A teacher can be a very important person in a student's life. They're an adult figure whom the student can turn to in times of need, and can trust them with almost anything. This leads to students telling their teachers some of their most intimate secrets. Just ask these teachers.
Teachers on Reddit share the wildest thing a student ever told them. Content has been edited for clarity.
"I teach English as a Second Language, and every lesson we start the class by sharing something good that happened to us over the last week or so. Needless to say, kids share the most random things ever. I have many weird stories because of that. We enforce a rule that they need to share good things so they don't start one-upping each other over whose grandma had the worst death lol
One day, a student said, 'I was riding my bike over the weekend when I fell.'
I could see where it was going but didn't have enough time to enforce the rule when he just spat out, 'I fell over a wired fence and cut my neck, it just kept gushing blood, a lot of blood.'
I reminded him that we were only sharing good news when he said, 'It's good because I'm still alive.'
I had a good laugh and agreed but the damage was done, every kid after him wanted to share about the most horrific injury they had or witnessed."
"Even though I'm a professor, nothing that's ever been revealed by this question has ever been as awkward or uncomfortable as an occasion that happened when I was still a student. This was when I was in my MFA program for creative writing. If you've never been in an art program before, it probably won't surprise you to learn that they can attract some weird personalities.
It was the first day of a fiction workshop, and the professor decided he wanted us to share something interesting about ourselves. For some reason, one girl, Ashley, decided that this would be a good opportunity for her to tell us about her long history of substance abuse and the equally long period of mental psychosis she went through as a result of it. She didn't do this as a quick answer either, but as a long-drawn-out list of every single substance she had ever experimented with.
This was followed by a catalog of every single delusion she suffered as a result. The only one I can remember now is that at one point she became convinced she was a millionaire, and her family was hiding her money from her. All of this was delivered in a monotone monologue with her eyes glazed over that lasted at least five minutes.
This was met at the end with a long, awkward silence before the professor said 'Well that was definitely something interesting,' and moved on to the next person."
"I was teaching a 10th grade Honors English class once, and this pleasant young woman busted out the C-word (See U Next Tuesday). I hadn't had any trouble with her whatsoever, so I was a bit shocked. The whole class went dead silent. I told her she couldn't use 'that word' in class and she was confused as to which word I was referring to.
Finally, I said'"the C-word.'
She repeated it and then admitted she didn't know there was anything wrong with it because her parents use it at home all the time. The rest of the class let her know it was bizarre that she was using it."
"I work with preschoolers (three to five age group). One day, we had the kids go around and tell us one thing that made them special. Most were pretty normal, things like 'I’m really good at drawing,' 'I have two big sisters.'
And then I get to this one little girl—super cute and sweet. Looks me dead in the eyes and goes 'I have been around forever. I have seen the whole world and I know everything.'
Dead serious. Super creepy. When I pressed her, she couldn’t really find the words to explain, but kept talking about how she 'came from the sand,' and was frustrated that she couldn’t 'say it better.' I didn’t use to believe in past lives, but now I’m not so sure."
"One time I said, in like fourth grade, that I have needles in my backpack and I stab myself with them three to four times a day.
The teacher asked me where I got my needles and I said 'Mom and Dad get them for me!'
Turns out she didn’t realize that the IEP for diabetes was for me. There was a long talk with my parents and me about how I don’t talk about stabbing myself with needles or that I have needles. I now just say I’ve been diabetic since I was one."
"Took intro to criminal justice as an elective course a long time ago. In the first class, the professor asked us to write down what we would do if there were no legal consequences for our actions. Then the pieces of paper were folded up and sent to the front of the class to be read anonymously.
The majority of the responses were speeding all the time, or substance and heavy.
But one of the submissions was very memorable: 'I would kidnap, assault, and murder the girl sitting next to me.'
Needless to say, there was a long pause and a lot of shifting eyes while everyone looked at who was sitting beside them.
It could have been fake because after the pause, the professor segued into how society would act without consequences in order to spark a debate about human character. It was a fun class."
"Doing two truths and one lie, and a student responded 'I like video games. I like school. Sometimes I perform experiments on stray animals in my neighbor where I’ll use a needle to take blood from one animal and inject it into another animal.'
I just kind of stared in disbelief. He went on to explain how the recipient animal would then start to exhibit behaviors and features of the donor animal, and how he wanted to be a biochemical engineer when he grew up.
I really hope that the last one was the lie. Never found out. I reported the whole incident."
"In a community college elementary education reading class, we had to do an introduction of ourselves and tell something 'interesting.' Most of the class goes through the motions, expressing where they from, why they want to teach, and some 'fun fact about themselves.'
At the end of the first day, our professor said she was going to go last and finish our class time. She just goes on to tell the rough summer she had where she had both a son and her husband diagnosed with cancer...very sad and she almost broke down in tears!
This was sad enough, but the next class it seemed all students were up to outdo each other with sad tales. I found it hard to believe that there could be so many sad and hard stories from one freshman level education class.
The first girl goes into detail how she was assaulted earlier that summer and how she is having her trial shortly; I was blown away. A couple of students later, another girl later tells the story of how her state college roommate committed suicide in their dorm room, and this why she’s at community college.
I’m sitting at my desk trying to catch my breath.
Another girl tells us that she’s at community college to get a degree because she has to raise her six children even though she was only 21. Someone said they were proud of her for bettering herself for her kids. She then tells us that it’s ok, she’s going for free because a guy is paying for her classes because she told him one of the babies was his.
She then whispered jokingly under her breath, 'She’s not.'
I’m kinda blown away at this point; no way can this get more intense, right? Wrong.
One of the last girls gets up in front of the class and immediately starts balling. The students and teacher encourage her to just sit down, take her time, or just excuse herself. She says she has to do this. She goes into a detailed story of how her dad is in jail for murdering her mom over cheating on him.
Everyone is stunned. Students are hugging each other. I don’t know if it means I’m insensitive but I was more than uncomfortable. The teacher expresses she got more out of this than she expected. Yeah, you think?
The class was weird to go to the rest of the semester, but we got through it together."
"When I was in the eighth grade, we had a new science teacher. She was 26 years old and it was her first full-time teaching job. She was really laid back and she basically turned every Friday class into a free period where we could just goof off. One of the things she did though was she had us write down anonymous questions for her to answer, with no topic off-limits.
She answered questions about her private life, things she did in college, substances she had taken, etc. The one that stuck out the most was she admitted to us she was cheating on her fiancé with the shop teacher."
"In our freshman orientation for our dorm hall in college, we had to go around the circle and say our name, but before our name use an adjective that started with the same letter as your name. Ideally, you should explain it a little as well.
All is going well, until we get to this one kid.
He says 'I guess I would be JPEG Josh because I like to look at adult movies on the internet.'"
"I had a kid many years ago who was brand new to the school and introduced himself as a prophet.
As in, 'Hi, my name is 'Corey,' and I'm a prophet.'
He said it super casually like it was the most natural thing. The other kids had no idea how to respond.
The craziest part was, the kid, Corey, believed it. His parents believed it, too. So conversations would go something like:
Teacher: 'I'm calling to see what we can do together to support Corey. He hasn't been completing any of his work and I'd like to know what we can do to help him be successful.'
Parent: 'Of course he doesn't do his work. He doesn't need to because he's a prophet. Would you make the Lord do math?'
('Would you make the Lord do math?' is a direct quote and will stay with me forever.)"
"So one day, a third-grader who had recently immigrated here was telling us about what his family does on special weekends.
'We catch the raccoons! My dad and brothers and I go and hunt them, catch them, and drink their blood! It makes us strong!' he excitedly told us,
Not a single freaking kid batted an eye, even though only one or two kids in the class shared his heritage. It was unclear whether this was a practice exclusive to his home country or if this was still ongoing in America, but he spoke in the present tense (though that could be because English was his second language). This was about two months into school and I am the music teacher, so I could see this class clearly had a wonderful accepting dynamic which was a credit to their classroom teacher.
I just smiled while he talked, then said, 'Wow, that's so cool! Thanks for sharing!' And moved onto the next person.
The kid was sometimes a headache, but very goofy and got easily excited about things, so you had to love him. He moved later that year, and I hope his next school was as accepting of him and his culture."
"We were playing 'Two Truths and a Lie' during one of our last morning meetings this year. If you don’t know the game, basically you come up with two things about yourself that are true and one that is a lie. Then, everyone tries to guess which one is a lie.
One of the boys in my class (5th grade) excitedly volunteered to go after me. His three choices for us were:
1. 'I had cake for breakfast.'
2. 'I fell off my hoverboard and broke my tooth.'
3. 'I ate a pine cone yesterday.'
All the kids and I knew it wasn’t the second one, because he would’ve been bragging about a broken tooth already. That meant the first and third choices WERE true. Meaning, he ate a pine cone yesterday.
We all asked him why he would choose to eat a pine cone. His reasoning was 'Uh dunno, I was just bored and it looked like it could be tasty.'"
"I was at a corporate training event, and we had to introduce ourselves with something we’re most proud of. Most people were saying normal things, like raising a child as a single mother while getting a masters, being debt-free, or divorcing a toxic partner.
One of the new hires (a new grad, probably 22/23) stood up, and proudly told the entire group, 'Hi everyone, I’m JimBob, and 10 years ago, I held my poop for 11 days because I was at camp and didn’t like using public bathrooms."
"When I was student teaching, we asked the students to write anything about themselves that they think we should know on a piece of paper. They could write their name or leave it anonymous, it didn’t matter.
One student wrote that every day when he got home from school, he spent all evening cooking and cleaning for his seven younger siblings. He would help them do their homework, and just take care of them while his mom worked her second job. He then wrote that he’s sorry if he smells like weed, and to please not send him to the office if he smelled like it. Smoking weed was how he coped with the stress of his life and didn’t want to get into any more legal trouble for it. That was written by a 13-year-old.
I just wanted to give him a hug and tell him I’m a stoner and not worried about that at all. It’s one of my biggest motivators to dedicate my life toward fighting systematic bigotry and for a world where no child has to grow up like that. Really most answers we received were heartbreaking and I expected them to be more 'weird' or personality type things, but mostly it was just devastating."
"This past year, I had got a student from Somalia come to me mid-year. His English was pretty broken, and he seemed totally lost in the middle school environment. So I asked him what his experience with school was so far, just to get a gauge of things. He was able to tell me that his parents stopped allowing him to go to the only school near their house because one of his friends was attacked and eaten by hyenas while walking the 'long, long way' back to the village from school.
Apparently, they had to walk so far to the only free school, they didn't get back home until after dark when the hyenas were out hunting. A group of hyenas attacked him and his friends so they ran. When they got back, they realized one of the friends was missing, and they never found him. He also told me that before all this, they always tied rocks to the end of belts to beat the hyenas back that would try to attack them. But the last time this happened, the group of hyenas were too big and the group of kids walking back from school were too small, so there was nothing they could do but run."
"I've taught at the Middle School level (Grade 7) and I've taught at every secondary level (9-12). Currently, I teach Psychology and Sociology to Seniors (12th grade/Year 13). I've heard some doozies.
A 7th grader told me she didn't know where her mom and dad were and hadn't seen them for some time. I assumed she was living with her grandparents or an aunt and uncle which was very common in this area. Come to find out her parents had left in some type of substance-induced craze. She was living alone as the head of the house with her three younger siblings. She got up every morning, got everyone together, and on the school bus. We were in the 3rd week of school before it was discovered. She was always clean, always attentive, and got excellent grades. It was discovered when her younger brother, who was a 4th grader got in trouble and a parent was needed.
A high school kids once asked me why felons weren't allowed to vote. The reason? Both of his parents were convicted felons who had just recently been let out on parole.
Had another girl tell me once that she was pregnant, and wasn't sure who the dad was because she had slept with three different guys at a party. She had a miscarriage and later that year asked me if she could get pregnant from watching a guy touch himself, and then letting him finger her."
"A student in my college class talked about her boyfriend who was 10 years older than her, who had a known history of being inappropriate with children, and that she always paid for his meals. It was crazy this chick had no filter, and each thing that came out of her mouth was just as shocking as the last.
My professor tried to explain to her in the nicest and non-overstepping way possible to get the heck out of that relationship. She then said that her parents, siblings, church, and everyone in her life were all against her being with this guy, but said the only reason she didn't want to break up with him was to avoid an awkward encounter and that she felt bad for him.
This was a relatively normal girl too. Good-looking, never swore, religious. No clue why she dated someone like that when she had a ton of better options."
"I teach an intro level psychology course to high schoolers. At the beginning of every year, I ask my kiddos what they want to learn in my class. I get the usual answers (understand myself and others better, learn about mental disorders, etc...) but every year, without fail, I get at least one kid who says they want to learn how to control and manipulate others. I usually take this with a grain of salt, as sometimes high schoolers don’t really know what psychology is or what the course is about.
But I had one student who I will never forget. This kid not only said he wanted to learn how to condition his enemies so that they would 'be enslaved to his will,' but he also described in a great deal the positive punishments he wanted to use on these people. These included very realistic and horrifying things like pulling fingernails, emotional abuse, and developing a Skinner box style 'learning chamber' where he would 'teach his enemies valuable lessons.'
He also asked if we could recreate the famous Monster Experiment and the Stanford Prison Experiment to 'see if they were really that bad.' Needless to say, I was terrified and didn’t want him anywhere near my class."
"When my oldest son was four and in preschool, my husband worked the night shift for about a year. My kid referred to my bedroom as 'Daddy’s sleeping room.' Cute, right?
It was nearing Christmas, and I was volunteering with some other moms. When asked what he wanted for Christmas, my son confidently said he wants 'ladies of the night like in daddy’s sleeping room.'
That was awkward. It took me a bit to figure it out, but the silly kid wanted freaking clothes hangers for Christmas. The request for 'ladies of the night' like in daddy’s sleeping room was actually his desire for clothes hangers, like the ones that hung in my closet. What a wish list, kids are weird.
It was a very small town and I knew or was friends with at least half the staff. I never did figure out a way to oh so casually bring that up so I could dispel that tidbit and smooth it over with so many staff members and parents that I’m sure heard it through the grapevine. Fun times."
"One time during morning meeting (5th grade), I asked them to tell me a highlight from their mornings. One of my students said he was happy because he found a 'craw egg' and brought it to school. At first, I thought he said 'raw egg' but turns out he meant a crawdad and he had it in his pencil bag. It was huge with babies, and we let it out during recess.
On different days, that same student brought a huge djembe drum, his mother’s wedding ring (to give to his girlfriend of two days as a promise ring), a snowsuit, and cardboard cut-outs of TVs.
We definitely never had a boring day."
"When I was in kindergarten, my grandma and aunt took me to the zoo one weekend. Well, back in school we were discussing our weekends and I loudly exclaimed that I had seen a two-headed monkey! I was very sure I had seen it and apparently would not shut up about it, and I kept mentioning it throughout the day. So my teacher calls my parents who call my grandma to ask what I was talking about since during this time teachers and parents thought I might be on the spectrum or have ADD or something so they were trying to monitor what kinds of things I was saying.
My parents had to come to talk to my teacher and principal about it during parent-teacher conferences.
What had actually happened was at the zoo, I saw a baby monkey clinging to the back of an adult monkey and the fur blended perfectly so it really did look like a two-headed monkey. How was I supposed to know?"
"As a younger child, I had a tendency to gnaw on things much longer than a baby or young child would teeth (still do this in the form of ice crunching). One of the things I gnawed on was a glow stick around the 4th of July, and ended up getting some liquid in my mouth (this is all told to me as recalled by my mother). When I was asked to give a fact about myself (grade seven I think?) I said:
'When I was little, I almost swallowed the liquid in a glow stick.'"