Narcissistic Kids: 8 Ways to End Your Child’s Sense of Entitlement

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Why do so many kids act entitled? No matter what they get—clothes, sneakers, toys, gadgets—they seem to want more and don’t understand why they can’t have it immediately.

It can be incredibly frustrating when your child reacts with a bad attitude or acting-out behavior when you say ‘no’ to a request. You think to yourself: “I wasn’t this way when I was a kid. What happened?”

If you find your child isn’t appreciating what you’re giving them or doing for them and are acting increasingly spoiled, it’s important to realize that you can change this pattern at any time.

You can learn how to pause and say no when your child asks for something. You can also learn how to walk away from an argument and not get pulled into your child’s negative behavior.

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At first, this is hard to do, but you will get more comfortable with it over time—it just takes practice. (More on this below.)

Sometimes we look at our kids, see their behavior, and realize we don’t like it very much. You love your children as people, but you might not like how they’re acting.

But remember, nobody wakes up saying, ‘I’m going to spoil my child today.’ We want to raise grateful children. If you’ve played a part in your child’s sense of entitlement, it’s not the end of the world. Don’t beat yourself up. You can start changing right now, even if you have a demanding teen in the house.

Here are eight things you can do to end your child’s sense of entitlement.

1. Set Clear Expectations With Your Child

Make the statement that things will be different. Let your child know that things will need to change and to expect a different response from mom and dad. Tell your child that they’re going to hear ‘no’ more often.

This is a commitment that you’re making to change your behavior, too. By saying that you’re going to behave differently, you begin to make that change as a parent.

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Sometimes these changes are due to the family situation changing—there’s been a divorce, or someone’s lost a job and the financial realities are different. Or maybe you simply realize that you can’t or shouldn’t give your child all that they ask for—that you’re creating a monster.

Be clear with your kids about what’s going to change, and let them know that everyone’s expectations will have to change because of that. In the moment, you can start by saying to your child:

“I don’t like how you responded when I said no to you just now.”

Then walk away, and do not engage in a fight. Understand that things may get worse before they get better. Indeed, your child might not accept hearing you set those limits at first, which is really what you’re doing.

But in a short time, if you stand firm, they will see that you mean business.

2. Don’t Get Pulled Into Fights With Your Child

The most important thing is not to get pulled into the drama and the emotionalism of your child’s response to hearing the word ‘no.’

Be specific about how you’re going to handle the situation with your child. Depending on the age of your kid, you might say:

“If you scream, yell, or curse at me, there’s going to be a consequence for your behavior.”

The bottom line is that if your child acts out when denied what they want, whether their behavior is mild, moderate, or severe, you need to acknowledge the problem and change the way you, as a parent, respond.

Remember that nothing changes if nothing changes. Make no mistake, it’s critical that you do not give in when your child acts out. If you do, it sends the message that they just need to yell and scream to get what they want.

3. Explain Consequences to Your Child Ahead of Time

Let your kids know that they can’t threaten and misbehave to get things. You can say:

“Last time I said no, you threw a tantrum and couldn’t stay at your friend’s house that night because of your behavior. So the next time I say no, what are you going to do? Are you going to act out again, or are you going to handle it better so that you’ll have a better weekend?”

In other words, explain the consequences ahead of time and follow-through consistently if they misbehave.

4. Know That Parenting Is Not a Popularity Contest

Your child is not your friend—and parenting is not a popularity contest. There will often be some anger and disappointment when children aren’t able to get what they want. But acting out behavior shouldn’t determine your response. You need to hold fast.

Try not to get caught up in the moment when your child is begging, pleading, and yelling because you will lose your perspective. You may want to step away from the situation and take some time to consider your response. Don’t get drawn into a debate with your child. Once again, stay firm, say no, and don’t engage in a discussion about it.

5. Saying ‘No’ to Your Child Takes Practice

It will feel weird at first to say ‘no’ or not give in as you have in the past. But trust me, it gets easier over time and starts to feel good and right to hold firm.

The more you can do it, the more clearly you see the situation. What’s more, it helps you gain self-respect, regain your parental authority, and recognize that you’re being a responsible parent.

It’s hard to deny your child something they ‘really, really have to have’ at first. And know that your child will try to pull you back into the old behavior. But it gets easier over time for you and your child.

Believe it or not, kids feel safer and better about themselves when you put these limits in place. When it comes right down to it, your child doesn’t want to be demanding and throw tantrums all the time. That’s not behavior that makes them proud. Eventually, when they can tolerate hearing no, they’re going to feel better about themselves.

This is the truth: entitled kids are unhappy kids. You do your child a favor by saying ‘no.’

6. Use Hypodermic Affection With Your Child

Catch your child being good. When you see your child starting to take the word ‘no’ better, say something. Give them some credit or reinforce it when they’ve thanked you for something or handled a disappointment well.

And use that as a teaching moment, too. You can say:

“Hey, I saw you deal with it really well when we couldn’t go to the movies the other day. Good job.”

In The Total Transformation® child behavior program, we refer to this as hypodermic affection because you’re picking something specific to compliment your child about. It’s a ‘shot’ of love and appreciation.

Realize that empathy is something that develops over time in children. They are not born with the ‘thankful’ or ‘grateful’ gene. We have to teach them and reinforce a sense of gratitude whenever we see it. You can model this with your affection.

7. Teach Your Child to Earn What They Want

With older kids, you can talk with them about other options for getting what they want. They can babysit, pet sit, mow lawns, or get a part-time job. You might decide to give your younger kids a small allowance if that works for your family.

When children can earn things for themselves, it gives them a dose of reality and helps with their own feelings of self-respect. And part of your role as a parent is to teach your child how to work to earn things. In this way, you’re teaching responsibility and preparing your kids for real life.

8. Reinforce Your Decision

Look at it this way, if you’re giving in all the time, you’re not teaching your kids how to be self-sufficient or responsible. It’s worth imagining what a child who grows up this way will be like as an adult. How will they be as a worker or a partner? Will they be able to take care of themselves? Thinking about what you want your child to learn as they grow up—the big picture—will reinforce your decision to do things differently.

About

Janet Lehman, MSW, has worked with troubled children and teens for over 30 years. A veteran social worker, she specializes in child behavior issues — ranging from anger management and oppositional defiance to more serious criminal behavior in teens. She is co-creator of The Total Transformation® Program, The Complete Guide To Consequences™, Getting Through To Your Child™, and Two Parents One Plan™.

Comments (40)
  • Angeli Rose
    Awesome insight. Love hearing what works for many parents all over the world!
  • Deb
    Im at the end 9f my tether with my 13yr old sons rude abusive behaviour he has just trashed his room in temper and calling me all sorts . Ive been constantly telling him to keep the noise down for approx 6hrs when i went to shut his door heMore was abusive so ive turned the game off and walked away.I had spoke to him earlier when he apologised for his behaviour yesterday which was the same but its a fact that he only apologises to get what he wants.Its a vicious circle.Im tired of this constant bad behaviour Ive done two parenting programmes over the years and he has had a support worker in high school for a while.What would be my next port of call for help?
  • Puppysinger

    We adopted two boys from Russia at age 4 in 2005. Both have been diagnosed by a clinical psychologist with Reactive Attachment Disorder. One also has Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Narcissism. The latter has displayed narcissistic characteristics since we adopted him, though we didn't know his actual condition for a long time. His caregivers in the orphanage described narcissistic behaviors during his time there, but we thought it was just a quirk of his childish personality.

    The world has always revolved around this boy, or so he believes, and he has to be in control of everything. From day one he was defiant, disrespectful toward women, had no empathy for anyone, and constantly made our family late because he was more concerned about his appearance than being on time or inconveniencing us. He repeatedly stole our debit card and withdrew a total of $21K before we figured out what was really happening. He believed he was justified in the theft because we expected him to follow rules and wouldn't give him money for whatever he wanted. He even enlisted his brother's help in this, something our other son would not have done on his own.

    He firmly believes that he is always right, and everyone else is just "stupid" or "assuming" or "opinionated."

    We have always had rules and delivered consequences -- sometimes to the point of the boys having to leave our house for a few days (after they turned 18) -- for disobedience or gross disrespect. While their friends were getting away with all kinds of misbehaviors and being lavished with luxuries, our boys were made to suffer consequences for their wrong actions and work for what they wanted. None of this changed our son's narcissism. Telling families that a true narcissist is "created" by parents' lenient or spoiling parenting is not only false, but hurtful. We are not the cause of a "born-in" mental disorder. We and our families -- and anyone a narcissist becomes close to -- are not the cause, but the victims of it.

    My son just came back home after moving out on his 18th birthday 10 months ago. He surfed couches and mooched off friends, not having a job of his own or a way to get to any work he might find after messing up his brief employment at a C-store. He now wants all the benefits of living at home: cell phone, transportation, free food, college tuition,

    etc. He learned some hard life lessons during those prodigal months, and is treating us somewhat better as a result (he is working hard for our family business and has begun to pay back what he stole), but he still believes he is right in all things and should never have to justify his actions. Just yesterday he told me he didn't have to listen to me about how to do things, because there isn't anything that I can do better than him. The fact that I am 62 and have a lifetime of experience under my belt -- including 6 years of military service -- doesn't register with him. He hasn't really changed the way he feels about others: his superiority complex is alive and well.

    I dated a boy like this for 4 years in high school and college, and I know firsthand how destructive a narcissistic man can be to a woman's self-esteem. I was lucky enough to be strong enough to fight back, and that he finally dumped me (for cutting my hair!) before we could talk about marriage. I know now that God was saving me for my wonderful husband (of 30 years), and preparing me for the son we would adopt many years later.

    If I could ask a question here, it would be this: should I try to warn his girlfriends about him, and how they will be treated once their novelty wears off? I still love my son, but I don't want him to hurt and discard a string of unsuspecting and vulnerable young girls. He is still dating high school girls after graduating last spring, because they are closer to his emotional maturity level than girls his own age. As much as it hurts me to say this, I believe it would be better for him to be single and alone than to ruin other lives. Your thoughts?

  • Heidi
    I wish I had found your site when my son was younger. Even after hours and hours of family therapy and parenting courses, we could not understand his power struggle with us. We loved him so-o-o much, but couldn't get him to listen to a thing. Your advice, so practicalMore and sane, rings so true. Our son, after being totally out of our control through his teen years, died way too young last year, from breaking one more rule.
  • Frustrated Bonus Mom
    So I came into my stepson's life 4 years ago. He is now 16 and completely defiant,no empathy,no remorse and self entitled. His bio mom stepped out of the picture over 11 yrs ago and sometimes she shows up for her weekends and sometimes she avoids him. I getMore the not feeling wanted part by the person who carried you for 9 months. Ever since me and his dad got married 4 years ago it has been an Uphill constant battle between myself and my stepson. He disrespects women, even his grandmother who took them in when my husband left my stepson's mom. This child has gotten violent with me, cussed me and has tried everything in his power to get rid of me because he thinks in his mind if he does then his mom will come back into the picture. He takes no responsibility for his actions,words or violent tendencies. He will tell you the world revolves around him and we are merely here to serve his needs and give him everything he wants. We are trying family therapy but our "Counselor" buys into the bs every time. I have gone as far as not acknowledging him these days since he took a swing at me and bowed up on me this past weekend. We have taken everything away and it doesn't matter to him at all. I am at the end of my rope and my husband wants to bury his head in the sand instead of dealing with the issues.
  • diballn30
    Worst mistake I've ever done... My ex- wife warned me, but NOOOOOOOOOOOOO, I didn't listen.. DO NOT SPOIL YOUR DAUGHTERS!!! ESPECIALLY,  US FATHERS.... I once saw nothing wrong with giving my daughter everything she wanted.. BIG MISTAKE. They won't appreciate it,  nor appreciate you. Once they get that entitled personality,More  it over... I can honestly say I raised a SPOILED BRATT
  • Wish I had hindsight
    I've raised an entitled preteen. I didnt realise what I was doing until now. I do remember saying often "Im not spoiling her, Im just giving her what I never had" and now she wants more and more and life is all about her, she complains about everything, refuses to be helpful,More shows no respect for anyone, doesnt want to participate in family outings or activities anymore, and wants us to spend so much money on so many new things. She has just started having regular contact with her biological father (after only seeing him twice in the past 9 years) and of course he is now trying to make up for it by spending money on her and treating her like his friend because he doesnt know her well enough to parent her, so now she wants to live with him and his wife and their children. She is really disrespecting my husband, who has raised her and been her only dad since she was 2 years old, is mean to her little 3 year old brother now that she has more siblings, and now she has a "new mum" seems to be rubbing it in my face. I would love to do those things mentioned above, I would just love to tell her "No" but its got to a stage now that we have cant or she rebels in ways that are harmful to herself. I feel like she has me trapped in a no win situation. I cant see a way out of this. I really worry for her future, for the wellbeing/stress levels of myself and my husband, and for how my son is quietly processing all this negativity. She is so high maintenance, its so exhausting just being around her. My husband, son and I are all relaxed, nature loving, money saving, easy going people, but she is the complete opposite. She is all about money, technology, and complaining about how unfair her life is because all the other kids have all the things that she thinks she should have, all the things she thinks her biological father will buy for her if she moves in with him.... I miss my nice friendly loving little girl. I feel like such a bad mum for letting things get like this. I had no idea. You should have to get a license to have a kid, thats a life you are in charge of and if you dont get it right the first time, you cant go back and make different choices for a better outcome. I love my girl though and I know it is my fault she has turned into such a not nice person. I thought all I have been doing has been giving her a great life, but really ive made her spoilt and entitled.
    • bravegirl65
      @Wish I had hindsight I felt like I was reading my own thoughts with your comment. Every word you wrote is exactly my situation here (minus the bio Dad part). But since mine was little, her Dad had no idea how to parent either, and would get in these longMore drawn out arguments with her, in spite of my best efforts to tell him not to argue with a child. We went to family counseling and that just made it worse. The counselor told my husband to just focus on complementing her, and not do any disciplining for awhile while they repaired their relationship. It all fell on me and since my marriage was so stressful, and their fighting was so stressful, I found myself giving in to her. And it's created everything you described. Mine is now 16 and she is demanding a car! I started talking to her about a part-time job and she freaks out, like it's completely outrageous. My "quiet", easy going son said to me last night, "Mom..Do NOT give her a car. The fact that she thinks you should just hand one over with gas and insurance is outrageous. Next, she'll be doing that with a house!".  He's totally right...and now I have to make some really hard changes. I know it will get worse before better. I've already started saying "no" sometimes and walking away if she throws a fit. I calmly say, "It's not up for discussion." Or, "I will not talk to you while you're yelling." Or, "If you raise your voice to me, you will lose your phone for the night." If she continues, I will say, "If you continue, you will lose it tomorrow, too." I found this really helps...to start with a smaller consequence I can follow through on because she knows I mean it. Her Dad would say, "you're losing your phone for 2 weeks", and then never even take it for a minute. He's finally gone, and now I am determined to right this ship! Good luck to you....I wish I had hindsight, too.
  • at my wits end
    WOW...I can relate to some of these situations.  I am a divorced father of 3.  My son 21 (the golden child) and twin daughters 17.  I am on ssdi and have been divorced for over 10 yrs remarried almost  2 years ago.  I have been dealing with a narcissisticMore ex wife for way to long.  She has gotten 2 of my 3 kids not wanting to see me and when I ask why, they say I lied.  I ask about what and then get not responses.  I send them all text messages at least 2-3 times a month and get nothing back.  Give them gift cards for holidays and b-days again get not thank you or anything. I try to follow several different ways to deal with this and still I get nothing.  I call them and get their voice mails.  Then their mother tells the daughter that still speaks to me to tell me not to call or text the kids because she pays for the phones.   My daughter that still talks to me gets a whole lot of BS when she talks to me and wants to visit.  There always seems to a reason why she can't come to visit me on the weekends.  It has been 2 years since she has met me 1/2 way to drop off my daughter.  Since I want to see her I drive 2 hrs to pick her up. Okay-back to the kids that don't talk to me.  All I've ever wanted was a family and my ex know that and seems like she thrives on putting distance between me and my children.  We have not been together for over 12 years and she still feels the need to talk about me.  She doesn't know me at all.  She badmouths me to the kids and constantly lies to them.  She doesn't know the difference from truth or lies.  I haven't seen my son or daughter for more than a few minutes in more that years.  At first, I didn't blame them, I understood that I has a lot to do with their mother.  But now that they are getting older what am I supposed to do, keep trying or give up.  Please help as I am at my wits end.
    • DeniseR_ParentalSupport

      at my wits end

      I am sorry to hear your children are choosing to limit their

      interactions with you. As you can see from reading the comments under the

      articles Living with a Broken Heart: Are You Estranged from Your Child? & Estranged from Your Adult Child? 5 Things You Can Do, many parents are facing similar estrangement from their adult children, so, you’re not alone. It may be helpful

      to find a counselor or support group to help you deal with the pain this

      situations is causing you. The 211 Helpline would be able to give you

      information on services and supports in your area. You can reach the Helpline

      24 hours a day by calling 1-800-273-6222 or by visiting them online at http://www.211.org/. Good luck to you moving forward. Take

      care.

  • gimp
    I am trying to decide if having no contact with my oldest child is the right thing to do! She turned against me and ran away almost three years ago at 17 years old because I had rules and consequences for not following them and refused to buy her aMore car and give her the ssi check (which she claimed should've been hers to spend on whatever she wanted) that I used to help pay the bills. Her father passed when she was an infant. I know now that she has npd. Too many reasons to get into here. I made numerous efforts for the first year and a half to repair our relationship, but anytime I said something she didn't like I was shunned and lied about to anyone who would listen. She even convinced her school officials to not allow me at her graduation ceremony. And has been conspiring with my ex (that she witnessed physically and verbally abuse her brother) to try and help him gain custody of our child. We've only had contact one time since May 2014, when I asked her to stop lying about me asking her for money. I haven't and would never ask her for money. And she responded with how horrible I was and she's lucky to have survived having a bum me as a mother. Then she cried on Facebook that I sent her an abusive message. My family fell for it at first, everyone believes anything a child says. Now she's cut her grandma and great grandma out of her life for disagreeing with her. Am I right to not try to contact her and rebuild our relationship? It hurts me deeply and people judge me very harshly for having gone no contact with her. Mothers don't abandon their children. When she was around she caused nothing but heart ache and in my opinion will put her sibling in danger just to hurt me. Sorry for the long rambling rant. I'm just really confused and need help. After having read through these comments, y'all seem to be a very intelligent and informed group of folks.
    • Friend200
      @gimp Hi gimp i feel for you deeply. Parenting comes with no instructions and we all do the best we can. No need to try to rebuild at this stage if you see her just hug her and tell her you love her. don't say anything else. She will visitMore you one day but she knows living with you will not help her she has been with out you for a while now and she know what freedom is like. Your daughter is at a difficult age where the glass is always half empty. If she has made this situation then it is best to just let her live that consequence. There are rules all over and if your rules were rational and fare, then one day she will also see that when she has her own children. Grandparents are great but they have a certain air that makes them not in touch with what is going on. There is too much technology around and changes in society to have a positive input. Their views in most teenagers eyes are seen as old fashion. Money makes us all do silly things so always help without giving money. But don't loose contact with her know at the back of your mind, what she is doing because when she finally needs to make a real decision then you will always be the best person to hear it. You have to treat her as you would an adult because she will be 18 soon and from an emotion point her have done all you can. It time to just let her come out of her shell. Let her come to you, don't chase her. She is old enough to know that lying is not a long term solution. The truth always will show up. In May you told her to stop lying so don't need to do that again because she knows. But what she doesn't know is that you love her. If she tells you something don't have an opinion ask her what she thinks. Or how does she wants to handle it. If she doesn't know then don't give her a solution just stay quiet, even if its obvious. When she is with her sibling then just watch. Just assure them after she has left for that session that you love them. She is their sister and when you are not around she may have an impact in there life. Your comment mothers don't abandon their children is true and the true fact is that you haven't and it is impossible for any mother to truly abandon their child. There is always a link regardless of how bad the situation has gotten.
  • Allyr
    I am so sad, feeling impotent, and angry.  I am dealing with what seems to be a narcissistic teenager daughter.  All teens are necessarily narcissistic because of their age and their need to develop there own identity.  I am a clinical psychologist.  I am dealing with a former husband whoMore is a covert narcissist who is brain washing by his revengeful, vindictive behavior toward me and undermining me in my ability to parent her.  She went to his home six months ago (He lives 5 minutes from me), and she hasn't gotten more and more distant and combative with me, no matter what I do.  I don't know what part is teenage stuff, whether she is really developing into a Narcissistic Personality or is brainwashed.  I imagine a mixture.  He sued me for sole custody, and I cross suited him for undermining my parenting.  We are currently in trial for parental alienation.  The loss of my daughter is breaking my heart, yet being around her is just plain horrible.  I have always been a very caring, supportive and emotionally involved mom.  I fell twenty feet onto concrete a year and 10 months ago, and it was because she called me up on a platform to take photographs of her and her friend.  I lost my balance and flipped off the side.  I was in the hospital for two months due to a broken back and a brain injury.  She lived then also with her father, but abandoned me completely after I was home in a body brace for 6 months.  Since that time, our relationship got worse and worse.  I did not understand her lack of empathy, and growing disrespectful and combative behavior. We are in family therapy, but it does not move.  She expects me to say sorry and understand her, but yet she never takes responsibility for any of her amoral behaviors, lacks any gentleness or loving way toward me.  She will never say sorry for any of her behaviors.  I just wonder where my my beloved child went.  I need all the support I can get so I am glad I found this site.
    • gimp
      I'm so sorry you're child is treating you so horribly. I have no advice to offer, as I cannot fathom the actions of my own daughter. I am saying a prayer for you and her and wanted to tell you that you aren't alone. Much love momma. I hope youMore can get your beloved back.
    • momabat
      Allyr  I so feel your pain, it is as if you are telling  my story, although after 5.5 months with her father, she came about 2 month ago to live with me (her decision) after a few week of getting comfortable it all  has become  much of the behaviors that youMore re seeing we  are also in therapy, as a matter of fact 2 months ago I changed therapist from an male psychologist to an MSW female after 2 years it just wasent moving, I do feel that we will move forward with some better results.. My husband and I separated  in feb (officially) and Im not sure who was trying to hurt me the most , my angry daughter making the decision to go live with her dad or my husband the Narcissist  with his revengeful and vindictive behaviors in which I feel he added fuel to the fire with our 15 yr old daughter by expressing to her all of his negative feeling about me, For sure her continued disrespect  is her own internal conflicts, and I refuse to except the disrespect from her, I understand her hurt of her parents separating but to me she pose many narcissistic characteristic and a strong since of entitlement and also has become a pathological liar .In trying to deal with her effectively she just blames me for everything ...never taking responsibility for any of her action , the more structure the more defiant she becomes. Its a tuff position to be in but I am a believer that trouble don't last, and all will have to be held accountable. stay strong.!! and continue as a mother for as I said a better day will come.... consider changing therapists although training is training but a different person with a different approach may just get through... hope to hear back from you.... from the sociologist to the clinical psychologist :)
  • sacha
    Everyone views the world differently according to who they are.  We see the world through our own looking glass and that looking glass was created according to our personality and character. The more you polish your character the better the world will seem. For a person who accepts himself completely,More world is exactly how it should be. There is a lot good things, full of possibilities. There are also problems, but he views them as things that should be there, it is a challenge that he needs to overcome. He is not daunted by it. For a materialistic person, who measures all success with money, he sees nothing else but people chasing after money, he sees the world how he is himself. For narcissist the world is dark and dreary place full of danger and enemies. Everybody out there to get at you. It is a dog eat dog world for them. You grab what you can, the biggest slice if possible and run. They are full of anger, jealousy  and hatred for others. He sees in others what he has inside him. But they do not display their true emotions to everybody. They display their true emotions to their loved ones, because they are more comfortable with them. To others they wear a mask, very charming some people will even think he is a model child. Despite all this you need to love this child. Give this child unconditional love even knowing that he is like that. That is best you can do  to him and for yourself. Anyone can love a loveable cuddly person, but it takes a special person to love someone like that. We are here to resolve our internal conflicts. And for narcissists their only way of resolving conflict is to act it out on people who love him. They are not purposely trying to hurt you, they are just trying to resolve their internal conflict. The best you can do to them is to give them a loving feedback. Explain them  what they are doing is hurting you and others but most of all they are hurting themselves. There is no guarantee that he will believe you, but there is no guarantee for anything in life. Just keep repeating your message. Do the best that you can and hope for better outcome. But most important of all you have take control. If you let your child control you, you doing disservice to him and yourself. You are yielding to his bad behaviour.
    • janeyx
      @sacha  I've only just realised my 18 year old daughter is narcissistic, this is the first web site I've been on and yours is the first comment I've read. Thank you, you have just unleashed a wave of guilt and love in me for my child. she is the perfectMore person out there, but hateful at home, she confuses me! now I understand . thank you Sachax
    • Char1ie
      @sacha  Thank you so much. What you have said really makes sense and I will try my best with the knowledge I have, however difficult it may be. It does take a special person to love a child who is narcissistic. Some people who have not been in this situation doMore not understand how emotionally draining and exhausting it is to parent a child who displays these behaviours. Thanks again :-)
  • sasha1
    It is very interesting as soon as I comment on things my comments get wiped out. Why and who is censoring this?
    • janeyx
      @sasha1  I hope not, im very interested in your comments, finding them really helpful.
    • DeniseR_ParentalSupport

      @sasha1

      You ask a great question. The comments posted to our site

      are moderated. Sometimes there may be a delay between when a comment is posted

      by a community member and when it’s approved by a moderator. Comments that are

      posted during regular business hours (9 am to 5 pm EST, Monday through Friday)

      generally are published on the same day. Comments posted outside of this time

      frame would not be published until the following business day. We try to ensure

      that all  views are welcome within our community. However, there are times

      when we may choose not to publish a comment, such as when there is profanity or

      the post is of an overtly religious or political nature. I

      hope this helps to answer your question. Take care.

  • sacha
    I think that when experts insists that all babies born innocent and perfect they are missing the point. It is tied with issue what life is for. I believe life is for perfecting our character. We go through different obstacles and struggles in our lives and some people come throughMore it better people and others are succumbe to it. All our struggles are there to make us better people. I believe we go through many lifetimes in order to perfect ourselves. Narcissist are people who haven't mastered that perfection, they are on the very basic low level of perfection. If anyone does not resolve their  narcissism in this life time they will go to the next life as they are. That is why everybody born different with different level of ability and different challenges in life. You can't teach people how to be humane, you can only put restrictions on what they can and can't do to others . Humanity people have to learn for themselves through their own struggles and tribulations.
  • sandra
    I have sole legal custody of my 3 children, a 14yr old boy, 11 yr old girl and 9 yr old boy. My ex husband constantly showers them with expensive gifts and cash and tells them my rules are ridiculous and undermines them. He tells them I am cheapMore when I won't but everything they ask for. He tells them that since he pays child support, it should be used to get them whatever they want. Recently he has filed for custody of my 14 yr old because he is now considered by the courts to be old enough to choose who He wants to live with. The two younger ones are not as affected by him but my 14 yr old is siding with him. This is extremely stressful. Is there a program that feels specifically with divorced parents?
    • DeniseR_ParentalSupport

      @sandra

      It can be quite stressful when the interactions between

      divorced parents tend to be antagonistic and challenging. I am sorry you are

      having to experience such turmoil. While we don’t have programs that are

      specific to divorced situations, this is one of the areas covered in our program called Two Parents, One Plan. We also have several articles that focus on parenting

      after divorce; one in particular you may find helpful is https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/parenting-after-divorce-9-ways-to-parent-on-your-own-terms/. The most important thing

      to remember is you  really can only control the culture of accountability

      that’s developed in your home. You’re probably not going to have much effect on

      how your ex husband parents or the rules he chooses to have his home. Hang in

      there. I know this can be a very tough situation. Good luck to you and your

      children moving forward. Take care.

      • Karley445
        DeniseR_ParentalSupport I am facing similar issues as Sandra. My son is now 18 and I have lost complete control as a parent. This did not happen overnight. I have been divorced since my son was 3. My ex used hockey, gifts and money to draw him away. Since my sonMore was old enough to make decisions when he was 15, his Dad sent him to hockey school 5 hours away and then has given him a car and cash. I have provided financial support but had boundaries as I also wanted my son to work for things so he would be a responsible upstanding adult.  It back fired and my son blames me for not doing anything for him and is very disrespectful.  I am left disappointed  with a failed relationship with my son. I am hoping one day he might see through all this but it is horribley tough when one parent feeds the dream and raises an entitled child.
  • sacha
    I would like to say that narcissistic child can be born not made. There is a predominant view that narcissists are only created. I think this view is perpetuated by professionals and experts. Because if it was created by a parent then it can be undone by an expert. ItMore gives more work for people in this profession. Of course some are made, but there are others who are born. People are born with their own personality from day one. How otherwise could children with the same set of parents turn out totally different. People might argue that they treated them differently. Of course you can't help treat different people differently. If person is obnoxious one would automatically treat that person in a different way  from a kind patient person. But as long as treatment is just and fair you as a parent are not contributing bad influence onto your children. The point is that it is not the treatment making them different, the difference is inside them. Yes upbringing has a great influence but you can not reshape a person completely without a consent of the person himself (the child). Human beings have a free will. If a human being has a deep desire to be a good person he will be regardless of circumstances. The same applies if person does not wishes to be a good person, does not see any value in it then that person will not, no matter how much good people around him can do. But luckily most people fit somewhere in between. They want to be good people but sometime they find being good can be a bit inconvenient.
  • Char1ie
    @jert Oh no that must be even more difficult having her Dad constantly against you. My son is 12, nearly 13 but he's big for his age so can be quite frightening. I agree with your comment and I'll try to remember that too. I think he is at warMore with himself really. It is difficult, I feel emotionally drained a lot of the time. I am hoping that he will improve when his hormones settle down as he seems worse lately, but I have always found him extremely difficult, right from him being a baby.
  • Char1ie
    My son is 12 and I have always found him extremely difficult. He's always been stubborn and demanding and I suppose I have been too soft and given in for an easy life, but it just gets worse. It's got to the point now where he has no respect forMore me at all. He swears, calls me awful names, he is sometimes physically abusive. It's like he has the control in our home. It is all about control with him, I can see that but it's how to stop it now and take that control back. I'm the parent but I don't always feel strong enough to stand up to him. His moods are erratic and he is so unreasonable. He is extremely difficult to live with. I'm a single Mum and I work, and I have 2 other children, a 15 yr old and a 6 yr old, both of whom wouldn't dream of acting like he does towards me. hes fantastic at school and he's full of charisma, he has a fantastic personality when he's nice but he's like Jekyll and Hyde when with me.
  • Dee
    My son is 7 and acts very entitled at school.  He simply walks away from the line when he feels like it or stands up in class and shows everyone his paper.  He is constantly in trouble and seems to be the "problem kid" in class.  Rewards don't seem toMore motivate him, punishment seems to be meaningless and the color system at school is useless because he is always on red (the worst color).  He doesn't make the connection that what he did was wrong and often blames the person that "tattled" on him instead of recognizing his faults.  It's now April and I don't see much change and I think the teacher may have given up.  What in the world can I do to motivate him to try being positive?
  • Jert

    My daughter gets so angry with me sometimes I simply can't walk away. Last night she followed me everywhere, shouting as loud as she could close up, knowing that this could potentially damage my ears and destroy my career (I am a musician). I couldn't leave the house because she stood in front of the door barring my way and tried to grab my phone every time I tried to call a friend for support. I was basically standing with fingers in my ears, unable to do anything, being bullied by a full grown 16yr old in my own home for laying down rules about the way she conducts herself with her boyfriend in the house. How do you walk away from that? She is brilliantly clever, has just achieved spectacular results in public exams and won 3 school prizes plus an award for 6th form (as we call the last 2 years of school in the UK) and has a very nice boyfriend. Of course, none of this will give her long term success in adult life on its own. I am trying to encourage her to go and seek help in our relationship together so that we can learn to communicate better but I cannot physically force her to go. 

    I am a single, working mother and it is so hard to maintain any sort of authority without a male figure in the home. She is physically stronger than me and knows it. She was away for 2 weeks this summer and I was alone with my 2 14yr olds. It was heaven. We had such a good time, not doing anything special, just getting on with our lives with relative peace and quite. They have told me they never want to go on holiday with their older sister again because it really upsets them to see the way she treats me. 

    Thanks for listening.

    Desperate mother  

    • Char1ie
      Sounds exactly like my Son! I can't walk away either because he will follow me or he will stand in the doorway blocking my way. He screams until he gets a reaction. He'll just shout 'Mum! Mum! Mum! Mum!' He won't stop, sometimes he will do it at night soMore I can't go to sleep. And he says his behaviour is my fault. I brought it on myself because I annoyed him. But everything I do or say annoys him. I feel like I hate him at times, and like you, spending time with my other 2 children when he's not there is bliss. No-one wants to go on holiday because everyone knows how he will act and it will ruin the holiday. We can't even go on a day out without the whole day revolving around him. I hope you can get some help with your Daughter, and me too! It's so difficult being in the situation, I find it especially difficult when I'm hormonal and very tired. I feel I can't cope and sometimes I think I'm not living, I'm just existing.
      • Care4Moms
        Children can have high anxiety just like adults. I would ask your doctor or a child counselor about anxiety in children.
      • sasha

        Char1ie Hi I am Sacha. I understand why you feel you are not living but existing. It is because if you are emotionally connected to your son there is an energy (emotional) exchange happening. You will feel some of his emotions and he will feel some of your emotions.  It is a very unfair exchange, because his emotions are darker emotions then your emotions. Narcissists are not living, they are only existing. That is why they seek out people so that they can give their darker emotions to them in exchange for lighter ones from them. That is why when he is away it can be a bliss as long as you don't think of him and worry about him. Every time you meet someone and talk to someone energy exchange happening all the time. That is why some people can make you feel bad and others make you feel good. It all depends what kind of energy they carry with them. I hope this helps.

        • Char1ie
          Yes it does help, thank you. You talk a lot of sense :-)
      • Jert
        Char1ie Well,the only positive I can see is that we are not alone. We are currently in the process of seeking help but it's all very slow. If my daughter was performing badly at school the whole process would be quicker, but she's not. I made some progress with carefullyMore thought-out consequences for unacceptable behaviour but her Dad now undermines everything I do. I shared these with him and told him exactly what I had done and why. Not only that, he discusses the flaws he perceives in my parenting with her. He is also refusing to engage in any sort of help that is going to assist in setting boundaries and insists that she is  now a young adult and needs no boundaries. Despite the overriding view of most experts that this is not the case, and the evidence to prove it, he really does appear to believe his view is the only one for our daughter.  I withhold money, he gives it to her, I insist that social nights out in the school week are not acceptable (late ones) so he gives her pop concert tickets as a birthday present for the third night of the new term in September, which she announces over breakfast in front of the other 2 children. So, yet another precedent I wish to set has been removed and my younger children have more ammunition stored away for later use, potentially at least. I am assured that the parenting expert who I will meet with when I reach the top of the waiting list will be expert in dealing with all this because nothing I do carries any weight. At least we are on some sort of right track now. Don't punish yourself for feeling that you can't cope. My daughter grinds me into the ground, as I'm sure your son does too. How old is he? I think it must be more frightening with a boy because they are so much stronger, and also the relationship with a boy is so different. My son has begun to withdraw from me, and that's hard enough, but the thought of him behaving like his sister fills me with horror.  I think that once they get so far down that destructive road they can't stop. It's like a drug, and we know that if they don't learn to express their feelings appropriately, they will have BIG problems in life. You've recognized the problem and that's the best place to start. Someone said a wise thing to me, which is hard to see in the heat of the moment. She says my daughter is really at war with herself, not me, but I have to keep reminding myself and sometimes can't see that for what seems like weeks on end.
        • sacha
          Jert Char1ie I understand that you have two other children apart from the difficult 16 year old. How old is your son? As I was saying to Char1ie in a family we all share emotions, and sometimes a fathers emotional problems can appear in a child, or daughters can appear inMore a mother etc. It does not stay with one person it gets mixed up in a family. If your son is withdrawing from you it could be your daughters emotions getting into him and making him act that way. If this is the case he will not be like that permanently. There will be times when he is happy and  relaxed. Ask him then why he is doing it? Probably he would not know why or could be  just he felt that way.  It could also be your husbands, you never know. If your son was a nice, loving child as he was growing up he will not change. You don't have to worry about it. He will act out from time to time, just have to be patient with him and let the acting out pass. Most likely that he is a sensitive boy and picks out other peoples emotions. Best wishes Sacha.
          • Char1ie
            My son is 12. My older son is 15 and my Daughter is 6. I've asked him why he behaves like he does. He always say different reasons. He's tired or he's stressed about school or someone's wound him up. To be honest I don't think he really understands why.
          • sacha
            Char1ie Sorry Char1ie, the previous message was for Jert. I thinks she has 16 year old daughter and she was worried that her son was withdrawing from her. I am sorry to confuse you. I am really glad to know that my comments are helping people. Take care Sacha.
          • Jert
            @sacha Char1ie Sacha, very helpful, thank you! It is natural and right for a teenage boy to withdraw to a degree but good to be reminded that his innate personality will not change. He is indeed a very sensitive, caring boy and incredibly aware of other people's feelings and needs. HeMore always has been.
    • DeniseR_ParentalSupport

      Jert

      Having a child who corners you or bullies you when you try to

      disengage can make walking away difficult. As counter-intuitive as this may

      seem, the fact that your daughter continued trying to re-engage you in the

      power struggle actually points to how effective disconnecting is. It’s not

      uncommon for a child to follow you when you try to leave a power struggle.

      Eventually, when she realizes the behavior isn’t going to get her anywhere, it

      should die of neglect. Responding to the behavior in the moment serves only to

      feed into it and give it more power. This doesn’t mean you have to ignore the

      behavior completely. After things have calmed down, you can go back and http://www.empoweringparents.com/the-surprising-reason-for-bad-child-behavior.php with your daughter what she can do differently the next time she

      disagrees with the limits you set. You can also hold her accountable for her

      behavior through a task-oriented consequence. What this might look like in your

      situation is limiting her use of cell phone or other privilege until she can go

      for 24 hours without being verbally disrespectful or physically aggressive to

      you. Something to keep in mind is your daughter doesn’t have to like the limits

      you put in place, she just needs to follow them. I hope you are taking time to

      take care of yourself. Self-care is an often overlooked part of being an

      effective parent. Taking time to doing something good for yourself, such as

      meeting with a friend for coffee, going for a walk or doing another activity

      you enjoy, can go a long way towards recharging your batteries. We wish you the

      best of luck moving forward. Be sure to check back and let us know how things

      are going. Take care.

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