But mommy, that’s not fair! How often as a mom have you heard this statement? Or how many times have you said this to your parents or someone else?
Life isn’t fair, and you will be dealt with some tough hands along the roads of life. But most of us grow out of the entitlement stage and learn that we have to take responsibility.
What is the entitlement mentality and why do some people continue in the entitled state for all of their life?
What Is The Entitlement Mentality?
Oh boy, now that is a big question. I could give you a dictionary definition, but I believe I can better explain it without the proper definition.
Entitlement is when someone believes they are so important and deserve special treatment. A person thinks the world owes them something just because they are alive.
An entitled person believes they don’t have to work for what they get, but rather others are to provide for them all the time. It is a way of life and a deep-seated psychological problem.
Why would anyone think they get more or special treatment over another person. I can’t say I have the answer to this question, but I am going to tackle a few thoughts and share my ideas with you.
It is a common misconception today that the younger generation is the entitled age group. Entitlement is a problem in all age groups, not just a specific group.
It is an individual personality trait or characteristic that makes a person believe they are just a bit better than someone else.
They appear to exude confidence when, in reality, they are playing on the emotions of another to gain what they want. They want and need your approval, and they will do what it takes to get it.
Behavior like this may be a result of narcissism or poor self-esteem. It may be a psychological problem or a result of a child’s upbringing.
What Does An Entitled Person Look Like?
At first, they may appear just like you and me, but you can pick one out very quickly. Usually, as soon as an entitled person speaks, it is evident they are only aware of themselves.
Many times I have made the statement “they are entitled,” and it is after some minor interaction with the person.
You are driving down the road, and a car cuts you off so they can turn at the stoplight first. At first, you think they may be in a hurry and don’t think a thing about it. But that car continues to cut everyone off, speeding in and out of traffic.
You both end up at the same parking lot, and he whips around you to take the closest parking spot. That person is entitled and feels you owe him that spot, so he takes the liberty to cut in front of you.
When he gets out of his car to head into the store, he never looks back or gives his actions a second thought because it is his right to have special treatment.
Or what about that person in your workplace? The one who always gets others to do his work and never returns the favor.
As a nurse, I have worked with a few people like this one. The emergency room nurse who is always gone out of site when it is time to take a new patient. After you settle the patient in your co-worker returns from who knows where and sits down at the desk.
At the end of your shift, she has taken care of 2 patients, and you cared for 8. Her patients were easy in and out cases with splinters and strep throat while you cared for the critically ill.
No one likes working with her and avoid interaction with her. But she doesn’t give her actions a second thought because it is her right to have a comfortable life. And she will accomplish this at the expense of everyone around her.
When you first encounter an entitled person, you can’t believe anyone would purposefully think they are better and manipulate situations to get what they want.
So you overlook it and make excuses for them. You think this must be a one or two-time event, and they will snap out of it. Then you begin to notice a pattern.
They play the self-pitty part when they don’t get their expected outcome and attempt to get everyone on their side. Everyone needs to feel sorry for the entitled person.
You become the bad guy, and they become the master. They are entitled.
They never take responsibility for their actions. They want to blame everyone else for what has happened to them because of the poor choices they make.
All situations have to turn out the way they want. It is a “my way or the highway” mentality.
They have a child-like tendency to show an attitude of “me first or look at me or pay attention to me.” It is all about “me.”
In relationships such as personal or work, they do not know how to give and take to work things out. They believe they deserve all take, and it is your job to provide everything for them.
An entitled person is always angry and critical of others. They are self-centered, seek attention in negative ways, come first in all things, and do not believe they should have too work or do the same things as you to make a living. You should hand everything to them.
They don’t follow the Rules.
The rules were made for others to follow and for the entitled to break.
We were at the airport going through customs recently. Security stated numerous times that if you have your cell phone out and on, in the baggage claim area, you will receive a fine of $5000.
One girl had her phone out texting the entire time. But no one of authority confronted her because they did not want a scene from an entitled person.
So everyone else conformed to the rules, but she believed rules were made to be broken and would manipulate the system if she had to obey.
What Causes Entitlement?
There are some ideas presented by psychologists. Most believe that entitlement is a part of the narcissistic personality disorder. I could not agree more.
Narcissists have to be the center of attention and need to be #1 at all costs. They manipulate people and situations to make themselves feel and look outstanding. Narcissists put others down to build their self-esteem.
They are the best at all things and live in a fantasy world where they deserve everything everyone else in this world has. They will go to any measure to ensure they get what they want.
Here is a post that may help explain a narcissist better.
Others believe that how we raise our children can play a crucial part in the mindset of entitlement.
If you always give your child all they want and give in to their every whim, then they will grow up believing the world owes them something.
If a child grows up in an emotional or physical abusive home, they may seek approval from others and cover up their insecurities with the entitlement attitude.
They may be seeking to get back what they missed in nurturing as a child.
How To Deal With An Entitled Person?
The best way is to ignore them and move away from them. But what if that person is your child or your co-worker or your spouse/significant other?
Your life will be more difficult. You will need to set boundaries and stick to them. The entitled person does not recognize the limitations of another and will continually mow them down.
Tough love is an excellent example of how to handle someone close to you. If that person refuses to respect your boundaries, then it is time to stand your ground. One of the key ways an entitled person works is to manipulate everyone to get what they want.
It may be time to cut ties to that person until they seek help, and if they do not, then let go of them and move on.
As a mom, I know it is hard to let go, but it may be the only way for your loved one to heal.
As a co-worker, record all that takes place so the entitled person can not plead a lie. Get witnesses and do not engage with that person.
Engaging will allow the entitled person to transfer their anger to you, and you will be the none to sit in the boss’s office.
I have linked to a post on boundaries that may help you set some if needed.
To You The Entitled-
Life is not fair, and most of us do not want to be a part of supporting you to make your life easier.
To The Entitled Person’s Victim-
Stand firm, and think smart. Do not allow manipulation, and do not indulge that person with anger and frustration.
What do you think? Have you encountered an entitled person in your life? If not close and personal, then in a store at some time.
I would love to hear your story. Please leave comments, stories, and questions in the comment section below.