There’s a reason that people say you should never meet your heroes, and it’s because there’s a very good chance that they’re going to disappoint you.

It could be because you realize they’re just human, but it’s also just as likely that they’re complete jerks in reality and your perception will be forever tarnished.

We can’t help but spend time with our teachers, though, and most of us at one time or another has put one of them up on a pedestal.

I would think that most of us – like these 15 people – have also watched one topple off.

15. This makes me nauseous.

When he popped up in the local paper for being a nonce.

This guy was That Teacher that everyone wanted as their teacher in primary school (up to age 10-11). He was funny, he made jokes, he wrote his own assemblies and school plays. We all thought he was such a cool teacher, not like the other stuffy teachers.

And I remember he always used to give special attention to kids in the class who were perhaps a bit poor or a bit slower academically – seat them in front of his desk and give them extra coaching and encouragement. And at the time everyone said how nice he was for doing that, but with hindsight he was picking them out and grooming them. Absolutely turns my stomach.

14. Not an uncommon tale.

When he’d shamelessly flirt with high school girls. This teacher was the girls varsity basketball coach, and every year there were rumors about him having s^x with a couple of them.

I’m sure most of those rumors are exaggerated, but one girl admitted years later that she had s^x with him on multiple occasions when she was 17/18 (this was in the late 80’s – the teacher was about 35-40 at the time and married).

13. Third graders. Oh my god.

When they bullied my friend to the point where she wanted to end her life.

We were in the third grade and she would always yell/taunt students, make fun of people with disabilities and flip out over the smallest of things. However, I assumed that this was how life was suppose to be as I had a similar childhood with my peers and home. I felt miserable, but she always helped me with my schoolwork because I was delayed as a child, so that made me like her more than my classmates. She didn’t ignore me like everyone else would, so I really liked that.

But that all changed when I was over at my friend’s home one day and she told me in secrecy that she wanted to end her life. She made a detailed plan and tried to give me something valuable of hers (a my little pony doll). At the time, she was not in a good home situation either and the teacher made her life miserable, since she would specifically target her.

My friend told me not to tell anyone, but I got my grandparents involved. They got her the help she needed and she’s still alive and my best friend to this day. She doesn’t know that I’m the one that told and I don’t even know if she remembers.

I tried bringing it up once in high school because it was relevant to the topic we were on about anyways, but she seemed totally confused. Not upset, just had no idea what I was talking about.

I am so glad that she’s alive though because she’s absolutely amazing. I hope that she actually doesn’t remember feeling that way. No one should.

12. So glad there were consequences.

At my high school a teacher/volley coach douche man was popular with the girls and a bunch of the normies thought he was cool cause he had nice cars.

He banged one of the girls who was 14. He was probably 40 and he was married. He also had a daughter who was 16 who went to the school.

This was in 2003. He got 11 years.

11. Why are there so many of these stories?

When I saw his mugshot show up on local news along with “statutory rape” and “16-year old girl”.

Doesn’t help that I was one of the only two girls in his class…

10. She’s lucky to be alive.

When he got drunk and beat the shit out of his then-girlfriend for turning down his marriage proposal

He locked her into her bedroom and ripped the phone out of the wall before leaving. Her brother found her the next day

9. Not such a cool guy.

There was a teacher at my school who everyone loved, he’d always try make lessons super fun. Well he got a new job and tons of us wanted to keep in touch with him because we all viewed him as a cool guy.

I think I was 14 at the time he left my school and every now and then we’d exchange emails but nothing much was said that’s noteworthy. When I turned 17 he emailed and I was pleasantly surprised as it had been a while since we last spoke. He mentioned he wanted to visit my hometown in the summer, I assumed to see family. Then mentioned there was someone he wanted to meet.

Eventually he said it was someone he really missed and then said that it was someone from school. He didn’t say it was me outright but I began to feel really uncomfortable and stopped replying. Eventually he wrote telling me to just forget it, he’s really sorry and tried to change the topic.

I blocked his email and never told anyone. Even now old school friends reminisce about how cool a guy he was and I keep quiet because what do I say? Anyways that’s my weird teacher story.

8. That’s pretty messed up.

I started out thinking my art teacher was all right..

Then I drew something and he started laughing really hard and exclaimed to me really loudly so the whole class could hear: “this looks like something a five year old drew”

7. This was always a slap in the face.

When I asked for an academic reference after leaving school. For 8 years she was my head of year and history teacher for 4 of those. Called me a star pupil, we had in jokes, I gave her gifts at the end of each academic year. But suddenly 3 years after I left, she “didn’t know me well enough” to write one. I was really disappointed and tbh a little heartbroken.

I complained to some school friends who mostly weren’t surprised and said they’d all found her two faced and didn’t like her back then. I was the only one who thought she was amazing and inspiring.

Later in life I’ve had university lecturers happily give me references without batting an eyelid, 5 years after completing their modules.

6. I am also mad now.

I was in beginning pottery my freshman year of high school, and the task was to make a lidded pot, so I decided to make mine shaped like Yoshi, with his head/back as the lid.

I was told it was childish and he wouldn’t put it in the kiln.

I had to start from scratch and didn’t have enough time to finish before it was due, so I got an F.

I still finished the class with an A, but I’m also still kinda peeved by the whole interaction.

5. Just reading this makes me feel gross.

I developed a very close bond with them similar to what you said. He’d call on me in class a lot and joked that he knew I already knew the answers. He let me go beyond time limits on presentations. We’d talk a lot before and after class, outside of school have long discussions at the library, etc.

He seemed really intelligent and wise.

It took me a while to understand why a lot of other students didn’t like him and resented me for our close bond. Also didn’t understand why after my dad met him and they talked for half an hour he asked me not to be alone with him.

Long story short, I later found out he had been singling out and befriending black kids in his class and that he had very radical political and religious views that he was trying to groom them into. I didn’t really believe it at first but he’s very open about it on social media, like really messed up stuff I wouldn’t otherwise know existed.

4. What was he getting paid for?

I basically didn’t have history class in 10th grade because the teacher was so lazy and apathetic.

The students loved that we had “free days” every other day, and most of the “class” when it wasn’t a free day was him putting a random movie on while he sat on his computer.

3. How is he not fired?

I had a teacher in grade 5 that I thought was really cool,I met him again in high school…he kept getting transferred from one school to another because if he got angry at a student he would hurt them (I’ve seen him pick up a student and desk and throw them).

Rumor has it that in the previous school he broke a student’s collar bone.

2. Sad is definitely one word for it.

When my history teacher cheated on his wife, who was a teacher at the same school, with another teacher and took her and her kids secretly to Disney world before ever taking his original family there. Sad.

1. Makes you wonder how he got the job.

Everyone loved one of my high school music teachers. Well…I should say all the students loved him. A lot of the rest of the department would put on a brave face, but then stories started circulating about how he’d fuck over his coworkers without giving it a second thought. But when you’re a student, you don’t really know the ins and outs of faculty politics. (Or at least students shouldn’t.)

Fast forward a number of years. A couple years after graduating from college, I wind up back in my hometown as a music teacher. The popular high school teacher had gotten his administration degree and was now the principal of the building I was assigned to work in. And he was terrible. TERRIBLE. Completely incompetent. Rude and unpleasant. Tried to use his physical size to intimidate people (in a building mostly staffed by women). I have stories.

Someone who was vaguely aware of the history but not the specifics once said to me, “Oh, isn’t it so nice that you’re working with one of your favorite teachers now!” I told her the truth – every good memory I had of being one of his students was erased by what a horrible principal he was.

We want to believe the best of the people who claim to care about us, but it’s just not true that they’ll never let us down.

What story would you add to this list? Tell us about it in the comments!