Is Your Teen's Anxiety About College Causing Stress in Their Lives?

In my practice, I provide Adolescent Transition Counseling for teens struggling with entering the daunting and unfamiliar territory of University life.  It is very common for teenagers to feel scared to leave the comforts of home, a familiar school and the support of family and friends.  I offer therapy for teens who may be suffering from depression and anxiety related to this important and often overwhelming transition to college. 
I provide your teen with the help he or she needs by teaching tools to manage the stress associated with leaving Home to attend University.

Some specific questions teens may need support with include:

  • How will I fit in and make new friends?
  • What if I am incapable of succeeding and fail my classes?
  • How will I manage a full class schedule?
  • Will I be able to have a social life or will I be stuck studying all of the time?

Some common problems that you may have noticed your teen begin to grapple with are:

  • Struggling to manage time effectively when it comes to preparing for College
  • Disinterest in talking to their parents about their concerns about College
  • Inability to keep up with deadlines on Applications
  • Behaving younger than their age and requiring more of your assistance
  • Shutting down emotionally and not wanting to communicate their fears or concerns

Many Parents Worry That Their Children Will Have Difficulty Making the Transition to College Life:

  • How often do I, as a parent, step in to help my child get their bearings vs. allow my child to build up their own resources?

It would depend on your child and how independent he/she is, and if they are comfortable asking for assistance.  During the first months of a semester, many teens struggle to find their way to cope with college anxiety.  You know your child best.  Have a talk with them before they leave for college about how much help they will need to navigate their routine.

  • What should I do if my child becomes depressed while away and wants to come home?

Don't panic. Although it is difficult to hear your child suffering, depression in college students is common, especially because life at a university can feel lonely and overwhelming.  Do your best to reassure your child that in time, they will make new friends and ease into their schedule.  If your child needs more support than family members or friends can provide, guide them to a Mental health professional on campus.  

If your child attends teen counseling sessions before leaving for college, I can assess his or her depression symptoms and determine if further treatment is needed. Then, as your child gets settled at college, I can help guide him or her to appropriate mental health care on or close to campus. 

  • What if my child is failing academically? How much effort do I put in as a parent to get them to succeed? 

Many students beginning college will have to get used to new, more rigorous academic demands. Despite a great deal of success in High school, your child might not be prepared for the amount of work or level of difficulty of classes in college.

If I were to work with your child before he or she attends college, we could look at where his/her strengths and weaknesses are academically and create an action plan for seeking out assistance in those subjects that are more challenging.  I can also offer effective skills for time and stress management for college students. 

Remember, most often what your child is experiencing early in his or her College experience are normal fears and adjustments. Things will get easier in time. The transition to college is an exciting opportunity for your child to take empowering steps toward adulthood. You, as a parent, can offer your child the support he/she needs to make that transition, but in the end, they will need to do the work themselves.


You may believe that therapy for teens would be a good choice, but still have questions and concerns...

What should I expect my teen to get out of therapy?
I will provide a safe and nurturing environment for your teen to feel able to express any and all concerns, fears and hopes, without any fear of judgement.  Because your child is a unique person and there are often different circumstances bringing each teen into counseling, I offer an individualized treatment plan for each of the adolescents I see.  For example, while one teen may be experiencing pre-college anxiety or sadness and depression after leaving their home; another may be excited to attend College, but need support with time management and navigating what is expected of them.  

How often will my son or daughter need to attend teen counseling sessions?
The frequency of sessions will be determined during the Intake appointment. A session lasts 50 minutes. Frequency of appointments can vary from once a week to once a month, depending on your son or daughter's needs. We can discuss treatment goals during the Intake appointment.

What professional experience do you have working with Adolescents?
I have 23 years of experience working with adolescents in crisis and teaching stress management skills. I help teens to identify negative thought patterns that keep them stuck in fear, making it difficult for them to address problems on their own. Often, it isn't easy for a teen to articulate what his or her worry is really about. I can assist by breaking down the problem into manageable parts so it will become easier for us, as a team, to brainstorm solutions that work for your teen.
 
Your teen can feel prepared for this life transition and empowered to create a college experience that leads to fulfillment and success.

I invite you to contact me today for a free phone consultation. We can discuss any questions you have about teen counseling and my practice.

 

Testimonials

 
A talented and respected therapist

“Lisa is a talented and respected therapist among her colleagues.  Her skills and engaging style prepare teens for college with reassuring support, information, and confidence.”

Helen Lemm LCSW | Psychotherapist Private Practice

A strong advocate for her clients.

“I enjoy collaborating with Ms. Knudson.  She is a strong advocate for her clients, and is talented in working with adolescents and young adults who are navigating transitions."

Nakia Scott, M.D., ABIHM | Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist | Diplomat of the American Board of Integrative and Holistic Medicine

 

 

I invite you to contact me today for a free phone consultation.

We can discuss any questions you have about counseling and my practice.