It’s never nice when you know someone who takes advantage of others. You might be interested to learn about a few words that could apply to describe someone like this. This article will help you to understand the best words for someone who uses other people.
Which Words Can Describe Someone Who Uses Other People?
There are some pretty good ways we can describe someone who uses other people. Some of the best words we want to share with you include:
The preferred version is “freeloader” because it applies well to people who use their “friends” for gains in some way. They’ll keep using their “friends” without them even realizing it, and they’ll live a luxurious and easy life while using the kindness of their “friends.”
Let’s start with the best word on this list. It works really well when describing a user, especially for monetary gain.
A freeloader is somebody who uses other people to get money, food, or lodging. They typically won’t work themselves and will spend most of their time indoors, meaning they’ll never give you anything in return for all the kindness you’ve given them.
The definition of “freeloader,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a person who uses money, food, a room in a house, etc., given by other people, but who gives nothing to them in exchange.”
It’s usually easy to tell when someone is a freeloader. However, it’s not as easy to tell yourself that you need to cut contact with them before they take everything from you.
We could use “freeloader” in the following ways:
- I’ve heard that he’s a freeloader and that you should kick him out before it’s too late.
- He’s not a freeloader like you seem to think he is, though he does seem to like spending my money.
- They’re just a group of freeloaders, and they’ll pretend that they’re your friends until they get what they want from you.
A “leech” is a great way to describe somebody who takes advantage of others. It’s also one of two insect-related words on this list.
A leech is somebody who takes money and support from others by acting like their friends. They will pretend they care about them, but in reality, they only want to benefit themselves, and once they’ve got all that they need, they’ll be out of there at a moment’s notice.
The definition of “leech,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a person who gives attention to someone over a long period in order to get their money or support.”
We can use the term “leech” to refer to anybody who is more than happy to use their friends and family for their own gain.
We could see “leech” in the following ways:
- Don’t be a leech. Nobody likes a leech.
- You’re just a leech, and you always crave money and attention from people who think you care!
- They’re both leeches, and they’ve made you believe that you’re important to them.
The second insect-related term is “parasite.” It’s a very harsh term for someone who uses others, but sometimes these harsher terms are relevant.
A “parasite” is someone who is deliberately lazy and will get by through other people working. They’ll expect money from their friends and family while not aiming to do anything to get an income themselves. They’ll also never give back.
The definition of “parasite,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a person who is lazy and lives by other people working, giving them money, etc.”
“Parasites” are notorious for not returning the things that people have done for them. They do not do nice things in return, and they will not give gifts to others to show how much they mean to them.
“Parasite” is a great way to describe someone and can work as follows:
- You’re just a parasite in this house, and I’m sick of you using me!
- Stop being a parasite and start going out and doing something productive with your life.
- He’s a parasite, and I don’t want to do anything more with him around.
We might use one of the more colloquial terms, which is “mooch.” It works in many cases when someone is a user to other people.
A mooch is somebody who borrows a lot of money or items from people. However, they never intend on returning those items, even when pestered for it back. You usually realize someone is a mooch when it is too late because they would already have left with your items or money.
The definition of “mooch,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “to borrow from people or ask them to give you things without paying for them or intending to return them.”
“Mooch” works as follows:
- He’s nothing more than a lazy mooch. I wouldn’t give him any more money if I were you.
- Don’t give her money because she’s a mooch. She’ll never return it, and she won’t even thank you!
- You’re a mooch, which will make it hard for anyone to accept you.
You might hear the term “sponger” work in many cases as well, and we want to show you how it works.
A sponger is somebody who gets support from others without working themselves. They often expect other people to cater to them (as a result of being spoiled as a child).
The definition of “sponger,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a person who gets money, food, etc., from other people, especially in order to live without working.”
We might use “sponger” in the following ways:
- I’ve lived with a sponger for most of my life, but now I want to change that.
- Please tell me she’s not a sponger! That would be disastrous for me!
- You’re just a sponger, and I’ve finally realized that you’re taking advantage of me.
A “scrounger” is another acceptable word on this list, and we can use it similarly.
A scrounger is somebody who will do whatever they can to get the things they want. They’ll never work for what they want, and they certainly won’t buy them. Instead, they’ll usually ask (or beg, if they want it enough) a friend to help them get it.
The definition of “scrounger,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “someone who tries to get things, especially money or food, by asking for them instead of buying them or working for them.”
We might see “scrounger” work as follows:
- Please don’t be a scrounger, okay? We will know if you try and use us!
- You’re a scrounger, and you need to do something to make money before we throw you out!
- He is nothing but a scrounger, and we don’t want anything more to do with him.
Finally, we want to show you “user.” Now, “user” has a slightly different meaning to the other words on this list. It’s not about money or laziness, but it still works well to show how someone might use another person.
A user is someone who is in a relationship for personal gain only. This means that they’ve been involved romantically with someone, but it’s usually as a way to further their own life (i.e., by taking their money or by getting close to one of their friends).
The definition of “user,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a person who uses a relationship with someone only in order to get some advantage for themselves.”
Typically, users will be the ones to instigate a breakup. They also have a habit of making the other party fall in love with them, which makes it much harder for the poor person who has to deal with the breakup afterward, while the user doesn’t shed a single tear.
You might see “user” work in the following ways:
- She was a user, making it very difficult for me to be happy with our time together.
- I’ve been called a user before, but I’m trying to work on myself to fix that.
- You’re a user, and I hate you for all the time I’ve wasted thinking you cared!
What Does It Mean To Use Other People?
Now that we’ve covered all the best synonyms, it might help to briefly look at the original idea. Using other people can have a lot of meanings, but there’s one, in particular, we want to focus on.
Using other people means that someone is more than happy to take from others (mostly for monetary gain) while never giving anything in return. They take advantage of other people’s kindness, and kinder people usually don’t realize until it’s too late.
Using other people can be an obvious thing or something more subtle.
It’s common for users to be manipulators who can bend their words to make a kind-hearted soul oblivious to the fact they’re being used in any way.
Usually, someone who uses others will only keep those people around while they’re beneficial to them. The second that the person they’re using is no longer relevant or useful, they’ll move on to the next best thing, making them difficult people to be friends with.
Martin holds a Master’s degree in Finance and International Business. He has six years of experience in professional communication with clients, executives, and colleagues. Furthermore, he has teaching experience from Aarhus University. Martin has been featured as an expert in communication and teaching on Forbes and Shopify. Read more about Martin here.