Re: Teacher/Students Etiquette Posted by terrier4581 9/4/2013 4:45:00 PM
I hate to sound harsh, and I say this with the caveat that I only know what I read from your post, and there may be more to the story.
Whenever you loan money to someone, whether you are an individual or a bank, there is a fairly significant risk you won't be paid back. It seems obvious that the guy had other creditors too and was in a desperate situation since he filed for bankruptcy. As someone else has said, when you loan money to someone, think of it as if you would never see the money again. Of course you were trying to be nice and you probably felt sympathy for the guy and wanted to help. This is certainly understandable. But in such a case, I would only give the money over if I would be okay not seeing the money again.
As far as him being a ballroom dance instructor, I don't see the relevance. Someone else mentioned pre-payment of lessons, but you never said that's what you did. Did he imply that he would stop teaching you if you didn't loan him money? In what way did he use his professional position as your teacher to take advantage of you? If I loaned money to my gardener and didn't get paid back, would you say he was an unethical gardener? My point is: What does his being your former instructor have to do with his failure to pay you back, other than that being the way he came to know you?
I'll leave it up to you and any other individual to decide whether we should judge a person morally for getting themselves into financial trouble and being unable to pay their creditors (though this happens to average people every day), but you haven't made the case to me that the person's reputation as an instructor deserves to be dragged through the mud.
I'm truly sorry that this unfortunate situation happened to you. Let it be a lesson to us all to take care not to trust people too easily.