For example, schadenfreude is the pleasure derived by someone from another person's misfortune.. I'm sure that someone's love of the act of complaining is encapsulated in one word, but I don't know what that word is!

  • Curmudgeon comes to mind: merriam-webster.com/dictionary/curmudgeon Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 9:11
  • @FatherLuke I like that word, but it often has the connotation of "old age".
    – Deepak
    Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 9:18
  • Hmm if we ignore the "love" requirement there are tons of words. Critic, whiner, bellyacher. Don't yet see any answers that deal with this behavior resulting from any love rather than say depression. But maybe I'm just a naysayer. =) Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 9:19
  • 1
    @Lily - Do you care about the part of speech? Could you give us a sentence with a blank where the desired word will go? Commented Aug 18, 2015 at 20:12
  • Not particularly? It just needs to encompass BOTH parts of the meaning. So, it could be she is a "person who loves to complain" or "the love of complaining" is a common phenomenon.
    – Lily
    Commented Aug 19, 2015 at 6:29

5 Answers 5






  1. not satisfied or content with currently prevailing conditions or circumstances.


  1. a malcontent person, especially one who is chronically discontented or dissatisfied.
  • This refers to the emotion that a person experiences, not necessarily whether they are vocal about it (by complaining), and definitely not whether they love to be vocal about it.
    – Flater
    Commented Oct 18, 2017 at 9:46

I doubt that there is a verb with such a specific meaning; as you cite 'schadenfreude', I assume other parts of speech are fair game.

A word that is perhaps a hypernym of what you request is cantankerous.


cantankerous (adj)

Ill-tempered and quarrelsome; disagreeable

Synonyms for cross-grained {ODO} include awkward, difficult, uncooperative, perverse, contrary, disobliging, unaccommodating, unreasonable, recalcitrant and refractory.

Agent nouns that are perhaps closer are carper, castigator, caviler (or caviller), censurer, criticizer, disparager, faultfinder, hypercritic, knocker, niggler, nitpicker (again ODO).


"Hater" comes to mind:

a person who thrives on showing hate toward, criticizing, or belittling other people or things, usually unfairly. - Dictionary.com


These may not be perfect fits with the "deriving pleasure" sentiment, but perhaps they might help:


Full of complaints; complaining.



To raise irritating and trivial objections; find fault with unnecessarily



  1. Having or regarding the self or the individual as the center of all things.

  2. Having little or no regard for interests, beliefs, or attitudes other than one's own; self-centered.


  • Unfortunately, I do know all these words :) I'm looking for one with that precise meaning, not somene who just complains a lot or is generally grumpy. Thanks anyhow!
    – Lily
    Commented Aug 16, 2015 at 22:27
  • @Lily, how about argumentative? "Fond of or given to argument and dispute; disputatious; contentious." But the way I understand what you're going for is something like the stereotypical "prissy bitch" popular high school girl that's mean to everyone just to get a rise out of them and laugh about it with her friends. "Kvetching" is along those lines, perhaps, but I think it's closer to "bitching" and doesn't necessarily imply enjoyment is garnered from the whining. Great question. Interested to see what you come up with.
    – Dan
    Commented Aug 18, 2015 at 1:21
  • 1
    thanks, but not so much? I'm kind of trying to come up with the word that shows the tendency of humanity to complain about things FOR the sake of complaining, rather than changing their situation? As in, one might have 5 assignments due but instead of doing them they'll sit around complaining while other commiserate - and then when they don't have assignments they'll complain about that, because the ACT of complaining brings them satisfaction. I was joping there's a word for that :P
    – Lily
    Commented Aug 19, 2015 at 6:32
  • @Lily You just said it: commiseration. The human condition is inescapable. A psychologist would probably give you a better understanding of why. Or perhaps a German could give you a better word: schadenfreude is on loan. There's a perfectly good idiom for this: Misery loves company.
    – Mazura
    Commented Apr 7, 2016 at 2:01

How about "professional complainer"? Clearly it would have nothing to do with a profession, but something that gives so much pleasure that it could become - for the unfortunate subject - as involving and time consuming as a normal occupation: his specialization, his profession.

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