As parents and family members, it can be challenging to know how to help your student when they tell you that they've been struggling at UCLA. Common emotional and mental health concerns among college students include anxiety, depression, loneliness, mood swings, self-identity concerns, disordered eating, substance use, and suicidal thoughts. We encourage you to empathically listen to your student, be curious without judgment or offering quick solutions, explore what they think might help them improve their situation, and discuss the option to seek counseling for further help as needed.
If you are concerned about your student, call CAPS to consult with a Clinical Coordinator, 310-825-0768, or peruse the FAQs below to help guide you on your next steps.
There are many on-campus resources to address different needs. Here are a few resources that may help guide you in helping your student.
- Video: https://source.wustl.edu/2016/08/timeless-advice-parents-new-college-students/
- Book: When Your Kid Goes to College: A Parent's Survival Guide by Carol Barkin
- Website: https://parents.ucla.edu
- Office of Parent & Family Programs - A "one stop shop" for information and campus resources for parents and families
- What Can Parents Do? - A quick guide on how to protect your student's mental health
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline - Get support on how to be a caregiver to someone who is having suicidal thoughts. 24/7 hotline: 800-273-8255
- Bruin Resource Center's Students with Dependents Program - Provides services and support for UCLA students with dependents
FAQ for Parents/Families
How does my student access CAPS Services?
- Students must meet with a CAPS Triage Counselor to assess their needs and determine appropriate services. See Beginning Treatment for details.
How can my student get a prescription refill?
- If the prescription has been provided by a CAPS psychiatrist, the student can send a Secure Message to their psychiatrist requesting a refill or submit a request with the CAPS Front Desk staff. Students who have not established care at CAPS will need to start by meeting with a Triage Counselor. See Beginning Treatment for details.
I know my student is seeing a CAPS therapist. Can I make sure they went to CAPS? Can the therapist tell me what happened during their sessions?
- Due to California state laws regarding confidentiality and privacy protections in mental health, we cannot disclose whether a student has visited CAPS or the nature of their treatment, even to their parents or family. Release of information is only permitted in situations allowed by law (i.e. imminent safety concerns) or if the student consents by signing an Authorization to Release Medical and Mental Health Information to a third party. We encourage you to speak to your student about signing this Authorization so we may coordinate their care with you. As a concerned family member, you can always call CAPS (310-825-0768) and relay your concerns about your student to a Clinical Coordinator. CAPS staff can provide you with general information and support, however without a signed consent to disclose information to a third party, specific client information will not be released.
How much does it cost to see a CAPS counselor?
- All registered UCLA students are eligible for a Triage appointment to meet with a counselor to discuss needs and appropriate next steps for care at no cost. Eligibility and fees for ongoing care is determined by UC SHIP enrollment. See Fees & Eligibility for details.
I purchased BruinCare for my student, can they access CAPS services?
- BruinCare is only valid for services at The Ashe Center. All registered UCLA students can access CAPS services, however fees and eligibility for various services or groups will vary depending on UC SHIP enrollment. See Fees & Eligibility for details.
I'm worried about my student. Who can I call if my student is having a crisis?
- If your student is in imminent danger, call 911 or UCPD (310-825-1491). If you have concerns regarding your student’s wellbeing in multiple areas, i.e. academics, residential life, mental health, email CRTeam@ucla.edu your name, contact number, your student’s name and the nature of your concerns. A Student Care Manager will respond and help guide you on getting the help your student needs. If you would like to consult with a mental health professional specifically regarding your concerns, call CAPS at 310-825-0768 and speak to a Clinical Coordinator