Ways To Not Raise A Narcissist

February 28, 2016
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We’ve all met the kid that thinks he will always get his way, the one that wants special treatment and throws a tantrum when things don’t go his way. This is a common trait in younger children; however when a child roughly reaches about seven years of age, he becomes able to compare himself convincingly to his peers. In most cases, this leads to an overall drop in self-esteem. For some however, it’s the beginning of a narcissistic nature which carries through into adulthood.

Some deem it to be a disorder – Narcissistic Personality Disorder, or NPD – and it is actually more commonly diagnosed in males and is believed to affect approximately 6.2% of the population.

However, recent studies conducted by the University of Amsterdam and the Ohio State University, has revealed that “narcissism in children is cultivated by parental overvaluation: parents believing their child to be more special and more entitled than others”. This basically indicates that no child is actually born narcissistic – they are brought up that way. This is good news as it means that there are things we can do to prevent our children from becoming narcissists.

Here are a few ways to raise a non-narcissistic child:

1.Manners makes the man

You will probably find a few well-mannered narcissists, however a lack thereof is the definitive form of narcissism. An absence of manners is a signal to the world that you have no need to obey to any silly rules or common courtesies and that the only thing that counts is your own comfort. Reinforcing things like table manners and greeting people from an early age will go a long way.

2.Say NO

It’s totally fine to say no to your children at times. In fact you will be doing them the world of good as they will be hearing that word at least a number of times throughout the adult lives. They may as well learn this at a young age, so it doesn’t come as a shock later in life.

3.Expose them to the world out there

Travel with your kids and expose them to other parts of the country and world including places where people are less fortunate than they are. It doesn’t have to be expensive trips but the more they see that the world is a big place made up of people with different cultures, economics and lifestyle, the more they will realise the world does not revolve around them.

4.Read to your child

Similar to travel, Reading fiction is known to help people improve their empathy, as it encourages them to place themselves in others’ lives.

5.Teach them responsibility

While the current parenting trend on “quality time” is good, boredom is its own potent life lesson. The message that you have to spend a portion of each day doing things that are essential and not fun is important. So giving your children chores teaches them a degree of responsibility and it’s also a nice way to bond with your kids in a relaxed setting.

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