My teacher hates me because of my brother. How do I get her to realize I’m nothing like him?

My teacher hates me because of my brother. How do I get her to realize I’m nothing like him?

So basically I currently attend the same middle school my brother used to go to (he’s in high school now though) and let’s just say he wasn’t exactly a model student…(he got suspended twice) and because of him, all the teachers hate me. The second my teacher read my name in attendance she asked me if I was (my brother’s name)’s sister and when I said yes, she gave me a dirty look and said “…oh” and looked me up and down. She made me switch seats to the front of the class, she’d pick on me to answer the questions that I didn’t know the answer to, she’d make me present first and do group projects individually and when other kids whispered to each other, she’d give them a warning but I whispered a question a question to my friend and got detention. She’d find reasons to keep me in during recesses and after school. I couldn’t hear her during a lesson once and she yelled at me and said I wasn’t listening and called my parents once because I asked a question and she claimed I was talking back to her. The principal always took her side because he thinks I’m just as much of a troublemaker as my brother. I thought she would only hate me for the first days of school but now it’s been 4 months into school and she’s still treating me like crap. How do I convince her that I’m nothing like my brother?


  1. You may not be able to, which isn’t fair. In middle school you may not feel you have a level of self-advocacy to do this, but asking to speak to the teacher privately could be what you need to do. If this happens, tell the teacher how you feel, not what you think the motivation is. If this teacher really is as unprofessional as your post implies, you can talk to a guidance counselor, administrator, or a parent.

  2. What the others have said, but if the teacher ever mentions your brother please just say “I’m not my brother, please remember that.” or “I’m not my brother, please stop comparing us”.

  3. Break won’t fix it. Maybe nothing can. But you can try and get past it. You can’t control her reactions, but you can control yours.

    I have a little brother who HATED being compared to me, but for the opposite reason. I set the bar pretty high and he was more about sports than honors classes and he was really sick of my former teachers saying, “Oh, but your sister was so good at blah blah blah.” He went the opposite direction and was a terrible student, sometimes I think just to spite them, but it only hurt him. So I learned from his example and even if I DO know students are related, I pretend I don’t.

    You might try seeing if the counselor will meet with you and the teacher. Just tell her that you’d like a chance to come out from behind your brother’s shadow and be your own person, but you need her help.

    But, her expectations don’t define you. Some teachers get set on these expectations and I challenge you to live beyond them. Don’t let her expectations limit you.

  4. I am so sorry you are going through this. I actually refused to buy a house in the school district my in-laws live in because they have a child 1 yr older than mine who is horrible and I didn’t want her to experience it. No advice, but my deepest sympathy.

    All you can do is try to show you are not your brother, but please understand that if that doesn’t work, that is on the teacher, not you.

  5. Tell them how your brother makes you feel. Tell them it is embarrassing and that you’ve always dealt with this. (Just had this conversation with a seventh grade student- had no idea she was the sister of the kid exhibiting the worst behaviors we have ever seen – brother is just one year older.)

    It happens. Just tell your teacher that you understand how they feel because you feel the same way to win them over

  6. Well, I had a student like this tell one of my coworkers “You know, I’m not my brother – you’re treating me unfairly” in a very sad voice. My coworker realized this was true, and has stopped.

    I’m not going to lie, I didn’t get on her case at all – but I was on sharp lookout when I saw her last name after teaching two of her older brothers and having run-ins with a third. She isn’t anything like them though, has absolutely none of the problems I’m frustrated with in them. It took me about 2 days to figure this out for sure and it hasn’t been an issue.

    If you’re right, your teacher should have figured it out too. The fact that they didn’t is a bad sign, but it should be easy to prove if they’re out of the picture. Perhaps you could get the administration to talk to your teachers from grade 4 and 5?

    edit: I will also point out to you though, she does have her own issues – she is far from a model student, and I think that she thinks she is better than she is because she compares herself to her brothers. I’m working to teach her how to be a model student, and she’s getting better. It sounds like this teacher is totally overreacting, but also you should consider if there is anything you’re letting yourself slide on because “at least I’m doing better than him”, since it will only hurt you in the long run. Hopefully that’s not the case, but it’s worth some self-reflection if you haven’t thought about it.

  7. Have you tried talking to the teacher directly about it? Sometimes that may help.

    Side note: your username is very uncomfortable

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