Respect is never given. It must always be earned OP. If you're having trouble fighting back because the people attacking you have better guns, Go to survival mode. Boneyard is the easiest to survive because you can hide behind the blue trailer next to the brick wall and the NPCs will continually walk into your kill zone. The point of doing this is not to level up, But to allow you to collect the weapons that spawn. Get high enough in the rounds and mini guns and rocket launcher spawn. When you have a minigun and a rocket launcher, the other person's respect for you is a moot point when the rounds start popping off. However, you will lose these guns when you leave your current session. So keep that in mind.
Never go into passive mode unless there is something nearby you can stand on to protect you from people running you over. If you get stuck near a spawn killer and can't escape, swap back to single player before returning to online, this is the easiest and fastest way to escape.
If you're not the running type and you have a decent set up of weapons, learn to use those weapons effectively, Do not rely solely on auto aim, you have the double the effective range when you manually aim your gun instead of waiting for your attacker to get into auto lock range.
And use your enviroment to your advantage. Rooftops in particular are the best place to be when you want to put up a fight against a persistent attacker. Just make sure to cover all potential entry points.
And if none of the above appeals to you, then find another game to play.