I liked my physics teacher. I liked him then and I remember him now with a fondness and respect that might surprise him.
In that first lesson he created an opportunity to have a private chat with me. “What has happened to you is ghastly beyond measure. You are just going to have to deal with it one day at a time and I promise you that it will gradually get better.” Those few words, that I recall as if the conversation had taken place yesterday, were words that I repeated to myself many times a day during those first few weeks.
It is a problem for the pastoral staff in a school to know exactly how much to tell other colleagues not directly involved with a pupil in my situation. With hindsight I think they probably should have warned the staff in the front office to be extra vigilant that correspondence that would normally be sent to parents would, in my case, be sent directly to me.
This became an on-going problem and it over a year before it was totally sorted out. I think that the rapid turnover of staff in the front office meant that the people who knew they had to be careful moved on and that the newcomers were never told anything until it was too late and a tearful Sally would be thrusting a letter at them and having a good grumble.
Sometimes they got it right. But sometimes letters would be handed out in envelopes to the rest of my tutor group – except for mine which was just the letter. I imagine that somebody had spotted the mistake on the envelope just in time! At least twice I had a circular letter with Mum and Dad’s names just crossed out and my name written in. That is just so thoughtless.
I tried ignoring it, I tried mentioning it to my Form Tutor and to the Head of the Sixth Form and I even wrote to the Chair of Governors (who wrote back to my parents rather than me which was a "nice" touch!).