If you are looking for words to accurately describe someone who uses another person, your search has come to an end.
No one likes to be used, as it entails deceit which doesn’t foster good relationships between people. Also, words used to address a person who uses others are often negative and offensive. However, some are more offensive than others.
For example, words like ‘Cunning’ and ‘Scheming’ are neither positive nor negative and can be used in referring to a person who uses others. Examples of offensive words to use in referring to a person who uses others are ‘exploitative’ and ‘Deceitful’.
15 Words for Someone Who Uses Another Person
Aside from the four adjectives (Cunning, Scheming, Exploitative, and Deceitful) mentioned above, we have 15 words you can call someone who uses another person and what they mean.
‘User’ is the simplest word for referring to a person who uses others for his/her selfish gains. This word is negative but not the most offensive word in referring to a person who uses others.
This word also doesn’t specify how the person uses others but is more suitable for a person who manipulates relationships to satisfy his/her selfish desires.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a user is simply a person who uses something. The Oxford Dictionary also defines ‘User’ as a person who treats others unfairly, selfishly, and unethically. A similar word to ‘User’ is a parasite; a person who keeps taking from another person without giving back.
- Don’t allow users to get into your life.
- I’m not a user. You’ll be getting your share when this is over
‘Taskmaster’ is another word for referring to a person who uses others. However, this has to do with more of violence or force than deceit.
You can refer to your boss at work as a taskmaster if he/she is using his/her power as your employer to make you do more work than is required of you. It may also be someone else who is put in charge of you.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a taskmaster is a person who supervises workers, especially one who imposes burdensome work on others.
A taskmaster may delegate his/her duties to another worker, being in a higher position and difficult to challenge.
- He is one hell of a taskmaster.
- That taskmaster won’t let us rest. It’s not even part of our job.
‘Puppeteer’ is the word for a person who uses another person to achieve his/her aims. This has more to do with the other person being submissive and the ‘Puppeteer’ being manipulative of the other person’s meekness.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a puppeteer is a person who uses a puppet. The Oxford Dictionary also defines Puppeteer, figuratively, as a person who is manipulative and, therefore, able to get people to do what they want or make events go in the way they want, in a puppet-like manner.
A puppeteer uses manipulation to control other people or situations.
- He is a Puppeteer. Don’t let him get in your head.
- I know puppeteers like you who deceive and manipulate others for their selfish aims.
A person who uses others for his/her selfish desires can be called a Manipulator. A Manipulator can deceive you to make you do what he/she wants.
He/she can use the relationship between the two of you to make you do things against your will. A manipulative person may also use your feelings to make you do things that only satisfy him/her.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a Manipulator or manipulative person is one who controls or influences another person in order to achieve a specific purpose, especially one that is unknown to the person being manipulated and beneficial to the manipulator.
- I know him as a Manipulator so don’t expect him to do this freely.
- He is a well-known manipulator. Be careful.
‘Boss’ is a word you can use for someone who uses you. This is a positive word to use if you don’t want to offend the person or if you think it’s okay for him/her to make you do some things.
A boss supervises his/her employees as they work for him/her. It is okay to use ‘Boss’ to refer to the person, especially if you are also gaining from the relationship between the two of you.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a Boss is a person who oversees and directs the work of others. It also refers to a person who owns a business or company.
A boss is one in a position to use you so it’s okay to simply say Boss even if you believe he/she is using you improperly or selfishly.
- He’s the boss. What can we do about it?
- He drains us with unrelated tasks but he’s the boss anyway.
‘Exploiter’ is a name you can give you a person who deceives you to steal from you. An exploiter can exploit your knowledge, strength, money, or skills.
This word refers to a person who will give you false reasons to make some sacrifices while secretly gaining from the effort, time, or money you are sacrificing.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, an exploiter is a person who forcibly or deceitfully deprives someone of something to which he/she has a personal right.
An exploiter takes advantage of the victim’s possessions or capacity. He/she may also be an exploiter by paying less or nothing to a worker.
- He calls that a business but he’s just an exploiter.
- They work for exploiters but are too blind to see it.
‘Leech’ is a word for a person who sticks with a person to profit from the effort of another person. A leech is one who depends on what he/she is gaining from another person.
He/she may also not be dependent but chooses to stay with another person for the sole purpose of gaining from the person.
This is the kind of person who will only stick with you when you have something to offer him/her, even if he/she has nothing to give back to you.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a leech is someone who gets profit from others in a Parasitic manner. This implies that a leech takes from his/her host without giving anything in return.
The leech may be a burden, manipulating the victim emotionally. He/she may also be gaining from the victim who is ignorant of what’s happening.
- He has been a leech for years.
- I’m not going to be a leech. I have to give something in return.
‘Opportunist’ is the word for a person who will use and dump others, as long as there are opportunities to increase in wealth or improve his/her situation.
This is the kind of person who doesn’t care about relationships or morality when making decisions. When he/she accesses situations, the opportunist looks for opportunities to get things for himself or herself and goes after these opportunities while paying less consideration to how wrong the actions are or which people will be affected.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, an opportunist is one who takes advantage of any opportunity to advance their own situation, placing expediency above principle.
This person is selfish and will sacrifice others to advance himself or herself.
- I can’t be friends with an opportunist.
- I know opportunists like you who will throw friends out for money.
‘Delegator’ is the name you can give to someone who gives you his/her work to do. This is more suitable for someone who has power over you. He/she may also use guile in making others work for him/her.
A delegator can be your boss who gives you more work than you signed up for and threatens you with your job.
A delegator may also be a supervisor who can deceive you into doing more work than you are supposed to do. As he/she delegates tasks to you, he/she gets the gains without letting you know. However, ‘Delegator’ is still a positive word.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a delegator is a person who gives tasks to others or the authority to perform or exercise his/her powers and duties to another person.
While a delegator isn’t necessarily exploitative, he/she can be considered a user if you are not compensated for your work.
- He’s a delegator but what can we do about it?
- I won’t work under such a delegator.
‘Maneuverer’ is a name for someone who sets up wise strategies for a purpose. A maneuverer can manipulate others into doing things for his/her gain.
This has to do with using one’s wisdom to deceive others into doing certain things that indirectly benefit the maneuverer. A maneuverer is not necessarily one who uses others wrongly.
He/she may simply guide others strategically into doing things the right way and for a purpose that benefits everyone involved.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a maneuverer is a person who schemes or creates strategies. It is also defined as a person who manipulates others.
- You should be careful around that maneuverer.
- He can be a maneuverer at times.
‘Subjugator’ is the word you can use for someone who has forced you into serving him/her. This kind of person uses strength or defeats you in a certain way that forces you into submission to his/her will.
A subjugator makes his/her victim work and does wrong things for his/her personal gain only because the victim is unable to break free.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a subjugator is someone who conquers another person or forces him/her to submission.
This kind of person uses force to make others work for him/her.
- How did you encounter that subjugator?
- It would take a lot of force to be freed from that subjugator.
‘Sycophant’ is the name for a person who manipulates social situations to get gains from a person. This is similar to the definition of ‘Leech’.
However, a sycophant is one who uses flattery to make his/her victim continue to show favor to him/her. His/her comments may be intentionally deceitful or against public opinion, as long as it pleases the person he/she is leeching.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a sycophant is one who says deceitful and flattering compliments solely for the purpose of earning favor from a person.
- That’s not a fan. He’s a sycophant.
- You can’t see a sycophant when he’s saying what you want to hear.
‘Handler’ is a positive word for a person who supervises you in doing certain tasks in the right way. The word is used to refer to the person who guides you in playing a role that you are not qualified to play.
In this case, he/she is using you to play the role. While he/she has the brains to do the task, it is you who is carrying the task out.
A handler isn’t necessarily using you but you can use it in referring to a person who officially manages you and manipulates you while doing so.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a handler is someone who supervises another person who is playing a role that he/she isn’t qualified for.
While a handler may not be exploitative, he/she is in a position to exploit you so ‘handler’ is a positive word for referring to such a person.
- He’s my handler. I do what he commands.
- Your handler is exploiting you. You should do something about it
‘Enslaver’ is another word for a Subjugator. You can use this to refer to someone whom you are unable to escape from and have to submit to.
This can be your boss at your place of work. If you are seen as someone who desperately needs the job, your boss can use you wrongly for little pay.
An enslaver may also be using physical force to make you submit. This may also be someone in a public position who has the power to harm you.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, an enslaver is a person who makes another person subservient. He/she uses force or power to make others submit to his/her will.
- Where did you meet such an enslaver?
- Don’t be such an enslaver. Let him decide.
‘Player’ is another word for a manipulative person. You can use this in referring to someone who manipulates relationships to get gains for himself or herself.
He/she may also manipulate the feelings of another person to make the person act in a certain way that will indirectly benefit him/her.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a player refers to someone who plays the field rather than settling for a relationship.
The word has several other meanings related to games. However, the word is used as a slang for someone who deceives others.
- He’s a player. Don’t trust him.
- I’m not a player. I’ll let you know everything.
There are several nouns and adjectives to call a User, including ‘Exploiter’, ‘Manipulative’, and ‘Subjugator’.
More positive names to use for someone whom you’re submitting to include ‘Handler’, ‘Boss’, ‘Delegator’ etc.