Homesickness. What do you do?

hepdoll

Registered
Hey everyone,

I'm a little nervous about posting this here because I know not everyone on this forum is sympathetic, but I've been hit by homesickness for the last week and I am just hoping to find some support and advice.

I'm about at my 3-month mark (just did my first visa renewal). I've gotten the lay of the land, I'm comfortable speaking my poor-but-improving spanish, I have a nice group of porteno friends (and a few expats) who I see a few times per week.

My brother visited a couple of weeks ago. We're not particularly close, but I've been feeling this way since a few days after he left. I think it's because his trip was the last major thing in my life before Christmas. It's my first Christmas away from my home and my family, ever, and I think I'd been in denial about it until he left, when I couldn't ignore it anymore.

I've been good about making plans for the holiday. A friend's family has invited me over for Christmas Eve, and on Christmas Day I think I'm going to an asado. I'll be Skyping with my family the 24th, 25th, and 26th.

But in general it's set off a big bout of homesickness that I'm trying to work through. At least once a day I have a big low point for a few hours where I just feel depressed, usually in the middle of the day when I'm alone in the apartment. (I work from home, but I don't have a lot to do right now due to the holidays.) It's making me question whether I should stay here or whether I should go home to the US. I'm feeling anxious to start my life there again.

What I'd like to know is have you dealt with this before? And how?

thanks in advance.
 

nataliasarro

Registered
hepdoll said:
Hey everyone,

I'm a little nervous about posting this here because I know not everyone on this forum is sympathetic, but I've been hit by homesickness for the last week and I am just hoping to find some support and advice.

I'm about at my 3-month mark (just did my first visa renewal). I've gotten the lay of the land, I'm comfortable speaking my poor-but-improving spanish, I have a nice group of porteno friends (and a few expats) who I see a few times per week.

My brother visited a couple of weeks ago. We're not particularly close, but I've been feeling this way since a few days after he left. I think it's because his trip was the last major thing in my life before Christmas. It's my first Christmas away from my home and my family, ever, and I think I'd been in denial about it until he left, when I couldn't ignore it anymore.

I've been good about making plans for the holiday. A friend's family has invited me over for Christmas Eve, and on Christmas Day I think I'm going to an asado. I'll be Skyping with my family the 24th, 25th, and 26th.

But in general it's set off a big bout of homesickness that I'm trying to work through. At least once a day I have a big low point for a few hours where I just feel depressed, usually in the middle of the day when I'm alone in the apartment. (I work from home, but I don't have a lot to do right now due to the holidays.) It's making me question whether I should stay here or whether I should go home to the US. I'm feeling anxious to start my life there again.

What I'd like to know is have you dealt with this before? And how?

thanks in advance.

Hi Hepdoll
I think you did great in posting a message to share your thoughts!

I´m sure you´ll find several helpful ears in this forum.
From my experience working with expats, I guess you are going through a normal stage of every expat´s life abroad. And many of the readers of this forum may be feeling something similar these days....
Let me give you a piece of advice.... Once you realize that sadness and homesickness is sometimes unavoidable, then you can start accepting it. It wont be there forever. I promise!
Christmas season is usually a typical time of the year when many expats think about their loved ones back home. However, if you see the good side of it, there will be a point of time when you´ll look back and remember "the good old times in Argentina".
Let´s put it this way....you´re making great memories right now, that will feed you in the next couple of years. In the future, you may only remeber the greatest things of your experience in Argentina.
Let the sadness be there for a while. It´s normal. Only if you come to terms with it, then it will go away - and allow yourself to enjoy the marvel of a hot Christmas (instead of a snowy one) eating heavy, fattening food (this is one of the funniest contradictions of the Argentinian culture... and I´m an Argentinian!).

All the best
Natalia
 

keech

Registered
Hey hepdoll,

I think everyone gets a wee bit homesick around x mas,theres nothing you can do....I hate x mas here and this will be the fourth,you miss family and friends and asado just ain't turkey and ham....sun does not replace cold ,snow ,family and friends and all of the other things associated with xmas.

For me its a case of the little things,get some turkey and ham or whatever you associate with christmas,put up a little tree and wrap some pressies,do something nice or familiar.

You cant really kill the homesickness but you can make it a bit better,cheesy xmas songs on an mp3 work aswell .

Its a completly different christmas here, try and enjoy it,you have friends inviting you for christmas, try and enjoy their style,and maybe sneak in a bit of home, make a desert or a drink that reminds you of christmas and introduce them to it.

Try and enjoy it,its tough but it can be done

Merry Christmas

K
 

Katie159

Registered
Hey...I´m not here to offer any advice but just to say that I know how you are feeling!! I too have been here for 3 months and just updated my visa and up until now I have been absolutely fine, but with friends going home for xmas and me staying here I was suddenly hit with homesickness yesterday!! it has never happened to me before and i have been away for long periods of time...so yeh...i know how you are feeling...also thankyou for all of the posts on this link...reading them has also helped me!! x
 

iStar

Registered
I think a lot of expats can relate. I know I can.

This time of the year is especially hardest because the holidays are about family and friends.

When you are at home and feel down, try and visit some websites that inspire you. For example, I'm an entrepreneur so I like to visit a website that showcases new business ideas from around the world. (www.springwise.com)

You mention you work from home? How about making it a point to give yourself a 30 minute break in the middle of your day to go outside and enjoy the sunshine?

The good thing about Buenos Aires is you can get some really great tasting ice-cream, that always chases away the blues :)

You'll be okay... and don't be afraid to reach out for some support you are not alone in the way you feel :)
 

Katser

Registered
I have no advice just simply to say i feel the same way stuck in a limbo between loving it here but missing some things about europe.

i want to go home but fear my time here will be looked at as a failure by others. And a million other things! :rolleyes:

it's difficult!

i've just got over the culture shock and straight into homesickness!
 

Napoleon

Registered
Yeah, when I think about home, I do start to feel a little queasy. Then I remember that I don't live there anymore and I start to feel much better.

So my advice is "Remember that you don't have to go home." ...and you will start to feel much better.
 

perry

Registered
Culture shock is very real and it happened to me a few times and just about made me leave Buenos Aires vowing to never return. My reasons were my own due to coming here originally for the wrong reasons and the first year was very tough . I came without any plans and little monies and knew noone here. I gradually made friends with fellow expats the few that were around then in Palermo Viejo 5 years ago . Most of them moved back home but a few of us are still around with a connection that is deep due to our shared experiences living in this crazy city.

I have grown to love this city warts and all and understand it better due to very long walks daily through all barrios of the Capital Federal. This has helped me connect to the landscape and the people .
Be patient and accept what you cannot change . If feeling frustated in your daily lives walk and walk for miles better with music and soon those feelings will pass. Make sure that you make good friends the ones that will be there if you need a shoulder to cry on . Best of luck
 
Top