People who act like they’re better than everyone else usually had these 7 experiences growing up

Ever met someone who’s just a real pain to be around? Whatever you do, they judge you for it! They don’t seem to understand anything you do and always believe that their way is the best way.

In work, school, relationships, and even friendships, they feel entitled to everything they want – and despise it when they don’t get it.

Well, these people probably had experiences that the rest of us didn’t have growing up. It’s what led them down this path that they’ve never stepped off of!

The experiences they had were probably along the lines of the following:

1) They got everything they ever wanted

I can guarantee you remember this happening as a kid. You were in a toy store and you wanted something. You asked your parents for it and they told you no.

Let me guess, you have a million memories just like that?

That’s because you grew up without being spoiled. It’s hard for parents not to spoil their kids. They want to give them everything and I totally get it! But doing so can be a little damaging. And ultimately, it isn’t the kids’ fault that they’ve been spoiled.

But unfortunately, some spoiled kids grow up to be spoiled adults. They don’t learn as they get older that they can’t expect everything from everyone. They don’t learn to understand the word “no”.

These people don’t really deserve your sympathy anymore. Because instead of realizing they were privileged growing up and appreciating it, they think they’re better than everyone else because they had it. Which really isn’t good.

2) They’ve never faced rejection

Have you ever asked someone out on a date and been told no? Gone for a job and not got it? Applied for something and been turned down?

If so, you’ve been rejected! It sucks, I know. But it’s completely normal. Rejection makes us stronger in so many ways. We become more resilient, determined, empathetic, and understanding once we’ve felt the pain of rejection.

Yet even though it’s normal, not everyone experiences rejection – especially at a young age. Some people have breezed through life never hearing the words, “No” or “You’re not what we’re looking for”.

Some people let this “luck” go to their heads. They think they’re better than everyone else because THEY’VE never been turned away like everyone else has.

In a way, this is true, which is why it’s understandable that they feel this way. But no one is perfect, and their luck will run out eventually!

3) They’ve never failed

I remember sitting my school mock exams and failing a bunch of them. I didn’t study at all. I thought I’d just be good enough to pass with a high mark.

Failing all those exams was a real eye-opener for me. It was a moment where I realized that I wasn’t just naturally good at all these things. I had to actually work hard if I wanted to do well.

I’ve had more moments like these in work, relationships, friendships, and so on. Times when I’ve realized that actually, I wasn’t just good enough as I was.

But some people never have experiences like these. They won’t study for an exam and they’ll get straight A’s. They’ll try something new at work and it’ll all go to plan. They’ll go on a single date and end up happily married to the person 10 years later.

People who never fail at anything don’t have this realization. I mean, I’m sure if I passed those exams, I’d think I was better than those who studied long hours for months on end!

Which is why some people who’ve never felt these failures still believe this – that they’re better than everyone else.

4) They were never humbled

Haven’t we all had a humbling moment? I’m sure most of us can think of a million times when we’ve been humbled.

It happened to an old colleague of mine once. He was young and (self-admittedly now) very arrogant!

A job came up in the team that he thought he had in the bag. He told everyone he was going to get it. He even changed his email signature to the new job title…

I’m guessing you’ve already gathered that he didn’t get the job. Someone else in the team did. The move wasn’t intentional by management, but you can best believe that it humbled him to no end!

When you experience a moment like this, a bit like me when I failed my mock exams, you check yourself in the best kind of way. You understand failure and arrogance, and you see the problem with it.

If my colleague had gotten the job, he probably wouldn’t have learned that his behavior was bad. He’d probably do it again. And so long as he was never humbled, he might not have ever seen anything wrong with it.

It’s these kinds of people who reach deep adulthood thinking they’re better than everyone else…

5) They were never given the harsh truth

Lack of guidance People who act like they’re better than everyone else usually had these 7 experiences growing up

One time, when I was probably about 10, my friends and I went to a birthday party. We’d heard someone say, “I want cake” on a TV show in a funny way, so we kept repeating it over and over. When my mom came to pick me up, I kept saying it in front of the parents.

Some parents might’ve laughed it off and said nothing. But not my mom! She told me straight up that even though I was joking, I sounded spoilt and rude.

It was a harsh truth, right? But she was right. It DID sound spoilt and rude.

Sometimes, especially as kids, we need to hear the harsh truth. We can’t be wrapped up in cotton wool, being told that everything we do and say is “just fine” and “we’re just kids having fun”.

Because these kinds of kids grow up not always knowing right from wrong. They also grow up thinking that because they don’t get told off like their friends do, they must be better than everyone else. And these thoughts never leave them in adulthood…

6) They’ve never had their heart broken

This kind of goes hand in hand with rejection, but not really. Heartbreak brings about a certain kind of pain, especially when you’re older and you understand human emotions (including your own) a lot more.

Psychologist, Guy Winch, often talks about how similar regions of the brain light up when we feel the pain of heartbreak and when we’re physically hurt.

When you’ve never had your heartbroken, you don’t experience this level of hurt. Some people think they’re better than others because they haven’t felt it, too.

I have a “friend” just like this. She met her now husband when she was 18. They got married and 15 years later, they’re still together. The rest of us have had a couple of relationships before we’ve ended up married/cohabiting etc.

We don’t look down on people who are single in their 30s or have only been with their partner for 1-2 years. But she does! Because she doesn’t get how healing heartbreak can be or how much better it is to be single than in a bad relationship.

And she thinks she’s better than everyone else because she’s never been broken up with romantically. Or at least, she hasn’t yet…

7) They grew up with money

You can’t help how much money your family has growing up. Most kids don’t notice things like that when they’re young, anyway. They just think they’re living life like everyone else is.

But some kids get older and figure out what they had compared to others. It makes them grateful and appreciative. It makes them want to understand the life of others and their own privilege.

But not all kids are like this. Some kids, as kids, realize what they have and bully others over it. They mock the holes in other kids’ shoes and their dodgy haircuts.

The older they get, the worse they get. They don’t feel grateful or appreciative for what they have or had. They feel proud of it! And instead of doing good with their privilege, they use it against people.

They think they’re better than everyone else for the money they had growing up – and they don’t hesitate to make sure you know it.

Final thoughts

Like I said earlier, you can’t help how you were brought up or what you experienced in life. To an extent, it isn’t your fault if you behave selfishly as an adult because of it either!

But realistically, you should start learning the ways of the world the older you get.

When someone thinks they’re better than you as an adult, it really isn’t your fault or your problem – especially if this person is your friend or partner.

Just because you understand how they became the way they are, you don’t have to grin and bear it. Life is too short to be around someone who acts like they’re better than you all the time!

And besides, maybe telling them straight or cutting them off will be the humbling they’ve always needed!

Picture of Amy Reed

Amy Reed

Amy Reed is a content writer from London working with international brands. As an empath, she loves sharing her life insights to help others. When she’s not writing, she enjoys a simple life of reading, gardening, and making a fuss over her two cats.

Enhance your experience of Ideapod and join Tribe, our community of free thinkers and seekers.

Related articles

Most read articles

Get our articles

Ideapod news, articles, and resources, sent straight to your inbox every month.