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Bad parent meeting - confidence at rock bottom

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by curious_k, Feb 6, 2011.

  1. Hi all
    I am quite a new (2 and a half years experience) teacher. I had a conversation with a student last week because I was worried about her, and her mum took exception to one thing that I said (I don't want to be specific as that could identify me).
    The next day, I was fetched from the end of a lesson I was teaching - the office staff said it was an 'emergency' but would not explain any further. It turned out that the parent had stormed into school, without an appointment, in order to have a go at me - which she did, in public, until I burst into tears. I felt that she had come in to humiliate me and that the staff had allowed her to go ahead and do it by 'summoning' me without an appointment.
    A member of senior staff present backed me up, spoke to the parent and allowed me to go home early as I was in pieces. But all weekend I have felt very down, the incident keeps haunting me and I keep thinking of unpleasant things she said such as the suggestion that I could 'damage' her daughter or that she was going to the headteacher about me. I know (and have been told by SLT) that these were overreactions but I feel terrible about myself and terrified of teaching tomorrow. I have tried so desperately hard to be a good teacher and do the right thing, but I have very low self-confidence and any time there is an incident I spend weeks picking myself up off the floor.
    I am on antidepressants and doing ok on them but right now I feel hopeless. I don't know whether to give up this job and go somewhere less rough, or quit teaching, or just crawl into bed and stay there. I feel like I can't get through the 2 weeks until half term but at the same time I need to prove to myself that I am competent.
    Nobody else at school thinks I am a bad teacher except me (and one or two parents it seems!). I don't know whether that will improve with experience or what I should do to change the way I feel. How do you know if you are doing a good job or not? Any advice welcomed.
    K.
     
  2. Hi all
    I am quite a new (2 and a half years experience) teacher. I had a conversation with a student last week because I was worried about her, and her mum took exception to one thing that I said (I don't want to be specific as that could identify me).
    The next day, I was fetched from the end of a lesson I was teaching - the office staff said it was an 'emergency' but would not explain any further. It turned out that the parent had stormed into school, without an appointment, in order to have a go at me - which she did, in public, until I burst into tears. I felt that she had come in to humiliate me and that the staff had allowed her to go ahead and do it by 'summoning' me without an appointment.
    A member of senior staff present backed me up, spoke to the parent and allowed me to go home early as I was in pieces. But all weekend I have felt very down, the incident keeps haunting me and I keep thinking of unpleasant things she said such as the suggestion that I could 'damage' her daughter or that she was going to the headteacher about me. I know (and have been told by SLT) that these were overreactions but I feel terrible about myself and terrified of teaching tomorrow. I have tried so desperately hard to be a good teacher and do the right thing, but I have very low self-confidence and any time there is an incident I spend weeks picking myself up off the floor.
    I am on antidepressants and doing ok on them but right now I feel hopeless. I don't know whether to give up this job and go somewhere less rough, or quit teaching, or just crawl into bed and stay there. I feel like I can't get through the 2 weeks until half term but at the same time I need to prove to myself that I am competent.
    Nobody else at school thinks I am a bad teacher except me (and one or two parents it seems!). I don't know whether that will improve with experience or what I should do to change the way I feel. How do you know if you are doing a good job or not? Any advice welcomed.
    K.
     
  3. Often management don't back you up, so have confidence they do. Is there anyone at work you can phone to talk to?
     
  4. I know, I was lucky that someone had my back. It's good to know.
    I can phone my immediate manager if I need to.
    I guess what I am struggling with is that, despite various problems in the school, my immediate colleagues are lovely and supportive but they can't change the fact that I don't believe in myself, and I don't know how to change it either. It makes me feel like a bad member of the team to be so weak.
     
  5. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    You're right they can't change how you see yourself, only you can. If you are not yet getting a
    talking therapy, then either go to OH or your GP.
    Tell your line manager how the incident made you feel and ask that if this parent needs to speak to you again that they come with you.
     

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