What is the word for a person who expects other people to be like him, for example, a dad who wants his son to be like him?

  • 5
    Average? Common?
    – Mitch
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 11:50
  • is there an equivalent in other languages?
    – Sejanus
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 12:18
  • @Sej: I don't get what you are getting at.
    – MrHen
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 13:30
  • pro-parthenogenesis ? pro-mitosis ? An archaea ? Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 14:59
  • @MrHen: nice rhyme.
    – Alenanno
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 15:34

8 Answers 8


I don't believe that there is a single word which describes what you're asking for. You probably need a short phrase to give this idea:

He expects others to follow his example.

He wants his son to take after him.

He thinks he knows what's best for everyone.


A narcissist?

From Wikipedia:

-Difficulty with empathy
-Problems distinguishing the self from others
-Inability to view the world from the perspective of other people



  • Uhm in my opinion it's necessarily negative while in the question's example "if a dad wants his son to be like him" it isn't necessarily negative, right? Unless he forces his son too, but in that case we would have a context. Just a doubt of mine :D
    – Alenanno
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 12:13
  • @Alenanno: the key word for me is "expect", and the rather broad "other people". It's one thing if I would like to see my son become an engineer, but it's a different thing entirely if I "expect other people to be like me". But of course, the OP is welcome to clarify.
    – RegDwigнt
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 12:21
  • Ah I see the subtle difference now. What is an OP by the way?
    – Alenanno
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 12:39
  • @Alenanno: original poster.
    – RegDwigнt
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 12:40

I think you can find a word to mean someone who holds people to the highest standards: perfectionist. I think you can also find a word to mean you want to imitate others: mimic.

Though I think no one word exists which combines these two ideas perfectly. I suppose the closest you can get is perfectionist or perhaps idealistic, for someone who might very well expect others to be like him.


A few options:

  • role model
  • model
  • icon
  • idol
  • example
  • teacher
  • guide
  • trailblazer
  • leader

The idea of a son being like the father can be expressed as:

  • fated
  • inherited
  • a chip off the old block
  • an apple that didn't fall far from the tree
  • succeeded

Also consider

  • zealot, one who is zealous, one who is full of zeal for his own specific beliefs or objectives, [often] too passionate; a fanatic
  • missionary, Someone who attempts to convert others to a particular doctrine or program
  • evangelist, as used in "technology evangelist", a person who attempts to build a critical mass of support for a given technology
  • apostle, An ardent early supporter of a cause or reform
  • proselytizer, someone who encourages or induces people to join a movement, political party, or other cause or organization

I think the question is about a person with an unthinking bias, an attitude that is unquestioned and unexamined in themselves. They "expect", meaning: can't conceive otherwise. Given that, I would use the word immature, or naive, depending on whether they have had enough experiences that they ought to have learned better, or haven't yet.

  • Welcome to English.se. I am not quite sure why you think expect means can't conceive otherwise (it does not). For example, I expect he will arrive at 6 would not mean that I will go insane or be mortified if he arrives at 5 or 7. Immature and naive both imply not having much experience, so neither seems well suited to a father expecting his child to be similar to himself.
    – virmaior
    Commented Mar 11, 2014 at 20:28
  • I read the quotation marks around "expect" to indicate that the poster was expanding not "expect" but something we might call "expect". Assuming "can't conceive otherwise" is appropriate to the situation then "expect" would seem a reasonable shorthand for the OP to use, and reversing this would also be reasonable. Commented Oct 8, 2014 at 16:36

An autocrat, maybe—in the sense suggested in the following definition of autocratic from Oxford Dictionaries:

Taking no account of other people’s wishes or opinions; domineering: an autocratic management style

  • You could make your answer stronger by including a relevant dictionary definition of autocrat that indicates its suitability of the word to the questioner's context.
    – Sven Yargs
    Commented Aug 31, 2016 at 20:56
  • We appreciate the desire to help, but please consider either expanding your answer or deleting it. Questions should be answered as an expert would answer them: comprehensively, with explanation and context. Explain why your answer is right, ideally with citations. Unsupported answers may be removed. (more¹) (more²)
    – MetaEd
    Commented Aug 31, 2016 at 20:58
  • A specific word was requested. I provided a word, with a definition. The definition I gave is copied and pasted nearly verbatim from Merriam-Webster.
    – McCaverty
    Commented Sep 1, 2016 at 15:58
  • I recommend that you provide a link to the definition you used in your answer, or quote it verbatim and identify the source by exact title. The definitions given at Merriam-Webster Online are as follows: "Simple Definition of autocrat : a person who rules with total power[.] Full Definition of autocrat 1 : a person (as a monarch) ruling with unlimited authority 2 : one who has undisputed influence or power[.]" None of those definitions seems more than tangentially related to the definition you give.
    – Sven Yargs
    Commented Sep 2, 2016 at 0:35
  • My mistake - it wasn't Merriam-Webster, but Oxford.oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/…
    – McCaverty
    Commented Sep 2, 2016 at 12:41

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