Is an over-achieving culture putting our children at risk? There is some disturbing news about mental health coming from college campuses. Suicide is rearing its ugly head on college campuses all over the United States. In California, the number of students seeking counseling has risen 23% since 2001, 10% say they have contemplated suicide, and already-strained mental health services just aren’t expanding to keep pace. After accidents, suicide is the second leading cause of death in people of this age, and as recent headlines reveal, violence caused by mental illness seems increasingly common… and horrific. This may be due to an increasing number of medicated adolescents who stop medications, against doctors advice, leading to a downward spiral when they find themselves in new surroundings and intense school competition. One health center director blames boomer parents, saying they create unrealistic expectations which breeds frustration and contempt among students. My prescription? Check with your kids, and listen to them, looking for clues like isolation, loss of appetite, sudden academic sag, or changes in physical appearance. And don’t hesitate to insist on off-campus counseling or a psychiatric consult, if solutions are needed now, and the problems can’t be solved with on-campus resources. The demands on our budding scholars are increasing, so even the most resourceful and resilient students are at risk these days. Just listen, follow your gut, and look for unusual, though sometimes subtle, character changes. Then ACT!