Growing up, I got homesick; ridiculously homesick. Friends reading this will probably be nodding their head saying “yep” haha …
As a very close family of four kids (three of us are Irish Twins – which means we are all very close in age), my Mum was a SAHM and as we lived in the country; so we didn’t really go anywhere.
I don’t even think we stayed the night at my Grandparent’s house.
So when it came time where I was of an age to be able to have a sleepover, I’d have to go home because I felt homesick. Quite literally one time my friend’s house was across the street and my parents had to come and get me.
I was at a school camp and I’d be crying, telling people I felt sick, because I was scared and just wanted to go home.
I got homesick a lot.
I often think of this because my kids are growing older and I wonder if they’ll feel the same. So I did a little research and have found the following out:
WHAT DOES BEING HOMESICK MEAN?
It means you miss the familiar surroundings of your own home, and your family. It’s not specifically just for kids too – adults get homesick too.
WHY DO WE GET HOMESICK?
When you’ve grown up in a place, it becomes familiar. Your family, your house, your routines – these are all familiar to us and help us to feel relaxed. When we go to somewhere new, with people we aren’t familiar with, it takes us out of our comfort zone and often we don’t know what to expect. This can result in feelings of wanting to go home, and being homesick.
WHAT CAN WE DO TO HELP?
Obviously letting your kids experience nights away when they’re younger is great but not everyone wants to do that. My kids have only ever spent ONE night away from us, and that was with their Grandparents.
From my point of view, as someone who used to get homesick – I would personally talk to my kids about the fact that it’s ok to feel like they want to come home.
Feeling homesick is normal. Tell your kids that they can always ring and talk to you if there’s any doubt or if they’re feeling scared.
It’s also ok to go and get them. If a child is scared and upset, they won’t have fun, and I am a big believer in not making your kids do things that push them too far.
Obviously at some point they’re going to have to take that leap – but you should judge each situation as it comes.
My parents took me home ONCE and the rest of the time I had to deal with it. I can only imagine how frustrating / upsetting it was for them to have me be homesick, but eventually we do have to learn that it’s ok to be away from home.
Like I said above, because I got homesick a lot, I worry that my kids will too. Although my upbringing and my kids’ upbringing is completely different.
My kids go out a bit, and to other people’s houses, so hopefully they will feel ok when it comes to their first sleepover.
Did you get homesick as a child?