We’ve all encountered a princess at some point in our lives. She lives a fabulous life, while her debt accumulates and her loved ones bankroll her lifestyle. There’s no doubt that the princess lifestyle is toxic for everyone involved. On the show Princess, financial guru Gail Vaz-Oxlade gives these spoiled young ladies a reality check, forcing them to grow up, get real and take responsibility for their own lives.
Still not sure whether you have a princess on your hands? Here are a few tell-tale signs:
1. She feels entitled to — and unapologetically lives — a lifestyle that she cannot afford. One of the common themes among princesses is a sense of entitlement. They feel like they deserve the lifestyle they’re living because “they’re worth it” and they are “fabulous” even though they aren’t footing the bill for anything. Reality check: if she isn’t working for it and she can’t afford it, the lifestyle is not hers to live.
2. She only thinks of herself and relies on everyone else to foot the bill. Because she can’t afford to pay for her lifestyle herself, a princess will turn to the people who love her to pay her bills. If you know an adult who expects other people to pay their phone bill, car payment, credit cards or rent, they’re likely a princess.
3. Her personal relationships are suffering because of her attitude and spending habits. If her friends and family describe her as “selfish” or “manipulative” and are starting to resent her because of her spending habits, there’s a good chance she’s in need of a princess intervention. There are no material things worth having if it means hurting and losing people you love.
4. She doesn’t actually know how much she’s spending on a monthly basis. It’s always a revealing moment when Gail shows her princesses what their actual monthly expenses are. Not knowing her actual debt or what she’s spending is an unmistakable sign that her finances are completely out of control.
5. Her “wants” are completely out of whack with her “needs.” Because she is relying on credit cards and other people to fund her spending, a princess’s priorities are skewed towards lavish “wants.” Just in case it wasn’t clear, spending $400 a month on hair extensions is not a “need.”
6. She lives rent-free yet contributes very little (if at all) to savings or debt repayment. If someone else is paying for her “castle” and she doesn’t have to fork out for groceries or utilities, that money should be going towards savings and debt repayment. No questions asked. If it’s going towards visiting the nail salon three times a week — you might be dealing with a princess.
7. Other people are going into debt so she can maintain her lifestyle. It’s heartbreaking to hear about parents and boyfriends who are now in debt because they have been paying for the princess in their life. It all comes back to this: if she can’t afford the lifestyle, she shouldn’t be living it or expecting other people to compromise their financial security on her behalf.
8. Her partner pays for everything and as a result the relationship is suffering. A relationship needs to have mutual respect and can only sustain itself for so long if one person is being leeched off of financially. The fact that these ladies are willing to risk the future of their relationship, in lieu of taking control of their own spending is a tell-tale sign they’re a princess.
9. She shows a lack of gratitude towards the people in her life and everything they have done for her. A true princess sees the people around her as walking ATMs. However, keep in mind that it’s a two-way street. If you’ve been enabling a princess and you want her behavior to change, you need to put your foot down and tell her “NO.”
10. She’s not taking responsibility for her own life. Essentially, if someone is a princess, they’re not a full-fledged adult. Only once she’s able to take control of her finances, support herself and plan for her future, can a spoiled “princess” make the transition to independent “queen.”
Simone Paget is a freelance writer and the author of Skinny Dip, a cheeky blog about love, sex, relationships and everything in between. When she’s not writing her heart out, she loves wandering around her city, large cup of coffee in hand, in search of the next great story.