INFORMATION FOR PARENTS

CONSULTING WITH THE COUNSELING CENTER STAFF

Launching a son or daughter into the college years is a complicated process for parents. As with every life transition, parents want to do what is best for their children. Parents often become concerned about their college student’s emotional functioning. The Counseling Center is available to consult with parents who have questions or concerns about their Villanova son or daughter. It is best to call and schedule a time to talk to a psychologist – by phone or in person.

Issues commonly raised by parents are:

  • Is this a normal, developmental process for a college student?
  • How might the parent best support the student?
  • How might the parent convince the student to seek professional help?
  • If there is a basis for treating the student’s condition as an “emergency,” what steps should be taken?

The psychologist’s assistance will be based on the description you provide, and on our extensive experience working with college students’ emotional development. Our thoughts will NOT be based on information we have about your specific student. In fact, you probably will not be speaking to a psychologist who has met your son or daughter (see “disclosure” below).

DISCLOSURE TO PARENTS OF INFORMATION ABOUT THE STUDENT

The student’s assurance of privacy is one of the conditions that makes counseling effective. The Counseling Center is prohibited by law from disclosing anything about the student without explicit written permission from the student. This even applies to parents! Some students have signed a “waiver” allowing parents to talk to academic deans about the student’s progress. That waiver does NOT apply to psychological counseling.

If you know that your son or daughter has seen one of our psychologists and if you think it is important to talk to your student’s psychologist, PLEASE TELL THE STUDENT OF YOUR CONCERN, AND ASK THE STUDENT TO SIGN A RELEASE OF INFORMATION AT THE COUNSELING CENTER, which then allows us to discuss your son or daughter with you.

We are not even free to share with you whether your student has sought counseling, as even that information is protected by state law.

EXCEPTIONS TO CONFIDENTIALITY

When we believe that any student is in imminent danger, at risk of seriously harming him/herself or someone else, we will seek the student’s permission to involve family members. If the student will not give permission, we are compelled to break confidentiality. In that case, we will contact the family.

If YOU have very worrisome information that we may not have, such as someone revealing to you that your son or daughter has made a suicide attempt, please call us and give us that information. In that unusual circumstance the priority is to protect the student, and the family’s involvement is essential.

In summary, if you are a concerned parent, call us! We will talk openly with you about the concerns you describe. If there is a confidentiality dilemma, we will work with you to determine what is best for the student.

RESOURCES FOR PARENTS

Books:

Almost Grown: Launching Your Child from High School to College
by Patricia Pasick

The Launching Years: Strategies for Parenting from Senior to College Life
by Laura Kastner, Jennifer Fugett Wyatt

Letting Go: A Parents' Guide to Understanding the College Years, Sixth Edition
by Karen Levin Coburn (Author), Madge Lawrence Treeger

You're On Your Own (But I'm Here if You Need Me): Mentoring Your Child During the College Years
by Marjorie Savage

Articles:

Your Nest is Empty? Enjoy Each Other!
New York Times

I’m Homesick! What Parents Can Say to Their Anxious College Student
Huffington Post

 

Spring 2021 Student Discussion and Support Groups

All groups will be held confidentially via Zoom with a licensed counselor from the Counseling Center.

Bereavement Support Group  
For information contact Candice.Post@villanova.edu

Graduate Student Support Group
For information contact Victoria.Ostroff@villanova.edu

Normally, the Counseling Center is located in Health Services Building Room 206.
The building is located at the main entrance to campus, from Ithan Avenue, across from the Pavilion and the Business School.

Because of COVID, we are currently not operating out of the Health Services Building, so instead of stopping by our normal location, please contact us by phone. For everyone’s protection, your counseling will be provided by our staff, who are working remotely.

ARE YOU
FEELING
ANXIOUS?

NOT FEELING
YOURSELF?

HELP IS
A CALL AWAY.

Contact the Counseling Center at 610-519-4050 to schedule a teleconference.

Community First: The CARITAS Commitment Logo

 

EMERGENCY CONTACTS

 

In an emergency, call Villanova Public Safety at 610-519-4444.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255 (800-273-TALK)