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to think that the whole of MN uses the word 'entitled' to mean the exact opposite of what I think it means?

(34 Posts)
RachelWatts Mon 17-Nov-14 13:18:05

I keep seeing posts where grabby, selfish people are described as 'entitled', which to be honest usually throws me because I always thought the word meant something similar to 'allowed'.

So if I ask what I'm entitled to, I want to know what I can reasonably expect as my due.

Which seems opposite to the rest of MN, as it looks like when someone is described as entitled, they have an unreasonable expectation.

stubbornstains Mon 17-Nov-14 13:22:54

YANBU. It's an abuse of the English language, and really gets my goat. What people actually mean - and what they should say when they say this - is that the person referred to has a misplaced sense of entitlement, or similar.

VanitasVanitatum Mon 17-Nov-14 13:25:12

MN mean someone who believes themselves to be 'entitled' to a lot of things/much more than they in reality are, generally at the expense of others.

It may not be technically correct but I think it's expressive and useful on a site where that kind of feeling is often a topic!

Legohair Mon 17-Nov-14 13:25:13

Your understanding of it is the more generally-recognised one, but the use of 'entitled' as an adjective eg. 'grabby, entitled behaviour' is increasingly common and yes, does have the connotation that the entitlement is unreasonable. No idea where and how long ago it originated, but I'm certainly seeing it increasingly often.

foolonthehill Mon 17-Nov-14 13:27:21

In normal life we use entitled just as you do! I am entitled to my pay because I earned it, I am entitled to sleep because I worked all night, I am entitled to live in this house because I pay the rent etc. It designates an earned right.

On the relationships (especially) board and in psychological discussions a "feeling of entitlement" is often abbreviated to "he is an entitled man" or "she is an entitled woman" meaning that he or she feels that they are entitled to something even though reasonable people would not think this way.

A lazy person may feel that they are entitled to be provided for by their partner....but they actually have a responsibility to provide for themselves and their family. Selfish and lazy people rely on others to get them through life...they justify it by feeling that they "deserve" it usually just because they see themselves as above the common herd.

It's not proper English...just shorthand for "they feel that they are entitled"'s never a complement!


Sarkymare Mon 17-Nov-14 13:38:09

It basically means a false sense of entitlement.

It annoys me every time I see it. There's something not quite right about using a word and changing its meaning to be the complete opposite of what it actually means IMO.

ouryve Mon 17-Nov-14 13:39:30

Yabu and generalising

tethersend Mon 17-Nov-14 13:50:39

YANBU at all.

I'm constantly amused at the number of people getting angry about people having a sense of entitlement to things they are entitled to.

needaholidaynow Mon 17-Nov-14 13:58:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BananaLeaf Mon 17-Nov-14 14:05:48

YANBU. I find it very irritating and it seems the more it's misused the more acceptable it becomes to misuse it! As Sarky says it means false sense of entitlement.
I wish people would use self-entitled or some other shorthand if they don't want to write out 'misplaced sense of entitlement' grin

RachelWatts Mon 17-Nov-14 14:05:55

Needaholidaynow if I read a sentence like that one my first response would be "What?! How can you think that her having people look after her kids is reasonable?" until I'd had a 'hang on' moment and read the sentence again more carefully.

This explains why my first few weeks reading MN were so confusing. Really glad I didn't wade in with my twopennorth and show myself up...

Vitalstatistix Mon 17-Nov-14 14:08:21

I know what you mean and you are right. Entitled means you have a right to it and a sense of entitlement means you are being a brat grin but I think people generally understand what the person is trying to say from the context of the post.

I think that we all understand the difference between someone actually being entitled to something and someone having a false sense of entitlement and know whether the person posting means one or the other. 'Entitled' is just used as a sort of shorthand.

Bogeyface Mon 17-Nov-14 14:08:57

I read it in the same way I do DH, DC, MN, TTC etc, as a convenient shortening of a longer phrase.

I know it means "He has a false sense of entitlement" but "he is entitled" is much quicker to type. So it doesnt bother me at all.

ThatBloodyWoman Mon 17-Nov-14 14:10:44

I don't like its use here.
It feels designed to slap people down -like calling a teenage girl 'stroppy'.

RachelWatts Mon 17-Nov-14 14:17:04

I get that shorthand and abbreviations are useful, but using a phrase in the exact opposite way to how you mean is just confusing!

Not a big deal in the long run, and I'm not at all annoyed about it. Just wanted to check if my understanding of the word was completely wrong - it seems it's not!

needaholidaynow Mon 17-Nov-14 14:23:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PausingFlatly Mon 17-Nov-14 14:28:38

YANBU. It does bother me because using a word to mean its opposite means you no longer have a word to discuss the first concept.

I've seen it on MN already.

Poster says, "I'm entitled to live in this house because I pay the rent" or "I'm entitled to X pay because I have an employment contract saying so".

Is met with sneers about being "entitled", as if the poster is being grabby and has outrageous expectations.

It hampers the discussion of quite important issues.

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Mon 17-Nov-14 14:31:00

Sometimes it seems perfect when someone suggested recently that a carer should lift someone out of their wheelchair so they could use wheelchair space for their baby.

curlyweasel Mon 17-Nov-14 14:32:17

Agree with ThatBloodyWoman... also think it's way overused. It also seems to be regularly trotted out by those who don't seem to want for much.

I also have a similar problem with the overuse of passive aggressive.

TiggyD Mon 17-Nov-14 14:35:50

Sorry to hear about your goat Stubborn. If you know who took it shirley you can report it to the police, or coax it away from them with a bucket of oats or something can't you?

Together we can beat goat theft as Phil Neville would say.

Suefla62 Mon 17-Nov-14 14:37:55

Type it into google. Thus us what you get.

believing oneself to be inherently deserving of privileges or special treatment.
"his pompous, entitled attitude"

GarlicNovember Mon 17-Nov-14 14:38:53

I'm constantly amused at the number of people getting angry about people having a sense of entitlement to things they are entitled to.

grin Me too. I confess to using 'entitled' when I really mean "has an inflated sense of entitlement" - and also telling posters who call me entitled (I'm on benefits) that, yes, I am indeed entitled.

If you're gonna abuse a word, you should at least know how you're abusing it!

stubbornstains Mon 17-Nov-14 14:39:41

I'm not 100% sure who took my goat Tiggy, but I wouldn't at all be surprised if it was that Shirley. She is such an entitled caaaah....

GarlicNovember Mon 17-Nov-14 14:40:55

OMG, Sue, it's actually changed meaning? shock

So which word means entitled now?

RabbitsarenotHares Mon 17-Nov-14 14:42:18

Actually OP YABU - this meaning is found in the OED:

2. Chiefly N. Amer. Believing oneself to be inherently deserving of privileges or special treatment; spoilt and self-important.

OK so it's not the primary meaning, and it's mainly American, but it is still a valid use of the word in British English.

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