Arrogance in Children: What to Do

Arrogance in children may be due to having the example of proud parents at home, or due to affective or other deficiencies. Learn more.
Arrogance in Children: What to Do
Mara Amor López

Written and verified by the psychologist Mara Amor López.

Last update: 24 April, 2023

Arrogance in children, as in other people, is closely related to self-esteem and pride. Both, in their right measure, are signs of personality and character. However, if we have them in excess, it can be an indicator that there are deficiencies, which end up becoming a great defect. Arrogance indicates a lack of self-esteem and personal insecurity.

Arrogant children can be violent, authoritarian, and even irresponsible. Sometimes, they’ve learned this type of behavior at home, with the example of parents with this characteristic. That’s why, in order to raise a child, it’s key to set an example at home. So, how can you raise an arrogant child? In this article, we’ll tell you what you can do.

Arrogance in children: What’s behind it?

Arrogance in children can tell us many things. Among them is that there are fears and insecurities. For example, fear of being rejected, fear of criticism, or worry about not being the best, among others. So, the way children hide these emotions is to pretend to be what they’re not. In this way, they seek to feel that they’re above others.

A child with arrogance seeks affection and recognition, but doesn’t know how to express it in any other way and does so with this behavior. In addition, behind this trait, there’s low self-esteem. It’s a feeling of inferiority that they try to conceal by boasting about everything they do well in order to get the recognition they need so much.

An arrogant pre-teen admiring himself in the mirror.
Arrogant children don’t know how to manage this excess of pride and self-esteem properly. Therefore, it’s not a positive personality trait, but rather ends up becoming a defect.

What are arrogant children like?

They’re children who boast about their achievements in order to be recognized and, in addition, they despise others, as they feel superior. Therefore, they only care about what happens to themselves, but they need others in order to exercise their power and show that they’re above them. They try to camouflage their insecurity, fears, and low self-esteem with behaviors that humiliate other children.

They’re children who need to be constantly recognized in order to prove to themselves that they’re not inferior. That’s why they criticize others, in an attempt to hide their own shortcomings.

It’s important that parents correct their arrogant behaviors, if they have them, because if not, the education they give their children in this regard will be useless. If, on the other hand, they’re too permissive with the child, this will have negative consequences on their social development, both now and in the future. They may even become potential bullies.

Characteristics of arrogant children

Some of the traits of arrogant children are the following:

  • Authoritarian, violent, and irresponsible.
  • Disrespectful and cynical.
  • Low self-esteem, insecurity, and fear (they try to hide these traits).
  • Excessively proud and arrogant.
  • They need to feel loved, but at the same time, they reject affection.
  • They attack the weakest in order to feel superior.
  • They constantly need to be flattered.
A young girl standing standing in an arrogant pose.
Arrogant children have excessive pride, but in this way, they hide their low self-esteem, insecurities, and fears.

Learn how to educate arrogant children

To educate children so that they’re not arrogant, first, the parents have to analyze themselves and realize if they themselves have this type of behavior. If so, they’ll have to make some modifications. Here are some tips on how to educate arrogant children:

  • Establish rules and limits upon which the whole family agrees, as well as the consequences of non-compliance.
  • Work on emotional education. To do this, you can learn about it and put it into practice at home.
  • Have moments of fun and laughter as a family. Laughter is one of the best medicines for emotional wounds, as with it, we manage to have fewer negative thoughts.
  • Try to have a positive atmosphere at home, with good emotional bonds between all family members.
  • Don’t criticize the child in front of anyone. On the contrary, you must explain to them that it’s not right to criticize other people, as everyone’s different, and that’s okay. Also, before criticizing, we should analyze our own defects.
  • Know how to forgive. For this, you must encourage and develop empathy in your children so that they know how to put themselves in other people’s shoes. This way, you’ll achieve greater personal satisfaction.

About arrogance in children

As we’ve seen, arrogance in children may be due to having the example in the home of proud parents and affective or other deficiencies. What we have to do is to realize if adults have these attitudes or behaviors. In this regard, it’s possible that we haven’t identified them in ourselves and, inadvertently, we’re teaching our children that this is the right way to act.

In this article, we’ve offered some recommendations on how to educate arrogant children. We mustn’t forget that parents are role models for their children. Therefore, sometimes it’s enough just to realize this in order to be able to solve many problems in the education of children.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Rodríguez, S. G. (2006). Soberbia/humildad. La soberbia realmente existente. Debate feminista, 33, 245-247.
  • Bazal, F. (1924). La soberbia. Claridad, 5(121).

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.