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How Children Learn Disrespect From Their Parents

Children these days often treat people with disrespect, for example their parents, teachers, elders, classmates, or even a person of the opposite color or even gender. Disrespect in children usually starts with their legal guardian or parents. Children learn disrespect from their parents by how they create a role model for their children, by how they approach and handle certain situations with their child, by the kind of relationship they carry with their spouse in front of their child, how their child sees them treat each other at home, and lastly from simple things like what kind of shows or movies that you allow your child or teen to watch on television.

Children learn disrespect from their parents by what kind of example and role model their parents set for their children. For example if your at the corner store with your child or teen and you treat the lady at the register with disrespect and unkindness, there is a higher chance that your child will reflect those acts and treat others that way. On Tween and Teen Health it says “Remember, teens learn how to behave by watching their parents. Your actions generally speak louder than words”(Tween and Teen Health). Children learn disrespect by observing how their parents act, if you are a kind respectful person, your kid is more likely to be kind and respectful rather than being rude and disrespectful. They observe the way you talk and the way you treat and speak to others. Children live off of your rules and expectations, so don’t make them think that treating others disrespectfully is acceptable. Not only can it make them look bad but it can make you look bad also. You don’t want to set a bad example as a parent, because it’s possible if you’re a bad parent, they can grow up to be bad parents too. On tween and teen health it also says “Set a positive example and your teen will likely follow your lead”(Tween and Teen Health). It’s important to act the way you want your child to act because they are most likely going to mimic your actions.When your child sees you acting negatively and disrespectfully it makes them think that it is okay. You are the person your child looks up to, so whatever you do, they are going to think is okay even when you are not around.

Children learn disrespect from their parents by the way they talk and approach them in certain situations. For instance if your child is acting up or talking to an adult in a disrespectful way, you should handle the situation correctly and you shouldn’t yell and shout at them, you should talk to them in the correct manner, and let them know what they did wrong, and use the correct tone of voice and punishment to teach them what is correct. In Top 7 Parenting Skills anger management it says “Use authoritative tone of voice to rein in your child’s bad behavior”(Top 7 Parenting Skills). If your child misbehaves or acts up, you must approach them in the right way, not by shouting, screaming or saying negative things to them, that may bring them down or trigger them to act in an inappropriate way. But of course always remember not to let them get away with it and make them think they are the one in charge, so make sure you step up and take on your role as a serious responsible parent. In the article it also says “Remember that if you start to shout and fill your child’s head with negative thoughts, your words will reinforce the negative behavior”(Top 7 Parenting Skills). Not only by the way you talk to your children will affect their behavior, but also by what you say, never put negative thoughts into their head. When pointing out all the wrong things they do, don’t forget to reward them and make them feel good and accomplished for the things that they do right. Always pointing out what they do wrong can make them feel like they never do anything right, you don’t want them being put into a depressing or upset state of mind. You also don’t want to hold a distant or bad relationship with your child, try to let them know that you are always there for them to talk openly about any situations. It is better to bring your child aside and talk to them about their misbehavior and actions and explain to them what is right from wrong. You must also show your child who is the boss and who is in charge, it’s important to teach your kid without letting them run all over you, act and talk to them like their parent not their friend or buddy.

Another way children learn disrespect is from how they observe their parents relationship and actions towards each other at home. A good example is if you are having problems or a rough time with your significant other at home, it’s important to not fight, argue, disagree, or even mistreat each other in front of your child. In a health article it says “School age children who’ve witnessed domestic violence, may model their views on gender roles based on what they’ve seen”(Jonathan Strickland).Exposing your child to this kind of violence can lead up to them misbehaving or even treating a person of the opposite sex unfairly or differently than the way they would treat someone of the same sex. It also says “This could lead to boys growing up to be abusive toward women or girls”(Jonathan Strickland). So not only can it cause your child’s disrespectfulness to be present while they are a young child, but it can take long term consequences for when they grow older also. So never forget to keep your problems with your spouse behind doors and private, and to always make sure you don’t expose your child to any of your relationship violence at home. Often times a child’s parents will split up and try to work against each other to try and be the better or favorite parent. Doing that can confuse your child and they may act differently and be confused on what’s wrong and right when getting different perspectives from two different parents. This is another thing that can take a toll on their behavior. Parents need to work together rather than against each other for the wellness of their child.

Another way children learn disrespect from their parents is not only what they learn from them, but by simply what you allow, like what kind of movies and TV shows you allow them to watch or have access to at home. For example if you see your child or teen watching inappropriate TV shows or movies at home that are not acceptable for their age range, let them know that it’s not okay to view those kind of things, or even put parental control on certain channels or shows on your tv at home. In the article Lifestyle|Tweens and teens it says “According to Professor Samineh Shaheem of the human relation institute in Dubai, 70 percent of the 20 most popular TV shows include sexual content”(Lifestyle|Tweens).You don’t want to allow your child or teen access to see these kind of inappropriate things happening on TV shows or even movies at home. In the article it also says “When teens constantly watch their favorite characters engage unseemingly behavior, they’re likely to imitate what they see, whether it’s smoking, violence, or treating members of the opposite sex with disrespect”(LIfestyle|Tweens). Children often look up to their favorite actors or characters, so you don’t want them seeing their favorite role models acting violent or inappropriately because that’s not the kind of example you want to be set for your child or teen. If your child sees their favorite actors taking part in drugs, gangs, fighting and other bad things, they have a higher chance of acting that way or maybe even thinking that acting like that is okay. The last thing you want is your child imitating bad things that they see on TV shows. If their isn’t a way for you to always monitor what they watch, at least try to limit how much they watch TV or a certain show, constantly watching a inappropriate TV show can take a huge effect versus if they were only watching it once or twice a week.

So children being disrespectful can happen and be caused in many different ways. Anywhere from what kind of example and role model you set for your child, by how you talk and approach your child in certain situations, by what you let your child see from your relationship with your partner at home along with if they are exposed to any domestic violence or abuse, and even by what you’re letting your kid watch on Television shows and movies. Therefore children do learn disrespect from their parents or guardian, because in the end that’s who raised them and gave them their first look on the difference between right and wrong.


Jonathan Strickland “What’s the effect of children’s exposure to actual violence as victims or as witnesses?” 24 August 2010. <//> 10 February 2017 Contributors “What do right and wrong mean to your adolescents?” 4 April 2011. <//> 10 February 2017

“Top 7 Parenting Tips” 11 March 2009. <//> 10 February 2017

Staff, Mayo clinic. “Tween and Teen Health Tween and Teen Health.” Mayo Clinic, Healthy Lifestyle, 20 July 2016,

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