An Open Letter To My High School English Teacher

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By: Rachel Craig
I want to tell you a lot of things. Firstly, I want to thank you for teaching me how to write. That was very considerate of you, to donate your knowledge to a bunch of arrogant kids who took AP classes simply for the bragging rights and to appeal to a bunch of overpriced universities. It was nice of you to still teach us even though most of us will never appreciate the knowledge. I’m thanking you because all of that is the reason why I have the ability to write this letter to you.
This is what I really want to tell you. I’ve considered the rumors I’ve heard about you, and at first, I did not believe them. I used to sit next to Maria in class and I went to her birthday party in the summer after the sixth grade. She wore a one-piece speedo bathing suit that was royal blue. I was the only one there with a more than slightly developed chest. I have a framed picture of us in my room on top of my dresser.
I heard that you had sex with her. I do not want to use the term “make love” in relation to what you did with her, and saying that you fucked a girl who you graded alongside me makes me sick. I don’t know how else to describe what you did to her, so I’ll say you had sex with her. The term having sex seems too clinical of a definition to describe this sort of act, because you, after all, were the one that told us that we were too young to have sex, that we were too young to understand.


I will have you know that I have laid with three boys in the time you have made love to my classmate. One of them was a student of yours too, the one that used to yell sexist things in my face during your class and you would chuckle. You told him he would never find a girlfriend, and you were right. I never thought about dating him, not once. I wanted to prove to him that I was not the weak one. One was a distraction and also a piece of evidence to prove that I was worth something. He is a drug dealer, and a dog groomer. His rescue dog, a pitbull-mix, took up more room on the mattress than I do. The last was a mistake, and he used me. I finally felt something for someone and now he does not even look at my face. I thought of what you said after it was over, not the sex, but our friendship. I thought of what you said about sex to our class and about being too young. Then I decided that I didn’t care, because you are a liar.
Hayley told me that you two are in love. I’d like to tell you that I am happy for you both, but that would be a lie. I don’t even want to tell you that, really, because I think you are a terrible person. I was at Maria’s thirteenth birthday party and she didn’t even have tits yet. You were raising your children with your wife and teaching Jake’s brother and Katie’s brother and in three years you would teach Anna’s sister. You’d meet Maria in only four years and in that time her chest rounded out and in six years from the pool party where we hit a pinata so hard we ruined the candy inside you found her attractive enough to do whatever you are doing with her. This year you will be my brother’s homeroom teacher, something I was ecstatic about until you had sex with my classmate.
I wonder often if it could have been me. You were my favorite teacher after all. If I could have been the one who hung around after class just a little bit longer. We all pestered you after school, really, but never thought anything when Maria was your teaching assistant senior year or when she’d be after class every time I was there. I guess even the mixtapes were fine. And then we graduated and in June of 2012 Maria turned eighteen and now you two are together.
Did you hear that Hunter’s mother died last month? She drowned in the ocean in Mexico. She was on a vacation with her friends at a luxury hotel and a rogue wave swept her up and Hunter never saw her again. I think about that a lot because as much as I hated Hunter he is important to me. He was important to me like you were but now his mother is dead and you have left your children with their mother and you live in an apartment ten minutes from Maria’s school in Providence and that is all okay.
Maria will never be a mother or a stepmother to your children. She could be a babysitter, I guess.
I am writing this because I find you revolting. You sat in front of class and told us we couldn’t have sex at our age. I remember Caroline fighting with you and telling you it was developmentally normal to have sex but you argued she was wrong. We can’t understand it all. But I think you’re wrong. I don’t think you understand it. You are having sex with a girl that half your age. You are having sex with your student, the student that you told could not comprehend the repercussions of it. You are claiming to be in love with a child. You are a child.

Rachel Craig is simultaneously majoring in law and coming to terms with the fact that she never wants to be anywhere near a courtroom. She has red hair and is 5’7”. She can be reached


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