I have three recurring nightmares. I attribute them all to the fact that I once attended Jr. High.
Don't misunderstand - I had wonderful teachers (well, maybe with the exception of my 8th grade science teacher who regularly slapped students on their knuckles with a yardstick), good friends, and a wonderful family and home - it's just that Jr. High is hard. The fact that ANYONE lives through it without eventually experiencing nightmares is surprising.
First I have the locker nightmare. It typically involves me either 1) forgetting where my locker is located, 2) realizing I don't have a locker, 3) discovering that there is no way to retreive the items I have put in my locker as there is no actual door on it (don't ask me how I got the stuff in there that I am unable to retreive!), but most often 4) forgetting the combination to the locker I have a really hard time locating. I feel sure this disturbing genre of dreams stems from the fact that most of these things actually happened to me in Jr. High. Not the weird no-door thing, but definitely all the others.
Next is the nightmare in which all of my teeth crumble and fall out of my mouth. I'm no psychiatrist but this one really must be because of the "appliance". In order to prepare my mouth for braces I had to wear this nifty device that fit in the roof of my mouth, was attached to my upper teeth, and was operated using a "key". Every night for about 5 months my mother would fit the key in a tiny hole and turn it the appropriate number of times. This process was to expand my upper jaw so there was sufficient room for all my teeth, AND apparently to torture me - or so my Jr. High mind believed. Later I'll tell you about my great headgear.
The third nightmare is, I understand, fairly common in the general population. I am in college, the semester is almost over, and I have to go take a final exam in a class that I never attended, did not know I was enrolled in, or most disturbingly knew I was enrolled in but chose not attend just to spite myself. I'm still working on the Jr. High connection, but feel sure that it is somehow related to two incidents. One involves me walking into the boy's bathroom by mistake as a 7th grader. And the other, which for my own sanity I will not elaborate upon, has something to do with toilet paper and my very favorite pair of black patent leather shoes.
So, just think. I was a normal, well-adjusted, Jr. High girl without psychological issues, learning disabilities, anger problems or a difficult family situation. Can you imagine how much more devastating this time in a student's life could be if some of those things were thrown in the mix? Think on these things if you are a parent or teacher of Jr. High kids. They need you to survive.
And just for the curious - no, I never got my knuckles slapped.