For Concerned Family and Friends
As a family member or friend, you may observe behavioral signs or changes that concern
you. The following list offers some behavioral signs that may reflect potential problems:
- Aggressive or threatening behavior
- Social withdrawal or other marked change in social habits
- Marked changes in personal hygiene
- Preoccupation with weight, food or exercise
- Dramatic weight loss or gain
- Excessive crying, increasingly emotional or mood changes
- Marked changes in energy level (e.g., listlessness or hyperactivity)
- Noticeable changes potentially associated with drinking or drug use
- Increases in pessimism, hopelessness or helplessness
- Change in academic habits (e.g., a historically hard-working student who seems not
to care about academic performance anymore)
- Bizarre behaviors (e.g., paranoia, strange speech patterns)
- References to suicide or death
- Any other behaviors or symptoms which represent a distinct departure from the behavior
you have always seen from the student
What to do when your child is having difficulty or is in crisis.
- As a parent you may be in a good position to help the student acknowledge that there
is a problem. Talking promptly, openly and empathically about your observations and
concerns will likely have the best result. Here are a few suggestions on how to respond
to changes you may observe in your child.
- Don’t “put off until tomorrow.” Gently raise your concerns with your child as soon
as you notice problems. Ignoring disturbing behavior is unlikely to “make it go away.”
- Have a caring, concerned nonjudgmental discussion of your concerns. Choose a time
and place carefully to allow for a private and honest discussion.
- Listen at least as much as you talk.
- Avoid the tendency to be critical or judgmental.
- Avoid the temptation to offer easy solutions to problems or to “take care of everything”
for your child.
- Know your own limits. Do not feel pressured to take on the problems yourself. The
Counseling Center staff may be better trained to help your student with specific concerns.
Being able to refer your child to college resources is a vital role you can play.
How to refer to the Counseling Center
Please encourage your family member or friend to call the Counseling Center for an
appointment or come in to speak with someone. Often students are hesitant to seek
out mental health counseling and your encouragement can facilitate them getting the
services they need. Let them know that we see a wide range of issues at the Counseling
Center and no issue is too small or too big. Call 719-502-4782.
Hours of Operation
Monday - Friday
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Call The Counseling Center @ (719) 502-4782
*After Hours Emergencies Call Campus Police 502-2900
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