Washington DC From Afar

How to deal with homesickness after moving to Washington DC for college

Moving to Washington DC for college is such an amazing achievement and a great adventure. You should be proud of yourself for making this huge step. Chances are this will be your first time living somewhere else besides your family home. That can be a lot to handle even if this is something you really wanted and planned for. When they leave for school, many students complain that they miss the familiarity of home. Don’t worry, that is pretty common and normal as we already said. Of course, that doesn’t mean you need to feel homesick for a long period of time. We can show you how to deal with it and who can help you.

Every fall, a large number of college students head off to new campuses to begin their collegiate careers. The majority of students attending a public university live within a 50-mile radius of their chosen college. Students, however, almost always find themselves in unfamiliar surroundings, whether they’re relocating across town or even further away – across the country. The following are some tips to help you cope with homesickness while attending college. Luckily for you, Washington DC is a student-friendly city and you will easily adapt.

Reaching out

Leaving the comforts of your own home and adjusting/settling to life on your own may be a challenge at first. Fortunately, you’re not the only one feeling this way. There’s a good chance that other freshmen have the same concerns. That is a good reason to talk to them. You can share experiences. Feeling homesick at college? Tell your roommate or classmate about it! Give an example of something new that you’ve learned about yourself or someone you’ve just met.

You can also seek advice from older students/seniors, for example – your roommate or a professor in your field. There are organizations and activities that they can introduce you to that will help you form new friendships and support networks, as well. Another good option is to make use of on-campus resources like counseling services for students.

Three friends sitting on some stairs and talking after moving to Washington DC for college
Making new friends is very important.

Keeping busy

As you get used to your new surroundings, homesickness at college usually fades away within a few weeks. That is a piece of good news right there.  There are many opportunities for you to meet new people and learn more about the college and the surrounding community outside of your room. Start making the most of your first few days on campus, as you may have as much as a week to get settled before classes begin. You can join some sports teams or look into classes offered by the campus fitness center. During the first weeks of school, colleges and universities often organize events that allow students to meet and socialize. Use that to your advantage.

Continue your exploration beyond your university grounds by looking for green spaces and other places to relax in the neighborhood. You can also look for volunteer opportunities in churches and faith communities that cater to college students or any other organizations that welcome volunteers. Getting involved can give you something to look forward to and distract you from the things you miss about your home. You can find those groups before you even start packing for college (you can do it online).

A group of students
Find some new activities or groups to keep you busy.

Time is crucial here

Moving to Washington DC for college is a huge step and you shouldn’t expect that you will be settled in one day and your new life begins. No. It takes time. Of course, knowledgeable people can help with unpacking and settling in. Hiring professional movers can speed that process and help you but you will still need some time to feel at home.

When you’re in college, it can be difficult to overcome feelings of homesickness. You may, however, miss your family and friends as well as the places you left behind from time to time. Recognize that it may take some time to get used to your new surroundings and develop a sense of home. You can feel this way from a few weeks to over a year, according to studies. 94% of college freshmen said they had felt homesick at least once in the first few weeks of school, according to one study.

A pink clock
Allow yourself some time to get over this feeling.

Another thing to keep in mind

It takes some time and some patience to overcome homesickness. Movers like beltwaymovers.com will help you with relocation and settling in but you have to do the rest. After a break or holiday, these feelings can resurface when returning to school after a break or vacation. Remember the people and places you’ve left behind and give yourself some time to miss them. That’s ok. In the meantime, you can use your phone to keep in touch with them. That can also help.

This is normal and moving to Washington DC for college will leave you feeling homesick at least a little bit

At college, many students experience feelings of homesickness. In fact, according to research from 2016 more than 70 percent of first-year students reported experiencing homesickness on a regular basis.  Some students found it difficult to adjust to their new surroundings because of their distress and feelings of alienation. Being homesick can be brought on by a variety of factors, including moving to a new location, learning a whole new culture for some, or establishing new daily routines. Even missing your pets can be a symptom of this ailment. You may not be able to participate in some of the events you and your family enjoyed before you left.

Students may become anxious as a result of these changes. A lack of sleep or a sense of loneliness or isolation can keep some students up at night. Grief or depression are other possibilities. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to dealing with homesickness. If these feelings don’t go away, seek help. Take into consideration that even if the change is positive, it can still be difficult. The human brain is hardwired to seek solace in the known. Once you arrive at school, you can expect a period of adjustment. Even if you don’t feel depressed or grief-stricken, talking to a counselor at your college’s counseling center will surely help you to adjust.