If a person is disrespectful toward you, that is definitely a problem within the offender. When you allow the disrespect to continue consciously, when does the problem become more a reflection of your self-respect than it does of the offender’s values?
No one deserves mistreatment. If a man is disrespectful toward a woman or vice-versa, either way it is wrong. The bigger picture is mistreatment is unacceptable. Men and women both sometimes suffer from being victimized by mistreatment and feeling as though they can fix the other party. The truth is no one can get help who doesn’t want help. Allowing someone to mistreat you is not helping them. Waiting on them to “do right” is not helping them.
The best thing you can do to help someone who continuously treats you less than with the utmost respect and dignity, is to hold them to your value system of respect and dignity or they don’t deserve to be in your life. Some of these people will try to manipulate you, to be who they want to you to be. Often, they may say what they believe you want to hear; whatever is necessary to get back in your life. Do not allow this to happen.
If someone is mistreating you, unless they come back to you with a contrite heart and a change in how they value you and respect you (without trying to manipulate you), they are not ready to respect you and value you—and you should respect their values (or lack thereof) enough to realize they don’t match yours.
Each and every one of us have values. Most of our values are developed at a young age and refined throughout our lives. The challenge I hear so often is a couple’s values don’t align. If two people’s value systems do not align, their lives, goals, dreams and ambitions are not going to align either. It’s ok for your value system to not align but your relationship will be challenged to say the least.
It’s imperative to understand if your values don’t align, your lives won’t align and you will find yourself fighting for your beliefs and in some cases your self-respect and dignity quite often. For example, if a man grew up watching his dad cheat on his mom, and he does it, but his mate grew up in a two-parent home where infidelity was not an issue, this is pointing toward a likely value system that doesn’t align.
Every man who saw cheating doesn’t cheat, but for the sake of this article, let’s assume this man cheats on his mate and she finds out. Not only is she heartbroken, but it will be totally against her value system, because she didn’t see it growing up and it’s not what she expected from her committed relationship. She won’t understand the transgression the same as a woman who might have dealt with it earlier in life.
Before you walk down the aisle, take time to find out if your values align. Values will reflect in the character of your mate and if your mate’s character doesn’t meet your standard, it’s better to find out before the wedding and take the steps necessary to find someone who aligns with your values.
Self-respect is simply a way of saying a person will not allow someone to undermine their values, disrespect or dishonor them. There are other factors which play a part in our self-respect such as self-esteem, but ultimately, self-respect is our inherent challenge to ourselves that we have a value system. Self-respect is the display that we have the confidence to uphold our own personal beliefs.
If you decide you will not accept someone who doesn’t meet your standards, you can build your self-respect. When you decide you will no longer be disrespected, you open the door for one of the many other people out there who will honor and respect you and reach the standard of your value system.