Parents' praise can turn kids into narcissists, study says

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Turns out there can be too much of a good thing – at least when you're talking about praise.

According to a Dutch study, too much praise from parents can turn kids into narcissists who expect special treatment, ABC News reported Monday.

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The study, which examined 565 Dutch children ages 7 to 12, found that kids who were often told they were superior to others – even when they weren't – exhibited more narcissistic traits than kids who received more realistic feedback.

"Parents should be warm and loving, but not give their child blanket praise," said Brad Bushman, a professor at Ohio State University and one of the authors of the study. "We should not boost self-esteem and hope our children will behave well. Instead, we should praise our children after they do well."

But Dr. Gene Beresin of Massachusetts General Hospital's Clay Center for Young Healthy Minds isn't buying it.

"I don't see how you can label kids this young as narcissistic when it's generally recognized that such personality traits aren't fully formed until late adolescence, like around age 18," he told ABC News.

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