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College students account for more missing persons that you would think


Sources told WDSU that Rudy “Ruth” Carter, 21, was located in a hotel room there, with other people.  Rudy left the family gathering shortly after talking to her mother on the phone about her grades.”She made her friends aware she was tired of being a disappointment. This all recently unfolded. Nothing could be farther from the truth. It’s impossible for her to disappoint any of us,” said her mother, Nicci Carter.

Yesterday I talked about how so many people go missing in water, there is also a lot of missing persons that are students. I think this story about Rudy Ruth Carter explains a lot that goes on with new college students. Nicci, Ruth’s mom, says that her daughter had been talking to her about her grades and was worried about disappointing her, just before she disappeared.

College is tough. If your high school did not prepare you for it, if you don’t have a study habit set, if socializing becomes a priority, if your new found freedom lures you away from responsibility, if it just plain isn’t for you, a student can find themselves quickly falling behind. In one semester a student can be so far behind, they can’t keep up and then every semester turns in to a big catch up game. At first they convince themselves they will catch up, and they tell their parents they are fine, and it goes around and around.  Before they know it, the end of the year is almost there and they are not passing many, if any courses. And since college is for adults, there is no counselor calling the parent telling them their kid is failing.

For parents it is hard to let a child go out in the world, and in a way, paying for their child’s college, gives a parent a say in what the student is doing.

Many college students feel trapped, because of this.  They feel responsible to go to college even if they don’t want to, so they don’t disappoint their parents.   Pepper in personal shame, because they are failing, and it becomes too overwhelming and the only way out to them, is suicide or to just disappear.

Neither one is the answer, of course, but for young people, who have had just begun to swim the murky, turbulent waters of life, they don’t realize that this is just part of life and it does get better and it is NOT the end of the world.

A parent would much rather have a happy child that finds their own purpose in life, college or not, than an unhappy child that is full of shame and feels they need to runaway.

I was a college student many years ago that just didn’t get college the first time out. My major was the wrong choice for me, the classes required much more studying time that my high school classes did, I had no guidance, a low GPA and a pissed off father. I felt trapped, stupid and alone. I did what a lot of students do, I bailed from school, hid at a friends house for a couple of days, and then my guilt became stronger than the fear of disappointing my dad, and I eventually called and went home. A couple of months later, the family had moved passed it and eventually I went back to college, but this time when I was ready to go.

I am hoping that there is the same outcome for Ruth. That she realizes that it is part of the complications of life and she calls home.

Ruth, your mom has always been there for you, and this time is no different. Call her and I guarantee everything will be alright.

Rudy Ruth Carter: Missing Loyola student from New Orleans – National missing persons |

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