How Can I Earn More Respect From My Children?

Answered by Sheikh Abdul Samee al Yakti


How can I earn more respect from my children?


Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, and peace and blessings be upon the Leader of the Messengers and upon his family and all of his companions. To proceed:

Parents must aid their children in being dutiful and respectful to them. This is achieved by raising them from a young age to obey and be dutiful to their parents and to embody noble manners and ethics. It is also important to consider the children’s developmental stages and provide appropriate interactions and behaviors, especially during adolescence and youth.

Additionally, instilling good societal values and manners, such as respecting elders, scholars, and people of merit and status, and guiding, reminding, and advising them kindly will directly reflect how they treat their parents.

In summary, children are like crops; whoever plants good will harvest good. And Allah knows best.

Detailed Explanation

Children’s respect and appreciation for their parents are natural fruits of proper upbringing. Therefore, parents must play their proper role in this regard.

Imam Ibn Abd al-Barr (Allah have mercy on him), as quoted by Sheikh Abdul Fattah Abu Ghudda in his book Min Adab al-Islam, stated: “It is [the parents’] duty to aid [the child] in being dutiful to them, with kindness on their part, and by treating him gently; for no servants have reached obedience to Allah and the performance of His commands except with His helping them in that.”

We can earn our children’s respect by doing the following:

Start Early

Raise them from a young age to obey and be dutiful to their parents, just as we raise them in other acts of worship. Allah says: “For your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And honor your parents. If one or both of them reach old age in your care, never say to them ˹even˺ ‘ugh,’ nor yell at them. Rather, address them respectfully. And be humble with them out of mercy, and pray, ‘My Lord! Be merciful to them as they raised me when I was young.’” [Quran, 17:23-24]

Lead by Example

Raise them with noble character and manners, especially towards parents. Sheikh Abdul Fattah Abu Ghudda in his book Min Adab al-Islam says: “Observe utmost respect with your father and mother, for they are the most deserving of it. A man asked the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and grant him peace): ‘O Messenger of Allah, who is most deserving of my good companionship?’ He said: ‘Your mother, then your mother, then your mother, then your father, then your nearest kin.’” [Bukhari; Muslim]

And Hisham ibn Urwa narrated from his father, that Abu Hurayra (Allah be pleased with him) saw a man walking in front of another man and asked him, “Who is this to you?” He replied, “My father.” He said to him, “Do not walk in front of him, do not sit before he sits, and do not call him by his name.” [Musannaf Abdul-Razzaq; Bukhari, al-Adab al-Mufrad]

Initiate Good Treatment for Them to Reciprocate

Treat them well, fulfill responsibilities towards them, and avoid injustice or favoritism in material or emotional matters.

Abdullah ibn Umar (may Allah be pleased with him and his father) narrates that he heard the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and grant him peace) say: “Each of you is a shepherd, and each of you is responsible for his flock. The ruler is a shepherd, and he is responsible for his flock. A man is a shepherd for his household, and he is responsible for his flock. A woman is a shepherd of her husband’s home and her children, and she is responsible for her flock. A child is a shepherd of his father’s property and he is responsible for his flock. A servant is a guardian of his master’s property, and he is responsible for his flock.” [Bukhari; Muslim]

Avoid Insulting or Embarrassing Them

Respect them and avoid belittling or dismissing them, especially in front of relatives and friends.

Call their Attention to Intricate Examples of Respect and Reverence

Teach them the meaning of respect and appreciation, which words and actions demonstrate, and direct them away from words, actions, and behaviors that are contrary to it, in accordance with sound customs and healthy societal traditions. Then follow up on this with them.

These are some forms and manifestations of respect, as narrated by Sheikh Abdul Fattah Abu Ghudda from Ibn Abd al-Barr (Allah have mercy on them): “Dutifulness to them includes lowering the wing, speaking gently, not looking at them except with an eye of love and reverence, not speaking louder than them unless intending to make them hear, and being open-handed with Allah’s blessings, never being selfish with them in food and drink. One should not precede his father in walking with him, nor in speech in a gathering in matters that he is more entitled to. He should avoid their anger to the best of his ability and strive to please them as much as he can… And he should hasten to respond to them if they call him… and if he is in voluntary prayer, he should shorten it and be quick in it. And he should not say to them anything but kind words.”

Alerting Them to the Value of Honor

Teach them to respect elders, scholars, and people of merit and status. Anas ibn Malik (Allah be pleased with him) reported: “An old man came to the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace), and people were slow to make room for him. The Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) said: ‘He is not one of us who does not have mercy on our young and does not respect our old’” [Tirmidhi].

Ubada ibn al-Samit (Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and grant him peace) said: “He is not of my nation who does not honor our elder, have mercy on our young, and recognize the right of our scholar.” [Ahmad]

Abu Musa al-Ash’ari (Allah be pleased with him) narrates the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and grant him peace) said: “Part of glorifying Allah is to honor a Muslim of elderly age, a hafiz of the Quran who does not exaggerate in it or turn away from it, and a just ruler.” [Abu Dawud]

Be Gentle in Your Approach

Advise them kindly, converse with them with love and gentleness, remind them of the rights of parents over children, and present verses and hadiths on this matter. And Allah knows best.


I advise you – whether a father or a mother – to be mindful of Allah’s right in properly raising your children from a young age; for you will be the first to reap its benefits in old age. Children are like plants; the better the planting, the better the yield, and vice versa. I also advise you to implement the steps and principles mentioned above, for in them, God willing, is the rectification of any shortcomings in their upbringing.

We ask Allah for success and guidance for us, for you, for them, and for all Muslims. Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds

[Shaykh] Abdul Sami‘ al-Yaqti

Shaykh Abdul Sami‘ al-Yaqti is a Syrian scholar born in Aleppo in 1977. He obtained his degree in Shari‘a from the Shari‘a Faculty of Damascus University, a Diploma in Educational Qualification from the Faculty of Education at Aleppo University, and a Diploma in Shari‘a and a Master’s in Shari‘a from the Faculty of Sharia, and Law at Omdurman University in Sudan. He is currently writing his doctoral thesis.

He studied under esteemed scholars such as Shaykh Abdul Rahman al-Shaghouri, Shaykh Mustafa al-Turkmani, and Shaykh Dr. Nur al-Din Itr, among others. Shaykh al-Yakti has worked in teaching and cultural guidance in orphanages and high schools in Aleppo. He served as an Imam, Khatib, and reciter at Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi and as a certified trainer for Khatibs in Abu Dhabi’s Khatib Qualification Program.

He is involved in developing and teaching a youth education program at Seekers Arabic for Islamic Sciences.

Among Shaykh al-Yaqti’s significant works are “Imam al-Haramayn al-Juwayni: Bayna Ilm al-Kalam Wa Usul al-Fiqh” and the program “The Messenger of Allah Among Us (Allah bless him and give him peace).”