My most illuminating child, by far, "Little Tut". An eight year old patient, by clinical doctors, was considered beautiful by his family, school, and generally his social groups. "Little Tut", nicked named in my private notes, was raised with praise to feel good about himself. He was "catered to his every need" - be happy. Little Tut's parents, as many parents believe, organized their lives around him so that he would have great self-esteem. He felt 'entitled'. Little Tut transferred his learned expectations acquired from his environment to everyone else. "It's all about me" attitude was radiated from his beaming face.
"Disaster came into Little Tut's kingdom" when his parents adopted two foreign students with special needs. Suicidal (SI) and homicidal ideation (HI) at age eight. Upon classroom entry, I assigned him the storybook software to write about a young boy since he had spied the Tut art in my classroom from my foreign travels. He delved into Egyptian history in his internet searches and felt involved in it's young king. Little Tut told stories wanting to be liked.
Paraphrasing portions of the Little Tut's story plot that exemplifies his 'transference': Tut had lots of gold, but no one liked him because he was so spoiled. Not even his family liked him. Of all his journeys he had never been on the longest river that ran north, the Nile. A fairy came to grant him his wish if he killed the dragon attacking Egypt. This would be his chance to be liked, so he took a spear to kill the dragon. Egyptians had weird traditions, like shaving their kids' hair. In art, men danced with men, but they did favor all sorts of cats. There was a very rich beautiful girl mummy. She had golden cats in her tomb and was probably the second richest Egyptian. He killed the dragon.
Little Tut had not surfaced for a week while creating his computer pictures for his story. He made a pyramid with its secret hidden treasures, searched the internet, and wrote his name and codes in hieroglyphics. His hospital staff had numerous materials to lead him into discussing his own circumstanced. The King Tut Strut from Copycat Magazine (1998) encouraged his own rhythm and dance:
Beware caregivers of the "Kid trap" for using entitlement. Lynn Johnston's For Better or Worse cartoon gives a perfect example. A young boy was turning 'thirteen' and his friends expected a party. Organizing a party is the easiest thing they said. And the last frame...have your mother do it.
It's never too late to recognize the good in a child's life by seeing it in their parents' mood...seeing their world. Little Tut's expectations changed as did the parental view:
Kaye is a teacher and author of multiple works including Valerie Valentine Visits Vincent Vampire