Dealing with Homesickness

Dealing with Homesickness

  • December 18, 2014

As part of the symptoms of homesick, you might feel nostalgic due to not having for familiar things or people around you, such as your family, friends, music, food, pets, house, or neighbourhood. You can miss something as simple as your bed, pillow, or the tree outside your window.

When people leave their countries for more than 3 months it is possible to feel homesick from time to time. Some people may only feel a little bit of loneliness, sadness, or anxiety. Others may feel physical symptoms, like stomachache or headache, or even become truly depressed. Most of the time, once the new surroundings and people become more familiar, feelings of homesickness go away. But if you are feeling overwhelmed, it’s a good idea to seek help.

Below is list of suggestions that can help you with your process:

• Bring something that reminds you of home. (Pack photos or letters or a favourite teddy bear, sleep shirt, or pillow)

• Call home when you can. (This probably seems obvious, but during extended stays away, a quick call to hear your family can be quite reassuring. You also might want to arrange a time to call, skype or think about visiting)

• Do something you enjoy. (When you’re having fun, you’re less likely to spend time thinking about people and things you miss).

• Talk to a friend. (Ideally someone who’s going through the same experience you are. Knowing that you are not the only one dealing with this is helpful).

• Write in a journal. (Putting your feelings down on paper can help you understand them. Maybe writing about homesickness will show you what you really miss).

• Stay active. (Talk to people and throw yourself into activities, and before you know it, you’ll be too busy to be homesick).

• Talk to a professional. (Missing your family and home is normal. But if after a couple of weeks away you’re having trouble eating or sleeping or you’re not interested in doing anything, seek help and talk to a professional.

Written by Juan Grajales

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