Age-old wisdom regarding pedagogy that I realize to be true in the academia: "Unless hungry for knowledge, it is unwise to feed a (pseudo) learner who is there in front of you out of compulsion and sans aim."
I also am a little bothered about the 'thanklessness' of some learners. Last week, I had one person send me a mail asking me to Provide a reference with a note, 'do it asap.' I wondered if the kid had so lost it that she forgot that I had an option to decline this request too(?!) or if I was expecting too much by expecting just a little politeness from her part. Most of these references I provide for people, takes time and effort - something I could have rather invested in feeding a cow; often after this pressure to provide reference and recommendation, there is seldom any follow-up done by the other to let me know about the progress of their application - which of course I am interested to know (why else would I have referred or recommended their case in the first place?!)
Another incident happened recently that demonstrated the absolute 'sloppiness' of another bunch - after providing support (this in the case of research), the gang jumped to the conclusion that their task was now an issue for the guide to deal with and it is his burden to complete the research for them - as they waddle in the muck of their care and concerns in their personal affairs (which I would rather care a rat's arse about) a burden they expected well shifted 'if' the guide was a fool as they expected him to be. You point out to their issue and they walk away with a whiff of stray attitude - determined to showcase where they come from. Often concern shown in many situations is taken for granted in many academic corridors.
This sloppiness, clumsiness and total thanklessness, not only tests one's patience and compels one to lose trust yet also makes one wonder how far they would go? This is when you realize that it is time to withdraw certain lenient space provided earlier and draw those lines of restriction and distance and build those walls of resistance to safeguard one's sanity. Distance is better.
For an endnote, this is not an issue with most of the students yet there can be no denial that these situations do show up in a minority and it does affect. This is when a little enthusiasm when shown by just a little bit of students, is like seeing an oasis of faith in a desert for a teacher - even if it is only a mirage.