Relocation depression (+Understanding what it is)

This article will explain what relocation depression is. It will discuss how moving to a new city can cause a person to feel alone, and how it can be for them to not have a support system in the town already.

Aside from that, the article will discuss what are ways for a person to cope with relocation depression.

I moved to a new town, I’m feeling depressed because I have no friends

When a person moves to a new city, it might not seem like it, but it is a sort of trauma. For that feeling of being overwhelmed and sad, over some time, because of the move, it was created the term Relocation Trauma.

When a person moves to a new town, although it can also be exciting, it also means that all the familiar things are left behind. A person will have to build a new life, new relationships, a new routine. 

When you get to the new city you will live in, after all the stress of planning a move, you will find yourself sometimes anxious about what your life will be like, but also sad because of the life you left behind.

Because of this trauma, the person can start to show some signs that are similar to the ones a person with depression has. They can start to isolate themselves, as well as become hopeless and fearful. 

They can start to forget things, feel more agitated, or even aggressive. Lose interest in doing things they used to enjoy, and have difficulty concentrating.

They might also feel a change in their eating and sleeping patterns, and some might even have trouble with alcohol and drugs. People usually describe that they feel like they lost control and that an era of their life was ending because of the move, which affected how confident they felt.

What are ways I can cope with Relocation depression?

Since Relocation depression is a condition that indicates a need to adjust to the new place you will live in, it is extremely important to embrace it when it happens. Hiding how you feel can only make you even more anxious. Let’s discuss other ways one can cope with relocation depression.

Be open to people and feelings

When a person moves to a new town, it might be hard to be open to the feelings it might bring, people can just want it all to pass and magically find themselves adjusted to their new life. 

But it’s not as simple as that. When you move, although it is hard, it is important to tell and show people that you are open. If you are moving to study or to work, let your colleagues know you have no plans for the weekend, ask what their plans are.

Another way to feel less alone and more connected to people is by keeping in touch with your friends from the old town. It might seem like it won’t do you any good, but maybe having a video call with them can make you feel like, although at the moment it is hard, you still have people that are close and appreciate you.

Don’t pressure yourself

Although you might want to do everything you are invited to, as a way to make new connections, be true to yourself and to how you feel. If you don’t like a thing your new friends might do, you don’t need to cross yourself and your likings just to make friends.

Tell your friends what you like and dislike, try to discuss with them things you can do together, and if there are things they are not interested in, you don’t need to abandon them, explore those things by yourself.

Discover your new city

When you are about to move to a new city, you might have done some research on what were some cool things to do in your new town. Now that you are there, try to take a look at that list, explore those places, see what your city has to offer.

Some people might call that as having a date with your town. It will be just you and the town, soak in all the parks, museums, coffee shops. You can have a picnic with yourself. The more you know about the place, the less scary it might feel.

Immerse yourself in culture

Find something you love, it can be a tv show you want to binge-watch, some music or books, having all those things can be a great way to be by yourself, and not feel completely alone.

They are great sources of company and can connect to things you have lived before and things you still want to live. Listening to songs that remind you of what you’ve been through, in this city or the older one, can give you a warm feeling of gratitude for what has been, but it can also make you hopeful and excited about the things to come.

Keep focused on why move

When a person makes such a big move in their lives, it usually has a reason. It can be because they thought they needed a change, or because of a new job opportunity, or even because you are going to study something. In the hard times, you might start to question yourself as to why you did it.

But having in mind what was your plan, what you hope to accomplish from it, and your end goals can be a way to give yourself the encouragement to keep on this new life. Whenever it feels like you are doubting yourself, put your reasons back in your mind.

Remind yourself it is only the beginning (if you decide it)

Another thing to always keep in mind is that this is hard mostly because it is the beginning. With time, as you open yourself, allow people to get close. You will get acquainted with places and people, and that will make it easier for you to feel like your life is in this new city.

If it gets too hard, maybe you can set some time limits for yourself. Leave it open, so that if after 6 months or a year, you still don’t feel okay, you can always go home. This doesn’t mean you will necessarily do it, but having this window of possibility open, will make the whole process a lot less stressful.

You don’t need to stay in a place you don’t like. Just remember that the hard periods are part of the change, but you can always go back home.

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.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): What can I do if I feel depressed because I moved to a new town and don’t have friends?

Moving to a new city can cause anxiety?

Moving to a new city can also cause a person to feel anxious. Anxiety is a way the body and mind deal with a stressful situation. When faced with the unknown, it can be that you start imagining what might happen, and in that, people usually focus more on the negative things that might happen.

This idea that bad things are just one step away, can make a person extremely anxious. So if you are facing a move, try to remember that even though there will be difficult times, they won’t always be as your mind wants you to think. 

Maybe if you bring breathing exercises or meditation to your life as a way to try and center yourself when the hard moments arrive.

Is it normal to regret moving to a new city?

Yes, it can happen that sometimes you regret moving to a new city. It won’t always be easy or fun, it will take a lot of energy adjusting to your new life, meeting new people, and starting a new routine. That can be frustrating at times, causing you to imagine how your life would be if you hadn’t made the change.

And although people like to assume, it is impossible to know how it would be. What is known is that given what you had at that time, you decided to make this move. So try to see if it is possible to adjust, but if it feels like it isn’t you can always go back.

Is moving traumatic to children?

Moving can be a traumatic experience for everyone. Be it children, teens, adults, or seniors. It depends on what are the reasons why someone is moving, how adjustable they are, and what support system they have with them.

Children will often feel the loss of the routine, the friends, but they are usually more open to adjusting to a new life. As for teenagers and adults, if they have a clear reason as to why they are moving, it can make it easier, but creating new relationships can be harder in that time of life. Especially for teens that tend to need group support in their lives.

For the senior citizens, changes in routine are often difficult, they usually have a smaller social circle, but creating a new one in a new city can be hard. So the experience will mostly depend on how they open themselves to what is there in the new city.

How do you feel at home in a new city?

To feel at home in a new city one should start a good relationship with their neighbors and in local stores. Another thing that can help is to be an active part of the community. That will make you meet a lot of people and can give you a sense of belonging.

Aside from that, when in a new city, you are also in a new home. Try to make your home a warm and cozy space. Having a place you love to go back to after a long day at work can help you feel at home in your new city.

Is it normal to enjoy moving to a new city?

Yes, it is extremely normal to enjoy moving to a new city. Some people love this rush of beginning life again in a completely different location, with totally different people.

It is important to understand what is moving you to those new cities, if it is the experience of starting anew or learning about new places and cultures, or if it is something you are running for. 

Being mindful of your reasons can help you validate your decisions and live in peace with them. It can be in one city, or the next, but you should always have in mind why you are doing what you are doing.


This article explained how it can feel for a person to move to a new city where they have no friends. How it can cause them to feel Relocation depression, and how they can cope with that situation.

If you have any questions or comments about this article, feel free to write it in the section below.


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