A Rage-Filled Youth
A Rage-Filled Youth

"There was this kid in my high school whose dad committed suicide, so he was never really right. He was the kid that would go from 0-100 real quick if you said the wrong thing, so having even a casual conversation with him was always nerve-racking. Someone joked about his dad without knowing about it, and he literally fought off two security guards twice his size in rage. He also blocked a door with a knife to keep his class from leaving after the bell rang because no one remembered or knew it was his birthday. One of our friends accidentally found him on social media a few years after we graduated. He goes by a different name and is a female with long hair, a dress and all in the photos. I don't really know much more than that, but it was definitely a weird experience seeing that."

Hearing Voices


Hearing Voices

"She ended up going to a major college and one day after school went home and killed her mom and stepdad. Then she called the police and told them that the voices in her head told her to do it. She had a pretty bad stutter in high school, and even our teachers made fun of her sometimes. I normally kept my head down because I knew she'd snap one day. She did have a little meltdown in math when she hit one of our classmates over the head with a textbook and threatened another one. After that, I kept to myself. But yeah she killed her parents. And said the voices in her head told her to."

A Kid Has A 'Hit List'
A Kid Has A 'Hit List'

"This was before the Columbine shooting, but there was this 'weird' kid in our very small private high school. I believe he was autistic, but I had no exposure to him.

We were using the track system, which kept all of us very stuck in the same 20-people groups, so I didn't have any classes with him. I was a scholarship kid on the AP track. I think he was on the 'slow' track.

My best friend ('middle' track) may have had some classes with him. Every single day at lunch she would put her things down on our table then go talk to him. He sat alone, behind us.

One day I asked her, why do you have these daily conversations with him? She said, 'See that paper in his hands? It is a hit list. And I am determined not to be on it.'

I didn't take it seriously. Now I wonder; was he really planning something? And what happened to him? My heart breaks for him, but I also wonder if he ever did anything. Not at school but maybe later in real life? Wish I could remember his last name."

She Was Harassed Mercilessly...By The Principal
She Was Harassed Mercilessly...By The Principal

"I was the trenchcoat kid at my high school. I was creative and really into fantasy horror. At one point, I was drawing my own graphic novel about werewolves taking over a high school (I'm old and this was before Twilight). It was social commentary and meant to be funny, but this was circa Columbine and my principal had the biggest savior complex I've ever seen out in the wild. After getting her paws on that FBI school shooter profile, she decided that I was an imminent threat and harassed me relentlessly. I became so afraid that I'd be blamed in the event of a bombing or attack that I developed horrible insomnia and felt terrified to come to school.

The high school I went to was in North Dakota. North Dakotans, more than any other Midwesterners, have this uniquely insane ability to seem like really nice, warm people while also being as insular, xenophobic, and hostile to differentness as possible. I was new, I was different, and that was not ok. Keep in mind that I was quiet as a mouse and spent all my free time either in the library, writing stories, or in the art room, making comics. The other kids were sleeping with one and other and getting pregnant, driving after drinking, bragging about poaching deer, and worse. Yet, I was the problem, and the principal actually called a meeting at one point to try and get me expelled for my 'disturbing' art and writing. My mom pretty well flipped her lid at that point and demanded to know why the school was harassing her kid when I was just putting stuff on paper and not acting on it like so many other kids were doing right under her nose. My mom pretty well shut that principal down, and she left me alone after that. I could not have been luckier to have my mom, as my mom.

As soon as I got out of there, my life improved so much for the better, especially when I went to college. The things people singled me out for abuse and harassment for in high school suddenly made me ok. I got my Bachelor's of Arts and my Master's of Fine Arts and now I make a pretty decent living doing what I love. I still love werewolves and recently got paid almost $1,000 for a painting of one.

I'm also an attractive, professional-looking woman and you would never ever guess that I was the trenchcoat kid."

The Trenchcoat Kid Lives Quite An Adventure
The Trenchcoat Kid Lives Quite An Adventure

"He tried to make money by setting up a bike chop shop. Then he tried to make money by creating an underground rooster-fighting league. Then he tried to make money by buying and selling cars at auctions. He actually made some money this time and managed to fund himself through university.

Halfway through his parents won the lottery. His dad tried to take the money and run but he was stopped and the assets were frozen. Trenchcoat kid graduates/dropped out of university and tries to get some of the lottery money himself. He didn't get any because his family all seem to hate each other.

He then sold everything he had and drove to Mongolia (from the UK), where his car broke down. He crashed on some random guy's couch for a few weeks before he managed to sell what remained of his car and buy a motorbike. He then rode it to China. He got a job teaching English in a couple of days. He got fired after a few months. No idea why.

He now sells electric bikes to ex-pats in China."

It Took A While, But He Grew Up
It Took A While, But He Grew Up

"'Hunter the Trencher,' he was called. Hunter was the meanest dude this side of Kentucky. He used to stash cartons of smokes inside his trenchcoat and sell them to other students. Never was he caught by principal or staff. His lanky figure and ability to take off just when trouble was imminent was almost supernatural. I hear that as he got older, Hunter tried to deal some 'stuff' to some college kids at a party. A fight broke out and apparently Hunter kicked a football player right in his Adam's apple, then belted another one across the face. Well, the cops were quick to arrive and old slender Hunter in his trenchcoat legged it.

I still think he would've made a great distance, if not a great escape, if not for the fact that, when he graciously vaulted over the backyard fence, a 300 pound Samoan cop grabbed the tail of his trench coat just as it was about to clear the fence, then pulled at it causing poor old Hunter to crash violently against the other side of the fence. Well, still in escape mode, Hunter took out his trusty buck knife and cut himself free from his trenchcoat zipper. At this point, I still think he would've made a great escape, if not for the 250-pound bodybuilder-looking cop that tackled him to the ground at full force, and sat on his back.

Hunter got off lightly, given the college kids had stolen his stash during the fight, so he was only booked for a misdemeanor resisting arrest. I hear poor Hunter is doing well nowadays. He joined the Marines and saw the world.

By the way, I am Hunter."

This Guy Is Into So Creepy Stuff
This Guy Is Into So Creepy Stuff

"I was actually friends with the trenchcoat kid, whose nickname was 'Trenchcoat Mark.' His future seemed uncertain back then. He used to make his own illegal substances. One time he drank a whole bottle of his homemade batch and ended up wandering around the city for a few weeks and ended up in a psych ward for a while.

I have to say though, one of the kindest and most genuine people I've ever met. He really helped me out during a tough time and was the only guy during that time to offer to help me without also harassing me.

I stopped hanging out with him because one day he admitted to me that he's a necrophiliac. Then the next day he said something along the lines of 'to heck with my fantasies, let's get together and make our own.' So I told him I would call him back and never did.

Surprisingly enough, he's in medical school now, studying to be a doctor. Not sure if it's a genuine interest in medicine or just the access to fresh cadavers. He's also very creative and is making music."

The Weird Kid Likes Adult Magazines
The Weird Kid Likes Adult Magazines

"He got in huge trouble, with the librarian.

He checked out a large book, one of those 'look at the inside of planes/ships' type encyclopedias. Very oversized. He would read it every day on the bus, which was not that weird, especially since he was the weird kid. It turns out he was using the large book so he could read Playboy on the bus every day. They found out because he left the magazine when he returned the book. He got suspended and ended up changing schools."

Some People Never Grow
Some People Never Grow

"I was best friends with him up until he was expelled.

He was stupid. I mean, really stupid. Like, he was stupid for a stupid teenager. Granted, not all teens are stupid, but there's a subset of teens who are really dumb and eventually grow out of it; he didn't grow out of it.

He was obsessed with two things in middle school: The movie 'The Crow' and pro wrestling. He started wearing his trench coat around eighth grade and kept it on (even in summer) for several years until April 27, 1999, a week to the day after Columbine.

In his infinite idiocy, he made a joke about shooting up the school. Right after the school was evacuated for a bomb threat. In front of the principal. A week after Columbine.

Expelled without question.

Now he is 35 years old, wears Kevin Smith style shorts, still into everything we were into as teenagers, and has shown very little personal growth.

It's one thing to be a teenager and be a little childish - you're a teenager, you're still technically a child. And it's totally fine to be a bit of a nerd (Lord knows I am, and my kid loves it). But to almost be 40 and still living like you did as a teenager, that's as frustrating to see as it is sad."

Things Go As Bad For Him As Would Be Expected
Things Go As Bad For Him As Would Be Expected

"I realized he was different the very first time I met him, and it wasn't just because he smelled like diarrhea. It was the first day of fourth grade. He opened a Bible that he pulled out of his backpack and started reading it loudly before class started. He would stop in between verses to inform us that the words of the Bible were the only truth in this world. Everyone just sort of sat quietly until the teacher arrived and asked him to stop.

Through two years in elementary school, I shared teachers with him. He had been ridiculed enough to know that it was best to just be quiet, but I don't believe I ever witnessed him be physically bullied. When nobody would partner with him for our fifth-grade science fair I ended up with him as my partner. We had to pick a project, and we had to work on it outside of school. I asked him if I could come to his house since it was on the way to mine after school. He told me that he wasn't allowed to have people over so that we'd have to go to the library. For the most part, he wasn't terrible to work with once I got used to the smell.

We ended up getting an 'A' on the project. Afterwards, he became friendly. Being his friend would have been social suicide, but I did walk the same way home as him, so we'd have a few minutes to chat after school. This continued for the rest of fifth grade.

Middle school was so much larger and I didn't really have much reason to interact with him. The school had two separate lunches and with mine being later, I would watch him feed his entire lunch to seagulls from my Language Arts class in sixth grade. People began calling him Birdboy, and there were more than a few times when I saw him get picked on. A lot of those same bullies picked on me, so I wasn't in a position to help. In eighth grade, he started wearing Confederate Army costume and had the Confederate flag sewn onto his backpack. It was the first time I had seen it outside of Dukes of Hazzard reruns. The good news was that by the time middle school was over in 1994, he had found what were either friends or just a group of individuals who shared in the misery of being completely alienated. I didn't know the term 'emo' back then, but they were non-affectionately referred to as 'The Crap Pack.'

High School was upon us, and with it came the blending of the four local middle schools. It was a great opportunity to start over, and I took advantage of it. I was actually one of the cool kids after growing into my ears and face over the summer. For the first time since kindergarten, I looked forward to going to school. The only crossover I had with this kid was that we were both in the drama club. I think he joined the drama club, and Future Farmers (FFA) just to be ironic. While 'participating' in drama club, he never seemed to really focus and just talked about how much he loved his great leader, Satan. Any kind of improv we would do would just end with him, in his trenchcoat, grabbing his wrist as if to keep his hand from attacking his face. It never stopped being uncomfortable listening to him grunt and struggle against himself, always collapsing into a pile of trench coat as the seemingly demonic hand eventually had its way with his face to a smattering of supportive applause from the rest of the class.

With his new emo crew, he was mostly left alone. It probably didn't hurt that he had also grown to be around 6 foot 2 inches and weighed 250 pounds. That was until he got caught messing around with a goat in the FFA barn junior year. The school administrators gave a half attempted to cover it up for him, but it was a student who found him, and she told everyone.

After that, he just sort of disappeared until halfway through senior year. I have no idea where he went, or why he came back, but he did, and he was tormented daily. I even got involved in it and ended up getting suspended for a week after nailing him in the face with a snowball.

Shortly after this, he was investigated for abusing his young male cousin, and I never saw him again. A few years later he was convicted of abusing and murdering a 7-year-old boy and is currently serving life in prison."

He Just Disappeared
He Just Disappeared

"I'm from Colorado. Trenchcoats have been banned since '99.

That being said, we did have one guy who at least in attitude had that 'trenchcoat' vibe. He was a weird kid. My friend dated him for a while. He developed a serious addiction problem when we were seniors. He was a male 'dancer' when we were in college.

And then he dropped off the face of the earth. He stopped talking to people, deleted Facebook and Twitter, and changed his phone number. No one knows where he went or what happened to him. Not even his folks or his brother."

He Became Quite A Criminal
He Became Quite A Criminal

"A couple years ago I was dating a girl from my high school. This was like 10 years after we graduated. We had a cooking class in school together with this kid named Rhys. He was nice, and we got along with him. We were wondering how he was doing and looked him up on Google. He pulled a weapon on a cop and got killed."

The Crazy Conspiracy Nut

Valery Sidelnykov/

The Crazy Conspiracy Nut

"The thing about our 'trenchcoat kid' was that he didn't look like one on the surface. There was always something vaguely off about his appearance - he wore sweater vests on infrequent occasions, for instance - but his attitude and demeanor seemed to mark him as being more of a pompous jerk than any kind of a threat. Only in conversation would his true colors start to show, when he'd offer some of the most off-the-wall conspiracy theories that I've ever heard.

On one memorable occasion, I was forced to work with this fellow on a group project. He spent the entire time regaling me with a description of how gold jewelry (of any variety) allowed the government to spy on unwary citizens. He told me this is why tax incentives were offered to married couples: Wedding rings were actually tracking devices, each of which had been manufactured in Fort Knox. The Catholic church was allegedly in on it, too, given that they encouraged parishioners to wear auric crucifixes.

I may have exacerbated things when I asked him about circuitry.

Anyway, I haven't had any contact with the fellow in decades. If my brief Internet search can be believed, though, he now works as a real estate agent in the same city where we went to school, and he has taken to wearing his sweater vests with impunity.

I can only imagine the subtle hints he might drop to newlywed couples in the market for their first houses."

He Went After The Gym Teacher
He Went After The Gym Teacher

"We would have gym teachers monitoring the cafeteria and selecting tables to go get in the lunch line in middle school. Students would come from class, sit at their respective table, and wait for their table to be chosen. One of the gym teachers was a power-hungry jerk and would purposefully skip an entire table of students and select the next one just because he didn't like one of the students that happened to be sitting at that table. Finally, one day our resident 'trenchcoat kid' freaked out, stood on the lunch table and began berating the teacher, using every insult he could muster up in his infinite rage. After his rant, he grabbed a full lunch tray from another student and threw it at the teacher. He then bolted through the double doors that led to the front lawn of the campus and took off down the street. We never saw him again."

He Survived The Bullies And Came Out Ahead
He Survived The Bullies And Came Out Ahead

"I never wore a trench coat, but I was the kid people thought was most likely to shoot the place up.

Growing up, I had a few issues. Unstable family life, separation issues, undiagnosed or treated anxiety and depression, and a pretty bad rage addiction. I had one heck of a temper and combined with hormones from puberty, freshman year was pretty rough for me.

I was the kid the got tripped in the hallways, talked about behind their back, picked on, teased, and beaten up. People would even pretend to be my friend, for fear that I'd actually retaliate and shoot up the school, which is the one that probably hurt the most.

I wasn't even a weird kid. I liked Slipknot, video games, anime, and junk food. I just wanted to be left alone and draw, and play Halo and Magic the Gathering.

But since it wasn't sports or skating, I was different, and therefore targeted.

I never shot any place up. Today, I'm 23. I have a wonderful girlfriend, and we're getting engaged next year. We should be getting an apartment together soon, too. I have a lot of good friends and we play Magic the Gathering and video games together regularly when I'm not working 60 hours a week as a security guard.

I still like Slipknot and junk food.

I ended up pretty okay. Most of my bullies ended up in jail, homeless, or dead."

Broken-Hearted Friends

Kleber Cordeiro/

Broken-Hearted Friends

"His name was Walter. He was my number one crush in my first couple years of high school. In 1996, I came back from winter break to find my friend, Luke, (who was his best friend) with eyes redder than they'd ever been and unusually quiet. I asked him what was wrong and he told me Walter died over break.

He and his family never got along, and he had a fight with his mother and decided to hurt himself to hurt her. So he shot himself in the stomach. He blew a huge hole in himself and was dead before the ambulance arrived.

And since this was The South, and I wasn't out of the closet yet, I had to suffer in silence because the guy I'd fantasized about for years was suddenly gone. And we'd never been close friends so no one could figure out why I took it so hard.

To add insult to injury, the teacher in charge of the yearbook decided that any memorial for him would be 'glorifying suicide' so she didn't set aside any space for him. At all. No memorial. No senior picture. Not even a blank space where his picture should have been. His face was only visible in two class photos. In one, you can sort of see his face in a school bus window and in another, you can sort of see him standing in the background.

When we demanded to know why they did this, we were told, 'Well, we didn't want to glorify suicide. But you were welcome to buy ad space in the back for your own personal memorials if you'd really wanted to!' They'd never said anything about that to anyone who loved him. They never said anything at all about not including him at all."

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