People Explain How Their Favorite Teacher Became Their Worst Nightmare
Photo by Jess Bailey on Unsplash

Having a teacher that truly supports you is priceless. But sometimes, our favorite teachers can fall from grace, and through whatever events or circumstances, they become the bane of your existence. It sucks, but it happens quite a bit. Here are some of those stories.

u/Reiders-theaters93jx asked: What did your favorite teacher do to become your worst one ever?

That doesn't make any sense.

Sounds petty but.... In 7th grade. I always made 100% on spelling tests. Always. Hell, they give you the words on a list beforehand. But anyway, I got my test back with a score of 80%. I checked and rechecked and rechecked my paper and couldn't see the error. So, I go up to the teacher and tell her I can't find my mistakes. And honestly, she says to me, "You didn't dot your 'i' right over the 'i'. Huh?

I go back to my desk and ask to see my friend's test. They didn't dot their 'i' right over the 'i' either. I go back up to the teacher and tell her this and she says, 'Well, if everyone else is going to jump off a bridge, does that mean you would too?" By this time, I was pissed and said, "yes, I would."

I got sent to the principal's office. Hated this class after that.


Karen-esque, indeed.


My Freshman year of High School, I had this one English teacher who was not only a really cool dude but very good at his job and made great choices in assigned readings (including Shakespeare's more violent plays, like Macbeth and Titus.) As his student, I had a lot of respect for him.

Fast-forward 5 years, I'm taking a year off between High School and College to work a regular job so I can save a little more money. This same teacher walks into my store with a small order, and then proceeds to verbally tear the cashier next to me a new one because the items he "needed for his class" would have to be back-ordered. Like that's somehow the cashier's f*cking fault the distributor didn't ship out certain items to YOUR liking? I was utterly dumb-struck at his Karen-esque behavior.

Lesson learned: Just because someone is good at what they do doesn't mean they're a good person, you never truly know someone until you see them interact with the public.



I was a student worker in the guidance counselors office. I worked there two periods a day, doing filing, decorating, and generally being a gopher (go for this, go for that). I loved the two teachers/counselors who sat in that office.

And then one day, the fundraising candy box comes up $10 short. That's weird, because all candy is $1, but we assume someone made change and then someone (maybe else) saw a tenner and legged it.

That's what I though, anyway.

Several months later, we're running the book fair. I'm a cashier. One of the tills comes up $5 short. Could be theft, but could be just high schoolers bad at math, or a making-change swindle, or whatever.

The next day I get called into the principals office (oooOOOoohh!) and am told that they know I stole $20 from the book fair, because they also know I stole $20 from the candy sales several months prior, though they couldn't prove it at the time.

If, however, I pay the principal $50 in cash by tomorrow, my parents don't need to be involved.

Well, I don't want my parents involved because that's an automatic thrashing just for being contacted by the school, never mind what they'd do if they thought I was a thief (never mind I worked in the family restaurant since I was 9 and ran the register for years after school without ever coming up short). So I go to my two favorite teachers and ask them for help, because obviously something is screwy here.

Turns out, they're aware, because they told the principal that I had stolen the $20 from the candy box (never mind it was $10), so it seemed pretty obvious that I also took $20 from the register (it was short by $5). Never mind the extra $10, I guess.

Well, I had a job, so I actually had money, and I gave it to the principal the next day and like any honest blackmailer, he never told my parents.

The worst part about the whole thing was the implication of stupidity. Like, I don't much mind being called a thief, but I resent being called a stupid thief that would TWICE steal from his own till.

F you, Elkton High School. Those teachers are long dead, but you're still sh*tty in my book.



Our teacher Mr. A was really cool. We were in 6th grade. He was in his early 20's. He joked with us, made difficult concepts easy, and was easy to talk to since he liked a lot of the same shows and movies that we did.

One day, a girl with Down Syndrome transferred in. Our beloved Mr. A would pick on her and if she didn't know an answer, would relentlessly ask her and say stuff like "you're keeping the class from learning." She cried almost every day. The girl was gone a few weeks later. The teacher still works there.

HAPPY ENDING EDIT: A little Google digging let me know that the girl he used to make fun of sits on the local mental health board and has a full-time job in the community. The local paper had an article on her.


Definitely not always capitalized.


Last round of my 3rd grade spelling bee. Word is constitution. "c-o-n-s-t-i-t-u-t-i-o-n, constitution," I proclaimed confidently. My teacher said it was wrong, since constitution is capitalized. Except it's also an improper noun, dumb b*tch. So no one won the spelling bee, despite the other finalists spelling it blatantly wrong.


Definitely not the students' fault.

High school English teacher is an all-around fun person, and many people (including myself) chose her for the next grade of English classes. Christmas comes around and the teacher brings up the idea of doing one of those Salvation Army Angel (a gift for a less-fortunate kid in the community you take from one a tree at a store or mall. The class was on board with the idea, but then she insisted on doing two for our class section. It's an honors-level class with a few higher-income students, but we're in a Title I school where the majority of student—including myself—were on free/reduced lunch.

The weeks go by, and as people are dropping a few dollars here and there, the teacher expresses how she wanted to go bigger with the gift. Jackets for both, some toys, a baby doll for the girl, an iPod shuffle for the older boy. "What's an iPod without any music?" "What's a baby doll without some accessories."

Even when she said there was no pressure for us to give if we were unable to give, she began to make passive aggressive about how disappointed she was with the amount of contributions for the Angels. She began taking up class time to address how if we weren't able to fund two, we shouldn't have taken on the responsibility of two Angels. Putting blame on us that she's having to fund these with her own money. It's too late to return the Angel and it'd be our fault they don't have quality gifts this Christmas. As time goes on, more and more people are getting a bit uncomfortable, their perceptions of the sincere, 'cool teacher' start to change, and after a few more unrelated class rants and punishments, one of my favorite teachers goes to being my worst one ever.


That's rough.

TA in college. He ran our labs and was close to us in age so we used to hang out with him socially, play games with him etc. and he would give us extra licenses for software if we asked even though we were only supposed to get 1 each. He could give out Windows Pro licenses and stuff so this was really nice.

Then I missed a lab once because my Aunt was in the hospital dying of cancer. She didn't actually die that day though, so when I made up the lab the next week he marked it late. She died the next week.




Favorite English teacher my senior year of high school. She let me borrow novels to read, I'd chat with her before first period, she put a coffee maker in her office she'd let me have a cup. She was in her early 30s. Came in one day a frazzled mess and got arrested in class. She was sleeping with an 18 year old student. He had a girlfriend and she was married. She got everything revoked, teaching license, banned from teaching in the state. Changed her name, got divorced, ran off with the kid. I was devastated. I really connected with her and the sub replacement was a b*tch.


Well that sucks.

Had an amazing biology teacher who I really looked up to both as a teacher and as a strong female role model, until final year when one day in class she started on a rant about how gay people were abominations and were going straight to hell. I had found out a year earlier that my older brother was gay and was going through hell after being disowned by my dad. I lost all respect for my teacher right there and then.



When I was about 7 I thought my swim instructor was the coolest dude ever. One of the last things we had to do in the summer course was to dive down and touch the bottom of the deep end of the pool (8 or 9 ft) while he's also at the bottom to make sure if you made it or not. I hated opening my eyes underwater so I had no idea how close I was. Apparently I was within inches but I panicked and started going back up. He grabs my f*cking ankle and I lose it and started thrashing around until I surfaced. His excuse was that "I was so close".

That was over 20 years ago but I still remember. I know he was probably just some high school lifeguard with a summer job but it went from idolization to betrayal in an instant.


"Truly sorry."


Over reacts sometimes. I mean, she was sweet and kind but sometimes she overreacts over nothing.

I had a habit of saying "Isn't it suppose to be..." over something where I thought it was one way but thought it was another.

Apparently, she took it as an act of me "commanding" how an answer should be and got upset over the word "suppose".

One day I said it and she had already been upset with me, but later she gave us our test results. I walked up to her saying she might have given me a wrong mark, I was ACTUALLY telling her to lower it not increase it but I accidentally missed two points. She got upset that I suggested she was wrong, so instead of praising me for my honesty, she was going to send me to the headmistress. She said "I'm very sorry I had to do this," and I wanted to tell her that if she was truly sorry she WOULDN'T do this.

BTW, I was 9.



My current Chem teacher has no respect for students. She seems nice but I've broke down many many times in class sobbing. She's been standing right next to me watching me like nothings the issue. And when we had two students pass away this year (one due to medical reasons the other to suicide) she gave the message to the class in the most disrespectful way ever. You could tell that in her mind it was just a disruption.


That's an oof from me, dog.

It's gonna be hard writing this since the terms don't really correspond to the international norm, but bear with me.

So I'm taking university courses in Economics, majoring in Statistics and Economic Forecast, lots of maths, algorithms, statistical analysis and all. Last year we were supposed to choose our coordinating teachers for our degree thesis, and I chose the baddest badass of them all (or so I was told), simply because hearing that he's rather tough implied that he's a good professor - and a strict one, which gave me the impression that he'd get the best of me. We were supposed to choose between econometrics and statistical survey as practical methodologies for our thesis and I chose econometrics since I'm a lazy ass and didn't wanna go around asking for people to take my survey, also I like econometrics and data analysis a bit more.

So first meeting with my prof and my colleagues (we were 5 students who chose this prof as our mentor for the thesis), he seems like a really nice guy, immediately liked him and his attitude, kind of a careless guy with lots of knowledge to share and lots of willingness to share.

Fast forward to the beginning of the third (and last) year of our studies and we finally have classes with this professor. Oh boy, was I wrong.

To say he was rough was an understatement. From the nice guy he ought to be, his attitude shifted between being nice and careful and gentle to shouting and yelling and berating students, calling us names and threatening us with failing his class, which meant we'll have to come back for another year to take his class. Not to mention that he was that type of man, in his 40s, divorced, single parent, highly unattractive, not really relevant to our studies, but you could see that his frustration was affecting his performance as a professor and co-ordinator, mainly focusing on girls in our group.

A couple weeks ago he kind of confessed to his frustrations, when while grading our papers, he randomly started talking about how women leave you no matter how good you are, how nice you treat her, she'll always leave you for a better looking guy, or a rich one, or both. He went on with this for like 10 minutes. Me and a girl who I get along with would always joke about this before his rant, we always suspected he acted the way he did because of some frustration towards women, mainly because we knew his wife left him. He was also very temperamental, and taking grading and evaluation criteria decisions based on his mood, contradicting himself and making up his mind about grades. He was also very personal when evaluating us. It's sad that I really liked this professor, he really got me into studying and enjoying my studies, then disappointed me as a student.

Sorry for the long read, I had to get it out.


That seems uncalled for.


This happened in high school. I was going to the bathroom during passing period between I think 5th and 6th period. The urinals were kinda occupied, and guy rules dictate that I cannot go there, so I take a stall at the far end. I then pee and get out to wash my hands, but am immediately intercepted by a teacher. The teacher may not of been my exact favorite, but he was certainly close. He was my World History & Civilization (all one class) teacher, and that was my favorite class discounting teachers, even after what is about to happen. The teacher tells me I cannot leave or wash my hands or anything, and after another kid leaves the stall, he takes both of us out into the hallway. We are ordered to empty our pockets, and we do, then he looks confused. The teacher then just leaves.

As me and the other kid go back in to wash our hands, I ask him why we were just searched. Apparently, one of the kids in the stalls was vaping and the teacher must of saw the vapor. Keep in mind there are only three stalls in the smaller, upstairs bathroom where we were. The teacher searched the two of the three who weren't vaping. I had a real life smh moment, then went to my class.

After 6th period, lucky me had World History & Civilization class. I figured once there, he would apologize for wrongfully pulling me over and making me look stupid in the hallways. But no, the entire class he just ignored me completely, even when I raised my hand to answer questions he asked. As far as I know, that idiot never even caught the actual kid vaping. Like, seriously? I was acing his class and being a smart kid before that, but I would stop participating from then on out.

The class was still easy and I still aced it, but no more answering questions the others didn't have an answer for. No more laughing at your references only I get. Have fun getting everyone else to do something.


That's not a good teaching method.

I had a pre-algebra teacher who I thought was fun but she ended up being really annoying. I thought she was fun because she had a squirt gun to tease the kids with. But after a while she became just another one of those teachers, and she yelled at our class for not being able to solve problems in literally five seconds.

She kept saying things like "it's only going to get worse" and "you guys need to be spoon fed answers" constantly. It got so bad I had to leave pre-algebra and do normal math.