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Dealing with the Back to School Blues

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Montclair chapter.

Returning (or arriving) to campus is such an exciting time. Seeing your friends, meeting new people, starting classes with a fresh start, is all something to look forward to. However, there is a part of returning to campus that most people don’t talk about: sadness. The feeling of wanting to stay home with your family or just getting used to the routine at home again and not wanting to change it up. If you feel any of these ways, trust me, you’re not alone. 

If you’re a new student coming to campus in the fall and feeling the same way, it’s completely understandable. For most new students, this is their first time living without their parents and are learning how to be independent for the first time. If you’re a returning student feeling this way and feeling bad about it, don’t worry. I’m in the same boat as you.

As someone who gets upset and emotional around back to school time, it’s hard for me to remember that I’ve done it all before. As a second year student, I already did the same things last year, but I’m always filled with so many emotions before going back to school. Most of them are negative and fill me with anxiety. I see the constant posts of people excited to get back to campus and their friends. Part of me feels the same way. The other part, however, loves being home with my family and never wants to leave. Seeing these posts makes me feel like I’m wrong for feeling this way but these feelings are completely valid.

One thing I like to remember is that college is only as good as you make it. College can be scary and fill you with many emotions, but it’s your choice whether or not you let these emotions overcome you. It’s your decision on what you want to make of your college career. You can either stay by yourself and make college dreadful, or you can push the feelings down for a bit and go out and have fun! I’m not trying to point out anyone who identifies as the first option. Trust me, I’ve been the same countless times throughout my freshman year. Although, I found that when I was out with my friends and having a good time, the homesick emotions slipped away.

If you want to know my greatest advice to get rid of that homesick feeling throughout the first few weeks, it’s to not go home. Throughout my freshman year, I got homesick a lot and liked to go home most weekends. However, for the first few weeks, I made it a purpose to stay at school to meet new people and attend as many events as possible. This might’ve been one of my best decisions ever. I met so many new people throughout that first month and had fun doing so. I strongly believe that if I were to go home all of those weekends, then I wouldn’t know the people I do now.

Even though going home was nice and made me feel better, it didn’t do anything for my campus life. In my opinion, staying on campus for the first few weeks of school is crucial for you to feel like you belong. Constantly going home will only make it harder for you to come back. When you do, it might feel like you’re missing out on so much (and here’s some tough love – you do). Many friend groups form within the first few weeks. Some of them don’t last, yes, but the ones that do will potentially be your friends forever.

One last thing, try to stick it out as long as possible. It’s hard and scary, but in a few months or so you might look back and laugh about how nervous you were in the beginning. I know I did. Regardless, I hope everyone has a safe, healthy and intelligent year at school, and may you achieve everything you want.

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Emily Spillar

Montclair '25

Emily is a Junior, Communication & Media Studies major at Montclair State University. She loves all things fashion and beauty, while also finding new experiences.