Being able to respect others even when we do not agree with them is an important skill to have. People are entitled to have their own thoughts and opinions, and even though they may conflict with your own, it is important to remain respectful when interacting with others. It is a way we make and nature friendships. Whether you’re in pre-school or on your way to college, it is always good to follow the “Golden Rule” and respect others since you would like them to do the same in return. Without it, people will not want to hang around you since they may feel as if they are not being treated equally, causing some people to struggle with socializing. Respect is more than just accepting others’ opinions. It is also maintaining personal space, not asking too personal of questions to people who may not like that, treating other’s belongings properly, and so much more. Yet, for those with life challenges such as Autism, ADHD, “Asperger’s,” anxiety disorders, etc., learning how to be respectful can be difficult.
Middle school can be a hard time for children (and the adults who interact with them). It seems as if everyone is branching off to their respective groups, finding what they like, and becoming their own person, but this can bring problems. Sometimes, kids can be mean. They may act out because they do not like how a person is different from them, but it is important to remain respectful, even when they may not be treating you respectfully. In middle and high school, fighting back typically creates more problems. However, if you were to advocate for yourself and act respectfully, it shows how you are being more emotionally mature and not instigating the situation you are in, which would likely only be like adding “fuel onto the fire”. Yet not all conflict comes from bullies. Sometimes it is people in your own friend group. No matter how much you have in common with someone, there is always perceptual differences and it is important to be respectful of that. If you are, it shows the other person you not only care about your friendship but respect them as a person, strengthening that bond you two share. When it comes to children, “Most struggle to cooperate sometimes. But parents of [life-challenged] children and teenagers often find that their child’s lack of cooperation interferes with everyday life.” (cooperativebehavior, 2020). This could be for many reasons, such as the child just being a hormonal teenager, but it is important for children to know that respect is needed in all categories of their life. Whether it be at school with their friends and peers or at home with their families, respect is essential to ensure they are on the right path to becoming adults. It allows kids, teens, and young adults to strengthen the connections they have in their lives, providing them with a support system for their times of need, and overall makes them well-rounded individuals that can flourish independently in the future.
At the Support for Students Growth Center, we help those with life challenges learn the values and importance of skills such as respect, so they are able to do well on their own in school and any other environment. We provide the social, behavioral, emotional, and executive functioning skills children, teens, young adults, and their families need for a happy and successful life in and out of the school setting. Our team of professionals offers coaching/counseling, social skills groups and much more to help teach skills such as understanding the importance of respect to ensure parents do not have to worry that their kids will be unable to make and maintain friendships and other relationships on their own. So, if your child is struggling with skills like the ones discussed above and more, the SSGC is equipped with the tools to help.
Dr. Eric J. Nach, Ph.D., M.Ed., A.S.D.C., is a Developmental and Behavioral Specialist who specializes in Autism, ADHD and related disorders. Dr. Nach is the founder of the College Life Skills Program where he and his team of professional’s help develop the Emotional Maturity, Executive Functioning, Life Skill and Social Abilities of college students and those high school students preparing for college. The CollegeLSP is a subsidiary program of the Support For Students Growth Center, located in Boca Raton, FL and providing services nationwide.
Cooperative behaviour: Autistic children and teenagers. Raising Children Network. (2020, November 18). Retrieved November 14, 2022, from https://raisingchildren.net.au/autism/behaviour/understanding-behaviour/cooperative-behaviour-asd