I was generally a goody-two-shoes and stayed out of trouble; one of the few incidents I can think of, I got in trouble unfairly and I regret to this day that I didn't stand my ground.
1. The unfair incident: I was walking alongside a friend who was doing patrol duty on the playground and telling them a story I'd read in a book. Our playground was divided into two general sections, the "little kids'/lower hall" section (K through 3rd grade) and the "bigger kids'/upper hall" section (4th through 6th grade). I believe kids could pass between sections but it was highly discouraged. I can't remember what grade I was in but I doubt I could've gotten in trouble just for being on the "wrong" side of the playground, especially since I was accompanying my friend.
Anyway, I'd read this creepy story in a book of true paranormal experiences, about weird prints being found in the snow one morning in some town, including in places where prints shouldn't have easily been found. I believe this is the same story I was talking about.
It wasn't a TERRIFYING, bloody, scary story, just spooky, and I don't think I even mentioned the Devil or anything (I don't think the book referred to them by this name). I should also point out that the book I read it in was obviously targeted toward younger readers. I summarized this story for my friend as she patrolled the little kids' part of the playground, while one of the little kids trailed along after us for some reason. He shouldn't have been following us around, but he wasn't causing any trouble so we just ignored him. Recess ended and we all went inside.
Shortly after, I was called down to the office of a teacher in lower hall. I knew her--she had a reputation as being kind of mean--though I'd never had her as one of my teachers. The little kid who'd been tagging along after my friend and me was there, just looking blank and unconcerned; he never said a word. The teacher, though, immediately laid into me. Apparently this dumb eavesdropping kid who shouldn't even have been following us had been just TERRIFIED by my story (looking at him, he seemed more bored than anything!), I should never have told such a scary story in front of him (I hadn't been telling HIM the story, plus, he'd been free to walk away from us at any time, yet hadn't), and if I wanted to avoid getting in trouble (WTF, this lady wasn't even my teacher!), I needed to tell the kid that it was just a fictional story to put his fears to rest (why couldn't she have done that herself?--plus, as I said, he didn't look scared in the least). (Oh, BTW, the patrol herself, my friend, she was never involved in any of this; you'd think the teacher would've wanted her side of the story too, yes? Guess not. I don't think the kid told the teacher about her or that the teacher even spoke with her since she was never mentioned as being the person I was telling this story to in the first place
. Kind of a big omission...
Confused and hurt (and admittedly scared ****less myself, now, since like I said I was a goody-two-shoes and I NEVER deliberately caused trouble, and the teachers knew this), I feebly insisted, "But it was a true story, it really happened. I read it in a nonfiction book."
The teacher just got even more irate (while the kid just stood there looking dumb and bored). "I don't CARE that you read it in a book! Tell him it was a fiction story or else!"
I felt really horribly--I'd always been taught by these same teachers not to lie, yet here one was, insisting that I lie if I wanted to stay out of trouble. It made no sense to me and flew in the face of all the moral behavior I'd been taught. I really wanted to stick to my guns and be truthful, but the fear of getting in trouble with a teacher won out, and I caved in and quietly said the story was made up and never happened. The teacher calmed down, dismissed me, and that was that.
Decades later I'm still angry with her and that dumb kid, and disappointed in myself, over this. Especially since, if I WAS going to get in trouble for anything, it should've been for being on the wrong side of the playground or pestering the patrol as she was working (this was never
mentioned, therefore, it obviously wasn't an issue), and because I believe the TEACHER had been lying. I don't think that kid was scared by the story at all. I think what actually happened was he went inside and repeated the story to someone, the teacher heard it, and SHE was the one horrified, probably by its "Satanic" elements. (Recall that I don't remember my version of the story using the word "Devil," though I likely did describe "hoofprints," which might have easily triggered a pious sort.) So to teach me a lesson she told the kid that it was a bad story and to follow her to her office and demand a retraction. Kid probably had no idea WTF was going on and obviously didn't care, though maybe he just didn't want to get in trouble, either. So he was just a pawn for her to force me to lie just so SHE could feel better.
Well, I hope she felt good about herself, she cowed a scared little kid (me) into lying and learning that it ISN'T always a virtue to be honest.
I also started learning very early on that it doesn't pay for me to stand up for myself...
2. It's strange, I no longer remember what I did wrong (it wasn't something awful, maybe I was talking too loudly or crying in class?--I recall the teacher had an unusually short temper that day), but in third grade my teacher got mad at me and sent me out to sit at a desk in the hallway (a type of humiliation punishment). This greatly upset me (goody-two-shoes, remember?) but I obeyed. I sat alone in the hall...and sat...and sat. A long time, far longer than I should have been out there, passed. I grew even more upset and started to cry. Finally, after maybe a half hour, the teacher came out and, seeing me, abruptly halted, looking stunned. "What are you still doing out here?" she exclaimed; before I could explain that she'd told
me to sit out here, and had apparently forgotten me, she snapped, "Get back in the class!" So I hurriedly did so, feeling even more miserable even though my punishment was over. I couldn't understand why she was still mad at me when I'd just been obeying her order. Why was she taking her forgetfulness out on me? I tried hard to just avoid her the rest of the day. I didn't want to get yelled at again...to this day I still can't bear being yelled at. I get anxious and feel terrible empathy even hearing other
people being yelled at.
My interactions with that particular teacher were pretty positive in general so that's why that negative experience stuck out and hurt so. She could have a short fuse but that was the only time she took it out on me. I guess I was just the straw that broke the camel's back that day. Still didn't deserve getting yelled at for being forgotten, though... :/
3. Talking in class; I believe this was sixth grade. I got in trouble for this twice that I recall. The first time I was sent to the corner, I cried in humiliation, and I remember one of my bullies snickering in amusement over it. The second time, both my best friend and I got in trouble, and we were sent to opposite corners. I saw my bully starting to smirk as I walked past...then as my friend stood in one corner and I stood in the other, we just passed surreptitious glances at each other and giggled under our breath. Needless to say, my bully was disappointed that day, so that made it worth it.
4. Sixth grade. Having a "distracting" toy in class. It was just a rubber grasshopper, and I was just holding or playing with it at my desk, nothing particularly disruptive. Still, a distracting toy is distracting, so the teacher confiscated it, and said I could get it back after school.
She forgot, and, not wanting to invite her ire (likely remembering my previous experiences), I didn't have the heart to ask. I never did get it back.
There are probably a few other random incidents I'm forgetting but that was the gist of the kind of "trouble" I tended to get into, aside from the incident with the story, teachers just got annoyed now and then with me being distracted or too chatty...ironically enough. And probably why I can't remember any incidents of getting in trouble past elementary school, since junior high was when my social anxiety started to really kick in. I wasn't so chatty anymore.