If you’ve taken a leave of absence from school because of a mental health challenge and are deciding that you want to go back, you’ve taken the first step on your journey to return to college.
For students who are returning to college this fall semester as campuses reopen for in-person opportunities, that post-pandemic future vision feels within reach. For students who experience mental illness, or are re-entering college after leaving due to mental health challenges, that vision may still feel a little blurry and riddled with anxiety. That’s why our College Re-Entry staff, students, and Fountain House members have pulled together some helpful tips and words of encouragement that will help ease the transition to the new semester, and remind students that a hopeful future lies ahead.
When you’re diagnosed with bipolar disorder there are certain things that you come to expect. For instance, you expect that there will be times where you’re depressed and others when you are manic/hypomanic. Or even that you will go OFF on someone if they try you even a little (as you should). What people don’t often expect is that the way you take in information or are able to communicate it changes. The symptom is often portrayed as “trouble focusing”, but that’s not even the half of it. At times bipolar disorder symptoms can mirror that of ADHD. It’s a mind-fuck of a mixture when you’re a college student (which is ironically when symptoms of bipolar tend to manifest–haha life). The best way to describe how this symptom progresses is the same way John Green described falling in love: Slowly, and then all at once.
Today, Minyon is working with her College Re-Entry academic coach Michaela to prepare to head back to school in the fall, including choosing the right courses that will allow her the freedom to transfer and maintain her scholarship. “Even though I was feeling better, I knew I was not ready to show up to my education the way I needed to show up. Now that I found Fountain House College Re-Entry, I’m preparing to head back to school in the Fall and feed my ‘thirsty brain’ yet again!”
Jo Malone London will support Fountain House with the launch of the White Lilac & Rhubarb Charity Home Candle. For each White Lilac & Rhubarb Charity Home Candle sold in the U.S., Jo Malone London will donate 70% of the purchase price, less tax (between May 13, 2021 and May 13, 2022) to Fountain House, supporting the growth and expansion of its youth initiative and College Re-Entry program.
Charles lost interest in everything from attending classes to playing soccer because of his depression. With the time he spent at College Re-Entry, he regained the focus and motivation needed to do the things he loved the most.
Being with people in the same boat helped me manage my social anxiety as I went back to school.
Ambar shares how the College Re-Entry program helped her get out of isolation and return to college, after dropping out because of grief and psychosis.
Fran’s son stopped going to classes multiple times, but he only missed two snow days at College Re-Entry and is now studying to be a math teacher. Learn more.
College Re-Entry and Alumna Nelly Featured in the Article