Respect "to" or "for"

Who needs respect? Everyone does! However, in order to get that highly regarded respect, you need to earn it, not demand for it. Do you show your respect to your boss, or for your boss? That’s the issue here.

(a) respect to

If you’re conveying your respect directly to a person, then you use “respect to“.


  • I’m showing my respect to you by disagreeing in a polite manner to what you’ve said
  • My respect to you, sir, for speaking so boldly in front of all the managers.
  • This morning, I paid my last respects to Ms. Jones at the funeral parlour.

The word “respect” must always end with an “-s” if used together with “last” as in “last respects“.

(b) respect for

If you’re showing respect towards a person, or you admire that person for his ideas and qualities, then use “respect for“.


  • I’ve absolutely no respect for anyone who believes he’s right all the time.
  • Ismail shows his great respect for his elderly by not rebelling even though he is right.
  • You need to show respect for those who are not from your country.

Therefore, there’s no way you can say:

  • I show my respect for you. (X)

Why do you need to show your respect for another person when they’re already in front of you? It doesn’t make sense, does it? 🙂


Posted on November 7, 2009, in Word Power and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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