To those who feel lonely/homesick/friendless/think they chose the wrong school, etc...

Each year, I see similar posts from new freshman and transfer students. You are NOT alone, and this is normal and common. Everyone does not already have a permanent friend group. Your friends from home are not all having a great time. Your family is not going to forget you. You are smart enough to be there. You can handle college and will not flunk out if you do the work. There is a cure for what troubles you: Time.

You need to give your college a chance. Many of you will be second-guessing your decision. Buyer’s remorse is normal. Think about the sound reasons you chose your school and focus on them. Don’t succumb to “if only…”, because that’s a negative waste of energy. Get out of your dorm room and find your people. Take time to recharge alone in your room when you need it. But you do need to try, because you won’t meet people or have fun if you are sitting alone in your room with the door closed. (See the pinned post by bopper at the top of this page on things to do to meet people.)

Every student has some kind of struggle in the beginning. Some of you keep it to yourselves, some of you soldier on, some of you share with trusted people. This is a time of big, unsettling changes in your life. You have temporarily left behind your comfort zone, family and friends. Understand that this is something you have to get through, and you will. You are becoming an adult and it’s hard work. The vast majority of you will find friends and come to enjoy your college experience. If you put effort into doing your work and making time for social opportunities that arise, time will fly. Before you know it, winter break will be here.

I feel for each of you and I know how hard it is. I promise you that things will get better, but you have to give it time. This is a blip in your life. You will get through this and be a better person because of it.

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Excellent post @Lindagaf! There’s only one way through it too. To go through it and come out the other side.

Excellent post!!

Someone messaged me and asked “how long does it take to stop feeling this way?” There’s no set time, but I think there are a few general time frames that I hear about repeatedly. One seems to be by the end of October or early November, another is around Christmas time, and another is around Feb or March, when spring semester is underway. Some kids are going to be through the worst of it in another couple of weeks, others may have to stick it out until the end of freshman year. You just have to get through it at your own pace. Do take advantage of your campus counseling center. This is exactly why they are there. The longer you wait, the busier they get. You are not alone.

Some aren’t feeling it now but will feel it later when the novelty of college life wears off, winter comes, and/or they realize that those instant friends they made the first week really aren’t the friends they thought or want after all.

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Bumping, because there are many students who will benefit from this thread.

So true. One to three weeks isn’t a long enough period of time to determine that all is hopeless at a school socially or academically. That same period of time feels like an eternity to the kid going through it though. Supporting them through it is the only thing we can do when they ask for it.

I too have seen similar posts every year and have written the following:

Adjusting at college:

Doing well in academics:

I found this article to be helpful.

I’m a parent and it was very kind of you to take the time to write this post. There are many students who need to see this and I’m sure you helped some today

Great post @Lindagaf very timely and helpful!

Most of the UC’s started this past week.

Keeping the post alive for those students new to the “system”.

For those of you feeling alone on campus my daughters little film she made for a class project might help you and put a little smile on your face. Enjoy and I hope it gets better for you all.

@collegedadguy92 , I LOVE your daughter’s film! That is so cute, and I really hope she has found her posse by now. I agree that this will bring a smile to everyone’s face.

I hope many students will find this helpful. It’s a great video

@CALSmom , see post 12, above. Emery’s dad beat you to it when it only had 600 views. :slight_smile:

Awww! How sweet! ^^

@collegedadguy92 , that film was adorable! Wish I could have shown it to my son 2 years ago when he was still pretty homesick!

I went did 5 years in the military right after I graduated high school. Fast toward to the present, I just started college (2nd week) and I’m feeling all the same emotions mentioned in the title of this post.

For some reason, I feel these emotions more intensively in college (2 hours from my hometown) than I did in the military where I was deployed overseas 8,000 miles away from home. I think nostalgia is the biggest factor contributing to these emotions.

To all freshmen that are feeling the same emotions, the poster of this thread is right. If a 5-year military veteran like me is feeling these emotions, then it is absolutely normal for you to feel it as well. Just like everything in life, change is pretty stressful and may cause some heartache at first, but it will go away from time. There’s no secret magic pill that will make it go away instantly. Remember, you came here to better yourself. Stay motivated!

A little update: my college sophomore recently said that she was glad that she and her freshman year roommate didn’t get along. They didn’t argue or hate each other, but they had nothing in common. My D is naturally shy and (used to be) awkward. Because she wanted to spend as little time with her roommate as possible, it made her more incentivized to leave her room, even though it was very difficult for her to force herself to do that.

It’s fair to say that her first semester of college was not fun. She probably tried too hard in the beginning, but by spring semester she had a group of friends. She started out at her college feeling that she was at the wrong school, and now knows she’s at the right one. There’s a good chance it will be the same for you, if you give it time.