for Returning Home
Tips for Re-entry
Reentry, or reverse culture shock, is a very common reaction to
returning home from studying abroad. It can range from feeling that
no one understands how you've changed, to feeling panicked that
you will lose part of your identity if you don't have an outlet
to pursue new interests that were sparked abroad. As you go through
this transition period, you may find the following tips helpful:
- Your reactions
surrounding reentry may include one or more of the following symptoms:
restlessness, boredom, depression, uncertainty, confusion, isolation,
wanting to be alone, missing the people, places, attitudes or
lifestyle of your host country, changes in goals and priorities,
negativity or intolerance towards the U.S., including American
behavior, attitudes, customs and common social practice.
- This process
is much like the culture shock you may have experienced when you
first went abroad. Similar to having to adjust when you go to
another country, you must make some adjustments coming home, too.
The coping skills and strategies that were successful in helping
you adjust to your host culture will be just as helpful coming
home: get involved, identify a support group of other study abroad
students, suspend judgment until you understand a situation, keep
a journal, and always keep a sense of humor.
- You may recognize
that many of your values and beliefs have changed. Learn to incorporate
new and meaningful values and beliefs in your life.
that your friendships and relationships might change as a function
of your new experiences. Explore new places and people with whom
you can share your international experiences.
- Accept the
reality that reentry is a time of transition! Learn ways to take
care of yourself and ease into your surroundings.
Reentry & Reverse Culture Shock
The more you know, the better prepared you will be to deal with
Duke University, Office of Study Abroad; Indiana University, Office
of Overseas Study