If you’re on social media, you’ve probably come across the post about the abusive math teacher Mrs. Wegdan. If you didn’t, here’s the story:
A girl posted jokingly on her Facebook account about how she had an abusive math teacher, mentioning neither the teacher’s name nor any details about it. The teacher then took the initiative to comment on the post, told the girl to mention her name as it was not her fault that the girl was just “stupid.”
In reply, the girl thanked the teacher, in irony, for mocking her and calling her stupid on a post that was made to point out the abuse of math teachers. The comments went back and forth and the teacher started to say that she doesn’t want to take this fuel further- even though she did-, because of the girl’s situation at home back then. She continued, saying how the girl needs a therapist because of her parents’ divorce when she was younger and how that affected her, making her “confused” and “mixing things up”. As well as so, she said how she doesn’t care how many kids she traumatized, even if it were 90% of the kids she taught, but she only cares about the remaining 10% who love and appreciate her, while completely refusing to take responsibility or be held accountable for her previous behavior.
The question here is, didn’t we all, growing up, have our own “Mrs. Wegdan”? Many of us did, and some of us even witnessed things –if not directly done to us- that scarred us for life; and if you ask any of your friends, you’ll most probably hear a story like the one above, here are three examples of 3 stories from three different people, sharing their experience:
When I was 11 years old, in 5th grade, elementary school, I used to go to a private teaching center where everyone was a psycho. The entire center’s policy was teaching by hitting and publicly humiliating kids who were not as smart didn’t do their homework or get as high on tests. Every day was horrifying. It forced me to be a good student, not because I wanted to, but because I feared being next. My favorite teacher, at the time, -who was the personification of an abusive teacher- used to enjoy tormenting and humiliating me, because I was fragile. One time, my mother apologized to him, on my behalf, for me not doing my homework because of personal issues at home. He wasn’t supposed to say anything to me (which my mother had personally requested). However, that wasn’t the case.
“Your mom talked to me, but I don’t care. The only reason I won’t hit you is if you drop a tear or two for me. Come on, cry and I won’t hurt you.” He said to me, in front of the entire class and wouldn’t let it go. I eventually broke down, not for his sake, but in shame and humiliation; so much that I even thanked him when he didn’t hit me, and in return, he laughed at my crying face. Now that I’m 21, I realized that I wasn’t doing my best then. Fear was a obstruct. Once I was over it, I got grades so high I never thought I’d ever get.
It might sound silly that I still remember this day being a 27-year-old when this happened years back in Kindergarten. It was supposed to be a dish-party where we brought snacks, finger food, juice, and we were divided to sit on tables and eat. Don’t ask me why the teacher thought it was a good idea to bring the glass Coca-Cola bottles around a class full of kids, and expect zero damage. Well, the funny/sad part is that the girl next to me accidentally broke one of the bottles on the floor, but she was so scared she didn’t tell the teacher.
When the teacher was checking our table she found the bottle, and when she asked who did it, someone pointed the finger in our direction, the teacher thought it was me, and she didn’t even bother to ask whether it was me or the girl next to me and whether we were harmed from the glass shattered on the floor. Normally, you’d expect me to say that it wasn’t me, but I was in a state of panic from the amount of shouting, screaming, offensive words that I received from the teacher that was so loud, I couldn’t even explain myself. I was terrified, and all I was thinking about is how breaking a bottle by mistake is a crime.
This did not last for a few minutes or during the situation, no, the teacher kept shouting at me whenever she had a chance during the day, I didn’t eat, I was terrified to move from my chair during the whole day. Whenever I looked around I was so scared to look at her, and the most stupid part is that, when I got home, I did not tell my parents, I was just too scared, that I kept it to myself. I know it sounds like a silly story that could’ve been solved easily, but for a 6-year old, it was a nightmare.
In middle school, I was what people called “a fat kid”, though, it was just some baby weight that went away on its own a couple of years later. It wasn’t easy and turned the school into a living hell. It was bad enough how kids bullied me, but getting bullied by a teacher was a totally different thing. My abusive Geography teacher hated me for the sole reason of my weight. She constantly pointed out how my school uniform’s skirt should be longer than those of other girls, because “I was not the same”.
One time, she walked into class after recess, where I was eating my lunch, as soon as she saw me, she shouted sarcastically “Do you ever stop eating? If you don’t, you’ll leave no room for the rest of us.” Apart from that, she called me names on a regular basis. I later found out that she never cared to know my name. To her, I was just the “fatty” of the class. Years later, I came to acknowledge that I look perfectly fine, but it took forever to start feeling this way about myself.
So, the point here is, dear parents, please, listen to your kids. You never know what is actually going on. Sometimes, they’re too afraid to speak up because you wouldn’t listen. You would think they’re just being spoiled, but they have abusive teachers, they’re genuinely scared and have nowhere else to run to.
The biggest animal lover ever, who cooks for fun, and rides around the city on a longboard. She's the one to do everything full-heartedly, from writing to organizing festivals, and is definitely the right person to drag along to a concert!