When your child moves on and finally goes to college, they are experiencing an entirely different world than the one they have been used to. While there is more room to express individuality and freedom, many students also suffer from social isolation, stress, and depression. College is a stressful time, and there are plenty of ways your child might be struggling. Here are solutions to some of the most common problems.

How to Help Your Child When They
How to Help Your Child When They Struggle in College Pixabay

Help Them Out Financially

Helping your child with their financial needs doesn't mean you give them a credit card with no spending cap. What it does mean is that you take the time to help them create a budget so their money will stretch. It may also mean helping them in more practical ways. You could help them with the cost of tuition by cosigning on a student loan with them. Students with a cosigner are more likely to get approved, and they might get lower rates over the loan's life. If you're wondering who can cosign a student loan? You can get more information online.

Encourage Your Child to Make Friends

Take some time to put yourself in your student's shoes. It might be challenging to understand what it is like for a freshman who is experiencing social pressure. But you may remember what it was like to face pressure as a young adult. Have a conversation with your child about these pressures before they are in school, if possible. If it seems like social pressures are stressing out your child, talk to them about it. Encourage your student to take part in social activities available to them. Many campuses have events your child could take part in, or they could get involved in the local community. Talk to them about how they can escape harmful environments and surround themselves with positive people. It's important for your student to know you are a resource they can rely on when they need advice or are just feeling stressed. Many young adults in college don't have a trustworthy resource when they have important questions. Showing your child that you are there for them is part of unconditional love.

Help Them Seek Out Academic Resources

Schools offer a lot of support, but your child needs to seek it out. One of the best places to start is with the academic advisor. These professionals can help students manage their time so they are less stressed about their course load. They can also help students succeed in hard classes. They could even help your child connect with a study group for a particular class. Study groups allow your child to connect with other students who might find a certain class difficult. Having others to study with can hold a student accountable and help them make new friends. Plus, putting in a team effort can feel rewarding. Someone who has already taken the class might lead the group, and they may be able to explain a concept in a different way than the professor. There may be tutoring centers on campus that can help with areas your child might not be as strong in. If there is a writing center, your child may be able to get feedback on essays and papers before submitting them. These resources are all covered under tuition and fees, so take advantage of them.

Talk About Mental Health

When you are honest with your college-age student about mental health, it's more likely they will be comfortable coming to you when they struggle. It's common to experience mental health issues when transitioning from a teenager to a young adult, so give your child a safe space to express themselves. If your child is experiencing concerning symptoms, encourage them to get treatment. Many universities have treatment programs or counselors who can help students out when they need someone to listen to them. Young adults often want it to look like they have everything together, but let them know there is no shame in getting help when they need it.

Talk About Academics

Many men don't ask for help, even if they need it, and this can make academics challenging. Luckily, many schools have resources on campus for those in need of assistance in their studies. College courses are not as easy as high school, and many freshmen are not prepared for the rigors of their courses. Encourage your child to advocate for themselves and meet with academic advisors and professors. It's not uncommon to struggle with the more challenging coursework and exams while in college, so explain this is not the same as failure. Struggling can lead to failure, but only if help is not sought out. Many struggles can be addressed by meeting with the professor or taking advantage of other resources on campus. Many students start to struggle when they skip class.

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