Homesick in France: How to avoid or deal with it
Even if your overriding feeling when you are moving to France is one of excitement, there is also likely to be a certain amount of trepidation and homesickness over leaving your old life behind.
Although France is our nearest neighbour, moving here is still a move to another country and it will be important to spend some time adjusting to your new life. France Buying Guide has put together their top tips for dealing with homesickness after your move:
This truly is the key to any successful move; it’s important when moving to the UK, so when you take into account a move to another country, this becomes even more critical. It is wise to take the attitude that yes, things will be difficult and certainly unfamiliar at first, and you will probably feel out of your depth. Understanding this at the outset should help you with the process of settling in and dealing with your homesickness.
In many ways, this makes up part of the above, but we see this as important enough to be a separate point, because it is so important to ensure that you learn as much as you can about your new community in advance. Finding out information about activities and things to do locally will help speed up your ability to deal with your homesickness.
It’s so important to find out as much as you can about your new community in advance.
Take advantage of your ‘foreignness’
France is very different to the UK – it’s larger, with more open spaces, bigger and cheaper houses, spectacular scenery and, in general, a more laidback lifestyle (especially in the rural parts). Don’t presume that you will immediately get used to these changes and your new life; instead ask questions and speak to the locals – they will be interested in you and will understand that your life is very different. They will often then go out of their way to help you acclimatise.
Pursue a hobby or join a group
If you have an interest, such as singing, playing sports or anything else, find your nearest classes or groups and sign up; if you are religious, why not look for your nearest church or other place of worship? By doing this you are likely to meet people with whom you have something in common, and can hopefully build friendships with.
Move at the best time for your children
Those with children often move to France during the summer holidays, to coincide with the new school term. Your children will be able to join along with some others, which should help them to deal with any homesickness, and will also give you the opportunity to meet people simply by attending school activities.
Find an expat community
Most cities, and many smaller towns, are home to expat communities. Here you will be able to speak to people in the same situation as you, discuss experiences and share notes – and this is the sort of thing that can create strong bonds and overcome homesickness
Your city or town’s expat community will enable you to speak to people in the same situation as you.
Accept that homesickness is normal
There is no time limit on how long it could take for you to feel settled into your new life in France, and even after months have passed, you may find that there are days when you yearn for the UK – especially when you have left close family and friends behind. The trick to deal with this is to remember that it is completely normal. Try to embrace the differences between the two countries, and make the most of all that France has to offer you.
The France Buying Guide walks you step-by-step through each stage of the property buying process in France, with practical recommendations from our experts who have been through the process themselves. The guide will help you to: