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What is the difference between fear and respect?

In parenting: What do you think the difference is? Do you ever think they go hand in hand?

So many people want to respect their children and don't want their children to fear them. Sometimes it seems like a fear of the children and no respect for the parents.

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 1:51 PM on Sep. 30, 2009 in General Parenting

Answers (9)
  • Some may disagree, but I think they go hand-in-hand. There is a level of fear your kids have about being disciplined or corrected, so they know they have show respect. We are supposed to "fear" God right?

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:53 PM on Sep. 30, 2009

  • This is a really good question.  But I don't have an answer, lol.  I think maybe it's about finding a balance and what works for you as a parent.  I have spanked both of my children but I've found that (through many mistakes, of course) talking to them sternly hurts worse.  I don't mean "down grading" them.  Just explaining that something is not acceptable.  I flinched whenever my parents moved too quickly so I go by that also.  When I "jump" at my children, they laugh because they know that I am going to tickle them, etc.  They don't freak out thinking that they are getting ready to be spanked.  We've found our balance.  They respect me, I respect them.  I listen to them, they listen to me.  I hope I'm understanding the question, lol.  ;)


    Answer by Katrina3016 at 1:56 PM on Sep. 30, 2009

  • I do NOT think kids should fear their parents. I know if I fear someone, I sure as hell DON'T RESPECT THAT PERSON.

    Answer by JamiDesigns at 2:09 PM on Sep. 30, 2009

  • Fear implies physical danger, possible fear of being killed. Respect just implies that you respect the boundaries. Example Respecting the police because they can put you in jail. Fearing a criminal because they might actually shot even if you do cooperate. My children hopefully respect me because I can take things away from them or if necessary spank them. But I'm not going to kill them or even send them to the hospital. I'm not illogical, I'm not a drunk. I'm not an abuser. But I do have authority and I will punish them. So they need to respect that.


    Answer by Anonymous at 2:28 PM on Sep. 30, 2009

  • I don't want my child to fear me or G-d. Respect, yes.

    Answer by rkoloms at 3:36 PM on Sep. 30, 2009

  • A lot of parents have the attitude that a child should do as they say and respect them. The way they go about this instils fear.

    A child is a small person with their own thoughts and feelings and they should be taken into account as much as if not more than the parents.

    You can't force a child to respect you by can't force a child to be good either...that should be down to the child anyway...

    In parenting I think they go hand in hand too much....but they don't have to.

    In fact fear doesnt even have to come into it.

    Answer by keyaziz at 3:40 PM on Sep. 30, 2009

  • I think people often respect out of fear. I guess it depends on one's definition of fear. Fear of disapproval is a good one. Fear doesn't have to constitute impending bodily harm. But it isn't always unhealthy for a child to have a healthy fear of their parents- a fear of disappointing them or a fear of discipline isn't bad imo.


    Answer by Anonymous at 4:25 PM on Sep. 30, 2009

  • I think a good amount of fear-based respect is a good thing.

    Answer by KLBrown at 4:26 PM on Sep. 30, 2009

  • OMG is this a serious question? Your children should never fear you. They may not want to disappoint you but they shouldn't fear you. Fear that you'll do what, exactly?? How do you instill "healthy" fear into a child? Focus on building a trusting and respectful relationship with your child.

    Answer by MotherofIreland at 8:59 PM on Sep. 30, 2009

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