The Mental Health of People Fresh Out of High School

“My mental health was affected more by moving than my daughter. College is difficult, and balancing that with all the other responsibilities could be pretty stressful at times.”

Mental health can be difficult, especially for adults, or people around the age where you’re expected to be able to succeed despite the pressures put onto you; right after high school. Everyone manages it differently though.

This is a story of Hanna Roberts. She works here, at Capital, as a helping aid to one of the disabled kids. She isn’t particularly known well, but her story might be known a bit more to other people. Right out of high school, she got married to a military spouse, so her life wasn’t exactly ordinary. She had a kid at twenty as has a kid who is currently ten – and ended up moving around a lot. Making different choices from right out of high school is tricky, and expecting a kid is even worse. But being about to manage your mental health along with that is even more difficult. 

“So my college life was a little bit different than average college students. I never lived in the dorms, and I’ve had to transfer quite a bit because we move a lot.” Hanna said in an email. 

Moving around a lot is already stressful enough – but having a kid that is growing up alongside you is even more difficult. 

“I’m sure every parent or guardian can attest to how exhausted you are when you have a newborn. So trying to get assignments turned in on time with little sleep was draining, but I had a very great support system. My college academic counselor was very helpful! She helped balance my schedule out and fit me into classes in more convenient times.”

Feeling isolated in a new community is always normal – but being able to perceive it is important. Being able to adapt quickly is great, but with the right support it’s very easy. Not academically, but socially, it can be a lot harder to manage. Several adults have also agreed that making friends when you’re older is rough.

“My social circle has never been that huge. I used to struggle making friends. It is hard to get out of your comfort zone. I think moving around every few years has the biggest impact on my mental health. When you’re thrown into a new place with new people, it can be very isolating. It’s hard to build roots in a new place.”

Mental health is a tricky topic inself, and when you graduate high school, everyone kind of expects you to become an adult. And to know exactly what you’re doing is what’s expected. But with Hanna’s example, it’s hard to adapt quickly – especially because she made her choices younger in her lifetime. 

Knowing exactly what you want to do with your life is never known until you actually experience it for the first time. Vene if you try to plan it, you never really know what you’ve gotten yourself into until you’re in the middle of it.

Managing it by yourself is achievable, but being able to speak about it and find comfort in the life you’ve allowed yourself to have is just as important.