If you agree with 5 or more of these statements, then it's likely that you have this schema.
- 1I find it very hard to take no for an answer.
- 2I feel like I shouldn't have to follow the normal rules and restrictions of society.
- 3I find it difficult to admit I am wrong - because I am usually right.
- 4I believe that my needs and feelings are more important than other people's.
- 5I always put myself first.
- 6I have been told by others that I am very controlling and domineering.
- 7I can't stand being told what to do.
- 8I have little respect for authority.
- 9I feel that I am superior in some way to most people I know.
- 10I feel like I should be able to do what I want, when I want.
People with this schema feel that they are special. They believe that they are better than other people and feel entitled to special rights and privileges.
They don't feel that they have to reciprocate in relationships and they try to control and manipulate others to get their needs met. They rarely consider the cost of their actions on others and have very little capacity for true empathy.
They can be very domineering, controlling and will often use a position of power to abuse others. Typical behaviours include extreme competitiveness, selfish acts, ignoring rules and regulations, and forcing their own opinion and point of view on others.
Sometimes they can come across as very charismatic and they use this to control more vulnerable people, or to manipulate others into their way of thinking.
There are two basic types of people with Entitlement schema - those with 'pure' entitlement and those who are typically described as 'narcissistic'.
Narcissistic entitlement or "fragile' entitlement as it is sometimes called, is a compensation strategy for deep feelings of shame and inadequacy - coming from an underlying defectiveness and shame schema and an emotional deprivation schema.
Pure entitlement comes from a background where the child was allowed to do whatever they wanted and was spoiled and over-indulged. They were never taught limits and never had to follow the rules and regulations that other children had in place. The belief that they are special becomes deeply embedded in their subconscious brain.
This is one of the most difficult schemas to address for two reasons.
1. There are a great deal of benefits to this schema. People often don't want to give up their lifestyle of doing exactly what they want.
2. People with this schema don't believe there is anything wrong with what they are doing - they believe the problems they have are because of other people.
People with Entitlement often only seek help when they are forced to by other people in their lives. Often a spouse or a child who has been affected by their behaviour.
How this schema causes problems
Entitled people have the same emotional needs as the rest of us - they might meet some of them through superficial and indirect means but essentially they will begin to feel lonely, depressed and unfulfilled but not understand why - especially if they have achieved success in their life.
The people I have worked with who have this schema start to suffer from depression but they don't understand why as they have achieved a lot of success in their careers or financially. The things that used to motivate them, no longer satisfy them
Relationships are not equal with this schema - partners of people with Entitlement rarely get their emotional needs met and so feel quite lonely, undervalued and neglected.
If the schema is more on the narcissistic end of the spectrum, partners can end up feeling quite emotionally unstable due to the manipulation and abuse that they receive.
Some people with this schema can have difficulty in their careers as they don't like to be told what to do, while others can end up with legal problems because they often believe that the law does not apply to them.