Thursday, April 4, 2013

Loveland Leona Gets Some Mail.

Professor Leona,

I can't come to class today because I have severe anxiety and I can't do the assignment where we have to show our paper to a group because I have anxiety about other people seeing and judging my work. I am seeing a therapist about this.

Pitiful Pat


What I'd like to reply:

Wow, Pat, I'm sorry to hear that you have anxiety problems. I can relate. But I am definitely concerned because your major is Basket Production, and if you have such terrible anxiety about other people judging and seeing your work, how on earth do you plan to survive as a Basket Producer? Your entire career path is predicated on producing baskets for people to see and judge. You should probably change your major. Either you're full of shit and using a legitimate psychological diagnosis as an excuse, or you're simply full of shit. Fuck off and stop wasting my time.


What I did reply:



  1. Jumpin' Jehoshaphat! How could you respond without creating more anxiety or giving up all together.

    (Oh shit, maybe not replying is causing anxiety.)

    I have been in similar situations and it always feels like a trap. What are school policies on such things?

  2. If there is no documented disability on file with your support office, it's easy - a grade of zero.

    Even if there is documentation, if this is the first time you have been informed, a grade of zero would be warranted. In my CC, we are told that students need to "own" their disabilities - we give them every opportunity, but if they pull the last minute bullshit that you are seeing, tough for them.

  3. I am not nice is exactly right. I'd reply with a note that says, please provide me with the necessary forms from our student "whatever" office. That's someone else's call and not my problem.

    It's these self-diagnosing kids who kill my spirit. Sometimes they even SAY undiagnosed, like it's more rare or something. One kid kept saying to me, "But i have undiagnosed ADHD." Badge of honor? He figured it out himself?

  4. I-am is correct but I wouldn't respond at all. The student didn't ask to be excused or state that he should be. He just let you know why he wasn't there. No need to start a fight that doesn't need to happen.

  5. I has a very similar situation. The student went ahead with her presentation, but then took a short break by leaving class afterwards to mentally regroup for a few minutes. That seemed to work.

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  7. Well, Pat, people have been seeing and judging your work since the first grade. They're called teachers. If they and your parents have been telling you for the last 12+ years that everything you do is wonderful you should contact a lawyer and sue them all for malpractice, either in teaching or parenting.

    By this age you should have experienced disappointment and learned to deal with it. Also, if someone in class makes a really snarky/hateful/inappropriate remark about your work your proffie will take steps to let them know that such things are wrong and will use that incident to teach them the manners that their parents should have.

  8. The best bullshitter I ever saw, bar none, was the student who informed me that s/he could not complete the presentation because a conversation with me had upset him/her. The kicker? That conversation took place AFTER the botched presentation, not before. Oy.


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