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To be furious with this teacher?

(198 Posts)
Nixie60 Mon 29-May-17 11:47:16

DD is in Y13, has always been very academic but also quite sporty. She's not tall (5' 1") and not at all overweight, but is quite curvy and because she's done lots of running and martial arts she has very strong legs. Currently, the school are preparing for a stage competition and she got involved with some dancing for the first time. She's done really well at it, picked the routine up quickly, has practiced loads and has had lots of compliments from her fellow dancers. She was told that the only thing she needed to provide for her costume was a pair of cycling shorts and duly took some in. They came to about three inches above her knees.

Tonight, she has been in floods of tears because she got a text from a friend saying that one of the teachers wanted to know whether she had a shorter pair of shorts to wear under a tutu, if not, could she roll the ones she had up or borrow a pair from someone else? She's not at all comfortable in short shorts because she's self-conscious about her legs. Her feeling is that girls with slimmer legs look great in that sort of thing but it's not for her. She texted the friend back and said that she really doesn't want to wear short shorts but has a skort she used to wear for hockey which is a couple of inches shorter and would give that a go instead if that was OK. The friend has been very sympathetic and said she completely understands DD's feelings. However, DD is still very upset and feels she's been singled out by the teacher.

AIBU to think it might have been kinder of the teacher to speak to her face to face rather than ask a third party to contact her about this issue? Hopefully the friend won't say anything to anyone else but I don't understand why this approach has been taken. DD is feeling ashamed and anxious about what will happen if the skort is also deemed to be too long. I am absolutely bloody furious that she has been made to feel bad about her body because of some stupidity and thoughtlessness on the part of the teacher. I'm not sure if this particular teacher has some sort of issue with DD but it's not the first time I feel her behaviour has been not quite professional. She's very young, so maybe it's just inexperience, but she ought to remember what it's like to be that age!

I haven't done anything about this because I want to see what the reaction is to the skort, but AIBU to feel annoyed?

Haudyerwheesht Mon 29-May-17 11:50:40

Couldn't it just be the case that the teacher said to your dd's friend 'oh I'll need to ask X if she has some shorter shorts' or similar. I think you're over-reacting tbh.

TeenAndTween Mon 29-May-17 11:51:06

As I read it, the shorts show under the tutu so she needs shorter ones that don't show.
I am struggling to see the issue.
Perhaps teacher tried to catch your DD so asked a friend to pass in the message.

FishInAWetSuitAndFlippers Mon 29-May-17 11:53:12

I get why you're feeling annoyed due to your dds reaction.

I really don't think the teacher did anything wrong though.

cordeliavorkosigan Mon 29-May-17 11:54:27

It's dance. I don't think it'll work for your dd to be someone they can't ask about costume as she gets too upset... She should just talk to the teacher directly.

DianaMitford Mon 29-May-17 11:55:27

You're being ridiculous. Your dd is being way too sensitive over what is a non-issue. The shorts are too long and therefore unsuitable, no one is getting at your dd. Find something more appropriate and teach your dd to feel good about herself regardless of body shape.

Trifleorbust Mon 29-May-17 11:56:00

Your DD is a grown woman, virtually. She was asked to wear something more in keeping with the performance. How is the teacher meant to know she has issues about showing her legs? How is the teacher responsible for it if she does?

cordeliavorkosigan Mon 29-May-17 11:56:33

In fact the teacher shows every sign of not thinking there is any reason whatsoever that your dd might feel self conscious.

BeachyKeen Mon 29-May-17 11:56:42

They aren't trying to make her feel bad about her legs/body , they just want her to match how the others look.
If they had said, you're too big to be dancing or something, I'd understand the angst, but all they want is for the shorts not to show

Anothernewnn Mon 29-May-17 11:57:48

Slightly off topic but I've never heard of a skort. Is that a sort of cross between a skirt and shorts?

ElectricShapener Mon 29-May-17 11:58:58

I think you're overreacting.

I think the best course of action would be to encourage your daughter to explain to the teacher her feelings about the short shorts.
I certainly wouldn't encourage her to look at it as being singled out - it sounds like the teacher simply did something like Haudy suggested.

AgentProvocateur Mon 29-May-17 12:00:13

It's not the teacher's fault your DD has an issue with her legs, and common sense would dictate that the dancers wear shorts that are short enough not to show under their tutu. It seems like a huge overreaction from both of you.

sparepantsandtoothbrush Mon 29-May-17 12:00:54

I am absolutely bloody furious that she has been made to feel bad about her body because of some stupidity and thoughtlessness on the part of the teacher

Surely the teacher is doing the complete opposite of body shaming by not even noticing your DD's legs might not suit shorter shorts (in DD's eyes)

Iloverichtea Mon 29-May-17 12:01:18

Agree with PPs - I'm sure the teacher would have said the same to any dancer whose shorts showed under the tutu!

It's a shame your DD has issues about showing her legs, but I don't think she's been singled out for anything. I think you've both overreacted a bit tbh.

Trifleorbust Mon 29-May-17 12:02:27

She's very young, so maybe it's just inexperience

I suspect she is about to learn a valuable lesson in just how unreasonable some people can be.

Nixie60 Mon 29-May-17 12:03:45

Cordelia, that's my point - why couldn't the teacher speak to her directly about it? My annoyance is due to the teacher asking another pupil to text her about it when she'd clearly seen DD in the shorts and decided they were too long. She could have spoken to her then. No length was specified, she was just told to bring cycling shorts, so she did.

Yes Another they're like a pair of shorts with a skirt attached over the top.

mynotsoperfectlife Mon 29-May-17 12:04:15

I agree with sparechange

I think sometimes in here there's a "teachers can do no wrong" attitude but in this case, I don't think the teacher did.

Nixie60 Mon 29-May-17 12:06:33

Trifle I'm not making an issue and being unreasonable to the teacher here. That's the whole bloody point of asking on here whether I AIBU!

Trifleorbust Mon 29-May-17 12:06:36


Why shouldn't she pass on a perfectly innocuous message via another student? How is this an example of "stupidity"? I can't believe you've been so insulting about this woman, who, from what I can tell here, is giving up her time, working with your daughter on something she has been enjoying and that has been giving her more confidence. You are so rude!

DoreenGray Mon 29-May-17 12:06:55

Echoing what the above posters have said, I think the teacher has merely asked your DD to wear shorts that are in keeping with the costume and the performance.
Your DD hasn't been singled out at all. In fact, if the teacher had insisted that your DD wear the longer shorts to 'cover up' due to the shape of her legs, that would be singling her out.
The teacher cannot know how unhappy your DD is with the shape of her legs.

Lapinlapin Mon 29-May-17 12:06:59

The thing is you are expecting the teacher to realise your dd has a problem with showing her legs. She can't be expected to just know that. She was probably just thinking about costume requirements and just got one of your dd's friends to pass the message on.

If your dd was obviously overweight, then maybe the teacher would have anticipated it was a sensitive issue.

You've said yourself that your dd is not overweight and is also sporty, so that's probably how teacher views her too. Your dd needs to look at this a different way: no one else sees a problem with her legs, because there isn't one!

Trifleorbust Mon 29-May-17 12:07:07


But you are calling her stupid! Of course you are being unreasonable.

Topseyt Mon 29-May-17 12:08:49

I don't think it sounds like anyone has done anything wrong really.

She needs to speak to the teacher in person, see what the ideas are for the costume and explain her feelings about it.

She needs to do this herself. The teacher might well be sympathetic to her feelings and can hopefully put her mind at rest of come up with a suitable arrangement. She won't know until she tries, but she needs to try.

No need for all this being "furious". Why? Just communicate with the teacher and see what happens. Year 13s can sometimes still be rather self conscious, albeit somewhat less so than younger teenagers, so your DD is unlikely to be the first she has ever encountered.

MaisyPops Mon 29-May-17 12:08:51

Sounds like the sheets don't fit the costume required so they've made a comment like 'could you see if so and so had a shorter pair?'

I think you've over reacted.

We've asked kids to text their friends about drama productions etc when they've not been needed at rehearsals e.g. if anyone sees/speaks to charlotte, chloe or Sarah could you tell them they need 3/4 black leggings for next week.

To go from a logistical comment about costumes to being "furious" about body shaming is over the top.

LRDtheFeministDragon Mon 29-May-17 12:09:10

Surely, if the teacher suggested rolling up the shorts or borrowing a pair, she's not thinking of singling your DD out for her body shape? Rolling the shorts up would let her wear the original costume with a slight modification, or, she could borrow - which surely suggests the teacher thinks that lots of girls have similar figures to her.

It's unfortunate your DD feels this way about her body (and it's not your fault or hers - I get it), but I don't think the teacher can be expected to know that sort of thing automatically, and I don't see how anything she did was insensitive to body shape questions.

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