I want out

It is nearing the end of my first semester and I cannot find the motivation to continue college. I’m studying fashion design and the curriculum is brutal to say the least. Never have I hated taking art classes so much, until now of course. I’m here on a scholarship, so this class I’m about to fail is definitely going to impact the cost of continuing forward. I much rather drop out than continue and accumulate debt. All of this, plus family issues back at home, has really impacted my mental health and I don’t think continuing school would be smart but I don’t have anyone that will support my decision. What should I do?

Consider working for a year or two before returning to college. For some, joining the military may be an attractive option. Your mental health is more important than forcing yourself to endure a failing experience.


What are resources available to you? Hand on heart have you:

maximized teacher / ta office hours?
thoroughly investigated learning supports offered by the school?
talked to your advisor?
talked to the health center?
formed any study groups?

You clearly are finding the adjustment to college harder than you expected- but you are not the only one! You can’t sort out family issues back home, but you can redouble your efforts to find and use the tools available to you.

So, starting with the class that you think you are going to fail: have you asked for help from the teacher? It can be very hard to face people when you feel as though you are a failure- but sometimes you have to do hard things, and learning how to square up to this sort of challenge is an important life skill. Remember also that the actual job of your advisor, your teachers, even the people at the health center is to help students navigate college. You will not be the first, and you will be not the worst, problem they have seen.

Unless this school is a for-profit school, and then I would re-think the whole thing.

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Take a break from school. It is obvious that you are miserable at school, and that it is affecting your mental health in a negative way. See if you can take a “leave of absence” for a year, but if not, withdraw entirely.

You don’t “want” to withdraw, it seems that you need to withdraw, and you should. Meet with your academic advisor, and have them help you figure out the best way to withdraw that would minimize the impact if you decide to go back to college at a later date.

But yes, as @Publisher wrote - your mental health is what is important now.

Take care of yourself, and you should also schedule an appointment with a mental health professional as soon as is possible.


Why is the curriculum brutal? Are you out of your depth skills-wise?

When you say that no one is supporting your decision to quit, do you mean your family?

I’m sorry you are struggling. I am not one to counsel quitting at the sight of the first struggle. Overcoming difficulties in our lives is how we grow. I don’t have enough details on your situation to really offer advice. A more general piece of advice is to have a logic (meaning not one that is driven by emotion) plan in place before you make any bridge-burning decisions. Having a plan that is more that a desire to escape, will help alleviate the stress, calm down your flight response and help you move forward.

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I would advise you to:
-Talk to your academic advisor.
-Make an appointment at the school’s counseling center.


note: I already go to therapy and whatnot so the school can’t do much about that

@N_Sk, have you spoken with your therapist about your concerns? What advice has your therapist provided?

@collegemom3717 gave some great suggestions of resources the university might offer. Have you taken advantage of them? If not, I would start there. If you have reached out to those resources, then I would definitely speak with your academic advisor about a leave of absence. It may be possible to take an incomplete and finish the semester’s work at a later time, or have a medical withdrawal, or some other option. But make sure you take care of yourself, as that is the most important thing.