What do you call someone when they're always asking for something, and then is dissatisfied after getting exactly what they ask for?

  • 2
    @Josh61 but that question is closed. I think before voting to close a new question as a duplicate, the former needs to be still open. Lots of suggestions which nobody can add to. I am thinking of a word which is not listed in either question. (Well... I could be)
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 7:38
  • @Mari-LouA - yes, but the question is the same.
    – user66974
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 7:40
  • @Mari-LouA - and it has lots of suggestions! Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 7:41
  • @Mari-LouA - I thought about that, but I think it still is a duplicate:
    – user66974
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 7:43
  • 3
    I believe that the two questions are similar but not identical, the emphasis here is on the complaining aspect; the person is never happy, they may moan and sulk, like spoilt children. If you are hard to please it doesn't infer that you complain after obtaining your request.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 7:55

6 Answers 6


I cannot find the precise word but there are many options which are close:

demanding - "making others work hard or meet high standards; not easily satisfied" (Oxford Dictionary)

misery - "a person who is constantly miserable or discontented" (Oxford Dictionary)

shrew - "an insulting word for a woman who always complains, argues, or nags."

fastidious - "hard to please."

high-maintenance - "demanding a lot of attention." (Oxford Dictionary)

ingrate - "an ungrateful person." (Oxford Dictionary)

There are some more options here: http://www.macmillandictionary.com/thesaurus-category/british/people-who-complain-a-lot-or-are-difficult-to-please

  • 3
    I'd choose "ingrate" as the most fitting answer. Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 12:41

I would just go with the word "whiner." They whine when they don't get what they want, and they whine when they do.


What do you call someone when they're always asking for something,

You would call them a beggar.

and then is dissatisfied after getting exactly what they ask for?

Then you would call them a chooser.

This comes from the phrase "beggars can't be choosers".

TheFreeDictionary defines the phrase as:

If someone gives you something you asked for, you should not complain about what you get.

Wiktionary defines the phrase as:

When in need of help, one cannot dictate how that help is given. Put another way: when one's situation requires one to beg, one cannot complain about the insufficient or substandard gifts that one receives.


These two links list a number of good canidates. I like the list presented in the first link.



My favorite possibilities are:




  • The links are great but your choice from the list less so. What's a "pill"?
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 8:00
  • In US colloquial usage, a pill is a perverse person who might, for instance, insult a guest when protocol requires them to be pleasant, deliberately misunderstands what other people say to them, or is the only person who insists on going to McDonalds when his/her friends all want to eat at Olive Garden.
    – Erik Kowal
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 8:34
  • @ErikKowal thank you. I thought it might have been a typo. That explains why I didn't see "pill" listed in the thesaurus.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 10:09

Such a person is often described as being impossible to please or never satisfied.

There's a proverbial admonishment that can sometimes be applied in this kind of situation:

"Don't look a gift horse in the mouth".

  • I think that the proverb you cite refers more to the 'gift' rather than the person who receives it.english.stackexchange.com/questions/24539/…
    – user66974
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 8:48
  • @Josh61 - No, it relates to the attitude of the person receiving it. The meaning of the proverb is "Don't make it a point to find fault with an (especially unexpected) gift / opportunity". That interpretation is also the prevalent one in the discussion you linked to.
    – Erik Kowal
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 18:16

From the answers so far haven't really captured the fact of changing from saying they wanted something to them then saying it wasn't what they wanted.

I would call this two–minded.

Definition of TWO-MINDED Having two inconsistent attitudes toward something http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/two-minded

  • Such people who behave this way are generally not two-minded but simply never contented for what they have. Their initial expression of desire for something is never sincere, and hence they never actually changed their mind about what it is they want.
    – user21820
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 12:03

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