Homesickness is a common experience that can affect people of all ages. It is an especially common occurrence for new students moving to university with research from Warwick university showing that up to 70% of new students will go through homesickness.  However, it is possible for returning students to go through homesickness multiple times, it all depends on the person. It is a tough experience for anyone to go through, the loneliness and fear of moving out for the first time and meeting new people can be difficult for people to do. As someone that has had homesickness multiple times, I would like to share some tips that may help with handling it: 

Talk to someone you already know.

Going to a new place where you don’t know anyone else can be daunting and it may be hard for you to trust new people and open up to them. Although you have moved away from home for the first time, there is no rule that says you cannot visit home on the weekend if you are struggling to settle in and need a sense of stability. On the other hand, it may not be possible for some people to visit home due to distance or circumstances. In these cases, you can always call family or friends to tell them about what is going on. There is never any shame in being honest about your emotions and whether you are struggling.

Make your new home as comfortable as possible.

The unfamiliarity of the new place you are meant to call home now may also contribute to the want to go home. For me personally, the empty walls and unpacked belongings contributed to homesickness as it felt strange and uncomfortable, something I was not used to. By unpacking as soon as possible and decorating the room with your belongings, it can help to ease you into the new place as it will help to make the room more familiar to you. It can also be fun to decorate a new place, the new interior design will be entirely up to you and how you want to place things.

clean desk, plants, photo, chair, sunglasses

University services.

If the things that you do yourself do not work, there are always University services that you can rely on. Your personal tutor should be someone that you can ask for guidance and help with, however, if you do not feel comfortable opening up to them then there are other services available as well. For example, the Student Wellbeing Centre is there specifically to help students in situations like homesickness. You can contact them through their email If you feel that your homesickness is especially difficult and affecting your ability to function daily for a long period of time, do not feel as if you cannot reach out for more professional help with your GP.

To conclude, anyone can experience homesickness and it has the ability to leave a person feeling isolated and alone. But you must remember that you are not alone, there will be countless other students going through a similar experience. There are methods that you can utilise to help yourself, such as friends or family and the university services which are there to help you through those hard moments. 

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