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March 24, 2006

Comments

tortured TA

Wow. I have never been a student with a crush on a teacher - not a sexual crush, anyway. I've admired teachers as role models, never had any ongoing fantasies about any of them.

Well, now I'm the teacher. And it's the end of the semester. And I've got a crush on one of my undergraduate students. And he's ten years younger than me (barely legal, really). And I'm married. So, obviously, I'm not going to act on the crush, you know, but in the meantime it's just torture to be irrationally infatuated with an unattainable man.

Glad everybody else here is creating a support group about this issue. This is painful! Because with student/teacher there is a huge level of trust, intimacy, revelation - so much more difficult than a regular coworker crush or colleague crush IMO.

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B

I came across your page through google. I was thinking that I am madly in love with one of my professors although he did not even know my name. So I thought there must be something wrong with me, and was looking for an answer. And I think I have just found mine here. Thank you very much, prof. Schwyzer, for writing this.

HV

My situation is a bit different from your one size fits all crush explanation. I have NEVER found myself attracted to a teacher or professor in my life. I am older than almost all the undergrads I encounter (though still in my early 20's), a non-traditional student. I live in a house with a mortgage and I live an adult, responsible life. I started emailing my professor about a month ago about silly, trivial things.

Then yesterday I sent a witty email asking him to lunch (innocently enough). He came back with an explanation that can only be described as "I like you too, but uh.. hmm.. no."

It's very much a mutual attraction, and no, I'm not just seeing what I want to see. After reading this, I'm horrified that he thinks I'm one of those who is "seeing in him, what I want to be", as this is NOT the case. I'm a mature woman with my own life, and he is a great person, period. Even if he can't get over the student-teacher relationship after the semester ends, I'd still like to get to know him better as he is a nice man, and you can't have too many nice people in your life.

How would I approach this so that I DON'T seem like "that" kind of girl that you have so nicely packaged into a pathology?

Anna

You really made me think . I've always wondered why I keep having crushes on teachers . Ever since first grade I've had a crush on every single one of my male teachers , not exaggerating . Even though some of them were disgusting looking and creepy , I've always wanted them . Some of them have had what you're talking about , passion etc for their subject and have made me feel special and taught me things etc and that's why I've liked them . But I think that I've just liked all my teachers because I knew it would be "wrong" to do something about it , and that we would have to hide our relationship and it would be fun and hot . Right now , though , I have a teacher which I like for him , I think he's the first teacher I've had a crush on with the reason being him as a person and not him as a teacher . I can't do anything about it obviously though since I'm 16 and he's in his thirties and he even has a girlfriend and a son . I can still dream though hehe .

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i use to love my 3rd grade teacher. she is was so pretty.

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nice blog, it's quite informative for readers.

just a crush

Thank you so much for posting this. I feel like I understand myself a little better about why I am crushing on my teacher.

just a crush

"but in the meantime it's just torture to be irrationally infatuated with an unattainable man."

Tortured TA: I love your comment, "it's just torture to be irrationally infatuated with an unattainable man." lol =)

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Joan

What your lab partner said is exactly what I've been feeling toward my English prof right now. I can talk to him about anything--but not in a feminine, "tell me your problems" kind of way. I talk to him about books, mostly. His frankness is just wonderful. We have a shared affinity for all that is rough around the edges, Germanic, or stereotypically masculine, and it's just nice to be able to talk to him about literary and intellectual issues I can't really discuss with anyone else. I never really thought of it as a crush, though. Maybe these kinds of crushes should have a different name or something.

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Glad everybody else here is creating a support group about this issue.

hockeychick018

Wow... this is an awesome blog post. I'm 29 years old and happily married, but I've never completely gotten over my first teacher crush. My crush wasn't the young, good-looking teacher all the other girls in my class had a crush on, but he was my middle-aged, married, and average-looking (from an objective point of view - I thought he was gorgeous!) English teacher (Mr. S.) in grades 8 and 9. He just had this incredible... presence. I don't know how else to describe it. I had seen him around when I was in grade 7 and I was intrigued - which developed into a crush the minute he walked into the classroom on the first day of grade 8 and only got worse over the next two years. As well as English, he had a passion for history and he did his best to teach us as much history as he could. (He actually taught history to the other grade 8 and 9 classes but since I was in French immersion we missed out.) The quote about wanting to be inside his head is exactly the way I felt! (Exacerbated by the fact that he never told us anything personal about himself, so he had a little bit of a mysterious side, too.) I was the top student in my class and therefore one of his favorites, and he teased me all the time. Coming from any other teacher I would have hated that as I was painfully shy and regularly picked on by a lot of the kids in my class, but coming from him I loved the attention. At the time I was convinced that I was really discreet about my crush and that he had no idea, but in hindsight I'm pretty sure he knew. (As a side note, although he never did anything to discourage my crush, he certainly never did anything inappropriate. Even in the throes of my crush I realized that if he ever reciprocated my feelings I would be majorly creeped out!) Anyway, I moved on to high school and then college and had at least one teacher crush per year through the rest of my schooling... but I got over them all pretty quickly. I went back to visit Mr. S. a couple of times when I was in high school and one final time when I was about 19 and in college (and on that particular visit I got the distinct impression he was flirting with me ever so slightly!), and then life (and the fact I lived in a different city) got in the way and I kind of forgot about him. However, every once in a while my subconscious decides I need to be reminded of him and I have a dream about him, after which I can't stop thinking about him for weeks/months. He's been retired for a few years now so I have no way to get in touch with him... and it's making me feel all that teenage angst over again, except worse! It's not really anything sexual, I just want to talk to him... it's so frustrating! (And I feel kind of bad for my husband - not that any of this bothers him, but he just doesn't get it.) Ah well, at least writing all this has been somewhat cathartic! :)

Joan

Tiffany's feelings are exactly like mine for my English professor right now...I would never dream of sexualizing my admiration for him. He's very masculine, but I think I admire his ability to be frank and unashamed about it.

This is a dangerous time for male teachers....I hear these stories about middle school and high school girls sleeping with their teachers and I just want to throw up. At my old middle school, a girl framed her science teacher when she wanted him and didn't get her way. It was horrible--he couldn't work until after the trial was over and he was proven innocent. I know another teacher whose girl students crush on him (though, I'm convinced, in completely innocent ways, like the ways Hugo describes) and he is scared to death that one of them will pull a wacky stunt like that. He doesn't even tell them to stay after class. I think that teacher crushes can be completely innocent, but it's tough for any admiration or crush not to be associated with sex in our culture.

Ronke

What about the other way around? I think I have had a professor or two who have developed a crush on me and I have seen professors have crushes on their students too. We are all human and if you feel a connection with someone, then sometimes the crush follows. The important thing is how you act with those feelings.

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love sick

I am madly in love with my teacher. Some people just think it's because my hormones are going crazy at this age (16), but i really do love him. Everything about him is perfect to me. This includes his flaws. His authority makes me like him even more. I understand that it is completely normal to have a teacher crush at this age, but this is more than a crush. It has been going on for a year now. I don't even see him anymore...considering it's summer. Although it is summer, i drove to go see him at his summer job. I feel like i stalk him. All of my thoughts lead to him. There is not one minute in the day that i am not thinking about him. I have dreams about him every single night. I would wake up in the morning and WANT to go to school because i knew he would always be there. During the school year, i would go to his room everyday right after the bell rang. We have so many similarities, interests in the same music and activities, people say we are perfect for each other. Class with him was purely amazing. I could not get enough of him. Every time someone would be looking for me, they would go to his classroom and then giggle because it was always the first place they would look. He's a little over 14 years older than me. I know many friends who have parents that have an age gap like this, and i do not think it is that big of a deal. Now a day, random people will randomly facebook me or text me and only me saying they saw him, knowing that i will be the only one who cares that they were in his presence. I think he likes me, a lot, and i feel like a dating relationship could happen when i get out of highschool. I know that i will be in love with him for a long time. He takes over my thoughts. I do not see this as a problem, but others do. I feel awful about this, but i found his house, and it is not close at all to mine. He gave me a hug at the end of the school year. I started crying after the hug, but he could not even look at me, and he turned and left me there. I feel as though i might need a psychiatrist because i do not know what else to do.

Lexy

I'm not sure if it was a crush or not, but I found myself wanting to know more about a writing instructor at a technical school I attended. He noticed, and began to do things that were a little confusing and I may have read into more then I should have which is very unlike me to do so. he would walk around alot in the halls around me, or when I was coming from another class would come straight to me to talk. we also emailed each other but on an academic basis and discussed class topics and throw in a few topics off subject. Three times I reminded him that I was in no way interested in him in a sexual way but he never did respond. I just went to my classes and paid no attention to the rumors that slowly grew out of control about him and I. I even saw him being questioned about me by another faculty member. Soon, I was being toured and so was he and his behavior became hostile and bitter twored me. I grew saddened by this and ultimately left school because of it. He emails me from time to time and I let him now how I am doing in a way that he will not need to respond back to me. I would like to know why he acted this way?
ps. He is good looking, Russian and kind of tall. Good dresser, strolls when he walked and had a great smile. Is he hot headed and full of himself? he also had some interesting conversations about him going on to get his doctorate degree or maybe taking a few computer courses programming because it was he wanted to do before he went into teaching. I encouraged him to return to university. That is my story. someone give me an opinion. I am now at University to become an English teacher like him, because, well. Intsead of reading my textbooks, I would read Keats, Pushkin, and other literary classics.

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dee

i have a crush on my former professor from last year. But after reading all this, i think it's best to keep it to my self and not pursue anything

haute hippie

i think this post is a great way of dancing around the issue of WHAT TO DO about the student crushes. I have a friend who is also a young, single, attractive teacher at a high school and from his accounts, some of the students can be very aggressive and assertive with their energy. The question remains, how does one act, to safeguard oneself, safeguard the student, and go about being a passionate, effective teacher.?

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