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Moving out on your own is a big step in anyone’s life. You’re no longer living with your parents or guardians and you have to fend for yourself. It seems like many people can’t wait to be on their own and have the freedom to do basically anything they want. I was never one of those people.

I’ve always been pretty close with my parents. I would consider my mom to be my best friend. When I first went to college I’d go home to visit every weekend, even when I had a 3 hour drive home from WVU my first semester of freshman year. 

This year, however, I’ve been a lot busier. I’m involved in more things, I have a job, I’ve made more friends and lately, I’ve barely had the time to go home and see my family at all. I miss them a lot, and if it were up to me I would still go home to see them every weekend.

I feel proud of myself for becoming independent, but at the same time, I miss my family a lot. However, as a 20-year-old college student, I feel like missing your parents all the time is not the norm. There have been times when I’m questioned for wanting to go home and be with them, even by my parents themselves. I just can’t help it. To be quite honest, most of the time I would rather go home to see my family than go to a party or a football game.

I’ve felt weird about it and almost guilty because I feel like I shouldn’t be skipping out on time with my friends at college for my family. I’m 20 for pete’s sake! I should be out experiencing new things instead of going home every weekend.

It turns out, this homesickness is normal for people my age. In fact, when young adults are starting their own lives, they often miss home. It makes sense when I think about it, but it was never something I thought would happen when I was younger. I thought I would be beyond ready to move out and start my own life, but now that it’s finally starting to happen, I feel panicked, rushed, and I miss my parents. 

Homesickness is caused by people’s longing for routine and security, which explains why, in a time where it seems like everything is completely changing, we feel incredibly homesick. 

Change isn’t easy, and everyone grew up with a different dynamic in their homes, so there is no use in comparing my own experience to someone else’s who I perceive to be better off than me simply because they don’t go home to visit their parents as much. It may not seem like the normal thing for a college student to do, but I enjoy spending time with my parents and older family members. I want to take advantage of the time I have with them while I still can.

I think it’s about finding the balance between your “new life” and your “old life”. Letting go completely of how things used to be can be difficult and overwhelming – it’s not something that I personally want to try, and I don’t think it should necessarily be encouraged. It’s okay to let change happen slowly if you need it to, and that’s something I’ve slowly started to learn. There will be times when things have to change and I may not be happy about it. I may miss how things used to be when I was in high school or miss my parents, but eventually, things change.

There’s nothing wrong with homesickness – it just means there’s something worth missing. 

Rachel is a junior at Youngstown State University, majoring in Business Administration. In addition to being one of the Campus Correspondents for her school's Her Campus chapter, she is a sister of Zeta Tau Alpha sorority and a Campus Trendsetter. She loves writing, hanging out with friends and family, and Star Wars. She hopes to one day manage a large resort somewhere tropical (or at Disney World!).
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