How to tell my mom I need to quit college

College is making me suicidal and I’m hallucinating a lot. I just can’t handle the work, even online college. I don’t want to stop, but I think I have to, and my mom isn’t going to be supportive.

What’s the best way to tell her this?

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Be direct, and don’t be apologetic.

I don’t know what else to say.


Tell her the truth.

Maybe she would like it better to see you alive with no college degree, than dead or maimed or locked up in a hospital because the stress of college is making your illness worse.


Have you tried increasing your therapy or adjusting your meds yet? How far along are you? How much schooling do you have left to go? It might be smart to try increasing your supports before leaving altogether.

On the other hand, sometimes the smartest thing to do is to take a break. From an academic perspective, staying in while suicidal will cause you to get terrible grades, which will hurt you in the future. From a financial perspective, failing classes is a waste of money. From a health perspective, you might actually seriously hurt yourself. Some people who attempt suicide are left with permanent health problems afterwards. Failing kidneys, ulcers, disfiguring scars, brain damage. And those are the lucky ones who survive. If you’re really that close to the edge, it’s better to take a break and get well before trying college again. Just because you leave doesn’t mean you’ll never go back.

My son needed a break from school too, @falcon09. Tell your mom that you’re saving yourself and choosing the best option to survive.
I had to drop out of college too. I never went back and my fear in relation to my son was that he would never go back. He’s working and hasn’t gone back to school yet, but what I’ve come to realize is that his life is his, not mine. As long as he’s taking good care of himself and living, then I’m happy.
Your mom loves you and worries about you. Finishing school feels like the safe route, but sometimes it’s safer to leave the stress of school.

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Exactly! Nicely said, @77nick77!

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Here’s what I did when I was 18 in college.

It got so bad I stopped going to classes. Didn’t leave my dorm room most of the semester. Just holed up and cried. Ended up getting a 0.0 GPA. When I went home and finally told my mom, it turned out to be a big relief. I was so scared of her reaction. She helped me get to the pdoc and on meds. She did most of the work contacting the school and coordinating with the pdoc to write a letter explaining. They got the grades withdrawn. After the summer break I went back to school at a local community college while living at home.

Looking back I wish I had left school mid-semester and gotten help sooner. I had a bf at the time who was unsupportive and convinced me to stay even though because he was selfish.

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