Recently a 40 year old teacher (now former teacher) here in North Carolina married a 16 year old student who he also coached in cross country. Here’s what the story in the Winston-Salem Journal said:
coached Windy Hager at South Brunswick High School, where she recently
completed her sophomore year as one of the school’s top runners. He
also lives less than two miles away from the Hagers’ home on Oak Island.
Wuchae married Hager in Brunswick County on Monday, according to a marriage license.
Dennis and Betty Hager, said they did all they could to keep the couple
apart after noticing a deeper-than-usual friendship forming between
them. The parents said they tried to intervene by talking to the coach,
going to school officials, pleading with police and sheriff’s office
detectives, even other teachers and students at South Brunswick.
But the Hagers say they reluctantly signed a consent form allowing their daughter to marry her coach.
It’s often hard to criticize parents because you just don’t know what it’s really like for them. We’ve all seen parents completely lose it on their kids over seemingly small acts of misbehavior and thought "I wonder what the kid’s done before that caused this over reaction", or at least we hope it’s a "straw that broke the camel’s back" thing. In this case I’m not going to necessarily criticize the parents but I am going to say that you’d have to put a pen in my cold, dead fingers and move my hand for me in order to get me to sign the consent form. I’d rather take out a note on the house and put my daughter in a boarding school somewhere north of the arctic circle than turn her over to some middle-aged, can’t handle women his own age, bum of an ex-teacher.
And of course stories like this make it oh-so-much-easier to convince my friends back in DC that I really didn’t move to the location for Deliverance.