How To Deal With Homesickness At University
man looking outside by window
Photo by Andrik Langfield on Unsplash

How To Deal With Homesickness At University

Zoe Kramer November 1, 2022

Speak Up. Reach Out is Freshered's mental health initiative.

Moving away can take a huge emotional toll and homesickness at university is commonplace. The support network you’ve relied on your whole life of parents, extended family and hometown friends is now less easy to access, and the pressure to become independent can be overwhelming. It’s easy to feel isolated, especially if you haven’t made close friends in uni yet. Here are some ways to deal with this transitional period in your life and strike a balance between your new life at university and your old life at home.

Acknowledge your feelings

Homesickness at university is a completely normal experience. That doesn’t mean it isn’t painful. Instead of fighting against those feelings or willing yourself to feel better, take a moment to simply feel them. Consider whether you might be setting high expectations for your new life – Uni is supposed to be fun or this is supposed to be the best time of my life. Reflecting on these thoughts can put things into perspective.

Establish routines

You’ve only been there a short time, and your room in uni halls or student house probably doesn’t feel very homey yet. However, incorporating routines you associate with home can bring some comfort. Maybe you walked the dog at a certain time every day, or helped a parent cook dinner. Even though your family isn’t around, you can still maintain those activities for yourself. Alternatively, starting new routines can help you settle in, too.

See also: How To Cope With Freshers Blues

Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

Seek out community

It’s not always easy, especially when you’re feeling down, but finding community is one of the best ways to alleviate homesickness. Whether it’s with housemates, coursemates, societies or sports, try to find people with common interests. It doesn’t work out every time, but try to keep yourself open and make plans. The right group of people can be your home away from home.

Stay in touch

While you may have moved out, your family is still only a phone call away. Weekly check-ins can be a great way to catch up with life at home and to seek out advice for any troubles or concerns you may be having. If phone calls aren’t helping with your homesickness, there’s nothing wrong with traveling home for a while, too.

Reach out

The transition to university can be a very difficult period, and having someone to talk to can be immensely helpful. If you have a peer you feel comfortable talking to, open up to them about what you’ve been going through. They might be going through similar struggles themselves. You can also utilize your uni’s advice and wellbeing resources, which are always there to help you.

See also: How To Find Your People At University

Have something to tell us about this article?
Let us know
Zoe Kramer has been writing for GRV Media’s student-centric website Freshered since October 2022 and is now also contributing to HITC. She graduated from Cardiff University in 2022 with a BA in Journalism, Media and English Literature. During her time in university, she worked for her student newspaper as well as completing an internship with a book publisher. She has also written and continues to write book and theatre reviews. She is excited to now be pursuing a career as a journalist and learning something new every day. In particular, she loves writing about student life, books, the Internet, and travel. Originally from the United States, she is enjoying living abroad in the UK.