You can't choose your family but...

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The saying is that you can't choose your family but you can always choose your friends and when you do choose please choose wisely. But, what happens when you wish that you could choose your family? Or when your friends treat you, and care for you more than your family would? What happens then?

Yesterday, after a day of being grossed out by the most annoying person (see my FB status) I had a long drawn out conversation with one of my students.

One of the jobs of being an educator is that you are also a counselor to your students and you have to always be there to listen. But, moving along...I have been watching this young lady and I noticed how angry she has been. She always seems like she's at odds with everyone and yesterday after speaking to one of her friends she decided to talk to me and explain why she's been so angry.

The girl hates and I use this term just as harsh as she did.. she HATES her mother and her family members. I know many of you have this puzzled look on your face, and I know that I did also. I asked myself, "how can someone hate their mother?" How can someone just say that about the person that carried them for 10 months, its impossible. I initially thought that she meant that she was unhappy with her mother but after her explanation I found out that it wasn't an unhappiness she had with her mom, the girl had genuine hate for her mother.

Her take on this is that her mother had 3 kids by 3 different fathers knowing that these men would not be in their lives after they were born. She feels that her mother should've known better than to keep having children with men who were there for a moment instead of a lifetime. She tells me in minor details the problems she has with her mom, her main point is that her mother is selfish. "What mother would rather spend time with her girlfriends instead of her 3 children? The anger is so intense that as she's telling me why she's been the way has she has a tinge of sadness in her voice. My student harbors so much hate that it makes her seem so removed and unhappy when at this age in life she's supposed to be enjoying the moments of being a H.S. senior.

I remember my senior year, my concern at this time was graduating and prom and finding a date but this girl its finding a job so that she can buy a coat so she won't freeze when the winter months come. I want to tell her that things are going to be ok, and that she should go to college away so that she can do things for herself, but I can't. I can't give that advice to her because its not my place to tell her that. I tell her that college will be different, I say that if she plans to go away things maybe different and many of my friends have done it. But she says that she can because she wants to take care of her little brother because her mother seems not to want to do that.

How does someone's family make them more upset than their friends. I know that some friends are family. I know that sometimes when things go wrong it is a friend that comes to the rescue but I am just shocked that this is happening to such a young girl. These kids of ours have to be protected, and if its not the ones who carried them in their womb who wants to protect them, who will?

There is a fine line when it comes to teaching, and I don't want to overstep my boundaries, but I don't want to leave her hanging because she did come to me to talk. I want to help her in any way I can... but first the initial thing I know I will do is FIND THIS GIRL A JOB and a COAT!

Family, can't choose them so what to do with them?


Tiffany Nicole said...

I know your story too well~I too I am a teacher at a high school. I often say college did not prepare me for the multiple jobs I gotta do. No one wrote a textbook on being a real teacher!

Crankyputz said...

Teachers are on the front lines of society. You have to deal with the remanents of bad upbringings. Your jobs are so important, and I wish the rest of us in society recognised you more. a good teacher can change the course of someone's life

Ms. Liryc said...

Tiffany, you have never told a lie.. girl the student teaching thing did not prepare me for any of the mess that I see every day. Some of these kids are in serious need of adult intervention.. though some of them don't take me seriously because I look like I could be in HS many come to me for advice, and there is a fine line to what a teacher can do for a student.

Cranky, let me tell you.. teachers are so under appreciated. Though our hours are from 8-2 or 8-3 we stay well beyond those hours. And some parents have the audacity and the gall to blame us for their child's failures... We can affect a change in today's society.. the only thing is.. there are so many that we want to change that we only get to see 1.

Honey said...

I can understand how you say you don't want to overstep your boundaries, BUT... I HAVE been in this young ladies shoes, one too many times before.

You should pull her to the side after class or school one day, and sit down with her. I know educating is one heck of a responsibility; but this girl here will never learn in your class nor others with such a heavy heart. Her pain can go so far; if no one reaches out.

She's needing some type of female figure-that cares right now. Showing your constant concern for her education, and well-being... You don't understand how much weight that would probably lift off her shoulders. I was in her shoes one day. Except...No one came to rescue me and help me. I had to defend for myself, and not all take that task well!

But being an educator is a blessing...!

KellyAnne said...

The first thing I would do, is speak to the school psychologist and set up some counceling for the student. I know she wants to take care of her brother, but she needs to take care of herself first. Going away to college and getting a great education will help both her and her brother in the long run. Please go to the school psychologist about this, this was this girls cry for help, and perhaps child services needs to intervene. You aren't overstepping your bounds if you report it. The pyschologist can lead her in the path that you have outlined and even help her find a job.

Anonymous said...

I agree with's a sad situation these days being a teacher, knowing you guys aren't recognized for basicly being a parent to some of these kids...

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