Pattie’s Parenting Tips-College Aged Kids & Stress

Authored by Pattie Carroll

Anxiety in college students is something we take for granted. College is stressful. The pressure, workload, expense, and missing home all have a way of building up. This can lead to emotional distress, depression and even burnout. Under normal conditions, college students can experience these types of stressors. Even students who do not think they will get homesick experience anxiety caused by being on their own. Added stress includes the fact that students are also tasked with securing a whole new set of friends once they begin college. Covid-19, a contentious election, and social injustices add a tremendous amount of stress on top of the normal stressors for college students.

The University of Wisconsin Madison, Division of Extension- Dodge County, Human Development and Relationships Educator, Pattie Carroll, is asking parents and other caring adults to check in on their college aged loved ones. Carroll says, “Now more than ever young adults need support. They need to know that they have a connection, a safe place, and that they will be okay.”

As college campuses have been dealing with Covid-19, some classes have moved from in-person to online, back to in-person. Carroll reminds parents and caregivers that this can cause a rollercoaster of emotions for the young adults in their lives. Here is a resource you can share with your child, friend, or loved one. ‘FACE COVID” is a set of practical steps for responding effectively to the Corona crises. Here is a preview of this resource that could help.  It is based on Acceptance & Commitment Therapy and this 12-page eBook presents a practical approach to safety and emotional wellbeing in the time of COVID. Here is a preview:

F = focusing on what’s in your control
A = acknowledging thoughts & feelings
C = coming back into your body
E = engaging in what you’re doing

C = committed action
O = opening up
V = values
I = identifying resources
D = disinfecting & distancing

Check it out here:

FACE COVID  eBook by Russ Harris
Afrontar el COVID (en español)


All the Best,

Patricia Carroll | UW-Madison, Division of Extension
Associate Professor, Dept of Family Development
Human Development & Relationships Educator, Dodge County



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