Whether you remember your own college admissions experience or you’ve seen friends and family members go through it, there’s little doubt that helping your teen through the college application process involves guiding them around quite a few challenges. In the least stressful version of things, your college applicant moves through the process with little more than basic discomfort, filling out college essays and applications, then moving from high school to university with ease. At the more extreme end of the spectrum, your child may deal with impaired mental health as a result of their admissions process, facing depression panic attacks, anxiety disorders, and other mental and physical symptoms. However, with your guidance and support, you can both make it through the process relatively unscathed, treating any serious concerns as they arise, and helping your child to thrive before they even arrive at their freshman dorm.
Make sure you’re putting them first
There’s no doubt that college is an important step for a vast majority of modern young adults. However, it’s even more crucial that you prioritize your teen and their health and well–being beyond the college admissions process. So, for instance, if your teen is exhibiting anxiety symptoms or signs of mental health conditions like panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), agoraphobia, major depression, or other types of anxiety disorders and phobias, ensure that you’re taking care of them and making whatever treatment they may need a higher priority than the next application‘s deadline. Should something happen that your student needs to defer a year before entering the school of their dreams, it will nevertheless be a preferable outcome to struggling with a lifetime of mental health concerns as a result of the admissions process.
Get the best guidance
Admissions experts can come to you in many forms, whether it’s through admission offices at your teen’s top-choice schools or as part of an outside organization. In any case, finding the right guide to help you through the college admission process can ensure that you and your teen have the least possible stress, even when faced with deadlines and the anxiety of taking such a big step in life. Many college admission experts work with high school students and college applicants as the focus of their careers, meaning they’ve seen just about anything and will be ready to help you get through this stressful situation.
Be there for them every step of the way
At the end of the day, young adult or not, this is your child—your baby. College admissions will likely be a stressful time in their life, but it’s a period that you get to be there for at their side. Soon enough, they’ll be off on their own rather than sitting with you as you work through the financial aid process or proofreading their college essay. Take advantage of this time to be genuinely supportive and help them towards their goals, rather than letting the strain get to you both. Of course, you may both feel the weight of that stress and even find your mental health suffering as a result. However, it’s important that you both take care of your wellness holistically, treating any mental health concerns or simple stress that arises along the way.
The admissions process can be challenging for everyone involved, not least of all the applicant and their family. However, these processes don’t have to reach the level of requiring long-term mental health treatment due to the mental and physical symptoms of dealing with college applications. Instead, with expert guidance and the support of you as their parent, you and your teen can move through the college application process into university and well beyond graduation day successfully.
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