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Helping Your Child

Tips for families of students:

Adjusting to university life often involves many changes that can produce stressors. Students often appreciate your support and acknowledgement of their successes.

Consider the following suggestions:

1. Observe for Potential Signs of Concern

  • Loss of interest or energy

  • Sudden drop in grades

  • Missed assignments

  • Unusual behavior

  • Aggressiveness or irritability

  • Emotional outbursts or crying

  • Excessive weight gain or loss

  • Lack of personal hygiene

 

2. Communicate

  • Make time to talk.

  • Be patient and give your undivided attention.

  • Let them talk with minimal interruption

 

3. Avoid Being Judgmental

  • Mention that you have noticed changes in him/her, and that you want to help.

  • Validate their concerns rather than focusing on solutions.

 

4. Give Plenty of Reassurance

  • Your child may have lost the ability to recognize their positive attributes. You can reaffirm; for example "You are a sensitive person who cares for others."

5. Offer to Help

  • Inquire about how you may help.

  • Don't be offended if the reply is "Leave me alone"

 

6. Talk About What They Find Helpful

  • Make conversations about mental health difficulties easy and open.

  • Asking about what helps when things are tough.

  • Encourage your child to seek resources available at the university.

  • Encourage him or her to contact the service directly to arrange an appointment.

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