‘King Baby’ is a title sometimes conferred on us, especially in early recovery, and refers to the characteristic infantile ego possessed by those who need to grow up. King Babies are driven by self-will, banging with all their might on their high chair trays. Recovery is a process of maturing emotionally and spiritually. Maybe that’s why Bill W. referred to AA as a ‘Spiritual Kindergarten’.
What is a King Baby (or if you prefer, Queen Baby)? This is someone who needs to control others. It is someone who has an inability to accept frustrations. It is someone who wants it our way, right away.
What are some other characteristics of King Baby? None of us have all these traits, but we will probably find many that describe us. Here is a list roughly adapted from a Hazelden Recovery Pamphlet of the same name:
(1) Often becomes angry or afraid of authority figures and attempts to manipulate them to get thier own way.
(2) Seeks approval to the extent that the lose their own identity in the process
(3) Makes a good 1st impression, but are unable to follow through.
(4) Have difficulty accepting criticism and becomes threatened and angry when criticized.
(5) Have addictive personalities and are driven to extremes
(6) Are self-rejecting or self-alienated.
(7) Are often immobilized by anger and frustration, and are rarely satisfied
(8) Are usually lonely even when surrounded by people.
(9) Are chronic complainers who blame others for what is wrong with their lives.
(10) Feel unappreciated and think they don’t fit in.
(11) Sees the world as a jungle filled with selfish people who aren’t there for them.
(12) Sees everything as a catastrophe, a life and death situation.
(13) Judge life in absolutes, black-and-white, right or wrong.
(14) Live in the past while fearful of the future
(15) Have strong feelings of dependence and exaggerated fears of abandonment
(16) Fear failure and rejection and won’t try new things that they might not do well
(17) Are obsessed with money and material things
(18) Dream big plans and schemes and have little ability to make things happen.
(19) Cannot tolerate illness in themselves or others.
(20) Prefer to charm superiors and intimidate subordinates
(21) Believes that rules are and laws are for others, not for themselves
(22) Often become addicted to excitement, life in the fast lane.
(23) Hold emotional pain within and lose touch with their feelings.
[Harry M Tiebout MD – The Ego Factors in Surrender in Alcoholism (Hazelden Educational Materials)].