After writing about how painful (some) modern teenager are these days, I was interested in research undertaken by Jean Twenge at the San Diego State University. She studied 16,000 university students across the USA and found that showed "30 per cent were narcissistic in psychological tests, compared with 15 per cent in 1982. ''They are all 18 and 19-year-olds, so this is clearly a generational shift,'' she said”. The article goes on to say “Professor Twengel said that permissive parenting, celebrity culture and the internet are among the causes of the emerging narcissism epidemic”.
Narcissists had an inflated sense of self, lacked empathy, were vain and materialistic and had an overblown sense of entitlement. Some resulting social trends were a greater interest in fame and wealth, more plastic surgery, and an increase in attention-seeking crimes - for example, ''beating someone up at school and post it on You Tube''. This is very true — we (as in society) are bringing up a generation of “its all about me” and “look at me, aren't I great”. Just imagine what it will be like when they are in positions of power?
The ME generation believe they are invisible and therefore can do anything they please, without any concern for the consequences to either themselves or to others. However I would argue they didn’t get this way by themselves, parents have played a huge part — they did bring them up and probably over-indulged them. Perhaps the whole “helicopter” parenting style that we are seeing is creating children who are told they are “precious” and now believe they are precious (the princess syndrome - I read somewhere the term "raising royalty") and as a result we have created the vain materialistic generation of “I must have it now” and I don’t care what you think.
My son is encountering this right now with a person who he trusted who has turned out to be selfish and doesn't seem to care who they hurt. He can't understand why people behave like this and finds it hard to comprehend —and to make it worse the person in question is only a few years younger than he is. I am praying for a solution so my son and his fiance can be spared any further problems.