Advice for parent of college age student with Mono

Does anyone have any advice for a parent whose kid has mononucleosis?  My daughter, who is in her 3rd year at an out of state university, just found out she has mono. She had been feeling extremely tired and was having a tough time, although she wasn't sure if it was due to having, on top of regular classes, 30 hours per week of clinical observation for her major (athletic training).  She is freaking out because, although the doctor said she could continue taking classes and clinical observation, the program director wants to drop her from the clinical rotations.  She is also worried she might have to repeat classes because her grades had slipped when the demands of the clinical hours affected her study time especially when she had started feeling so low energy from being sick.  She's already on the "5-year college track" because didn't decide on her major her first year and then applied to the 3-year program in her second year of college.  I am curious to know if anyone else has had a son or daughter that has had this happen and how they/you managed it.  Did they come home, take a semester off, end up graduating late, etc. 

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If that were my daughter, I would be OK with her taking a semester off. Graduating from college is not a race, there really is no "late" unless the student is failing classes due to something like partying. There are many reasons students don't graduate in exactly 8 semesters. For health reasons can she withdraw and get at least some refund? Then go on medical leave for next semester.

I'm so sorry to hear this - sounds very difficult for her. I had a friend/classmate in college who came down with mono our sophomore year. Quite difficult for her as she was also far out of state from her family and doing some demanding extra-hours work for her major. I recall that she was diagnosed in November after being sick for awhile, missed a bunch of classes, stayed on campus maybe 2-3 weeks after the diagnosis, then went home early in December to recover. She came back a week or two late to campus for the new semester. All in all, it was probably 6-8 weeks at home to rest, though because of the holiday break, it wasn't all missed school time.

It was very difficult for her, academically. Her GPA took a hit. She had incompletes in a couple classes that she had to make up in the spring, and she lost her extra hours assignments for the spring semester because "she wasn't there" when the semester started. (I mean, sure she wasn't physically there, but it's not like she just blew it off!) To this day she feels like she was colossally unsupported by the faculty of our department and the university itself. However, she was mostly caught up (if disillusioned) by the end of that spring semester, and she graduated on time.

I can report that she got into grad school anyway, in the program she wanted, so she was clearly able to explain her semester of "poor" performance in essays and interviews. She's now fabulously successful as a designer of high-end home goods. I see her stuff in magazines sometimes. I think the moral of my friend's story is that yes, it's terrible to go through, but also temporary. This doesn't have to affect your daughter long-term. I hope others will respond with their experiences too!

I had mono as a college freshman--it is unfortunately a pretty common issue since it spreads so easily. It was a rough semester but the only thing you can really do is to rest and try to feel better. I think I dropped a class since I had been taking the maximum allowed, but otherwise completed the semester with no issues. The tiredness does improve as the disease runs its course. It may make sense for her to pull out of some of the more intense activities on her plate if she can push them to a future semester, though (and if the clinical rotations issue is around being contagious, she may not have a choice). Hope she is feeling better soon!

PLEASE help your daughter to arrange things with her school so that she can focus on recovering and not have to worry about her illness affecting her academic future—mono can be a serious, debilitating illness, and if she needs to withdraw from her quarter/semester for medical reasons, that is much better than struggling to keep up when she might be physically unable. I caught mono in my first semester of college but did not want to withdraw because I was dual-enrolled and using the credits to graduate from high school a year early. I barely passed the semester due to being so sick I couldn’t get out of bed, and my GPA took a major hit. If I had not been simultaneously completing high school I would have withdrawn from the semester for medical reasons, gone home to fully recover, and returned to college the following semester. It was an awful ordeal.