She turns to me: “I know what respect means.”

“Oh yeah?”

“It means you treat somebody well, and you love them.”

“Well, you don’t have to love someone to respect them, you should respect everyone.”

When she gets older we’ll talk about this more. A lot more I’m sure. What if someone doesn’t show you respect? Well, then they don’t get respect back. It gets complicated.

Life gets complicated.

When we talk about things like this I am reminded of all the things that I’m going to have to try to explain to her, and all the things that she may not understand until she experiences them – a friend deciding you’re not friends any more, someone being mean on purpose, someone you care about making you feel small and unimportant.

And a world full of a total lack of respect.

We may not be a religious household, but we will be teaching her a tenet of almost all of them, as far as I’m aware – to treat others as she wants to be treated.

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