Updated: Sep 26
Dear Charlie is an advice column that allows readers to ask Charlie for guidance on how to deal with problems. Whether it’s about love, friendships, or frustrations, Charlie is here to give you tips and ideas for tackling life’s everyday challenges. Readers can ask Charlie for advice through DM via our Instagram @liubknews, or anonymously through this form.
I see that you miss your mom’s homemade chicken soup. Yes, that one you said you didn’t want to eat anymore. I bet you’d give up anything to be able to taste it one more time.
Being away from home is very challenging in all aspects: moving to a new environment, meeting new people, not seeing your friends and family as often, and having new responsibilities are just some of the new things you suddenly have to deal with.
Rest assured, dear reader, it is completely normal to feel exhausted, overwhelmed, nostalgic, stressed, and of course, homesick.
Humans are a species of customs; put simply, we like certainty. But here you are, miles away from your loved ones, the streets you used to know, and your favorite places.
With a change this drastic, there are various spheres of your life that may be affected:
1. Emotional separateness: suddenly, you will find yourself physically away from the people that fill your heart.
2. New responsibilities: sweeping, mopping, doing laundry, shopping, and even having to wake up by yourself.
3. Unhomeliness: need to go to the restroom at three in the morning? Good luck walking to the other side of the hallway, and don’t forget your card to get back into your room.
What can I do, then?
To combat emotional separateness, keep in touch with your loved ones! Remember that you are never alone and that someone is expecting you back home. No matter how lonely you can feel, there is someone back home wishing you were with them.
Try to speak to your most beloved friends, and tell your parents about that class you liked a lot, or the other one where you were so bored you almost fell asleep. Whenever you are away, think that you are creating memories you will be able to share with them later.
To become familiar with your new responsibilities, try creating a to-do list with all of your chores and school assignments. Perhaps you can dedicate a free morning or afternoon to tidying up your dorm or putting your clothes in the washing machine before you take a shower so that when you finish your clothes will be done.
To make your new environment a little more homely, find places and activities that make you feel happy. Have somewhere to go when you feel stressed and have had a good day. Discover the city. Find your new favorite pizza place. And send photos to your loved ones of those awesome places you go to!
I hope my advice steers you in the right direction for better understanding and handling your emotions. You are brave for doing this, and you are not alone!