New Study Shows Parents May Inadvertently Make Kids Narcissistic

Telling your kids how special they really are may come at a price later in life.
3:58 | 03/10/15

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Transcript for New Study Shows Parents May Inadvertently Make Kids Narcissistic
here. An eye-opening study with important lessons about raising good kids. Telling them how special they are could backfire and encourage them to be narcissists. T.j. Holmes explains. For the records guys don't get over me, okay. At last count I have three stalkers. Reporter: "Modern family's" Hayley has been accused of being a narcissist, someone that thinks they're superior and entitled with burble treatment. There's a lot of pressure on parents, teachers to be their best so I think sometimes people forget and throw out you're the best, you're the best, their child will be happy. When, in fact, the child really just wants to be accepted and understood and cared for. Reporter: Are they born or made? Dutch researchers may have filled this out. Their research types that parents who tell their kids they're special or more deserving than other kids may increase narcissistic tendencies. Clue, veruca salt from "Willy wonka and the chocolate factory" ? if I don't get the things I am after I'm going to scream ? Reporter: Other narcissistic tendencies include feeling superior to others like Regina from "Mean girls." It was my parents' room. Reporter: They may be able to change their behavior by reinforcing the idea that they're loved, not special. Telling them how exceptional they are doesn't produce kids with higher self-esteem but narcissists. That's a problem. You don't want. You want kids to believe they're just as good as everybody else. You don't want them to think they're better than everybody else. Trying to walk that line is tough. We have a parenting expert, Erica site Ka souter is back. Parents have to be worried. Most parents do overvalue their kids' mrieshmentes. My son makes a mess, thank you, that's such a great job. So we have to be very careful because there's a failout. As they get older you have egotistical self-important entitled children so parents are skirting a fine line between praising and overpraising. You and you are both parents and always spend time on social media and parents want to know how much the selfie and for young people to post just about every single thing they do. Researchers have a hard time making a connection to say, hey, social media causes you to be a narcissist but it certainly develops narcissistic tendencies. You can cultivate and manipulate your image telling people exactly what you want them to think of you as. How much time do people spend on a profile picture, the glamour shot. We will re take 12 selfies before we get it right to post one. Now our self-worth is wrapped up in what others think of us versus what we think of ourselves and goes back to the self-esteem -- How many likes Jo. How many followers. People are obsessed with getting that, you know, those approvals from the outside world. That's not necessarily a good thing. We want them to feel good from a different place, intrinsic place. Accomplishments, not just what we look like. There are lots of things parents can do without constantly praising. Number one, you should know your child. You know, not every kid needs the same amount of praise. You know, if you have a type "A" kid that thinks they're the bomb they don't need as much as your shy, timid kid and use praise widely. Don't praise everything. They should get a sense of what they really do well. Tell them when they do things wrong too. Exactly. Not necessarily whatever talents you have. That's exactly -- that's the nail on the head, George. You do have to make them feel good about what they're doing and lastly --

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