It’s strange though, because I’m a pretty independent person and when I am at home, I stick to myself and stay in my room most the time - but they may be the exact reason I get homesick. Being forced into a new place without warning and having routine torn away can really mess with your head.
I don’t go away that often, only to sleepovers at my friends’ which never prove a problem in terms of feeling homesick. I find it’s when I’m with new people, or people I’m not as close with. I also found I felt a lot worse when I further away from home too.
I have learned how to handle it, however. I know I’ll never go out of my way to cure it because I rarely go away from home for long periods of time, and won’t be doing so for the foreseeable future. However, there are a couple things I’ve figured out in case I do.
- Try and stay with people you know, or befriend the ones around you. If you’re on a school trip with friends, spending time with them and hanging out with them will help time pass quicker and offer a sense of familiarity. If you’re in a place without your friends but with new people, try talking to them and befriending them, even if it’s just the one person. It’ll offer a sense of constance that you often lose while away from home.
- Phone home/contact home when you can. This was a major thing for me when I was away camping with a local program a few weeks back. Regularly speaking to my parents definitely helped keep me grounded.
- Establish a routine. I was only camping Monday-Friday (four nights) but I found after the second day that working out a routine and planning out a similar timetable for each day really helped me. It meant I was always doing something and the regularity definitely offered the sense of routine that I missed at home.
- Keep busy. I found this one the most helpful because it kept my mind occupied and away from the thought of home. It can be anything from reading a book to talking to people to watching a film - I just did whatever I could find at hand, and it really helped the days pass quicker. I also found that doing something I enjoyed helped be able to look back and realise that I did actually enjoy my trip and even though I was homesick, I was able to still have fun.
It’s also crucial to remember that being homesick isn’t anything to be embarrassed about. It affects every gender and every age group and it’s completely human. But, it’s also important to not let it limit you in terms of having fun, going new places and meeting new people. You may feel out of your comfort zone but it’s worth it sometimes.