Student life is not easy when it comes to staying away from home for the sake of education. Often, parents have to send their child to boarding schools owing to various reasons like if both parents are working, or Quality education of the child, or to make their school life disciplined and stable. Moreover, most students have to move out of their home to distant cities for preparing themselves for college admissions entrance exams too. But, the common issues faced by all students staying away from home, is feeling homesick, the nostalgia, the need, and sentimental behaviour which compel them to think about memories of home, their parents and friends.
Here, we discuss how parents and students can deal with such situations of Homesickness –
For students –
Remember the motive of staying away from home:
You are out for your education and your better future. Sure, you feel stressed by missing your parents, friends and your home but this doesn’t mean that you give up half-way of your struggle. Always remember, that once your motive of staying away from parents and home is achieved then you would be back with them.
Talk to your parents or warden about your feeling:
Even if you are trying your best to keep up with the new environment at the hostel, you may not be able to adapt to new changes quickly and would feel down. In such cases, you should talk to your parents, warden/guardian or even your fellow hostel mates about your feeling/pessimistic thoughts (if any).
Make new friends and explore yourself:
You can get to know fellow students at your hostel; you can mingle with them for studies, hobbies and do fun activities. Even, when you are in your room, you can find a new passion for writing or drawing which will help you with your extra time and enhance your creative side too.
Get rid of the dependency on others:
When you are away from your home and parents, you learn to do your tasks on your own like keeping your place clean, your clothes, making snacks etc. This makes you self-sufficient and hence, you can face any situation when you are required to stay alone. Students, who live away from their families, learn life-saving skills; deal better with their emotions and interpersonal skills too.
For Parents –
Make them aware of your decision and reason of sending away to hostel:
Generally, parents send their child to the hostel, without clearly specifying the reason this makes their child helpless as they feel they are being neglected by their parents. So, before sending your child away, sit with them and clearly explain your motive of their successful future. This makes the child more understanding of the situation and hence, feeling homesick would be lesser comparatively.
Visit your child on occasions:
If you give your child your time, by visiting or even talking regularly on phone will help your child. Talk to them about the environment, students/friends, and the warden and school life. Often, the child is not able to talk on the phone about various things, whenever such situation arrives ensure to visit them.
Identify the reason for your child’s homesickness:
Many times, parents ignore child’s homesickness as they feel the more they get in touch with their child, more the child feels homesick. You should never neglect your child’s homesickness as there may be reasons for his/her feeling it may be the stress of studies, the rules and regulations, bullying or harassment. Stress can be confused with homesickness when the child wants to be at home in the comfort of their parents and away from academic pressure.
So, talk to your child about his/her feelings and try to make time for them as and when possible. Your child needs you before a successful future.
For soon-to-be hostel/PG students -
- Before selection in a college, inquire about the hostel life and rules and regulations
- Make sure, you are mentally prepared for all situations before moving to a hostel, as once you are away from home, you will be on your own, managing life, academics, finances on your own
- You should regularly keep in touch with your parents and friends back home to let go of your homesickness
- Make friends; explore your passions (dance, music, writing etc.)
- Follow the same lifestyle as you followed at your home because often, students follow a laid-back lifestyle which affects their studies and discipline too
- Understand that, your parents have expended their saving for your studies and bright future, so you should be obliged and make yourself a good student and better human being
- Never indulge in bad habits like smoking, drinking or do things to rules and regulations of college or hostel. Generally, students perceive hostel life and staying away from parents as the freedom to do anything which they want and hence, fall into the trap of bad habits. You should not accept these bad habits in your life as they do more harm and no good to your health and lifestyle.Hence, feeling stressed and homesick.
Conclusion: Homesickness generally is felt by students who are attached to things and comfort of their home. Parents can help students in such situations by giving their child counselling, their time and also comfort things from home. Students need to understand that, the time away from home is limited to their education only and once their schooling is over they will be back with their parents at home. They need not be stressed about it, but rather should take this opportunity to enhance their skills, personality development and overall confidence about self-sufficiency.