How to act spoiled

How to act spoiled

A spoiled child normally grows to become a spoiled adult. This will affect them in maintaining a steady job, keeping friendships, having a spouse, and experiencing a healthy life. Spoiled people are selfish and self-centered. But, how do you know if they are spoiled? How can you help them see how destructive their behaviors are to others?

Here are 6 behaviors that create spoiled people (and how to avoid them):

1. Giving into everything.

Spoiled people have never known boundaries. Parents and friends cater to their every whim. These are the children who, with every tantrum, get exactly what they want. As adults, they have louder and more volatile tempers that implement the same behavior. “I want what I want when I want it.” Because they are used to getting what they want, they will torment anyone who doesn’t give into their demands. They border on mental illness because they can’t see reality from the delusional state of desires.

You can’t return to their childhood. You can, however, establish boundaries of what you will tolerate. The word “No” can anger these individuals. But, being consistent in your pursuit to help them recognize their behavior is important (and vital for their mental health). They might not stick around. If they do, know you have accomplished a beautiful task!

2. Reinforcing negative behavior.

Spoiled people trampled on anyone who gets in their way. They take what they want. They have zero concept that the world doesn’t revolve around them. They will make their way into an office and step on anything that prevents them from moving up the ladder of success. They will also use people and relationships quickly and then dump them without a single ounce of regret.

In order to disarm their behavior, you must use positive forces. For every negative action, you will need to establish several positive ones. So if you have witnessed the selfish behavior of someone who has been nasty to another to get what they want, you may want to let them know that the behavior can (and will be) returned in the same manner. Nothing upsets the spoiled person more than believing they will get punished. They don’t know what it is like to set limitations.

3. Picking fights.

A spoiled person will create drama to get attention. They will pick fights to deviate from what they want and then stab you from behind. It’s manipulation at its finest. They will devalue your opinion and turn around and utilize it for themselves. They truly don’t care how they get what they are after. They are determined to get it to all cost.

Pick your fights wisely. Not every argument needs to become a battle of wits to feed the ego. You stand your ground. Keep your boundaries. The spoiled person will soon forget what you were trying to accomplish. They are off on their next tantrum.

4. Destroying your image through manipulation.

People who are spoiled are narcissistic. They will manipulate through abuse, degrading, and control. They will make you feel horrible for not participating in the things that they want. They feed off your weaknesses or insecurities to get you to do things for them. These people don’t care how they hurt you as long as they get what they are after.

A spoiled person doesn’t accept that they have any weaknesses. It’s not about pinpointing those insecurities to them, but about turning the tables so they can see that things hurt when you are vicious. They have their weaknesses. Stay humble and use humility as your armor when dealing with these master manipulators. Stand your ground. Show them forgiveness but also discipline. Do not let them abuse you with their anger.

5. Rewarding poor actions.

Spoiled people brag about how they got that new job or the new girlfriend. They will create these stories with Oscar-winning talent. They want the attention even though it’s toxic. Rewarding poor actions and behavior encourages the self-centered and spoiled person to continue doing these things. It’s giving them permission to get what they want regardless of the consequences.

Create incentives for good behavior. Just like a parent does with a child, you must reward positive actions. Become a positive role model in this person’s life. You don’t need to brag about the things you do, but allow them to witness compassion, goodwill, and empathy through your examples. Let them know that the act of receiving is just as beautiful as giving.

6. Lack of consideration.

Spoiled people have no consideration for the feelings of others. They are aggressive in behavior. They will bulldoze over anything to get attention. Their actions are sneaky and premeditated. These folks plot and scheme to con anyone into doing anything. The famous Cuban poet Jose Marti said, “A selfish man is a thief.” He will steal your heart, your money and your livelihood if you let them.

We have been taught to satisfy our needs however we can. The spoiled person takes it on a completely different level. You do not have to satisfy their needs. You don’t have to participate in everything they want. Once again, boundaries are important. Show this person love. Most spoiled people are missing structure in their lives. They didn’t have set rules growing up. Everything was supplied to them. Now as adults, they don’t understand why the world has to be so structured.

Spoiled, selfish people are everywhere. You can deal with them in a healthy manner that won’t suck you into their drama. You don’t have to entertain them and give into everything. You can use your awareness and knowing to teach them little by little what it is to be a functional adult with healthy behaviors.

How to act spoiledIt could be for Father’s Day. It could be for a birthday or an anniversary. No matter what the reason, there are times that call for your man to be spoiled. It seems so much harder to do that for the men. But when you think about it, you’ll find many ways to spoil your man and have some fun.

Adjust these suggestions for your husband, father, brother, or any other man in your life that you want to show how special he is. Get the kids involved. They can make him a crown and a robe for his kingly position. They can help make meals and go to events with him. It is all up to. Here is a list to get you started.

  1. Rub His Feet
  2. Tickets to Ballgame or Event
  3. Cook His Favorite Meal
  4. Make His Favorite Drink
  5. Make Homemade Bread
  6. Let Him Grill
  7. Give Him a Day to Himself
  8. King for the Day
  9. Romantic Dinner
  10. Breakfast in Bed
  11. Let Him Do Whatever He Wants
  12. Spend the Day with His Hobby
  13. Give Him a Man Cave
  14. Scavenger Hunt
  15. Paintball
  16. Spa
  17. Car Show
  18. Shopping
  19. No Nagging Day
  20. Go Camping
  21. Leave Love Notes Everywhere
  22. Let Him Sleep In
  23. Serve Him
  24. Romantic Evening
  25. Celebrate for a Week
  26. Invite His Mother to Dinner
  27. Dedicate a Song on the Radio to Him
  28. Personalize Deserts
  29. Let Him Have a Guys Day
  30. Go to the Zoo
  31. Picnic
  32. Buy Him Zany Gifts
  33. Amusement Park
  34. Buy Him a Puppy
  35. Put up a Banner in the Yard to Tell the World How You Feel
  36. Put on a Roast – But a Nice One
  37. Throw a Party
  38. Bar-B-Que
  39. This Is Your Life Event
  40. Go to a Movie
  41. Leave Him Alone for a Day
  42. Give Him a Helicopter Ride
  43. Send Him on a Vacation
  44. Bring Him Coffee in Bed
  45. Send Him Flowers
  46. Get in a Water Balloon Fight
  47. Hold Hands
  48. Let Him Decide on Where to Eat
  49. Ask Him What He Wants to Do
  50. Tell Him You Love Him

How to act spoiled

Show your love. Spoil your man. Check out his interests and give them to him. Every man is different. One might like going to a ballgame while another would prefer to spend the day in a bookstore. One will prefer to fish and another to play computer games. Spoil them with what they enjoy.

When you tell him no, he yells “I hate you!” loud enough for everyone to hear before launching into one of his regular fits: kicking, screaming, crying. People are glaring at you, and you know what’s going through their minds: “Wow, what a spoiled brat.”

If this scene sounds familiar, you’re not alone. The spoiled child problem appears to be getting worse, too. In fact, 59% of parents think their kids are more spoiled than they were at the same age, according to a 2011 survey from Parenting and Today Moms.

We asked parenting experts to reveal the signs that you might be raising a spoiled kid. Below, they also share advice that will help you undo some of those behaviors.

What Makes A Child ‘Spoiled,’ Anyway?

How to act spoiled

A spoiled child is used to getting what they want when they want it with few exceptions.

“Every kid has an off-day —and so do adults — but spoiled kids are stuck in ‘me’ mode,” said Michele Borba, educational psychologist and author of “UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World.” “Everything revolves around their needs, concerns, feelings, wants, desires, and everyone else takes second place.”

Clinical psychologist Laura Markham takes issue with the term “spoiled” because she believes it suggests the child is somehow “ruined.” Nor does she like using the word “brat” to describe a kid. When you think about it, the harsh descriptors may be a tad unfair given that the parents (not the kids) are the ones largely responsible for the spoiled behavior.

“Children do what we train them to do, what we lead them to expect,” Markham, founder of the site Aha! Parenting, said. “If we have parented permissively and have never set limits, the child will not be used to accommodating appropriate limits.”

When parents spoil their children, their intentions are often good, albeit misguided. They indulge their kids because they want to provide them with the best life possible, giving them everything Mom and/or Dad didn’t have growing up. Some parents may worry that giving their kid a firm “no” will hurt the child’s feelings or damage their confidence. Other times, parents are just too exhausted to enforce the rules — or set any in the first place.

“It’s plain easier to give in when you’re tired,” Borba said. “We hate to say ‘no’ when we’ve been gone [at work] all day.”

Signs Your Kid Could Be Spoiled

How to act spoiled

Not sure if your kiddo fits the bill? Below are seven expert-backed signs they might be overindulged and under-disciplined.

1. When you tell them “no,” they throw a tantrum until they get their way.

All kids may express some disappointment when you tell them they can’t, for example, have pizza for dinner two nights in a row. But spoiled children have a particularly hard time taking no for an answer.

Tantrums might be developmentally appropriate for toddlers or very young kids who can’t adequately express themselves, explained marriage and family therapist LeNaya Smith Crawford . But if these meltdowns are happening all the time and don’t subside as the kid gets older, that could be an indication they’re spoiled.

“How does your kid typically respond to the word ‘no’?” Borba said. “Spoiled kids can’t handle the word. They expect to get what they want and usually do.”

2. They’re never satisfied with what they have.

Spoiled children may have all the toys and clothes in the world, but it’s never enough: They want more, more, more.

“Because they have a lot, they tend to be unappreciative and a bit greedy,” Borba said.

Instead of expressing their gratitude for what they have, they’re more focused on getting the next thing.

“They may start to say ‘thank you’ less and ‘I want’ more,” Smith Crawford said.

3. They think the world revolves around them.

Spoiled kids tend to be self-centered. They aren’t all that concerned with inconveniencing other people.

“Spoiled kids think more of themselves than of others,” Borba said. “They feel entitled and expect special favors.”

4. They demand things ASAP.

Bratty children aren’t particularly patient: When they want something, they want it now.

“It’s usually easier to give in than to postpone the child’s request,” Borba said.

5. They’re sore losers.

No kid enjoys losing — be it a board game or a tennis match — but spoiled ones may have a tougher time managing disappointment when they don’t win.

“If your child is always blaming others for poor performance, expecting to be singled out for praise for everything they do, yells at others who aren’t doing things their way and fails to give recognition when their teammates or competitors are successful, you may have a spoiled child on your hands,” therapist Virginia Williamson told Best Life.

“Remember, there is no gene for spoiled. It’s a learned behavior that can be unlearned — and the quicker, the better.”

6. They don’t give up until they get what they want.

Spoiled kids may employ manipulative tactics to get the “yes” they’re after, whether that means lying or pitting their parents against one another.

“For example, going to one parent and saying the other parent said they could have the item they desire,” Smith Crawford said.

7. They refuse to complete even simple tasks until you beg or bribe them.

It’s normal for kids to need some prompting to brush their teeth or clean up their toys, for example. But once a parent asks them to do something, they should listen. If your child frequently refuses to do very basic things until you plead or incentivize them with money, treats or toys, you could be setting a bad precedent.

“If you rely on bribes to motivate your child, then the next time you ask your 8-year-old to clear the dishes off the dinner table, for example, don’t be surprised if s/he asks, ‘How much are you going to pay me?’” clinical psychologist Suzanne Gelb wrote in a HuffPost blog.

How to act spoiled

The dating scene is weird on so many levels. On one hand, I can honestly say that there are a lot of people who are way too good for the people that they date. These people are often victimized by the dating scene, and end up becoming extremely bitter people if they can’t find a decent partner in time.

Then, there are others: the brats. These are the people who take advantage of good people and often end up causing way more harm than good. They’re self-centered, and they actually don’t really understand that other people have feelings. They are brats, pure and simple, and they think they deserve a lot more than they actually do.

Brats are not worth the time of day. They don’t care about anyone but themselves, and don’t even view the opposite sex as human beings. Worried you’re dating someone with bratty behavior? Then you should watch out for these signs of a spoiled brat.

1. He has weight requirements for his girlfriend.

Did he say that he needs to have a girlfriend who’s under a certain weight limit? This is basically the male version of women saying that they need to have a man over 6 feet tall — and yes, both versions are equally bratty.

There’s nothing wrong with wanting a person who’s slender, but if they actually list an exact number of pounds, they’re going overboard.

2. You’ve seen him tear down women who didn’t fit his “mold.”

A man who has no problem berating a woman who isn’t up to par or treats women terribly if they aren’t “his type” is a man who’s a brat and totally undeserving of any kind of love. If he’ll do it to them, he’ll do it to you once you no longer fit his idea of a good mate.

3. He’s been known to say really misogynistic things.

Nope! That’s a big ol’ red flag right there. At best, he’s ignorant. At worst, he’s openly showing you that he thinks he’s more important than you, and that he’ll treat you as such.

4. When he visits you, he starts demanding you do things you don’t want to do.

There’s something innately bratty about a man who shows up to YOUR place and demands you make him dinner. Just saying, he might be better off being hungry for a bit.

5. He makes a scene in public or in front of your friends, but calls you “unreasonable” or “crazy” when you say you no longer want to see him.

Just saying, there’s nothing wrong with not wanting to be seen with a public embarrassment. Perhaps he should find someone who has a bullsh*t tolerance higher than you do? After all, you probably don’t deserve the burden of having to deal with his BS.

6. If you tell him you don’t want to do something, he pouts or plays the victim until you cave.

From personal experience, tell him to either put up or grab a tampon. That’s bratty, manipulative emotional blackmail, and no one has time for that.

7. You notice that he has Nice Guy Syndrome.

He talks about how “nice guys finish last” and how “women only want jerks.” You get the feeling that he plays the victim, despite not being that nice to you at all.

Yep, Nice Guys are spoiled brats, too. That’s why they’re usually single and why they should stay that way.

8. He acts like going out with you is a chore, rather than a privilege.

Yeah, if anyone thinks they’re too good for you, chances are very high that you’re actually too good for them, and they’re just spoiled brats who don’t realize what they have.

9. You constantly find him telling you to do more and more, just for him to commit to you or stay with you.

This is a point that goes beyond brat and delves into the realm of user, especially if what he’s asking you to do doesn’t make you feel comfortable. Should you find yourself in this situation, tell him to kick rocks. It’s better to be alone than to be with this kind of leech.

10. People ask you why you tolerate his BS.

If people are voicing your concern, that’s a good cue to step back and look at your life. This is one of the major signs of a spoiled brat — and an abusive one, at that.

11. What he wants in a girlfriend or wife, and what he can offer aren’t anywhere near the same level.

He wants a model who has a prestigious job and a good standing. He’s a potbellied dropout with a terrible job and an even more terrible rep.

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Bratty? Yes. Worth your time? Absolutely not!

12. You regularly feel like you owe him, despite you logically not having any reason to owe him anything.

This is often a sign that he’s guilting you and manipulating you into doing what he wants. And guess what? That’s a sign he’s a brat who tries to manipulate girls into doing what he says, or who feels like he’s entitled to more than what he really deserves.

13. He regularly talks about how “he could do better” or says stuff that insinuates that you’re not deserving of his time.

To be fair, he’s right. He could do better for humanity by just checking out of the dating scene. You don’t deserve to be near such an insufferable twat, either.

14. Everything about the relationship is lopsided and riddled with double standards.

You can’t stop working, but if he doesn’t want to work, it’s okay. He has a right to complain about your looks, but if you want to do the same, you’re shallow.

Sound familiar? Yeah, it’s not acceptable regardless of gender and it may be time to dump this foul brat.

15. You don’t feel like he really takes your feelings into consideration.

Relationships are a thing of “give and take.” If you’re always giving and he’s always taking, it’s time to call it quits. He’s being a brat and it’s not your job to be a martyr for him.

Ossiana Tepfenhart is a Jack-of-all-trades writer based out of Red Bank, New Jersey. When she’s not writing, she’s drinking red wine and chilling with some cool cats. You can follow her @ bluntandwitty on Twitter.

How to act spoiled

It can be frustrating dealing with a spoiled adult who is all give and no take. He acts entitled, expects others to do things for him and is not used to hearing the word “no.” He is self-centered and does as he pleases, regardless of who he affects. Dealing with this kind of behavior, especially on a regular basis, can take a toll on your stress level and even your self-esteem. Learn to stand your ground and let him know that you won’t tolerate certain behaviors.

Step 1

Imagine life through her eyes. Consider how she may have grown up to better understand why she acts the way she does, suggests business and communications consultants Brian Salter and Naomi Langford-Wood in “Dealing With Difficult People in a Week: Teach Yourself.” If her parents did everything for her as a child, she may expect others to do the same for her in her adult life. Her attitude of entitlement can also be a result of insecurity and attempts to protect her self-esteem, says marriage and family therapist Neil Rosenthal in response to a question on Keep in mind that she takes any negative criticism as a personal attack and rejects having to face the reality that she’s not always right.

Step 2

Acknowledge his feelings. You don’t have to always agree with the spoiled adult, but validate his feelings to show that you understand and have heard his point of view. An insecure, spoiled adult will be on the defense and will be less likely to listen to what you are saying if he feels attacked. Show some sympathy and understanding to put him at ease, Rosenthal says. Although you are acknowledging his feelings, don’t apologize if you are not to blame.

Step 3

Establish boundaries and refuse to enable her behavior. While it’s important to sympathize with a spoiled adult, it’s also important not to make excuses for her. Tell her what you will and will not tolerate, says psychotherapist Beverly Engel in “AARP The Nice Girl Syndrome: Stop Being Manipulated and Abused — and Start Standing Up for Yourself.” Keep your voice and body language assertive, but don’t get into an argument. Omit any personal blame or criticism from the conversation. Make it clear that you do not agree with her and try to leave it at that. Arguing may be a waste of time.

Step 4

Stress that he must take responsibility for his own feelings. He may play the victim when you refuse to accomodate his spoiled behavior, says psychologist John B. Arden in “Stop Spoiling That Man!: Turn Your Needy Guy Into an Equal, Loving Partner.” After you have acknowledged his feelings, make it clear that you do not feel sorry for him. Tell him in an assertive, but respectful, tone that you are not to blame for how he deals with his own emotions. Walk out of the room if he refuses to listen or continues to yell. This will show him that his attempts to blame you for his feelings do not work with you.

Amy Morin, LCSW, is the Editor-in-Chief of Verywell Mind. She's also a psychotherapist, international bestselling author and host of the The Verywell Mind Podcast.

Ann-Louise T. Lockhart, PsyD, ABPP, is a board-certified pediatric psychologist, parent coach, author, speaker, and owner of A New Day Pediatric Psychology, PLLC.

Almost every parent has experienced a few cringe-worthy moments where a child’s ungrateful attitude becomes evident. Whether your child says, “Is that all I’m getting for my birthday?” after opening a pile of presents, or you hear, “I never get to do anything fun” as you’re driving home from a fun-filled day at the park, the lack of gratitude can be frustrating.


While it’s normal for all kids to have moments where their sense of entitlement becomes evident if you are like most parents you don’t want your child’s ungrateful attitude to become permanent. But instilling a grateful heart is about more than teaching your child to say “yes please” and “thank you.”

Being grateful comes from within and is more of a mindset than an action.

If your child is ungrateful more often than you’d like, the good news is, there are things you can do. Here are some discipline strategies that can help your child learn to be a bit more thankful.

Point out Ungratefulness

When you hear your child say or do something that shows an ungrateful attitude, point it out. Be specific without being insulting. For instance, avoid saying something like, “Stop being a brat.” Instead, say something like, “Complaining about not getting more presents is ungrateful. Your friends and family were kind enough to buy you a gift when they didn’t have to buy you anything.”

Consistently pointing out incidents that portray an ungrateful attitude will help your child see what behavior constitutes entitlement. Just make sure your comments are aimed at raising awareness, not shaming your child.

You also can head off ungrateful behavior by talking to your child before a birthday party or holiday where gifts are given. Discuss the fact that gifts cost money and that people often spend a lot of time thinking about what to buy. Remind them that the gift giver is usually excited to see them open the gift.

So, responding with an ungrateful attitude could be really hurtful. Getting them to see the money and effort someone else puts into a gift helps them appreciate it a little more. And, it is more likely they will respond with a more grateful heart.

Teach Empathy

Kids need help in understanding how their behavior affects other people. You can do that by teaching your child empathy.   Talk to them about how their words or behaviors impact others. Say things like, “When you say you never get to do anything fun, it hurts my feelings. I try to make sure we do plenty of fun things together, like go to the park or play games.”

You also can use situations in books and movies to get them to consider how others might be feeling. For instance, when you are reading books or watching TV together, pause and ask how certain characters might feel. Ask questions like, "When that boy said those mean things, how do you think his brother felt?" Help your child identify and label feeling words.

Delay Gratification

Showering your child with endless material items and countless indulgences will spoil her. Kids cannot be grateful for what they have unless they’re given an opportunity to delay gratification.

For instance, it is OK to say no when your kids ask for a new toy or an expensive gadget. Instead, tell them they need to wait until their birthday. Or, you could teach them how to save up their allowance for something they want.

Another way to delay gratification is to link privileges, like screen time and playdates, to good behavior. However, never confuse a bribe with a reward. Bribing your child will only fuel an ungrateful attitude. Saying, "Here's a balloon, now be good," is a bribe. A reward, on the other hand, is about saying, "You were really well behaved today. I am really proud of you. You earned a balloon."

You also may want to implement a reward system. This type of plan helps children feel good about their accomplishments. They also learn to appreciate their privileges much more when they have actually earned them.  

Foster Gratitude

There are many steps you can take to foster gratitude in children. One of the most important steps is to be a good role model of a grateful attitude.   Talk regularly about all the things you have to be grateful for each day.

Express gratitude for things that can easily be taken for granted, like spending time together, seeing a beautiful sunset, or finding a great parking spot.

Also, strive to establish family habits that foster gratitude. Create a gratitude jar where everyone writes down one thing they're grateful for every day. Then, on a specific date, like New Year's, read through all the slips of paper.

You also can make it a habit to talk about gratitude each day at bedtime or around the dinner table.   Ask everyone, “What was the best part of your day today?” Then, discuss why you are grateful for the good things in your day.

Focus on Helping Others

Make kindness a family habit. Take your children with you when you help an elderly neighbor or give them an opportunity to help you make a meal for someone who needs a helping hand.  

Get your child involved in volunteer work too. Teach your kids that they are never too young to help other people. Helping others in need will decrease your child’s self-centered outlook. It also will help foster compassion, which decreases the likelihood that your child will be ungrateful.

Talk about being kind often. Make it a daily habit to ask, “What is something kind you did for someone today?” or, “How did you help make the world better today?” When kids perform acts of kindness, they’ll be more likely to focus on what they can give, rather than what they think they deserve.

A Word From Verywell

Keep in mind that it's normal for kids to be a bit egocentric at times. It's also normal to at times behave as the world revolves around them. So, don't get discouraged. But, over time, an ungrateful attitude should be getting better, not worse. When you see your child act entitled, take a step back and think about what steps you can take to foster a more grateful spirit.

Y ou have to hand it to Lord Frost. He sure knows how to lose an audience. Not that the UK’s chief Brexit negotiator had much of one to start with. There were only a few dozen people in the British embassy in Lisbon and under 300 watching on the Cabinet Office live Twitter feed to hear Frost give his keynote speech on the Northern Ireland protocol. How many were still awake by the time he got to the end of his 30-minute confused ramble is anyone’s guess.

Then again maybe that was the point. Being dull is what Frost does best. He numbs the senses to distract you from the more obvious weaknesses in his own arguments. As a negotiator his main tactic is to bore you into submission, by hoping you will have forgotten much of what he said by the time you come to sign on the dotted line. The only flaw with this is that sometimes it’s him who nods off and forgets what he’s agreed to. Something that appears to have happened with the Brexit deal he concluded less than two years ago and which he is now desperate to change. Don’t worry. Lord Frost was on hand to clear up the damage caused by Lord Frost.

Frost struggled to explain what he was doing in Lisbon when he could more profitably have given the same speech in London or Brussels. “Edmund Burke and Van Eyck,” he muttered, not really making things any clearer. He’d have been better off just saying that if it was OK for Boris to sneak off to stay with Zac Goldsmith in Marbella for the week it was fine for him to have an awayday with the British ambo in Portugal.

That, though, was about the highpoint of his logic. Next up, Frost diplomatically trashed the EU by saying he was no longer much interested in what our former European allies did – before going on to insist the UK’s main influence now resided in that we could exert through competition and the power of example.

That was why we had needed a hard Brexit as only a hard Brexit gave us the freedom to change. This from the same David Frost who in 2016 as chief executive of the Scotch Whisky Association had said the UK would be mad to leave the benefits of the single market. If you don’t like Frosty’s principles, he’s got plenty of others. How else do you get made a lord these days?

Thereafter it wasn’t clear if Frost was being wilfully stupid or was just trying to have a laugh. First, he cited freeports as one of Brexit’s biggest wins – oblivious to the fact that the EU didn’t actually prohibit them – and then went on to extol the virtues of a free market, low-tax economy.

Something the UK can now only dream about as the government appears ready to step in to support business and put up taxes to their highest rates since the 1940s. Weirdest of all, he cited the UK’s response to the coronavirus pandemic as a symbol of Boris leading the world by example. Clearly Frost hadn’t got round to reading the cross-party health and science committees’ report that had been published that morning.

But all that had really only been foreplay to soften up the EU for the main event. Because what Frost really wanted was to rip up the NI protocol and start again with a new one which would allow us to do whatever we wanted. The very same Northern Ireland protocol that he had, at Christmas last year, said was “an excellent deal with the EU that he had been proud to secure”.

The problem was this. It wasn’t that the UK hadn’t anticipated there being a few teething problems with the Northern Ireland protocol: effectively creating a border between Great Britain and Northern Ireland had been the only way to preserve the principles of the Good Friday agreement.

The trouble lay with the fact that the EU was breaking the spirit of the NI protocol by going to the trouble of implementing it. No one in the UK had imagined the EU would take such a purist approach to the treaties it signed. The UK negotiators had assumed they could safely ignore the bits they found inconvenient or troublesome. In a surreal coda, Frost closed by accusing the EU of acting in bad faith by applying the treaty in the form in which it had been agreed.

The audience’s questions didn’t provide any greater clarity. It was a total coincidence that the UK was threatening to rip up the NI protocol the day before the EU was due to give its response to the UK’s previous demands. It was intolerable that the NI protocol should be arbitrated by the European court of justice even though that had been provided for in the treaty. Frost didn’t want to provoke a trade war by triggering article 16 but if the EU didn’t do exactly what we wanted then they would have to suffer the consequences. And even if they did play along with us they would have to be prepared for us to change our minds again at a later stage. Because what Brexit really meant was that the UK could do whatever it liked whenever it wanted.

Frost scarpered off as soon as he could. He tried to put on the brave face of the underdog who had just stuck it to the Man. But something told him that he had just suffered an abject humiliation. Worse, it had come at his own hands. He had tried to sound like a statesman but had only succeeded in being a spoiled teenager. Furious to have been outwitted by himself by agreeing to the NI protocol. Far from a triumph, it had been a regression.

How to act spoiledI don’t like to use negative words like, “spoiled” or “brat” but I often hear parents use this term to describe their kids.

What does it mean? I am not 100% sure, but I think it means that kids are acting badly. I think it is a mix of self-centeredness, selfishness and entitlement.

“You bought only one package of sidewalk chalk!”

“But this isn’t my favorite flavor ice cream!”

“Why didn’t you go to the store today and get me the pencils I wanted?”

Behavior like this, can put us parents on edge. We get annoyed and frustrated and a little insulted as well.

To help us out, we need to know that this behavior is normal. Most kids have a hard time seeing understanding another’s feelings. Which makes them look selfish. They also don’t have the easiest time regulating their feelings, so when they are disappointed, (by not getting their favorite ice cream) they may just blurt out exactly what they are feeling.

So what can we do? Can we turn this behavior around? I think so.

Kids who speak this way need to be trained to act grateful instead of entitled. That is our job. We also need to teach them to express their disappointment and their needs in a polite way. We also can point out how their behavior effects others.

To teach them to be grateful instead of entitled, you can gently say:

“I expect when I buy you a present, like sidewalk chalk, that you say thank you.”

“You sound disappointed about the ice cream. However, when someone buys you something you need to say thank you. Next time this happens you can say, “Thanks Mom, next time you go, can you get me chocolate?”

To teach them to understand how their behavior effects others, you can talk about your feelings:

“I feel frustrated when I am spoken to in this way. I wrote pencils down on my shopping list. The next time I have time to go to store I will buy them.”

Kids are diamonds in the rough, they just need some polishing. That is where we come in. So let’s avoid calling our kids names and focus on what we need to teach them.

How to act spoiled

The heroic Cuban poet Jose Marti once said, “A selfish man is a thief.” How true, as selfish people can rob you of parking spaces, pleasurable evenings out and even a peaceful night’s sleep. Unlike thieves, however, selfish people often don’t break any laws, even though it would be nice to file a complaint and turn the matter over to police. Instead, you’ll have to develop the skills to deal with the entitled and self-centered individuals in your life without resorting to the very behaviors you dislike in them.

Set Boundaries

“We teach other people how to treat us,” notes human behavior expert Patrick Wanis, Ph.D., on his personal website. When you’re dealing with people who are selfish, make certain to speak up for yourself as soon as the person begins to step on your toes. For example, if your spoiled nephew, who is 22 years old but acts 15, decides that stopping by your house every day to raid your refrigerator after work is preferable to buying his own groceries, tell him you need him to stop by the store and buy milk and sandwich meat on his way over tomorrow. If you don’t allow people to behave selfishly, they can’t.

Walk Away

If you’ve given a selfish and spoiled person the opportunity to change her behavior, and she chooses not to, walk away from the situation — figuratively, if not literally. This is easier when you’re dealing with a friend or acquaintance, but it can work with family members and coworkers, as well. For example, if your spoiled sister-in-law never bothers to write thank-you notes for the gifts you give her and her family, stop spending your hard-earned money on presents. When a colleague wants to waste your time yet again whining about how difficult a project is, excuse yourself and leave the room.