Back in college, when I told people I was majoring in English, about half the time they would ask me if I planned to go into teaching. In my mind, the main reason for the teaching profession holding zero interest for me is my total lack of patience with children. I would say, “No, I’d rather be a prison guard. At least you get to hit them with sticks from time to time.”
But now I think maybe if I had gone into teaching, the kids would not have been nearly as much of a problem for me as the parents. Meeting certain kinds of parents might make me give up hope of teaching their child anything important, knowing the kind of context the kid was growing up in. And the really awful ones are probably the parents that have the most contact with teachers and administrators. My hat is off to anyone in the teaching profession. Thank you.