Counseling & Psychological Services
Low-income single mother students face unique life challenges that make them more vulnerable to mental health issues. Single parent students are disproportionally affected by a number of mental health stressors. Common themes related to mental health include guilt related to juggling multiple roles, financial worries, lack of time for self-care, feelings of isolation on campus, sleep deprivation, and relationship issues.
According to a study conducted by Shenoy, Lee, and Leng Trieu in 2016, almost twice as many single parent community college students stated they had attempted suicide compared to their married and non-parent counterparts. Complicating the issue further, many unmarried parents in college are forced to forgo health insurance, leaving them with fewer resources for assistance.
Research demonstrates the importance of social and emotional support for this student population. Recommendations include on-campus support and student groups, counselors specifically trained to support expecting and parenting students, referrals for free or low-cost mental health services in the community, and connections to nonprofit and government mentoring programs.
Find the resources to expand your institution's social and emotional supports here.
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