How To Recognize Unusual Behavioral Patterns In Your College Students

Hello lovely ladies,

This did not post this past Monday, so here it is!

Good morning beautiful Women Supporting Women,

Happy Monday to you.  I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.  My weekend was filled with supporting my college sister at her Poetry Festival in New Jersey on Saturday.  This was an opportunity for young and adult poets to display their talent in front of fellow Paterson residents.  It was a joy to see the elementary and middle school students read their poems with such confidence.  They are our future!  On Sunday, you already know what I did :-).  I went to church to thank God for everything he has done and continues to do in my life.  I’m thankful for all blessings, big and small.

Last week, we spoke about the pitfalls of having a credit card in college.  This week, I wanted to take a different spin with our college students.  A lot of times, if they are attending college away from home, their behavioral patterns can start to change.  The child we once knew at home can become somewhat different.  We can sense when something is not consistent in our child’s behavior.  Could it be they are overwhelmed with their school work?  Are they having trouble finding employment to put a couple of extra dollars in their pocket? Are they unusually sad? Are they having trouble adapting to their new environment?  Are they about to graduate and are nervous about their unknown future?  These are some of the common issues my son and other fellow classmates have experienced. I would like to share how we, the parents or guardians, can recognize the signs.

One thing to remember is that you and your child are embarking on something new, so it is possible they may develop new patterns or new habits.  Don’t be alarmed if you see your child overly anxious about the issues mentioned.  This could be the norm, however, if you notice the patterns below are excessive, you might want to monitor the behaviors a little more closely:  

  • Irritable
  • Fatigued
  • Insomnia – Can’t seem to fall asleep (my son)
  • Frequent Headaches
  • Situational Nervousness (student always studies before an exam because maybe they didn’t study)
  • Overeating
  • Nausea

A lot of times WE diagnose our children and start thinking the worst.  Encouraging our children to have healthy dialogue with us or a trusted person will allow the lines of communication to stay open.  I speak to my son everyday, mostly by phone but sometimes by text.  If something seems a little different in his conversation, I will ask if everything is ok a few times and share why I am asking more than once.  98% of the time he will say everything is fine but then there is that 2% where he will start to share what may have transpired over the past few days.  Make sure they have your undivided attention.  Don’t multi-task when they are sharing information with you.  Give them 100% of you!

It’s tough when we see our children going through challenges. Know that the foundation has been set, and they will turn out great!

If you have any additional questions, please feel free to ask here or email me at:

Next Week:  Reader’s choice – what topics would you like to read about?  Post here and I can blog about it.

As always, thank you for reading.

Have a beautiful and blessed week,


Note: Marsha is not a licensed Social Worker nor a Clinical Psychologist….This article is based on research and facts shared from a client who is a school Social Worker.

Changing the lives in our community….one family at a time

PS:  This website has great information


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