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Miserable & homesick

egracie98egracie98 Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
edited August 12 in College Life
Sorry this will be long.. I just moved in to a large SEC university yesterday that's about 4 hours away from home. I was really excited & ready to go until orientation about a month ago (you come & stay one night & 2 days) and then it hit me that I wasn't sure I had made the right choice, I didn't want to leave my family at all. As the last 4 weeks at home went by, I dreaded moving. I would have little bursts of excitement, but they were rare. I am extremely close to my family, and I haven't ever really been away from them my entire life. I have pretty bad anxiety too. Today, I cried most of the time I drove down here. I wasn't excited. When we first drove in the city I felt a little excited, but it quickly went away. I'm starting rush for sororities today (it's actually 5:15 in the morning as I type this) , and I wish I hadn't even signed up (really only did bc one of my roommates is) and I honestly plan on withdrawing from recruitment after the first round because I don't see myself staying in or liking a sorority. My mom stayed in a hotel last night, and she is going to come see me one more time before she leaves. I feel sad and panicky already, I cried & cried & cried before she left for her hotel last night . I know it's only the second day but I can't bear the thought of being away from my family, I'm more attached to them than your average person my age. At this point I'm thinking if I even make it through this semester, I want to transfer back to the university in my hometown after Christmas. I've literally been thinking about how I can come home the most often. I want to go home every weekend, but I know I won't always be able to. I don't want to go longer than two weeks without being home, and even then I'll still be miserable. I just have this horrible feeling in my chest and all I want to do is go back home. I honestly wish I could just go back and have stayed at the college at home. I know a lot of people get over homesickness, but I was homesick before I even left home. I dreaded coming & I only did bc I didn't want to look bad. Idk if this is possible, but I wish I could contact the college at home & see if I could switch back there & still get my scholarship, since the school year hasn't started yet.

Replies to: Miserable & homesick

  • wisteria100wisteria100 Registered User Posts: 2,987 Senior Member
    What your feeling is perfectly normal. I'm sure a lot of students feel the same as you. But it is too soon to know if you really don't like this school. You do need to give it time. And by time, not just a few weeks, but a few months. As for the sorority, don't make any quick decisions. Not a Greek life fan myself, but at the SEC schools they are pretty dominant, so it may be a good idea to check them out and make your decision a little later on. Missing your family is normal and part of this process. You may always have those feelings, but as classes start and new friendships are formed, you will likely feel better.
  • skyii558skyii558 Registered User Posts: 22 New Member
    I know that this is easier said than done, but try not to focus on how much you miss your family. You said you are going through rush-please don't drop out! Focus on getting to know the girls in your pi chi group. When my daughter went through, they went out to a group dinners. This is the time to start building friendships which will help get you thru the tough times. Being so busy for the upcoming week will give you something to keep you occupied. If you drop out, you will sit in your room and just be sad. Also, keep in mind that you are NOT the only girl feeling this way. Let us know how it goes!
  • intparentintparent Registered User Posts: 29,509 Senior Member
    It is the second day. Focus all your energy on getting settled into your new life. You can drop out if rush right now if you don't think sororities are your thing. Just explain to your roommate that you changed your mind, and don't plan to rush.

    Focus on getting your books and finding your classes, looking into a couple of clubs or activities you want to join (not because your roommates are doing it), and meeting and getting to know people. You can re-assess when you go home for winter break, and decide then whether to put in any transfer applications. But focus this semester on getting good grades and making friends -- you may feel very differently in a few months. At a minimum, do well in your classes so you can transfer more easily if you eventually decide to.
  • mommyrocksmommyrocks Registered User Posts: 1,146 Senior Member
    edited August 12
    This story might help you. I hosted exchange students years ago, and one of them was a 16-year-old from South America. I could tell when I picked her up from the airport that she was not happy at all about being in the United States. She was miserable her first few weeks, and I could tell she had gone on the exchange program against her will. A few months later, she wound up admitting to me that her father had filled out the entire application and insisted that she study abroad. She had never even been out of the country before. She was also extremely close to her family. She was terrified and homesick. Well, over time, things changed radically. After three or four months in the United States, she was suddenly saying all the time that she never wanted to go back to her home country. She loved it here and didn't picture ever going back. It actually became a problem, because she started trying to find ways to stay beyond her visa, so I and her parents had to make sure she went back home when her five-month stay was over. She of course wound up readjusting back at home. My point is that how you feel now is not at all how you might feel at the end of the semester or year. You have the ability within yourself to not only adapt to your new situation, but to grow to love it. I recommend hanging in there and making an effort to get involved on campus. This is an ideal time and setting to make the transition to "leaving the nest" and making your own path in the world.
  • Marcie123Marcie123 Registered User Posts: 151 Junior Member
    Like @Lindagaf, my D struggled last year until around Thanksgiving. She never doubted that her school was right for her, but she struggled with the lack of friends. She's not one that can hang out with acquaintances, she likes being with a small group of intimate friends. But that takes time.

    She initially tried to get in with her roommates friends, even though she knew they weren't her people. It was once she admitted to herself that she wasn't going to be part of that group, that she started seeking out people more like her.

    Finally, around Thanksgiving, 2 friendships really bloomed and things have been fine since. She has other friends, but 2 truly strong friendships.

    In her case, which I suspect may be the same for you, time is what was needed. And knowing that true friendships take time to develop and that you don't have to stay with a group if they're not for you. It's ok to be on your own until you find your people.

    Hang in there!
  • mamag2855mamag2855 Registered User Posts: 672 Member
    It is normal to miss your family and routines from home. Everything in your daily life is new and strange. As others point out, settling in may take longer than you think, but staying busy with your academic studies and and club/activity or two can help.

    You can still maintain a strong connection with your family back home through whatever means works best, texting, talking, Skype, etc. They will also be missing you and will be curious about your college actuvities.

    If you are feeling overwhelmed by homesickness or anxiety and are not improving after a week or two, consider visiting your college's counseling services, sometimes it can take several weeks to get an appointmen,. Many other freshman students are in the same boat, but likely think they are the only ones struggling.

    My middle D experienced some anxiety and homesickness her freshman year, like you, it started even before she left home. She had such mixed feelings and angst about her impending transition from childhood to becoming an adult responsible for herself. She went to the counseling center at her college for a few months and found it very helpful. Her older sister had no trouble settling in as a freshman, but developed some anxiety during her sophomore year, and also found the counseling center to be helpful. She had a counselor she would see several times per month. Some colleges may not provide long term counseling, but can usually refer you to a practitioner in the local area.
  • juilletjuillet Super Moderator Posts: 11,582 Super Moderator
    ^And think about it this way...you may never remember how you made friends in your hometown and high school; you've probably had some of your hometown connections for longer than you can remember. Making friends and connections and feeling comfortable takes time! Everything won't feel perfect in one day and it's totally normal to feel homesick and anxious, even before you leave - the enormity of what you are doing hits you and you start to panic.

    Also...consider that you are going to have to learn to live away from your family at some point. What if you get a great job offer somewhere farther away? College is a nice safe place to experiment with what it feels to live away from home.

    Give it some time. It'll take some time to settle in.

    As for sorority recruitment...you can certainly withdraw if you really want to, but I'd encourage you to stay in. Being in a sorority is a great way to meet some friends. Even just participating in formal recruitment can be a great way to meet some friends. And even if you get a bid, you have an entire semester to decide whether or not you want to do it until you are initiated. Sorority life is often stereotyped, but at least go to the houses and talk to the girls and get a feel for what their actual lifestyles are like. I wasn't in a sorority in college - I joined one as an alumnae member - but it's one of the best things I ever did. I've made lots of friends and it's really helped me integrate into a new city.
  • gardenstategalgardenstategal Registered User Posts: 3,080 Senior Member
    As I read your post, a lot of your distress is around thinking about being away from your family for so long. It's hard, but try to focus on this moment now! When the kids were little and someone wold start crying during a sleepover, I would always ask if they would be crying if it were a play date that would end in 30 minutes. The answer was always no. They weren't crying about unhappiness now but about fear of unhappiness later. Now was just fine!

    Keep yourself busy and engaged as you start out. If you decide you are hating the rush experience, stop. You'll have some insights and experience you would not have if you hadn't done it. (Pretend you're a novelist getting material!) Every time you are feeling like you're going to break down, take a deep breath and focus on what you can do in this moment now to feel better. Maybe it's enjoying the feeling of the sun or breeze, maybe it's smiling at someone. But stay present!

    Trust me when I tell you lots of students feel this way. Don't sabotage yourself. One hour at a time. The problem with planning to get out is you'll never get in. You need to give it a chance. Hugs to you. I know it's hard.
  • bjkmombjkmom Registered User Posts: 4,558 Senior Member
    Give it a chance. If you still hate it at Christmas, you can always transfer. This is not necessarily a 4 year commitment, but try to commit whole heartedly for the semester.

    You owe it to yourself to give this wonderful opportunity a real chance.

    I imagine you had a host of accomplishments in high school that allowed you to get into this school. How many of them would you have had if you had quit on day 1? None, right? So give this school, these people, this opportunity, a real chance.

  • LindagafLindagaf Registered User Posts: 6,918 Senior Member
    @egracie98 , I see you have been active here today. Any thoughts on all this advice? I hope we have been able to help you feel a little more reassured that your feelings are normal and not unusual.
  • LindagafLindagaf Registered User Posts: 6,918 Senior Member
    edited August 14
    Four hours is no time at all. Think about what you were doing four hours ago. Many kids are plane rides away from home. Don't regret anything yet. Think of the good, valid reasons you chose your school. Your family isn't going anywhere and will always be a big part of your life, no matter the distance.

    And to reiterate what someone else said, you just have to let time do its thing.
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