Have you ever met someone who:
Believes and behave like he is not like other people
Feels that he is destined for a glorious life
Feels entitled to a special treatment
Those are some of the characteristics of a person who has entitlement complex (an unhealthy sense of entitlement).
At first you may think that this person has higher self-confidence and trusts his abilities to prosper in life but that’s not true. Whenever you see someone with an odd behaviour know that they are compensating for a certain flaw. People with feelings of entitlement are not different.
What Makes some Feel Entitled
- Inferiority: In some of my previous articles, I explained how feelings of inferiority can make a person develop narcissism as a defense mechanism. Similarly, when a person has intense inferiority feelings, he can develop a sense of entitlement as a defense mechanism in order to compensate for those inferiority feelings. Because the sense of entitlement comes with an exaggerated sense of self-importance, it gives the person a compensatory false sense of superiority. Next time you meet someone who feels entitled, know that he may be feeling inferior to you.
- They were pampered: a child who was pampered by his parents usually grows up believing that he is special. When parents give the child everything he wants and treat him as if he is special, the child starts believing that he deserves that treatment by right, and that’s when the feelings of entitlement are born. These children usually face many disappointments in life when they realise that the outside world does not recognise their specialness.
- They were mistreated: when a person gets rejected or mistreated in any way by his significant others, he may develop feelings of entitlement as a defense mechanism as well. Because mistreating someone can make them feel inferior, this can make them look for other ways to feel superior and important. As you might have already guessed, developing a sense of entitlement can help them accomplish that goal. Of course all this process happens unconsciously.
- They are narcissistic: one of the signs of narcissism is an inflated sense of entitlement. Because narcissists have an inflated ego, they believe that they deserve greatness, success and special treatment because they are special and not like common people. Most often, a narcissist is someone who is suffering from other psychological conditions like the ones I mentioned; inferiority complex, bad parenting and being mistreated at some point in his life; therefore it’s not narcissism itself that makes a person develop a sense of entitlement but other psychological factors. See: why are some narcissists so mean?
The Difference Between Entitlement and Real Self-confidence
Real self-confidence comes from a strong belief that one is good enough at something. A self-confident person believes in himself but still understands that he is not immune to life problems just like other people. Self-confidence develops in a person gradually when he manages to get the skills or knowledge needed to handle certain life situations. See: why do I feel insecure?
On the other hand, entitlement is an inflated and irrational feeling of confidence that is not based on real life achievements.