Mental Health Issues

Mental health issues can affect any family, at any time. Buts stigmas around these issues can prevent parents from reaching out for help, for fear that they or their child will be judged.

Fortunately, there’s hope. People are breaking down barriers and talking more openly about mental illness and mental health issues. And with increased awareness and visibility comes greater access to resources for parents who struggle with these challenges.

These videos offer parental support and information on topics such as depression, self-harm, and how to obtain the help your child needs.

How Do I Help My Child Manage Performance Expectations in Sports?

Barb Barrows
Athletic Director
Neuqua Valley High School
Naperville, IL

What are the expectations/goals of the Child?

ATHLETES work with your Coach in setting reasonable goals and acknowledge that goals are achieved over time. Focus on only what you can control, do your best and have no regrets. Enjoy the experience.

Parents communicate with your child about his/ her goals. This will help to avoid unrealistic expectations that are different from your child. The lack of communication and or extra pressure of unrealistic performance or season expectations can make the season very stressful and unproductive. Student athletes know their role on the team and what is expected of them. Support your child by encouraging him/her to do their best and be proud of their best efforts. Do not compare your child to other players. Do not use playing time, statistics or words in a newspaper or lack of in qualifying your son’s/ daughter’s experience.

Approach sports as an opportunity / experience for your child to get close to a group of people, build friendships, develop skills, improve fitness, learn discipline, how to manage adversity and how to work towards personal goals. These experiences carry over to real life. If the purpose of playing sports is to get a D1 scholarship, then the end result could be disappointing and the student be clouded to all the benefits that sports have to offer.

Participation in sports allows individuals to see what they are made of and how they will react to different situations. How an athlete manages the ups and downs of emotions, stress, time management, accountability in working with others, etc…

Sport can bring the best and the worse out of individuals. If a student athlete is being encouraged and supported to work through challenges this will allow him/her to enjoy their experience greater and grow as a person.