little lie breeds a lot of distrust” ? The same can be said about respect – small acts of disrespect eventually grow into big problems. Signs of chronic disrespect in men and women are shown in the following figure:

more characteristic of men

more typical for women

It is important to note that respect is lost not only if such behavior is shown directly to this person, but also to his relatives, friends or colleagues. My husband does not respect my mother! My wife doesn’t respect my friends! From time to time during an appointment, I hear a client talk about a loss of respect for his wife/husband because of her/his disrespectful attitude towards relatives or friends. Indeed, we often associate ourselves with the people closest to us and tend to take things personally that are not always directed at us. Why does this happen?

  • Belonging to a group (and family, friends, colleagues are a group) gives us an extra sense of security and comfort, so disrespect for this “our” group automatically extends to us as well. In separated families, where there are no close emotional ties, this does not happen.

There are a number of behaviors that almost always cause a lasting (if not permanent) loss of respect. They are well known, they are: betrayal (treason), humiliation, insulting, lying, violence.

Regardless of gender, a person faced with such manifestations from a partner instantly loses respect for him. It is extremely difficult to restore respect after such actions. This is due to the fact that each of these actions deeply hurts the dignity of the victim and causes him pain. Pain and respect are incompatible.

The peculiarity of respect is that it is much more difficult to earn it than to lose it. In this sense, respect as a concept is close to trust.

And what to do if you feel the loss of respect from your loved ones? Here are simple step-by-step instructions that can help you regain lost respect.

1. Look at yourself.

Analyze your behavior as “possibly wrong” toward the person. Maybe you have violated their “boundaries,” questioned their value, or simply offended them. Not everyone is capable of openly and immediately stating a wrong attitude. Unspoken grievances do not go away. After admitting your behavior, don’t rush to ask for forgiveness right away, but rather try to understand why (?) you did what you did. Not understanding the motives for their behavior, you run the risk of repeating it in the future. The next stage of your analysis will be to find another way to act, which will not be perceived by your partner as disrespectful.

2. Start a dialogue.

Tell your partner how important their respectful attitude is to you and how you feel when they don’t. Don’t make excuses or shift the blame from yourself to him. Acknowledge your mistakes simply by listing them. Acknowledge the person’s right to resent you and change their attitude toward you.

3. Ask for forgiveness.

It is forgiveness, not an apology. Not many people know that there is a big difference between the two terms. Apology is a more formal, secular term. Its essence is to ask to get the person apologizing out of a “state of guilt.” Forgiveness is a more personal, if not intimate term-it is about asking you to accept remorse.

Whether you have been forgiven or not, your awareness of your mistakes must translate into new attitudes and actions. Remember that you must first regain your respect for yourself and you are on the right track.

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How to make her husband respect his wife and be afraid to lose her: 5 practical tips from psychologists

Respect is a basic need for everyone. And of course, each of us strives to create a relationship in which this need will be satisfied. But one of the top requests, especially after the pandemic, which turned to a psychologist was: “How to return respect to the couple?” That’s what we talked to psychologists about.

A woman’s contribution to the loss of her husband’s respect for her

If someone demonstrates a disrespectful attitude to us, namely: rude, trespassing, behaving tactlessly, and maybe even humiliates – it may not be our fault.

Respect is inherent in normal human relationships. If we wonder where it is our fault that a person doesn’t respect us, we need to figure out where the “unhealthy wings” of that logic come from.

Maybe we’re not in a very “healthy” relationship right now. Or did someone once long ago instill in us that we have no value in ourselves? Respect in a relationship (mutual, naturally) should always be there. Period!

“We often understand ‘respect’ as ‘adulation’ or ‘reward,'” comments psychologist Leonid Kulik. – When we encounter any other person we are confronted with the Other. It is with a capital letter, as philosophers and psychologists like to write, emphasizing the absolute difference. Even if it is a very close person, and we have a lot in common, he is bound to have sides, actions, opinions alien to us. Sometimes radically. And in this he/she is the Other. In order to be in a relationship and to endure calmly this difference between us, we need respect for the other.

“How can I respect him/her?! Let him/her earn my respect first!” – the message is fundamentally wrong. Respect is not about bowing down or rewarding merit. It’s about the principle of reality. Respect is about reckoning with fact.

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Just as the Other deserves our respect by the fact of its existence, so do we ourselves deserve respect. And if we don’t regularly encounter respect from someone – it seems to deny us the reality of our existence. And if we don’t treat someone with respect, we deny him reality.

Of course, there are different situations in long-term relationships. Sometimes we behave terribly, we can say all sorts of things to each other, for which then it becomes very embarrassing. Then we apologize, talk, make up. This is normal. It is important that we do not make a habit of being rude to each other, do not make this style of communication the main thing. If we don’t communicate with our husband in the style of, “Hey you, loser, come here!” – we have a good chance of succeeding in maintaining a respectful relationship. And once again, we can treat a person differently, we can even go on a spree with them. You can destroy the relationship, but continue to treat each other with respect.

If the reason is the husband

If a man does not respect us and actively demonstrates it – one conversation. If we think that her husband is not worthy of respect – another. Both situations, again, lead us into some not-so-healthy field in which a family psychologist can help us.

Manifestations of disrespect.

A family quarrel, even the most heated one, is not the same as showing disrespect. It is possible to yell, it is even possible to beat the dishes, but it is not necessary to cross the boundaries of a respectful relationship. You cannot stop seeing and accepting the other person with his or her otherness. But then what can be considered disrespectful and how can it manifest itself?

Attention! The following list should not be a guide to categorical self-diagnosis and a call to immediately break the relationship. This is just a reason to wonder if it’s not time to sort things out in the relationship and talk to each other.

10 possible signs of disrespect in a couple:

  1. Rudeness. Often this is simply a matter of not having a very good upbringing, which doesn’t negate the unpleasant consequences of the situation. If we are regularly being rude, responding in a snide manner, talking in high tones – we should discuss the place of respect in the couple.
  2. Lies. If we are often deceived, even in trifles, it is unlikely a sign of a cool respectful relationship. After such it is quite difficult to rely on the partner even in cooking soup (what if he put there something that we do not like?), much less in the complexities of life together.
  3. Failure to keep promises. It is also a very hurtful thing, which generates a lot of unpleasant feelings. What to expect from such a person next? What is his attitude really like, if the promise made to him is a flop.
  4. Trespassing. We all have our usual sense of personal boundaries. If we ask our partner not to call us tomorrow during an important meeting at 11 o’clock, and he calls about the little things – there is a big reason to think. If he reads the correspondence in our phone or takes personal things without asking – too.
  5. Ignoring. The partner does not listen or does not answer questions. There is a feeling that all the words are being wasted.
  6. Too little time together. The partner is constantly busy with “more important things” and does not respond to rare requests for a little more time to communicate.
  7. Neglect of feelings or a deliberate attempt to “hurt feelings. For example, we do not like some memory, and the partner constantly pokes his nose right into the sore spot. Or we say that we are offended by some behavior, and he brushes off and continues to do the same thing.
  8. Disrespectful to our family and friends. If your partner constantly shows his negative feelings towards significant for us people, ignores joint leisure time with them and does not want to get in touch, maybe he is not too respectful to us too?
  9. Inability to compromise. If you can never agree on anything, find an option that is convenient for everyone. If your partner is “always right” and insists on his own, and all our arguments are rejected as nonsense – bad news.
  10. Depreciation. The partner devalues everything we do. Our work, the dinner we cook, our parenting “exploits,” and our opinion on the new season of our favorite TV show. We don’t seem to be good enough at everything. So maybe he should find someone better?

How to Make the Right Decision

No magazine article or psychologist can make a decision for us. A personal relationship is a private matter between two people. If we see or feel that things are not going smoothly, this is a reason to try to start working together.

You can go to a family psychologist, or you can try to work it out for yourself. After all, the other person may have a completely different picture of what is happening and his “black list” of our failures and gaps.

Don’t look for clues in pop-psychology articles with titles like “7 signs of a perverse narcissist. If we’ve already reached the right emotional conditioning, we’re bound to find these signs even in our own cat.

Have real doubts that our partner is treating us badly? We deal with it in the real world, with real experts. But remember: you still have to think and feel with “your head. Let’s start with a simple answer to the question: are we still more bad or good in this relationship?

How a woman to get back respect for herself

First, let’s understand why that respect can be lost.

“The main thing we are taught is to respect adults – says psychoanalyst Natalia Oblakevich. – Respect means to speak respectfully, to call adults “you”, not to raise your voice, to watch your words and tone … all this is clear and familiar to everyone, and at the same time there is nothing to understand …

Why should the younger ones respect the older ones? Isn’t it the other way around? Why can adults yell, accuse, and sometimes even physically punish … is this respectful? When a child is treated this way, it is as if he or she is making a decision: “When I grow up, I will make myself respect” or “When I grow up, I will build a respectful relationship with my partner”.

Unfortunately, more often than not, it does not work out that way. After all, in adulthood a person treats himself and others the way he was treated in childhood… The words of significant adults become like an inner voice. A person, growing up, begins, through these internal critics, to disrespect himself, to dislike himself. He can only serve other adults. He continues all his life to earn respect… and love.

If a woman is used to disrespect since childhood, she does not respond to devaluation, boorishness, rudeness. This is how she lets a man know that it is okay to do this to her. Often women call this “women’s wisdom”: just do not notice an unflattering attitude. Or here is more “good” advice: “Be above it!”. This manipulation is occasionally used by those who are used to insulting with impunity.

Basic respect is the value of the person as such. It is the right to Be. I respect you is a kind of “advance”: I see you, recognize you as valuable and equal to myself, even before I’ve even met you.

When it makes sense to fight for a relationship

There can be no single right answer here, every case is different. All we can say is that it is not worth fighting for a relationship where there is physical and emotional abuse. All other options are the business of the couple. If both partners believe that the relationship should be fought for, you can only wish them the quickest victory and the fewest losses. And most importantly – let this struggle will be for a relationship, but do not turn into a struggle with each other or with yourself! And in order to make it easier to come to victory, you can take note of some useful “fighting techniques”, let’s list the main five.

Five practical tips from psychologists

How to learn to respect the other in a couple? How to keep the warmth and positive background of the relationship?

“As we have already said, respect for the other is based on respect for yourself,” answers Natalia Oblakevich. – It is important to maintain a sense of self-worth: “I respect myself, I treat myself as a value. I understand and accept myself. In this world I have the right to be!”. In relationships, we too often bring up obligations and rights, but rarely celebrate our own worth and the value of our partner as such.”

So where do we begin on this journey toward “admiring” each other’s worth and human beauty?

  1. Noticing the good and important in each other. Recognize that the other is good in himself. Telling him or her that he or she is important and needed in the relationship. Celebrate his successes not only in relation to family, but in other areas as well.
  2. Hold boundaries when necessary. Don’t be afraid to give feedback, defend yourself, say no, don’t let yourself be attacked.
  3. Develop a fulcrum within. Have a clear view of yourself not based on the words of others. “I know what I am. I know I’m a good mom/wife, a good professional. Someone may not agree with me, but that doesn’t stop me from thinking I am.”
  4. Be honest and express yourself freely. But to do it in a respectful manner, not interrupting, not shouting down your partner. To give him the opportunity to express himself, to challenge our point of view.
  5. Stop constantly reminding our partner of his/her failures and missteps. Manipulating feelings of guilt is not the best helper of the relationship. Sometimes you can achieve a lot in this way, but it is definitely not about respect and love.

“One of the reasons for the loss of respect is the inability to respect the territory of the other person,” says psychotherapist Elania Ray. We forget that even the closest and dearest person who is close to us now was once a stranger and a stranger, we do not perceive him/her as a separate person with his/her own shortcomings and virtues. We do not see the advantages and notice the disadvantages.

When two people have just met and fallen in love, it is not difficult to respect each other. Lovers try to become one, getting closer so as to open up to each other as much as possible. And over time, the boundaries between them become blurred. It seems that the other is an extension, and I can treat him as I would treat myself. And this means: controlling the other, demanding something from him. He now owes me something. And when the infatuation passes, the relationship comes to a new level, you begin to see other sides of the beloved. The person suddenly has flaws. Respect leaves the relationship. What you couldn’t even think of at the beginning of a relationship, at the moment of falling in love, turns out to be normal after a while. Two people allow themselves to relax and start to behave as they want.

Allow your lover to be different. Allow him to have his own opinions, his own things, his own money, his own time, his own space in the apartment, his own habits. Respect means to respect and appreciate someone else’s and someone else’s.”

If a relationship is built on mutual value and mutual respect, neither partner will want to let them go. And then the question of how to make your husband afraid to lose his wife will never arise again. Love and respect each other.

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