Sharing – Twitter Thread on How Colleges Can Better Mental Health Services
I honestly think one of the reasons we see so many articles about exercise, eating right, or yes, puppies, as the cure for depression and anxiety, is because we really just want it to be that easy, so it can be “fixed” and we can go back to ignoring the problem.
But, umm yeah. There’s a reason so many people responded to Gabrielle’s thoughts on the subject:
What my university lacks in real, robust mental health services, they try to make up for with half-hearted solutions like therapy dogs or de-stress sessions with free hot chocolate. But while Mulligan the golden retriever is cute, he’s a temporary solution — he’s not going to fix the mental health epidemic universities are facing.
Puppies, encouraging self-care, and trying to eliminate stigma are good things. They may even help alleviate some symptoms for some people tor a time. There are a lot of good things we can do to help the problem, but at the end of the day, if the actual resources required to treat mental health issues aren’t there, they aren’t there.
Colleges should do better. We all should do better.
At a small liberal arts university and we definitely see the impact on students. As a prof, it’s challenging to figure out how to support students appropriately when our systems are broken. I can care, but I can’t counsel…nor do I seem to be able to sway admin who are the ones responsible for budget allocation. Also becoming increasingly aware of the secondary impact of caring for students through illness/trauma…we’re seeing more conversations about the impact on teachers at the K-12 level, I think, but I’ve started to feel it with my students. Another link in this article discusses ableist attendance policies, of which I’ve been reflecting on for quite a few years now as the number of students I’ve seen who have accommodations for flexibility in attendance has increased. Thanks for sharing!
Thank you Amy for sharing your own experiences!