Dealing With a Suspicious Student
Usually these students perceive that they are being mistreated and are apt to lodge complaints. They tend to be tense, cautious, and mistrustful and may have few friends. They often interpret a minor oversight as a personal slight or a sign of prejudice against them, and they overreact to insignificant occurrences. They see themselves as the focal point of everyone’s behavior, and everything that happens has a special meaning for them. Often they are preoccupied with fairness and being treated equally. Disavowing responsibility for their own behavior, they often blame others for their difficulties. Underneath, they may feel inadequate and even worthless.
It is helpful to:
Give clear, consistent messages about what you are willing to do and what you expect.
Express concern and compassion without being overly friendly or familiar.
Be aware of your own anxiety about how the student is acting or communicating.
Be aware of personal boundaries and space when interacting with them (i.e., keep a comfortable distance, both physically and emotionally.)
It is not helpful to: