Skip to ContentGo to accessibility pageKeyboard shortcuts menu
OpenStax Logo
Preparing for College Success

Family & Friends Matter

Preparing for College SuccessFamily & Friends Matter

Table of contents
  1. Preface
  2. 1 Getting into College
    1. Introduction
    2. 1.1 What Are the Benefits of College?
    3. 1.2 Your Academic Journey and Personal Story
    4. 1.3 Finding the Right "Fit"
    5. 1.4 Applying for College and Making Your Decision
    6. Family & Friends Matter
    7. Summary
  3. 2 Transitioning to College
    1. Introduction
    2. 2.1 Why College?
    3. 2.2 The First Year of College Will Be an Experience
    4. 2.3 College Culture and Expectations
    5. 2.4 It’s All in the Mindset
    6. Family & Friends Matter
    7. Summary
    8. Checking In: Your College Readiness Checklist
  4. 3 Managing Your Time and Priorities
    1. Introduction
    2. 3.1 Time Management in College
    3. 3.2 Procrastination: The Enemy Within
    4. 3.3 How to Manage Time
    5. 3.4 Prioritization
    6. 3.5 Enhanced Strategies for Time and Task Management
    7. Family & Friends Matter
    8. Summary
  5. 4 Reading and Note-Taking
    1. Introduction
    2. 4.1 The Learning Process
    3. 4.2 The Nature and Types of Reading
    4. 4.3 Effective Reading Strategies
    5. 4.4 Helpful Note-Taking Strategies
    6. Family & Friends Matter
    7. Summary
    8. Checking In: Your College Readiness Checklist
  6. 5 Studying, Memory, and Test Taking
    1. Introduction
    2. 5.1 Deepening Your Learning
    3. 5.2 Memory
    4. 5.3 Studying
    5. 5.4 Test Taking
    6. 5.5 Developing Metacognition
    7. Family & Friends Matter
    8. Summary
  7. 6 Building Relationships
    1. Introduction
    2. 6.1 The Benefits of Healthy Relationships
    3. 6.2 Building Relationships in College
    4. 6.3 Working in Groups
    5. Family & Friends Matter
    6. Summary
    7. Checking In: Your College Readiness Checklist
  8. 7 Maintaining Your Mental Health and Managing Stress
    1. Introduction
    2. 7.1 Creating Your Best Self
    3. 7.2 Your Overall Well-Being
    4. 7.3 The Mind-Body Connection
    5. 7.4 Mental Health Basics
    6. 7.5 The Role of Social Media on Mental Health
    7. 7.6 Physical Health Basics
    8. Family & Friends Matter
    9. Summary
  9. 8 Understanding Financial Literacy
    1. Introduction
    2. 8.1 Personal Financial Planning
    3. 8.2 Savings, Expenses, and Budgeting
    4. 8.3 Credit Cards
    5. 8.4 Paying for College
    6. Family & Friends Matter
    7. Summary
    8. Checking In: Your College Readiness Checklist
  10. 9 Planning Your Future
    1. Introduction
    2. 9.1 Setting Goals and Staying Motivated
    3. 9.2 Planning Your Degree Path
    4. 9.3 Making a Plan
    5. 9.4 Using the Career Planning Cycle
    6. Family & Friends Matter
    7. Summary
  11. Index

JT has always been a hard worker, even when balancing college and work has been stressful. However, shortly after the end of the year, JT’s family experiences the sudden death of his father. While he had had health issues, the family is not prepared for the loss, especially right after JT's grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins celebrated the holidays together. JT is very close to his family, and the thought of returning to his classes and continuing to work seems too much to bear.

Nonetheless, JT begins the new semester, but soon finds it difficult to get out of bed and go to class. Working is the only thing that he has motivation to do, perhaps because he needs to work to pay the bills. When JT feels well enough to go to class, he comes in late, loses focus during class, and forgets to submit assignments.

JT’s boss has seen no difference in his work ethic or behavior, but JT’s professors have noticed he is not performing well, and a few of them have reached out to find out what is going on. JT has ignored the professors’ emails and skipped appointments with his advisor to talk about his academic risk. Despite being encouraged to seek on-campus counseling, JT is convinced that he can get better on his own and doesn’t have the motivation to talk to anyone other than his family members who understand best what he is going through.

Let’s Think About It

JT has several options. Think through the consequences of each one, and choose the best option or create your own option.

  • JT continues to deal with his depression and anxiety by missing classes and avoiding work with the hope that with time it will get better.
  • JT talks to their professor about what he is going through to see if there is a way to get extensions on assignments.
  • JT meets with a counselor to talk through options for improving his mental health that would involve additional costs including regular therapy and medication.

Let’s Talk About It

JT may feel uncomfortable expressing his mental and emotional needs—and he need not share personal health information with others if he does not want to—but he could communicate with those who are affected by his behaviors. Here are some suggestions for communicating with others about the dilemma that JT is facing:

  • “I am going through some tough things right now and have not been myself. While I am very committed to my education, my actions are not in line with that commitment. I am struggling with how to get back on track.”
  • “I have had some personal issues that have kept me from focusing on my course work. I am planning to seek some counseling and would like to talk about what steps I can take now, if any, to help me make up for lost time in the course.”
  • “I want to share an explanation—and not an excuse—about my behavior in and out of class. I have been struggling with some family issues that have made it difficult to feel good enough to come to class and do the work. Do you have any advice for me or would you be able to talk to me about it at length?”

Whatever choice you would make in this situation, it is always best to communicate clearly your needs, your concerns, and even your uncertainties.


Want to cite, share, or modify this book? This book uses the Creative Commons Attribution License and you must attribute OpenStax.

Attribution information
  • If you are redistributing all or part of this book in a print format, then you must include on every physical page the following attribution:
    Access for free at
  • If you are redistributing all or part of this book in a digital format, then you must include on every digital page view the following attribution:
    Access for free at
Citation information

© Jun 27, 2023 OpenStax. Textbook content produced by OpenStax is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License . The OpenStax name, OpenStax logo, OpenStax book covers, OpenStax CNX name, and OpenStax CNX logo are not subject to the Creative Commons license and may not be reproduced without the prior and express written consent of Rice University.