English Teachers Reveal The Strangest Personal Details Their Students Have Written About
Working with kids can be awesome and awful at the same time. They can be hilarious, inspirational, creative geniuses - and they're typically wired for honesty so if you're having a bad hair day, you'd better believe they'll tell you. As trust deepens, students tend to open up even more and that can lead to some uncomfortable moments. One Reddit user asked:
And we immediately thought: **STORY TIIIIME! **
When I was super young, my school had an assembly about alcohol abuse. We had to write an essay afterwards. I divulged in my essay that my grandmother used alcohol literally every night and sometimes even made me use it. I talked about how I hated it because it was stinky.
My grandmothers house had terrible air conditioning. She would put rubbing alcohol on her skin and sleep with an oscillating fan on to keep her skin cool. Sometimes, she'd sprinkle some on me or on the sheets if I slept over.
Nobody had bothered to explain during the assembly that rubbing alcohol wasn't the same as alcohol for drinking. Nobody in my family drank alcohol aside from my grandfather's occasional glass of red wine; so I had never heard the word "alcohol" used to mean anything other than rubbing alcohol. The assembly scared the bejeezus out of me and had me convinced my grandmother was going to die if I didn't get her help for her "alcohol addiction."
There were multiple meetings with multiple authorities after that one. Rightfully so. I was lucky enough to have teachers and administratros who took this seriously. I was clearly in no danger, but if I had been, I would have wanted the adults to react the way they did.
My parents took it well; they still make fun of me for it at every opportunity possible.
I teach English as a second language in an Asian country. One of my students wrote her final senior speech about her older sister who died as an infant. In a pile of fluff essays, I really did not expect to come upon such a deep topic.
She wrote that they still celebrated her sister's birthday and her mom bought a cake every year. She also described how sad her mom was after her sister's death and how hard it was for her to continue to have children. I went up to the girl in the next class and told her if she wanted to talk more she could come to me any time. She seemed surprised I said anything. When she gave her speech to the class everyone was really respectful and she ended up placing in the top 10.
The Ineffectiveness Of Vaginal Douching
First time poster, but I finally have a story I can share. I'm a social studies teacher but teach English in Summer School. Practicing state test essays with the kids and one of them asks: "Mister, can we write an argument about whatever we want or just the topics on the essay prompts?" Not thinking anything of this I told her that as long as she had evidence she could argue whatever she wanted.
About a week later, I get a gem of an essay, fully sourced, about the ineffectiveness of vaginal douching. Hands it in, totally straight face, eager to get my feedback. To be fair, this girl was an immigrant and perhaps it wasn't as strange in her country to mention that douching doesn't work for you to a teacher, but I wasn't sure how to respond.
She ended up getting a pretty good grade on the assignment because her argument used solid anecdotal and medical evidence from online and personal experiences. I also ended up learning a lot more about douching than any man needs to know.
My college application essay had to be about an adversity that I faced. So I wrote about how my boyfriend committed suicide. I made it up. He did not commit suicide, but he did threaten to commit suicide. I think he had borderline personality issues.
I realize now that I was being emotionally abused and manipulated, and that's f^cking plenty of "adversity". At the time I was still going through it, and I thought I had never really faced any adversity. I thought this was no big deal. I had a good childhood, my parents are still married, no one had ever even died (at the time), no one is chronically ill or anything, I'm white and middle class. These days we would call that highly privileged. It leaves you with a really odd insecurity about yourself, like you're somehow not worth sh!t unless you've suffered something and "faced adversity".
I still hate that stupid f^cking prompt to this day, even though I could trot out plenty answers to it now.
In Japan I worked with a junior high student named Taro. My job was to help him prepare for a speech by translating it from broken English to proper English, and helping him rehearse. The first line of his speech was:
**"Some days I don't want to be alive, I think it would benefit everyone if I was dead, but I can't. My mom won't let me." **
I had to put it down leave the room and have a big cry.
The speech was about how he has autism and how difficult it is for him to understand people and for people to understand him. Ultimately, he ends up doing or saying the wrong thing and he feels like he hurts people around him. He attempted suicide, but his mom found him and begged him to never try again. At the end of the speech, he asks people to try and accept people like him and if they see someone acting strange to remember they might be like him. Maybe they need more understanding.
He encouraged the audience to just ask him, he will explain his autism to them. He also asked them to forgive him, he is doing his best and to remember
"10 people, 10 colours" - it is okay to be different. Different allows us to broaden our minds.
At 14 Taros feeling of being a burden but were like what I felt. It took me until I was 20 to accept those feelings and not hurt myself. He has done it at 14. I told him I was proud of him and that I understand those feelings. We both cried a little. He asked me if I wanted a hug. Instead of just saying yes, I asked him if he wanted to hug. He said no, but he had learned that hugging is what people like to do when they are sad.
We didn't hug.
Damn it Taro! You are my hero!
My creative composition professor once had a student write a very graphic vignette about how said professor fell down a flight of stairs and broke every bone in his body. The student got an A because of how well written the piece was.
"Ladies, I'm Single."
I was in my public address class and someones first persuasive speech was about why you should rebel against society. Sounds like a cool idea right?
Well, he somehow mixed into his speech the fact that makeup causes violence because women cant afford it and go crazy killing people. He also brought up the fact that his parents are swingers and tell him about their "lifestyle activities" regularly.
His conclusion? "Ladies I'm single." Full finger guns and clicking sounds included.
You could say the speech was entertaining at least. 10/10 would be persuaded again.
One of my students here in Mexico wrote "noodle fight" in the middle of her written report, it had nothing to do with her report and it came out of nowhere, to this day I still don't know what she meant! BTW, I'm an English teacher here in Mexico and this happened at a university, the students were learning English as a second language!
I'm not an English teacher, but I read and advise current high schoolers on their college admissions essays and portfolios. One in particular stands out in my mind.
This boy, was quiet and reserved, as far as I could tell. He seemed smart, and had good grades. After a few attempts at college application essays that were "meh", I encouraged him to write about something that really meant a lot to him personally. He agreed to write another essay, this time writing from the heart, "with no filter."
I was excited---I have read a rare few superb college essays, and so I can tell when a student is inspired. A week later, we meet again, and he hands me his draft, looking a little uneasy. I expected something personal, like something about his family. Instead, as I read it, I realized that I was reading a literal manifesto.
It started out strong---talked about how he felt like an outsider because he had strong opinions, but believed that nobody would agree with him. After the intro, he basically outlined his entire political philosophy, in detail. First, economics: all currency should be abolished, production should be controlled by the state, and citizens should be given only what they need. Okay, I thought, Marxism is a little unusual.
Then, he went into society: all people should wear the same exact thing, uniforms, every day; all languages besides English should be outlawed; people should be sterilized at birth and permitted to breed only at the behest of the government. I was absolutely f---- up at this point, and this wasn't even half of the essay. It went on for maybe 2,000 more words (WAY over the word limit), and described a global government ruled by twelve people chosen for their IQ, wherein all people are assigned careers based on aptitude tests, and "dissenters" (his word) are "removed" from society and forced to live in labor camps. Basically, this kid spent several pages outlining a civilization somewhere between The Giver and 1984. Your textbook dystopian nightmare.
I didn't have any idea what to say, or where to even begin, so I just told him it was very interesting, but didn't talk about himself enough. I suggested we take a look at his previous draft.
He got into an exceptional school, and is now studying political science.
I may have enabled future Hitler.
Ms. Hunter Quits
I've actually had the reverse happen before, where an English teacher revealed a personal issue to our class through an assignment.
It was 6th grade. My English teacher was a young, peppy woman that always made time for her students and always had some sage advice for her them if you made the effort to ask. As a problem child myself, she was one of the few teachers I can recall being comfortable talking to about my own personal issues. One day, I remember the class getting a week long assignment where we had to write a short essay about something we were struggling with (be it personal, something relating to school, etc.), with the catch that it can be done anonymously. Over the course of the week, we submitted them, and she would read them out loud. Some people we could guess wrote what, some people we couldn't, as is the nature of these kinds of assignments.
That Friday, the assignment is pretty much winding down, and as she finishes reading what we think is the last essay, she says "Actually, one other person submitted an essay." hesitates a bit, and starts reading it. At first, no one is really sure who it's about and I could see a few people zoning out a bit. It wasn't until the words "nicotine addiction" popped up that people started listening and everyone noticed that our teacher was actually fighting back tears while reading it. As it turns out, reading our papers over the course of the week inspired her to confront her own nicotine /cigarette addiction. Everything ended with a big class group hug. She actually did manage to quit.
Hope you're doing okay out there, Ms. Hunter.
Horrible Beginning, Happy End
Between 16 and 21 I was a TA, then later, guest speaker in my high school health class.
I was both because I had grown up in an abusive home, had a history of drug addictions and alcoholism plus I had my first son when I was 16. So I would talk to the class about the importance of using a condom / birth control, the difficulty of parenthood as a teen, How to deal with abusive and dangerous home situations, As well as running a lot of group activities on the dangers of drug addiction and alcoholism.
The end of every quarter the teacher would ask them to write a thank you note for me. For both my TA stuff then guest speaking.
One girl wrote me a 4 page letter about how much it helped her and made her believe she could fix herself too, and that she didn't need to kill her self that summer.
She had hated her self and blamed her self for everything. I told her teachers that I HAD TO talk to her, and I grabbed her out of her next class after reading her letter and we spoke for the rest of the day. She went into great detail of everything that had been happening for the past 9 years. We made a plan and got her out of her house, into drug counseling.
She and I still talk to this day and she is doing very well. Shes getting her degrees to become a child psychologist specializing in helping children recover from abuse. She's become one of the most well adjusted young women I have ever known.
He's Never Been In The Military
I wrote my SAT essay about my dad who had died in Iraq. He's never been in the military. I may be an awful person, but I got a great score on it and I wouldn't have done it if it wasn't just between me and the person grading it... And now the whole internet I guess.
Because She Was Drunk
For one of my journalism classes last year we had to write a piece about a life changing moment. Every single one of us wrote about someone in our life who had died, except for one girl, who wrote about a time she accidentally drank a bottle of olive oil because she was drunk
"He Shouldn't Be A Teacher"
I teach in South Korea. One of my 6th grade students keeps a personal journal in English that he's very proud of. He is just starting to learn English, so his entries are usually very simple things like:
**"Today I went to the park!" **
One day he showed me his journal and one page had a detailed description about how the science teacher hit him hard in front of the whole class because he couldn't do one of the experiments properly. That page was longer than any other page in that journal, and more complex too. I remember the sentence:
"I feel bad every day in that class because my teacher is a horrible man. He shouldn't be a teacher."
The Poetic Love Triangle
Two years ago I put my students through a poetry unit which involved the writing of a LOT of poems. I think each student probably wrote ten to fifteen poems in a month in a variety of styles and lengths, with different amounts of editing.
At the end, we produced a poetry wall where everyone's poems went up and hung there for the rest of the year. One day as I was reading over the wall, I realized that - if you knew the kids involved - you could TOTALLY follow the course of a grade nine love triangle through the poems.
You could read about how happy Jane had been with John, but then about how much of a dick John had become. Then they changed to Jane's discovery of how nice Tim is, and how much she liked spending time with Tim. Meanwhile, Tim's poems start off being all lonely and then observing John and Jane from a distance, getting to know Jane, happiness with Jane and finally overwhelming joy when Jane leaves John and starts to date Tim.
John, for his part, showed some understanding in his later poems, his earlier stuff being mostly dark and accusatory. Ultimately, John realized that Jane was probably better off with Tim and came to know that he, too, would be okay and was a better person for going through it.
Of course it was all symbolic and didn't have any names attached, but if you knew the kids, and knew the fact they'd had this little love triangle, it was almost painfully obvious what they were writing about.
I didn't experience this a teacher, but as a student. We had to give a presentation in our communications class about our guilty pleasures. Some people did chocolate or keeping up with the Kardashians.
An international student did hers on "GV, aka, gay videos." She did indeed mean pornography. I mean slides with images and everything.
Something Bad Can Turn Out Good.
In high school, my son had to write about how a bad thing turned out to be something good. The bad thing was his mother's death. He gave me a copy. I'll hold onto that forever.
His mom turned into a much different woman from the person I'd married. She'd become addicted to opioids, was angry all of the time, and took the slightest incident and magnified it all out of proportion. We were in the process of getting divorced when she died of an overdose. According to his essay, the good was that she wasn't yelling at us any more; that I'd met the person who is now my fiancée, and was much happier. Also, instead of her being a non-working financial burden, I was receiving SSI survivors' benefits for him and his younger brother. That meant I didn't have to work as many hours, and had gotten a better job, so I had nights and weekends off to be with the family instead of working mall hours.
It's been a couple of years since I've read it, so I don't remember the details, but that's the gist of it. We're all happy now. We weren't before.
About A Boy
Not the teacher, but wanted to share this story. In tenth grade, we were assigned to write a paper about a major moment in our life. At one point, we had to present our rough drafts to the entire class. A friend of mine started her essay with something along the lines of
"I remember standing there. Knowing HE was in that room. That HE would change my life. That HE would -"
And my teacher cut off her. Called her out in front of the class, told her off for "writing about something as unimportant as a boy"
My friend was shaken up, then flatly announced her paper was about the day she met her biological father and what it felt like to be told to never contact him or his new family again.
_The teacher was mortified. _
I believe she pulled her out later to apologize, but there wasn't much coming back from that.
Mom Chose The Boyfriend
Students (grade 3...9ish y/o) had to write a poem that goes like
I am happy when\__
I am excited when_
I am angry when\__
I am sad when*__*
One girl wrote "I am angry when" but never finished it. There were multiple erased words. Then:
**"I am sad when my mom's boyfriend comes over" **
I saw it when she turned it in - as they were being dismissed to gym.
I asked her to stick around. I went line by line through the poem asking her to explain each point. She couldn't explain why she erased the "angry" part, just saying she couldn't find the right words. She said:
"I don't know what word fits for angry all the time."
She said that moms boyfriend makes her cry, and he grabs her too hard. I asked her why he grabs, and she said he grabs her when she's being bad. I asked her to point to where, and she pulled up her pink sleeve. She had bruises on her arms.
I asked if she wanted some juice, or a treat before gym to keep the conversation moving away from what evidence I uncovered. She had a hard candy and we walked to gym together while she happily enjoyed it and we talked about her favorite gym game.
After I dropped her off, I went right to the principals office, and told them the situation and we made notes on the conversation. We had to follow protocol, so child protective services were called, they saw the girl half an hour later, and she was taken to their day center while the mom was contacted.
Her mother refused to leave the boyfriend, and the child was relinquished into protective services. She was forced to change schools, the whole bit. The last time I saw her was guarding a bowling pin from being pelted by dodgeballs. She had a big smile, mishapen only by the candy she still had tucked in her cheek
My heart still hurts in all kinds of ways thinking about it. I have never talked to friends or family about it. This is the first time I've said anything in over a year.
Never Asking That Again
As a first assignment to a composition class I would have students do a personal essay where they had to discuss something that happened to them earlier in their life and how their perspective on that event has changed over time. It was natural that a lot of students would pick tragic events but usually it was when their grandma died or something like that. They could sometimes be a bit hard to read but were generally not too bad.
But then I had a student tell a story about her younger sister getting sucked into the propellers of a speedboat and chopped to pieces. The next semester I cut that assignment from my curriculum and have never used it again.
Being woken up suddenly is not very good for our health.
Especially for the elderly, it's not something to make a habit of. Sleep interruption can increase blood pressure, cause a worsened self image, and cause a day filled with irritation and confusion.
No one wants to be woken up, but there are definitely some reasons for being woken up that are worse than your alarm clock.
We went to Ask Reddit to find out some of the worst reasons people have been woken up.
Redditor Toothpiicxxk asked:
"What's the worst reason you woke up?"
These truly are the worst.
We love our pets, but sometimes not so much.
"My cat was throwing up right next to me."
"She brought you breakfast how cute."
"I was just about to answer that my cat threw up right on me, specifically my hair, which I had just washed..."
Some horrible news hits you.
"Being woken up to be told someone you know died certainly qualifies."
"Or when you already know, but you wake up in that ignorant bliss that lasts for about a second and then it hits you. And this goes on for a long time."
"It's been about 15 years and I still will wake up on occasion thinking I have to tell my older brother something cool that I know he'd love to hear about. Or have a vivid a** dream about how it was all an mistake and he's still here. Happens less often then it used to but oof does it ever still hurt."
"Woke up at about 3am to a cop repeatedly ringing my bell. my mom had accidentally drowned in the tub. she was really weak from chemo."
"Woke up to a phone call telling me my incredible brother-in-law had been hit and killed by a drunk & high driver, his wife was also expected to pass as her neck had been broken, and their kids were both in surgery. My husband and I were in the will to get the kids, so we needed to fly to Chicago right away. As I sat there in shock, I hung up the phone, turned to see my sleeping husband snoring away, and knowing I would now have to wake him up to tell him the worst news he would ever hear."
2018 false missile alert.
"I live in Hawaii, that time we got the missile scare."
"Oof at least it wasn't real but I would have definitely panicked if that was me."
"Damn, I slept straight through it. My mom literally woke me up, told me; and I still went back to sleep."
"What were you supposed to do? Go outside and witness your annihilation?"
"I think it's the right thing to do to inform people even if there isn't necessarily anything that can be done about it."
"Some people would appreciate being able to conduct prayers, get one last hug with their loved ones, etc."
"Cockroach walking on my lips with no shame. I brutally murdered it as soon as I yeeted it halfway across the room."
"I had a weird dream about a cockroach somehow paralyzing a friend then walking towards me in that same room. Then I awoke to find this a**hole cockroach slowly creeping on my lips."
"When I threw it away, what startled me was it did not panic AT ALL. It even slowly headed towards me!"
"I also mouth washed and brushed my teeth and even disinfected my lips with alcohol. It was a surreal experience."
"I seriously loathe roaches and there's no other way to ensure its death than a brutal one."
Screams in the night.
"One time I got woken up by a blood curdling scream in the middle of the night. I live alone and it also woke up my dog who was freaked out the rest of the night. Searched everywhere including outside and didn't find anything."
"Well that was lucky. Imagine what would have happened if you had found it..."
"Hopefully a fox, coyote, cat, or cougar."
"Being clearly asleep, and then someone wakes you to ask, 'Are you asleep?'"
"Bruh my mom be like [this]."
"The only correct answer to this question is 'yes.'"
"I woke up to my mom calling me sobbing because she thought I had died, I was 10 hours away and my blood sugar was severely low and wasn't answering any calls, that was horrifying."
"We've learned what does and doesn't work for waking me up in a medical emergency."
"Blood sugar can be a b*tch, found my mum having a really bad hypo while sleeping when I was a toddler and for years and years after would wake her up to check she was okay without realizing I was doing it for that reason. Glad you're okay!"
Something so relatable.
"My alarm rung. It's a daily struggle."
We've all been there.
If you're not a morning person, waking up in the morning can already be a challenge, but no one wants to get woken up to horrible news or an emergency.
In fact, we should be waking up naturally with our own personal sleeping patterns.
We all know that's easier said than done.
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People have a habit of excusing crap behavior - honestly because it's often easier in the short term. Long term = flaming dumpster fire.
The excuses people use to dismiss behavior range from mundane and meaningless to the sort of leaps normally reserved for kangaroos and Olympians. It's sometimes amazing that these excuses work - but they do.
Some of them work so well that they're just sort of "accepted." That, obviously, kind of sucks and is something we should avoid - so let's talk about 'em.
Can't swerve around what you don't see, ya know?
Reddit user TMTtasmachine asked:
... and away we go.
" 'That's just how they are.' "
"One of the biggest enablers for tantrum throwing, bullying, etc. is that they get treated with kid gloves to avoid dealing with them." - alexrt87
"Oh my God you hit the nail on the head. Whenever someone says 'that's just the way they are' I say:"
" 'Yes, that's the point! Glad you noticed too! Now is it okey-doke for them to be jerks they have special jerk privileges? Or maybe they are just people and should treat everyone else as such?' " - notatrumpchump
"It depends on how it's said."
"People are the way that they are, and you shouldn't be surprised when they continue to be that way."
"This, obviously, doesn't excuse it - but people also shouldn't be surprised when a bad person continues to make bad decisions. Neither should we waste space in our minds being bothered by it." - unlawfulfoxy
Harassment Isn't Humorseason 2 lol GIF by ShamelessGiphy
" 'It's just a joke, bro.' Harassing people isn't humor." - loading__99
"A guy who says/does offensive things and decides whether he was joking based on the reaction of people around him." - Eatsleeptren
"Dude, legit had someone come up to me and start shouting in my face, calling me Madison, pretending I was cheating on him. Literally the most crowded location outside a theater, everyone staring at us, looking at me like I was some horrible cheater while I was out with my then fiancé."
"I started hyperventilating, my fiancé nearly decked the dude, and then someone shouts 'CUT' like this is some big 'YOU'RE ON CANDID CAMERA' moment and everything's supposed to be okay."
"I burst into tears."
"It was the most humiliating moment of my life, and thank god my then fiancé, now husband is not the type to overreact or jump to conclusions, or be abusive. Imagine how bad that could have been for someone with an angry or abusive partner."
"Prank videos are a plague on the internet and there is a REASON so many of them are fake, or involve actors." - Darkovika
Stay Sober, Then!Drunk Drinking Beer GIFGiphy
" 'I was drunk / high / etc.' "
"Then don't drink?! Stay sober if you can't NOT be an a**hole!" - BasedBenjamin
"Alternately, I hear a lot of 'I'm a happy drunk!' "
"Yeah, according to your drunk a$s. That doesn't mean you're not an ahole. Not remembering is not an excuse either." - PepeBabinski
"I was also loud, obnoxious, and I wouldn't remember sh*t the next day."
"Quitting drinking has been one of my best choices of my life." - TTungsteNN
"Help"new girl coach GIFGiphy
" 'I'm just trying to help you' " - Miserable-Air1234
"Every time I've heard this, they're manipulating me while helping only themselves." - mykittenfarts
"My Mom to a T. Everything she does is better than anyone else's and she always gets pissed that people don't praise her for 'helping.' "
"She's now a certified (by herself) psychic and I have come to the conclusion that she's not a covert narcissist but an obvious one. I really wish I was joking." - Silent_Discussion657
Parenting ProblemsLeave Me Alone Run GIF by TLC EuropeGiphy
"Any variation of 'I'm a Mother/parent.' "
"Had some lady cut me in line at a coffee shop and she hit me with 'I'm a single Mom of 3!' as her excuse."
"Ok? And? I was still here first." - maid-for-hire
"I'm a single mom and I f*cking haaaate when other single moms/parents pull that sh*t to get special treatment."
"Last week, I was having a rough morning, my kid was being difficult, and I was running late. I was rude to a cashier over a minor inconvenience."
"Not only did I apologize for my shitty behavior, I wrote corporate to let them know how professional and patient she was while I acted like a f*cking toddler."
"Was being a parent part of the reason I was frustrated? Absolutely. Was it an excuse for that behavior? HELL no."
"I acted like a b*tch, and I called myself out, and I apologized. I still feel bad about that - I rarely let things get to me to the point I snap at others." - ClusterfckyShtshow
"Wow. I'm a Mom as well and tired but it doesn't give anyone a right to use it as some sort of ploy to get away with stuff."
"Like, mice become Moms about 12 times a year. You're not special 🤣" - SpoonLoops
Believing Your BossThe Office Monday GIF by 20th Century Fox Home EntertainmentGiphy
"I had a boss say some really racist sh*t around me one day and the next day, out of nowhere, he says:"
" 'Don't believe half the things that come out of my mouth!' "
"It was not really an excuse, more like trying to cover for himself after the fact, but still stuck with me." - sirlongbottom441
"Report them to HR. Seriously." - kokichi--ouma
"Looking past the racist stuff for a bit, that's not a very encouraging thing to hear from a boss…" - WonderfulBlackberry9
Bad Day AgainBad Day Reaction GIF by Schitt's CreekGiphy
" 'I'm having a bad day/week' "
"Okay, so you decide everybody that you interact with deserves the same fate? Get out of here, dude." - myordinaryexistence
"We all got stress, don't take it out on me. I get some people have stress bad enough for it to be passable every once and a while (family member passing, etc) but general, stress should not lead to you being a jerk to me." - willsimpforfree
"Damn, I'm definitely guilty of this. Usually I remember to apologize after but at this point I've learned to just avoid the situation in the first place by minimizing my interaction with people if I'm in a shitty mood." - nozzzrul
"Reminds me of when that White boy went on a murder rampage and killed a bunch of Asian women & that a-hole sheriff gave a press conference telling the media that the 'poor boy had a bad day.' "
"My idea of a bad day involves going home after a rough day at work and just staying in the house."
"Apparently, I should change my ethnicity from Asian to White and go on a murder rampage, see if my @ss gets a sympathetic sheriff to say on my behalf that I had 'a bad day.' " - kingkazul400
It's Not An ExcuseSeason 2 Reaction GIF by FriendsGiphy
"This won't go down well, but using depression as an excuse. As someone who suffers from it, it's still not ok to treat others like sh*t" - Rainbowwallstickers
"Could not agree enough. My partner has a 'friend' who treats everyone like sh*t all the time, has no consideration for others and openly mocks people in public."
"She gets so much grace from those around her under the guise of her 'mental health.' It's so infuriating watching an adult woman never have to take responsibility for her actions." - 34boor
"I get there are some things you can't control, but you are still responsible for keeping that sh*t in check and if you're aware of your mental illness, you should be aware of how you approach people and situations."
"I'll admit I used to be guilty of using my mental illness to be an @ss, but now I'm trying to better myself" - VeeSquibbles
Florida Gonna FloridaLooney Tunes Florida GIFGiphy
"People are letting Florida off the hook way too damn much. And I live in Florida."
"Just because it's hilarious doesn't mean it isn't still completely f*cked up." - AlphaWhiskeyOscar
"The phrase 'Florida Man' is almost always followed some heinous way a Floridian is being an a$$hole." - PepeBabinski
"I'm also originally from Florida, and that state has serious problems. We need to pay attention to it." - [Reddit]
Moment of honesty ... as a Floridian ... yeaaaah, I'm gonna have to agree with that last one.
We live in a time where we are critically re-examining how we pay workers. After a two-year-long pandemic where some low-income and "unskilled" jobs were deemed "essential," we now must put our money where our mouth is.
For too long in the world have incredibly important jobs been overlooked or else outright maligned. Teachers in the USA make some of the least money, career-wise, and have some of the hardest jobs. Dancers pay to put their bodies through hell with no guarantee of paid work after training.
So how do we fix this problem? By naming it, of course.
Redditor u/NightReader5 asked:
"What professions are severely underpaid?"
Here were some of those answers.
Our Elderly Deserve Better
"I worked as a CNA in a nursing home and I loved it. It's such hard work for such little pay and that's why I had to leave."
"Not only that but I was a rare person in that I LOVED caring for the residents. Nothing was beneath me such as changing a dirty diaper or spoon feeding."
"Everything helped their quality of life. Sucks they can't keep people that genuinely enjoy it cause I couldn't make over $10 an hour."-Dancer9d9
"Came here to say this: Emergency Medical Technicians. I will never not be just a bit salty about this."
"My husband is one of those people who does this job because it's his passion and he loves helping people."
"It would be nice if he earned more than the kid who just got hired at McDonald's this morning."-ThePotterheadHobbit
High School Bathrooms....
"The janitors at my high school. I walked in the men's bathroom there once and there was a mega-giant steaming pile of crap and diarrhea right in the middle of the floor."-satanic-sex-god
"Anyhow. Are you sure that was a high school? We're talking grades 9-12 here, right?"-VoicedVelarNasal
"Unfortunately yes. Other highlights of my oh so great high school men's bathroom that contains teenagers from 14 to as old as 20 are:"
"A dude bringing a sledgehammer to school and smashing a sink, the toilets being blown up, the toilets being frequently clogged with trash..."
"Smashed beer bottle glass covering the floor, and a centimeter of pee flooding the bathroom whenever you walk in. I hate it here."-satanic-sex-god
You know immediately YOU might not want to do this job--so why is someone else getting paid next to nothing to do it?
The More You Help Others The Less You Get Paid
"Statistically speaking, any job that provides significant social benefit to others, the less you will get paid, something that David Graeber discusses in essays and his work, Bullsh*t Jobs."
"This is so sad. I'm currently in a job that pays very well, I just dont find any meaning or fulfillment with it. I want so badly to do something where I'd be helping others- something with purpose- but I honestly dont think I can afford it."-mko0njo9
"Social workers. Dealing with negligent, abusive parents while trying to help the children while in an underfunded, low-paid system is a travesty."-ZRX1200R
"Can also confirm. I like working with my family's but I don't get paid enough to deal with their crap or most of the bureaucracy."-Altowhovian93
Minimum Wage To Go Against FIRE
"Entry level wildland firefighters. They start them at $15 an hour."-NuclearEyedSquirrel
"I live in a small town in Ohio and I think the lowest starting wage I've seen was 11."
"That's the low side and those places are having trouble hiring because there's so many places paying higher. McDonald's here starts at 13 or 14 an hour."-rjoh4459
One Kid, One Para
"Paraprofessionals. Yea, my town increased the pay rate for paraprofessionals to get more people to apply since they have a shortage but the pay increase was not that good IMO."
"For that job, I think you need to be compensated for the physical and mental demands of the job."
"It's a hard job and they should be paid for the work, the pay rate in my community for the job with 60 credits is $14.50 but I think it should be more than that."-YourQueen2Bee
The question then becomes, why won't the people who HAVE money do something to help the quality of these jobs, and make sure that these people get paid?
"Everything in veterinary medicine. Kennel technicians, Veterinary assistants, Veterinary technicians, Veterinary receptionists, and Veterinarians."-aIsiduous
"Veterinary interns/residents, too. I work 70-120hrs+ per week, am on call about half the days per month, have to pay for my own board exams and accreditation fees out of pocket, and all for ~$33,000 per year."-WyrdHarper
"It's bullsh*t. There's nothing on this planet I want to do more than be a veterinarian, but I simply cannot afford the debt. Hopefully one day we'll get the recognition deserved. Stick in there, I know you got this!"--aIsiduous
In The Classroom
"I work in a special school, I love it but I really don't think we get paid enough for all the times we get yelled at, punched, kicked, bit, spat on, cursed at, have our classrooms trashed, have things thrown at us..."
"And then we also have parents making demands and admin telling us their 'simple' solutions to all of it that we have to carry out while they have zero clue on what it's actually like to spend a day in the classroom."-Sajiri
A Morbid State Of Affairs
"Funeral directors/embalmers/funeral professionals. We didn't get days or holidays off to begin with. Now the pandemic has stretched us to working double overtime, which we are exempt from getting paid for under Florida statutes."
"And forget hazard pay for being exposed to COVID multiple times a day every day via the deceased, the deceased's family members, the general public attending funerals, and the hospital/nursing facilities we remove decedents from."-Lesscute
So why are we holding off on giving these people a raise? Their jobs involve dangerous, mentally and emotionally taxing situations, and yet, we treat them as if society could function without them. The truth is it couldn't.
And society had best learn that as soon as possible.
What causes a small town to die?
Honestly, there can be quite a few factors, but perhaps the biggest one is that small towns often lack the upward mobility opportunities that are more available in urban areas.
As a result, many towns around the United States for instance have lost tens of millions of people as their populations seek jobs and opportunities elsewhere.
And what remains of these places can be pretty sketchy.
People told us more after Redditor RadicalizedSnackWrap asked the online community,
"What's a super sketchy US city that we never hear about?"
"Daytona Beach, FL. Imagine a bunch of alcoholic high school kids who came for spring break in 1984, and never left, and never grew up."
Oh, I don't have to imagine it.
I've seen it!
I lived in a neighboring town for a while and bodies would always turn up in farmer's fields that the cartel in Yakima had dropped off there."
Sounds like Netflix needs to get its hands on Yakima, a new show to go against Ozark.
"I remember a story..."
"Guntersville, Alabama. If I were to ballpark it, over 80% of the population are meth addicts and traffickers.
I remember a story where a man walked into the Walmart, took all the supplies and equipment required to cook, and proceeded to cook meth in the bathroom."
"A run-down town..."
"Reading, PA. A run-down town that is mostly used as a central point to run drugs between New York and Philly."
I am writing this from right nearby actually, and I can smell it from here.
"Small town almost entirely..."
"Butte, Montana. Small town almost entirely comprised of violent meth heads."
"More of a town than a city..."
More of a town than a city, but it's such a weird place, bordering on Twilight Zone. You'll see a meth house right next to a youth theatre."
According to a friend I have who spent a lot of time in Arizona, this sounds about right.
"Used to have..."
"Gary, Indiana. Used to have a prosperous steel economy, but now it's just home to abandoned buildings, failing infrastructure, and lots and lots of crime. Just look up pictures."
"I always said..."
"Amityville. Yes, that Amityville.
I always said the "Amityville Horror" house is for amateurs. You want something scary, put on a nice watch or a gold chain and wander around downtown Amityville after dark."
I went there once.
I have not been back.
"It looks harmless..."
"Harrisburg PA. It looks harmless and maybe a little boring but holy hell that place is a giant puddle of corruption just waiting for someone to step in it. Not just state government, there's a bunch of layers you can use to crawl up the corruption ladder."
"Used to be..."
"Natchez, Mississippi. Use to be the headquarters for the KKK. Not much there besides crackheads, plantation homes, and European tourists. Don't own a nice place if you're black, you'll be stopped by the police and questioned."
It doesn't look any of these are changing anytime soon, and that's sad.
Have some small towns to tell us about? Feel free to tell us more in the comments below!
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