We’ve all relied on our school guidance counselors as we were preparing to apply to colleges, exploring the best colleges for our chosen majors or finalizing our top colleges lists. While I didn’t go to my counselor for much more than choosing courses in high school and applying for college, I have friends even back in the day who sought out their counselors for guidance in their personal struggles, both at school as well as home.
Things have changed over the years. School administrators, teachers, parents, and even students themselves have realized the importance of seeking out help and support for mental health issues. And this becomes crucial when high schoolers transition to college. This issue is addressed in detail in the following article.
We frequently hear that today’s students suffer from record rates of anxiety, depression, and stress, that they are emotionally immature, and less resilient than their predecessors. Raised by overprotective parents who, too often, shielded their children from failure and regard their offspring as extensions of themselves, it is not a surprise, many assume, that they are deficient in coping skills and have high expectations for handholding. No wonder, it is easy to conclude, that they want trigger warnings and safe spaces.
Are today’s students more emotionally fragile than those in the past?
Many reports in popular media say yes. After all, demands upon counseling centers have reached record highs.
The actual evidence, however, is unclear.
Longitudinal studies show no trends that suggest that psychological disorders are more prevalent. Suicide rates among college students have actually fallen.
So what’s going on?