Helene Combe

Through my journey as an English teacher and a language learner

I care too much

There is something I realized last week, and I am not (really) proud of it: I care too much.

It’s good, as a teacher, to care for your students: you want them to succeed, you want them to understand, you praise them… Caring is undeniable for a teacher. You can’t be a teacher if you don’t care. Be a zookeeper or a supermarket security guard if all you care about is listening to yourself and ignoring your students.

But I do care too much. See, I was thinking about taking another job, and that would mean leaving my current students behind. I always found excuses not to leave them, for example:

-She will lose her motivation

-They are used to our habits and won’t behave well

-He will stop his efforts

-They won’t continue to learn

I am lucky enough not to have really difficult groups, nor students, they are, most of them, motivated, nice, friendly. Even my busiest student always tries to make an effort, because she knows I care. When I left BEET last August, I cried during my flight back home because my students had sent me a nice email and some lovely comments on Instagram. Maybe I am too sensitive, maybe I am just a newbie and I need experience, but either way, I couldn’t leave my current students and I decided not to get the other job.

For now, I don’t care about something else than my students’ improvement. I want them to feel good during our classes, and to enjoy them, as much as I do. I don’t know if I am right to care this much, but I am afraid that, for now, I am not able to be otherwise.


  1. I’m not a newbie and still find that the hardest part about leaving any job. I’m always sad during the last class when I really like the students. But not everything can last forever, that’s life!

    • hcombe

      2018-01-21 at 9:47 PM

      I am actually glad to see that I am not alone feeling this way! Fortunately, there is always new students coming after so I don’t “mourn” the old ones for a long time 🙂

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