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homesick/feeling very down

(15 Posts)
countydurhamlass Wed 22-May-13 02:58:20

i have spent the day chatting and socialising with a couple of other expats (our husbands all work for the same company) but now they have gone home and i feel really lonely now. (its been the first time i have done this since being in the country) i have been in canada for nine weeks and not once felt homesick, i have been fortunate to keep in regular contact with those close to me. i have had a couple of times when things havent gone to plan and money has been short where i think it would have been better if we had stayed in the uk but nothing really serious so why after such a nice day do i feel the way i do?

i dont particularly want to go back to the UK but right now i dont want to be here, i dont know where i want to be,

i know i will be fine in the morning, but then i will be on my own and i am starting to think that its better that way, i havent ventured far because i dont drive and tomorrow i have to get a bus into the city so dont think that is helping either

did anyone else feel like this? i dont work at the moment and i cannot work (immigration rules) for at least another six months so my social life is limited.

if you felt like this how did you overcome it?

bubbleandbubble Wed 22-May-13 03:10:58

Poor you, its such a horrible feeling and it creeps up on you unawares. I have to dash out but just wanted to say that you will be fine and get through it. Allow yourself to feel homesick, its completely normal and just do whatever feels good - have wine/chocolate/a good cry. Will be back later today (am in Hong Kong, we have just arrived after 3 years in Sydney so I know how you feel) if I can help any more.

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 22-May-13 03:25:35

9 weeks in your brain has realised this isn't a holiday and you are really staying. It's also classic culture shock. The rush of arriving has gone. Now you are noticing the differences and probably idolising the UK a little.

I couldn't work for months. Volunteer your arse off. I had two voluntary jobs. It's great for references, experience, friends. It's also good for staving off the feeling of uselessness and foreignness.

CrystalDeCanter Wed 22-May-13 03:42:26

Oh poor you - I had an awful homesicky day on Monday (posted about it - you can read how I felt) and I've been in Oz for almost 7 years. I agree with MrsTP though, 9 weeks is a tough time - as is 6 months, I definitely had a major dip then. Good advice to volunteer. Being busy is a great cure.

I find whenever I'm generally miserable about anything my mind tends to tag it onto missing home as it's easy iyswim. After my day from hell on Monday, I've concentrated on eating well, exercising, being busy and my mood has lifted considerably.

For a long time, although I enjoyed meeting new people and making new friends, I did struggle a bit with the fact I had no history with anyone. No one really knew the real me. Perhaps even though you had a lovely day with new friends it's made you miss the old ones a bit?

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 22-May-13 03:48:25

Crystal it takes a long time to make old friends.

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Wed 22-May-13 03:54:26

Yup- the 2 month crash is pretty typical. The excitement of the move wears off and you realise that this is your life now, except that because you're not in a routine of work etc., it's hard to know what that life is.

Not sure if you have kids, but try to get a routine going that is not friend dependent, so that you have something to do every day and you at least have some contact with other people. I didnt work for a year in Dubai (nothing going- was right at the start of the financial crisis). I used to do boot camp on Sunday/Tuesday/Thursday mornings followed by 2 hr yoga class, volunteered as an accountant/general manager for a charity Monday/Wednesday afternoons for 2 hours each time. I joined an online writing group which took up probably 1 full day a week. I helped another charity catch cats for a neuter and release program (now that was crazy, but kind of fun- was driving round an abandoned house development with a net).

Do you think not driving will be an issue? Is that something you could focus on while you wait for your work permit?

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 22-May-13 03:58:20

Where in Canada are you again, I know you said at some point? There's always a MN Canadian meet up to organise.

countydurhamlass Wed 22-May-13 04:03:52

we are in regina.

i have joined a gym and have today emailed about volunteering at the local YMCA, my son is 9 and at school all day. not driving is quite an issue but i am hoping to learn soon, although i will be a learner for 9 months minimum due to the laws.

Mutley77 Wed 22-May-13 07:16:19

I know how you feel. Tbh my homesickness has not been linked to whether I have had a "good" day or not - some days I seem to click with people and have a nice day but still feel rubbish. Perhaps because it reminds me that those of the sort of nice days I took for granted at home!!

I think the advice above about just accepting it and going with it is good and also getting a routine going that doesn't involve having friends.

I have been really homesick on and off - I think we have been here 10/11 weeks now. If I am having a good week I sort of forget it but then it creeps up on me again. I have a routine of sorts as I have 2 DCs (8 and 4) - the 4 yo is at home with me 2/3 days a week and we have activities booked in those days, sometimes they make me feel worse as I am at a group and feel like I am a social outcast, but overall I think it is better to be going than to have the potential alternative of being housebound and feeling rubbish. I am sure it will pass - everyone says so! - good luck and hope you feel bit better soon.

echt Wed 22-May-13 08:03:46

Oh God, I remember this; sitting in the front room, looking at the bloody weird Australian trees and crying my eyes out. A lot better once I had a job. I see you don't drive, and this must make a difference. Are you going to take lessons? I think the advice to volunteer is sound; I didn't do myself as I was working full-time within 5 months, but certainly would have done so.

Good luck, OP.

ProbablyJustGas Wed 22-May-13 11:40:57

::hugs:: It really does come and go in waves. I posted on a really bad day about feeling homesick a few weeks ago, and I have been living abroad for years. The best thing you can do is just let yourself be homesick for awhile and know that you'll start to feel positive again about where you are soon, rather than try to suppress the homesicky feeling and hope it will go away, if you see what I mean.

Definitely learn to drive, if you have the resources to do so. I reckon that will give you some more ways to get stuck into life over there. I think Canada has a lot of automatic cars on the road, so learning on one of those may be a little more straightforward than fussing with gears. I can't recall what the road system is exactly like - been a long time since I've visited - but if it is close to America's, then making decisions on the road may be a little less tricky than I've found it to be in the UK too.

Importing some favorite snacks and cereals - even if you would normally never eat junk food - helps too, surprisingly. Amazon Canada seems to let you import Hobnobs for a premium, at least, and there are probably some other UK food importers set up that would offer more than that.

Other things that have helped me are watching TV shows from home and watching sports from home online (even though I was the opposite of sporty at school!).

And yes, volunteering is definitely a good suggestion.

ProbablyJustGas Wed 22-May-13 11:50:12

Oh, just one more question. Does your visa allow you to sign up for a college/uni course, and would your family life allow that? This is something an American friend of mine did when she got to Scotland - she signed up for an MBA at the local university in my city. It gave her something to do during the day, gave her a qualification at the end which allowed her to enter the local job market more easily, and she made a lot of friends on the program.

SolomanDaisy Wed 22-May-13 11:53:27

I remember for the first few months doing anything like going on the bus seemed like a massive, massive task. Not quite knowing how things work makes little every day things seem huge. That gets better quite quickly, once you've done something a few times you feel a lot less 'foreign' when you're doing it.

complexnumber Wed 22-May-13 17:17:24

I think it would be very strange if you didn't have those moments when you question if you have made the right decision, when you miss friends and family.

It's entirely normal. Hope it gets better as you get better established.

countydurhamlass Fri 24-May-13 16:01:04

thanks for all your replies, today i feel a lot better and think i am getting over feeling homesick, got lots planned at the weekend to take my mind off it

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