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falala Offline
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Exclamation Is it normal to love your teacher like your mother? - October 7th 2011, 06:37 PM


I'm thinking that I'm crazy to be doing this... but i believe I need to talk to people about this who will not affect my life directly. Please bear with me, and I thank you in advance.

Ever since young, I've realised that I always form an attachment with a female teacher. When I was younger, I couldn't quite understand why I felt such a dire need to do this.

I just wanted to know, is it okay to feel like this? Because I always feel a deep sense of betrayal to feel for another woman what I should only feel for my mother. But the alternative is even harder to stomach.

No, I do not trust nor will I love my mother, and I resolutely have decided that my responsibilities will only go so far as to cover filial piety i.e. financial security for her, as is required of me as a daughter.

I just... I don't know what to do. Innately, I know at this woman could never love another kid as she loves her own and why the hell would she bother anyway? She's a teacher so her job is to teach and that's all she's here for- she gets paid to make sure that there are fewer idiots in the world.

But she's wonderful. She isn't afraid to get down and dirty with any of her students and she is so passionate in her lessons. If you were to hear her speak, you would be won over by the mere power of her own conviction, even if you were a sarcastic, skeptical prick like I am. Her hair is always in artful, unintentional disarray and she has this warm earthy scent when you get close.And when you talk to her, whoever you are, she holds your face in a continuous steady gaze and takes you seriously or laughs and smiles when you're just joking. Her thoughts can be all over the place at once but they can instantly revolve around you when you approach her. She is firm but fair and makes very fair judgments all the time. She is incredibly eccentric because of her occasional bouts of fanaticism, whether over Maths or life values.

Life values-should be corny right? But not so with Mrs Pang. In short, she makes me feel safe. Like I don't have to work so hard to defend myself from things that hurt. Like I could rest for awhile and bask in her warmth and protection and give her all the love I could offer. If she taught me Maths, I
would work so hard just to get her remarks in red pen ink.

She's not the first I've felt an attraction to... and I suspect not the last. I wanted to know... is this healthy? Should I stop? If so, how do I go about doing this? Because I feel wretched whichever way I turn. I crave for... I don't know, something as improbable as love? From someone who's not even biologically related to me. I think I'm being ridiculous... but I need to know.

I'm sick of pretending to smile when I'm not happy, forcing myself to make jokes to charm others into believing I'm okay. And I almost never talk about my past, to keep everybody away. And when anybody digs too deep, I fly into a rage and threaten physical violence, a bit like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde I guess. I never have any fulfilling relationships with friends because I don't really let them get to know me, which I wouldn't want them to know, because they'd be appalled in some way or other or crow my defects from the mountains. I'm sick of living a pointless life where studies are the only thing that guarantees success and success is the only thing I should be aiming for in a dog-eat-dog world.

I've been feeling for a long time.... absolutely nothing. Like I'm dead. Like nothing I do has any impact so if anybody wants to control my life, a great big FUCK YOU to hell flies in their direction as well as tensed muscles. I feel like there's this great big black hole inside me. I feel like crying everytime I think about this. I drown out the pain and suppress the thoughts. I analyse. But it
never quite goes away, always lurking beneath the surface like a bloating corpse.

I've been betrayed by one teacher before who made fun of my apparent adoration for her to a colleague. I don't ever tell them I love them, like how I would like to love them. We usually just remain friends. And sometimes, when I let myself indulge, I lock the door to my room very late at night and cry. And I feel this aching pain inside my chest that seems to tear me apart because I
don't have what I want. Other times, when something as small as a teacher praising me for my work happens, I smile uncontrollably regardless of where I am. Why does it have such a profound physical effect on me? I think I am selfish to want love. There, I said it, I want love, okay?! What do you want in return?? Good grades?

Fuck this. Let me jump to another thought- I hate being compared to my older sister who's 11 years older than me. What do I fucking care that she fucking betrayed the family? What the fuck has she got to do with me? Why the fuck is my mother crying over this when my sister is a fucking bitch in the first place? My mother is blind to see anything! Or listen for that matter.

But it's okay, my opinions are not important. After all, there are always 4 other siblings of mine, or least 2, who can share her resentment of her wicked son-in-law and disappointment towards her oldest, favourite child. I don't care. I don't need her help just so that it can be used as leverage against me.

Love hurts so much. When if I get even the tiniest scrap, I feel a little bit of happiness chased by the usual fear of... of abandonment. Maybe I'm just being some prissy wuss who's not independent enough. I don't know. You tell me.

But just thinking about it makes me want to throw myself at Mrs Pang's feet, come kicks or repulsion, just so I can be with her, even for that second only. It used to be much worse before. But now that I've got a secret diary, things ar not so bad as they used to be because at least I can relate to an inanimate object. Sigh. I'm not allowed or encouraged to keep a diary for the simple reason that it WILL be read.

I just graduated today. I'm sixteen. I wish I'd known her better.

I'd been taking a picture with her. The photographer told Mrs Pang just how touched she was by her
efforts and passion in teacher. Mrs Pang was speechless for a moment, then she said, as is her usual eccentric self, 'I love you.' It was as if she was saying this to her husband, or her kids, because it was so real, it existed, it had no trace of falsity while I was crouched there, next to her shoulder, arm tentatively draped across her back.

It struck me so hard, deep inside. I was stunned for a moment then automatically I said 'Me too,' even though she wasn't referring to me! I guess I should feel embrassed about this. As I walked away, the pain came again. I pushed the tears away as is my habit, so desensitized to pain that I am. How am I going to deal with this damned bullshit emotions when I'm in college?

Please help me. Thank you again. I hope for a reply from anybody who can drag me out of this stupid emotional shithole soon.


Last edited by falala; October 7th 2011 at 06:49 PM.
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Re: Is it normal to love your teacher like your mother? - October 8th 2011, 01:05 AM

Hello, and welcome to TeenHelp! =)

First of all, there's been a great deal of research conducted on "attachments" during childhood. I'll sum it up by saying that, if you don't have a secure "attachment" with your mother (ex. a loving, trusting, mutually respectful relationship), then you may seek to have secure "attachments" with other people. Since you see this female teacher fairly often, and since she is both an authority figure and mentor for you, it makes sense that you would try to seek out a closer relationship with this teacher.

Now, obviously, there are acceptable and unacceptable ways to create this kind of a relationship... but it's not entirely unheard of for teachers to mentor students outside of the school environment. You just need to take things slowly and see if anything develops outside of the normal teacher/student relationship. Some adults will be open to serving as mentors outside of the school environment, while others will merely treat you as a student. You can't put all your eggs in one basket - instead, talk to a number of adults in your life, and see what happens with each of them. Maybe you will find the kind of relationship you're looking for with a coach, with a counselor, with a club advisor, with a neighbor... my point is that it's okay to reach out to others, and it's probably a good idea to look for mentor-like relationships wherever you go, not just with one particular teacher.

Definitely talk to someone - anyone - about how you're feeling. If they can't or don't want to handle it, talk to someone else. Keep talking to people, until you make a connection with someone. It's clear to me that you're dealing with a lot of pain right now, because you're feeling disconnected from the people around you. You DON'T, and you SHOULDN'T, have to be alone in life. You've got to open up, though, even if you're scared of what other people might say or do. Rejection is a part of life - but we face rejection each and every day in hopes that someone WON'T reject us. I know that you'll find someone (and probably more than just one person) if you can find it within yourself to be honest about how you're feeling, and be willing to develop a true give-and-take relationship with someone. =)

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Re: Is it normal to love your teacher like your mother? - October 8th 2011, 03:39 PM

Thanks Robin... you've given me hope. Haha and thanks for the welcome too! Didn't think I'd get a reply so fast C: Btw, I apologize for the terrible language in my first post as I had to get it off my chest as honestly as possible, without fear of consequence. But of course, that doesn't mean I can go around with a chainsaw and deforest the neighbourhood of people haha!

I read a bit more about attachment disorder and I must say that it pretty much describes how I've felt throughout my life, despite my dislike for textbook definitions .I don't want to be a jerk to other people for the rest of it too coz that's just not a life worth living to me.

As far as I've searched about this attachment thingy, I can't seem to find any help for myself. It's usually for parents who have kids who... are like me I guess. Your advice definitely helps so please forgive me for being curious-

Is the only cure for me then to find that person? Can I get rid off this craving for maternal love or will it haunt me for the rest of my life? Is it as simple as
saying No and suppressing it, like going cold turkey on habitual smoking? ... Can we live without this kind of love...?

Most of all, is it wrong, since I already have a mother? The thing is, where I'm from, to look for love from anybody other than my mother is an abomination. Religion-wise, I might go to hell. From the eyes of outsiders, it would look like I don't appreciate the fact that I'm lucky enough to have a mother who sacrificed her youth to raise me from when I was a helpless infant, because she made the choice to feed me and clothe me when she could have just left
me on the streets. And if I were a mom, I would be stricken to know that I'm not enough for some reason to my child. But then, I am NOT like my mother, but neither is she absurdly evil.

I know that everyone is human and that we all have our shortcomings and my mother isn't perfect either and so to be a good daughter I have to just suck it in and do it... but I'm not sure what things that have happened to me I should overlook for the sake of making her happy while I sacrifice my own.

Are mothers supposed to beat the heck out of their children and then offer a hug to take advantage of induced vulnerability? Is that okay? I can't remember what I did wrong... but I do remember the pain and then the comfort even though it felt kinda twisted.

Haha crap, I'm asking too many questions. Thanks for reading my rants; they have a dreadful number of 'I's in them. Feels good to rant. You can't believe how glad I am that I found this site coz now I can finally ask the questions I've always wanted to ask! Once again, thanks Robin and everyone else

Last edited by falala; October 8th 2011 at 03:44 PM.
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Re: Is it normal to love your teacher like your mother? - October 9th 2011, 04:21 PM

To find that person? What do you mean by that? A specific person, or just someone to fill the mentor role? Because I would say no, no specific person is needed to fufil this desire, but you do need a mentor type figure in your life.

Secondly, I do not know where you are from, or what religion you are from, but I know that in my mind there is nothing wrong for getting a mentor. She doesn't have to replace your mother, in her own way she's mentoring you through whatever class you're taking. No one else needs to know that she's working as a "replacement" to your flawed mother. I highly doubt any god will damn you to hell for trying to allow yourself to grow up in a healthy environment.

Secondly, no one else is worth permanently sacrificing your happiness. She gave birth to you, anyone can do it. Jelley fish, who have no brains at all manage to reproduce. I hate when people use the "She gave birth to you" to somehow rationalize abusive or harmful behaviour. Your mother gave birth to you, you allowed yourself to be born. I'd call any debt equal. If your mother is cruel to you, you shouldn't have to "suck it up". That is a bullshit lie. My mom has been on/off emotionally and verbally abusive, and it sucks. She gave birth to me, but she doesn't own me. I am not an object, I am a person, just like her.

Even if your child seeks out a mentor, it doesn't mean you "aren't enough" it just means that you aren't offering them some form of knowledge they need. For example, ways of resolving conflict with a parental figure, because you mother never taught you this, and you can easily not know how to deal with a rational parent. So your child will seek this information in another way. It's not bad or wrong, it's nature.

No, mothers shouldn't do things like that. Although I can relate to it. The endless droning and screaming about schoolwork was supposed to make me "Smarter" and somehow this was all for my own good, and I just couldn't deal with it. That was a lie. Although it did help me, it's wasn't for my own good, and it had longterm effects. She might have been showing remorse for her actions, or she might have been psychologically screwing you.

Ask as many questions as you want. I'm not a psychologist, but I have been depressed, suicidal, and abused in the past, and on ocasion it continues. Teenhelp has been a crutch through the tough times. I never even looked for advice, just a place to complain, and that's fine. Keep posting here for as long as you want, as many times as you want. I'm happy you are.

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Re: Is it normal to love your teacher like your mother? - October 11th 2011, 04:00 AM

In addition to everything Justin said:

No, you do NOT have to feel this way for the rest of your life! Having an "insecure attachment" is NOT an emotional "death sentence"... it simply serves as an explanation for why you think and/or behave in a certain way. You can always, ALWAYS recognize those patterns of thinking and/or behavior and seek to change the way you interact with others. You don't have to settle for a "loveless" life, nor do you need to find that one special mentor in order to experience love. In fact, the point of therapy is to help you break away from that black-and-white mentality, to think about your situation in different ways and come up with alternate methods of coping. If possible, I would look into seeing a psychological professional about what you're going through. Not only would it help you sort through this problem, but you could find yet another potential "mentor" figure!

I don't know what religion you are referring to, but it is NEVER okay for ANYONE to abuse you - physically, verbally, or emotionally. If your mother (or anyone else in your life) is currently treating you in this manner, I encourage you to consider contacting Child Protective Services. If you are intimidated by the idea of doing this on your own (many people are), you could speak to your teacher after class and ask for support while you go through the process.

If you're worried about how your mother (or anyone else in your life) would react to your desire to see a therapist/psychologist, I would simply come up with another reason, ex. "I'm really struggling with schoolwork, and I just need someone to talk to." Once you're seeing a psychological professional, everything that is said within therapy is confidential (unless you state that you are going to hurt yourself or other people). Your mother (or anyone else in your life) would never need to know why you really sought out therapy, and so you could begin to work through this issue without worrying about the religious/cultural backlash.

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Re: Is it normal to love your teacher like your mother? - October 15th 2011, 06:23 PM

Hey I don't have a big long post like the others, I just wanted to let you know I'm not alone.

I love my dad, with all my heart, but there's a man who conducts my string orchestra and I absolutely love him. He's 57, and I realised recently that he means the absolute world to me, and I'd be lost without him. Then I decided to define the sort of love I had for him. It wasn't romantic love, for obvious reasons, and it was more than friendship. So I decided I love him like a father, even though I love my own dad so much. And I do feel a bit guilty admitting that, but it's true.

He doesn't know that I care about him so much, and I probably won't ever tell him. But it's a really nice feeling when I see him/get a text off him. Maybe because it's such a new feeling? I don't know. But yeah, just enjoy having this teacher as a motherly figure, because there's nothing wrong with it <3
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Re: Is it normal to love your teacher like your mother? - October 24th 2011, 05:22 PM

Thank you, guys...

But I'm probably never going to see this person again, like all the other people I've liked. There just wouldn't be an occasion for it...

I like the idea of a pro-active approach but I know that the education system's counsellors suck big time. They are in cahoots with the principal and whatever I told them would most certainly go around the staff room, under the claim that it was supposed to help me. Oh God, haha, how I cringe.

I've asked around and I've heard plenty incredulous stories where the counsellor believed one student over another, and although supposedly the standard policy is privacy, absolutely EVERYTHING makes it to the staff room sooner or later. I know because I hear it myself from the teachers. Perhaps they (teachers) really don't care anyway about other people's lives, but the less is known of my private life, the fewer the misconceptions formed about me. It poisons the well for any relationship when people know who you are. Rather, when they think they know who you are.

Really, I would if I could have closer relationships with the people in my everyday life but there just aren't enough occasions for it. I have faced the fact that if you can't depend on family to support you, then there's only yourself left to take care of yourself.

I like independancy a lot but you know, there are times when the gaping hole becomes too big to ignore.

Oh that and the fact that I was just slapped for failing two subjects from my Prelim exams. Damn. Damn am I tired. And no, I didn't cry. Thank God. Coz I've had worse. If I'd cried over this, I'd have laughed at myself! Strange things been happening lately to my emotional foundation, but I'm glad I've still got my wits about me.

I decided, after much deliberation, to log on because I just couldn't sleep tonight. Hit by the usual strange sleep paralysis thingy that's been bothering me for years. Have you guys ever had such vivid dreams that when you wake up, you can't really tell if you're awake or not? I get that sometimes, embarassingly, coz my brain makes up memories that just weren't true. And some nights, like tonight, I get such terrible hallucinations that I'm afraid of sleeping and keep myself up. While you're having them, you tell yourself they aren't true and you're just having another episode but when you're so groggy and you can't move a muscle for nuts, you can't help but feel crazy anxiety. Stupid shadows!

I remember, when I was kid, that whenever I got nightmares, I'd just sleep in bed with my parents and made sure that they were the barrier walls between me and the edge of the bed but there came a time when I started to question if it was just a placebo because it started to not work. Nevermind, I digress.

Just had my English Language O-Level Examinations too! So happy it's over... and boy was it a funny day because I came later than the reporting time. The exam hadn't started yet, but I was getting calls every few minutes and I was welcomed like a war refugee to the exam centre. Last girl to arrive- phew, what a grand entrance. The teachers were shaking their fists at me I almost imagined them beating their chests like angry gorillas~

EMaths in two days time- can't wait... hope it'll be a breeze C:

And nah, I don't think I could call Child Protection services. Gosh, I'm sixteen, I have the physical prowess to fend for myself but I do hate being mentally fucked around with. And I don't think I am as unlucky as other people in the world who have no protection whatsoever from the people who are supposed to care for them. I got my brains to understand why I'm in this rut, right? Now I just need to figure out a way to dig myself under the prison walls, with spoon or no spoon.

Besides, in Singapore at least, the police can't meddle with domestic affairs... I've survived through umbrella jabs to the eye, gotten stitches on my skull for an "accident" where "I fell down the staircase while playing", received fingernail gouges on the back (that bled for days everytime I moved) for not wanting to watch some stupid movie with my eldest sister, beaten with a broom handle (which I broke on my knee, out of anger, so that the pieces were too short to hit me with but I still got jabbed lol), had knives/aerosol spray cans/ladles/books/water bottles/tissue boxes/warm(was lucky it wasn't too hot!) tea thrown at me. Hell, no place on my body is sacred! And I thank god it has never reached a point where I'd broken a bone or haemorrhaged. I dislike going to hospitals but oddly enough, I like the food there That's life with 5 other siblings- pure, unadulterated dischord- and when your dad is pretty much oblivious to his children's existense (exacerbated by my mother) while your mom obviously favouritizes and dominates all your choices in life... well, I'm not sure what you get. Maybe you get me, Frankenstein or a tin of corned beef. I don't know what to think and frankly I don't care for what I'm supposed to think. Life is too short to think about anything other than existing and surviving till the next morning, hoping that nobody (my mum) decides she's angry enough to slap me or slosh water on my unglamorous sleeping face to wake me up. No, I do not enjoy having a bath outside the bathroom or being some meat dummy for someone to hit. Still, the best response is no response so I usually ignore these things. Quote from 1970's TV Series Maude: God'll get ya for that!

Huh. Just reread what I typed. Sounds violent? Don't feel sorry, it's Standard Operating Procedure.

And barely out of diapers, I'm definitely not wise enough to draw conclusions from what life has taught me because it is my belief that people are not set in stone. 1+1 doesn't always add up, stereotyping is a sin! We can be whoever we want to be, but certain circumstances demand a different self, personifying a different aspect of 'me'. This I happily, personally learnt in Drama Club, even though I was slapped and forced to audition under a death threat (I had wanted to join Softball, but no, I was supposed to fulfill the destiny of a prima donna) despite the coach having called to persuade my sister and mom to let me join. The one good thing that happened to me is acting, because it makes everything seem more real and less fake. Playing pretend again... I love it. The irony of it all tickles me Too bad I'm officially retired from Drama Club on account of my O-Levels. God, what am I doing up this late. I should be studying.

Goodnight dudes and dudettes!

With love,

Last edited by falala; October 24th 2011 at 06:19 PM.
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