In our society, women and girls are often treated with disrespect. This is due, in part, to men and boys not fully understanding how to show them the respect they deserve. Any time you interact with people, including girls, you should strive to be as respectful as possible. Learn to respect the bodies, emotions, and opinions of girls, and to speak to them in a way that shows you care about their thoughts and feelings.
Method 1 of 4: Speaking to Girls with Respect Download Article
Make eye contact when talking. When you speak to someone, you make eye contact with them. This shows that you are listening attentively, and that you are focused on the conversation. This rule applies for girls as much as it does for boys. By making eye contact with her, you show her that you respect her.
- This doesn’t mean that you should stare unblinkingly into her eyes. You can allow your gaze to shift about, but try to stay focused on her eyes as much as possible.
Allow her to speak.Listen to what girls have to say and avoid dominating the conversation. Conversation between two people is give and take. After you say something, give her a chance to respond. When she is saying something, wait until she finishes speaking to respond. If you are truly listening, your response will be relevant to what she has said and add substance to the conversation. Try to practice active listening, such as by:
- Using neutral statements to show you are paying attention, such as “yes,” “I see,” and uh-huh.”
- Asking probing questions to keep her talking, such as “What happened next? “How did that make you feel?” and “What are you going to do now?”
- Restating to ensure you understood what she said, such as by saying, “It sounds like you are saying ____. Is that right?”
Assess your attitude towards girls. Basically every culture has some version of “The Golden Rule” that basically says “Treat others as you would like to be treated.” Well, this is applies to girls as well. Using degrading and disrespectful slurs (anything from calling her a “gold digger” to implying that boys are smarter than girls) is not an appropriate way to talk to, or about, girls. Take some time to reflect on your attitude towards girls to help you determine what your biases might be.
- For example, do you tend to associate women with certain careers, behaviors, or social roles? Are you skeptical of women in positions of power? Make a list of things that you consider your biases against women.
- Do not allow this behavior from other people. If a friend is being disrespectful towards girls, point it out and correct them.
Mind your manners. Avoid obsessive swearing, passing gas, burping, etc. While it’s best practice to avoid this things around any person, girls tend to be less amused by these behaviors than boys. Accidents happen, for example, a burp slips out after dinner, and that’s okay. Say excuse me and move on.
- Try to practice good manners, such as by saying please and thank you, paying attention during conversations, offering help, and opening doors.
- The point is to avoid being deliberately rude, not to be a robot.
Method 2 of 4: Respecting Girls’ Bodies Download Article
Ask for permission before touching another person. This rule applies to everyone: there are no exceptions to who does and does not have the right to give or withhold consent for physical contact. That said, girls’ bodies are more notoriously objectified. Show her respect by acknowledging her right to decide who touches her body, and when and how they do it.
- Note that this does not extend to allowing anyone to decide that you have to touch them. You also have the right to say no if you are not comfortable with the contact.
Understand that “No” does mean no. Society often seems disconnected from the concept of consent. Most people understand that if consent is not given, then you should not touch, or continue to touch, a girl. Somehow, though, many of these same people also believe that the validity of a girl’s objection to being touched is dependent on a host of other factors (e.g. how she is dressed, how much she likes you, etc.). This is not true. “No,” means no, period.
- This is not limited to romantic situations. The rule extends to any physical contact.
Be mindful of comments that affect her body image. You should not compare a girl’s body to other girls’ bodies. This can be seen as a direct insult to either, or both, of the girls you are comparing. Even if you are not talking about the girl who’s listening, saying things about other girls’ bodies can imply that you are talking about her body as well.
- It is okay to compliment a girl on her looks, but do it respectfully. “I think you are beautiful,” is much more respectful than saying “You’re hot.”
- Rather than complimenting a girl on an aspect she can’t change, like her eyes, compliment her on something she has control over, like her rad shoes.
Know when to leave a girl alone. Sometimes, a girl might not want your attention. In these cases, you should respect her wishes and leave her alone. If she tells you that she would rather be left alone, it is disrespectful to continue to talk to her, compliment her, or otherwise pursue her attention.
- If a girl indicates that she wants to be left alone, then you can just say something like, “Sorry. I’ll leave,” or “Okay, have a good day,” and then leave.
Method 3 of 4: Respecting Girls’ Emotions Download Article
Avoid generalizing all girls into the same categories. Each girl is different and has different needs than other girls. It can often be insulting to a girl to assume that she likes certain things just because she’s a girl. This implies that all girls are basically the same, which is not true. You have to understand that every girl has her own unique personality before you will be able to respect her needs and opinions. Think about the assumptions you make regarding girls, and work to overcome them.
- If a girl’s needs are unclear to you, ask her what she needs.
Acknowledge that her emotions are valid. You will not always understand the emotions of another person. This often comes to light when boys and girls struggle to understand each other’s perspectives and feelings. Even if she doesn’t feel the way you think she should, or you don’t understand how she came to feel the way she does, you have to acknowledge that it is how she feels. Her feelings are valid and do not need to meet your criteria to be important.
- Ask her things like “How does this make you feel?” When she answers, listen and don’t disregard her feelings by saying something like “Well, that doesn’t make any sense.”
- Show empathy and provide emotional validation. For example, you can say something like, “It sounds like you had a tough day. It must’ve felt awful to sit through that meeting/class.”
Attempt to meet her needs. First of all, when showing a girl respect, understand that she is her own person in charge of her own happiness. Her happiness is not in your hands. That said, when a girl decides to trust you or lean on you, try your best to meet her needs. Be supportive in tough situations, and encourage her every day.
- Again, you can always ask her what she needs if you are unsure.
Method 4 of 4: Respecting Girls’ Opinions Download Article
Recognize her opinion as equal to yours. If you are debating with facts and figures then those things speak for themselves. When it comes to matters of personal opinion, you absolutely must acknowledge that a girl’s opinion is as valid as your own. The fact that she is a girl does not make her any less intelligent or able to form a coherent opinion. You are allowed to disagree with her, but you also have to respect her point of view.
Present valid arguments. If you disagree with a girl, stick to the facts. Dismissing her opinion by saying something like “Well of course you think that, you’re a girl,” is completely disrespectful. If you have a reason to disagree with her, state that reason with facts (or as your own opinion), but do not belittle her for being a girl.
- For example, if you think that a Lamborghini is superior to a Ferrari and she disagrees, present the stats for each car. Don’t say something like “This just goes to show girls know nothing about cars.”
Ask her opinion regularly. If you respect someone, you value their opinion. Ask a girl for her opinion on things regularly to show that you care what she thinks. You can agree or disagree, but you should show genuine interest and consideration in her point of view.
- For example, you might ask you should ask her where she wants to go on a Friday night rather than assume that she’ll want to do whatever you decide.
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- Be consistent, do not be courteous the one day and rude the other. Thanks! Helpful 79 Not Helpful 9