I just moved away from home to go to college (+And now I feel depressed)

This article will discuss how it might feel for a college student to move away from home. Through this article, it will be shown how social support is important in that time of your life, and why, even though it is a happy experience, to some people it can cause them to be depressed. 

Along with that, the article will explain what are ways that you can cope, and connect to this new city and life you are going to live in. 

How does it feel to move away to college? 

Moving away from your parents to go to college can bring many emotions. It can make you excited about the new experiences that are ahead. And the dream of independence is just around the corner.

You might be excited about studying new things you are interested in, the new friends you will make, and all the experiences that college life will give you. All of that can be exhilarating. But your move to college can also have some concerns

When you move away from home to go to college, it is a step to adulthood, and that can also be overwhelming. All of a sudden you are responsible not only for yourself but for the place you live in. No one will order you to study, you will have to know what your needs are.

It can also feel lonely at times. Being away from your family, and people you’ve met your whole life can be hard. And this can happen even after you make friends in college. One group of friends doesn’t replace the other, and at times, all you might want is your high school friends close by.

With all that, it is safe to say that moving away to college can make you experience many thoughts and feelings. And not everyone will handle it the same way. So let’s discuss why some people may feel depressed by this move.

Why am I depressed because of it?

Moving away from home is something that can bring many positive, but also negative feelings. Try to not judge or blame yourself for not being the most excited person about this.

The step you take to adulthood can be an overwhelming one. It can make you scared and worried that you might not be ready for it. Along with that, leaving everyone you have ever known behind, at least in a physical manner, can be stressful.

With that, you are putting yourself in a completely unknown situation, which can make people extremely nervous. And through this period, you will need to adjust to many things. And when it seems like it must be too hard to do it, it is possible to say you are experiencing Relocation Depression. 

This is not a medical term, but it is what is called when a person feels intense sadness, a sense of hopelessness, agitation, irritability, and loss of interest in activities caused because of a move somewhere new. This feeling can last some months or even go on for years, depending on how the person adjusts to their new reality.

How can I cope with Relocation Depression?

There are some ways a person can cope with Relocation Depression. Let’s discuss some ways you can cope with it.

If you’re facing this, it may be a good idea to seek the help of a therapist or other mental health professional. You can find a therapist at BetterHelp who can help you learn how to cope and address it.

Embrace your feelings

Understand that this is a moment that is emotionally charged. Don’t try to control what you are feeling. Embrace it, and understand that it usually takes months for people to feel at home in a new place.

But keep in mind that if at any point it seems too hard to cope with all of this on your own, there are usually mental health support programs on campus. 

Don’t rush to adjust 

Take your time to create a new life there. At first, it might be that you will just need to explore, see what is out there, and with time, it will become familiar. But don’t try to pressure yourself into doing things you don’t feel ready to do. 

Try to keep a positive view

Although it is hard, when you are feeling sad to keep a positive outlook in life, it can have a great impact on you. It is something that won’t let you surrender to this idea that things won’t work out.

Keep in touch with your roots

Some people might say that keeping in touch with your friends from your time, and your family might not help a lot. But having this support network while still creating these relationships can make you feel less alone and offer great comfort.

Open yourself to people 

Although it is hard at first, try to keep yourself open to meet people. Try to remember that most of your colleagues are going through the same thing. And while everyone is adjusting to this, they will also be more open to meeting new people.

College years are usually extremely social years of a person’s life, there will be many events, social gatherings, and possibilities for you to meet new people. Keep an open mind and an open heart.

Meet your new city

To make yourself feel at home, it is important to not only open yourself to people but also your new town. Discover what it has to offer you, museums, parks, coffee shops.

This will make you feel more connected to your new community, and that can be a great way to deal with your Relocation Depression.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): Why do I feel depressed from moving away from home?

Can I feel depressed through my whole college years?

A person can be depressed all through their college years. But it might be that this is not related to Relocation Depression. If you feel depressed for such a long period, it might be good to look for professional help.

It might be that you are going through a depressive disorder. This is a common mental illness that can cause you to feel sad, and lose hope in your life and future. Along with that, it can make you lose interest in activities.

It is a condition that needs to be well treated, and through that, your symptoms can improve, and with time you can recover your emotional health and sense of well-being.

What can I do when I feel homesick? 

When a person is feeling homesick there are some things that they can do to help them feel better. The first thing is to not judge themselves. Let your feelings in, but don’t let them define you. 

And when you remember past events, instead of looking at it as something that will always be better than what you have or in the future, think of how you can recreate those positive emotions again.

Be open to your new relationships, understanding that having new friends won’t distance you from the old ones. Try to have an active routine in your new town, so it can make you feel more at home there. 

This won’t avoid you from feeling homesick, but there are ways for you to realize how, aside from that positive situation in the past, you also have a positive one in the present.

Can moving cause Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)? 

It is possible that moving to a new place can cause a person to develop Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder(PTSD). This condition, which is a reaction to a traumatic event, can happen when a person sees their move as something traumatic.

This will happen when the person feels like what caused them to move or be in the new town, is a trauma. Moving will always be a moment that generates big changes in the person’s life, but how each person will view it, can change. 

If a person understands they are moving because of something positive, it can be going to college, or a new job opportunity, although it will also have its hard moments, it can make it easier for people to adjust. 

On the other hand, if a person has a negative view of why they are moving, it can be more of a traumatic experience. It can be that they feel like they are living all that is good behind and that they will be unable to create a new life and connections in this new town. 

In this case, it might be easier to develop mental health issues, not only PTSD but also anxiety or depression upon the move.

Can the place I live in cause me to be depressed? 

It might be that the place you live causes you to be depressed, but this won’t be the only reason why people get depressed. This condition is usually multi-factored. The lack of adjustment, connections, and even interest in the place you live in can cause, in the long hall, for you to get depressed.

For that to not happen, having a well-settled life in your town can be of great help. But not only that, it is always important to keep an eye on your mental health, take care of your routine, your sleeping and eating, and understand what may cause you to isolate or feel disconnected from people. 

These will, most likely, be good ways to prevent you from getting depressed.

What are the signs most people show when they have a mental health issue?

There are some signs a person may show when they are going through some mental health issues. The first thing that changes is their moods. It may turn into an intense mood swing.

People may notice they will have days in which they feel good, and others when their mood is extremely negative. Along with that, there might be a persistent sadness or they might become more irritable, at times, even aggressive.

People that are going through mental health issues can also start to behave more worried or preoccupied. Along with that, they might show signs of isolation. For them, being around people won’t be something they feel pleasure in.

And lastly, when a person is going through a mental health issue, people around them may notice that their sleeping and eating patterns will change. In case you notice someone close to you is experiencing those signs, it might be good to talk to them about looking for help.


This article showed how young people moving away from home, because they are going to college, can have different experiences. Although some people might be extremely excited about it, other people can have trouble with it and even get depressed.

The article explained why this can happen, and what are ways for people to cope with it and enjoy their new city.



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