Away from home for the holidays? Here’s how to cope.

Are you going to be away from home for the holidays this year? Here are some ways you can cope.

Being away from home can be tough, especially during the holidays. Sometimes, it’s your choice to be away from home. Other times, it’s not. Either way, you may be missing your family, friends, holiday traditions or other things you enjoy this time of year. It’s important to know there are things you can do to feel better about being away from home for the holidays. Here are some ideas:

  • Stay in contact: try to keep in touch with friends and family. You can schedule a phone call or video chat on the day(s) you celebrate. (It can be a good idea to contact your loved ones whenever you’re feeling homesick, too.)
  • Meet new people: building new relationships where you are can help you feel more connected and comfortable. Look around your neighbourhood, school or other community group for people you’d like to get to know.
  • Honour old traditions: celebrate tradition by doing some of the things you typically would during the holidays. This can help you deal with the transition and feel closer to home.
  • Start new traditions: celebrate the season in your current living space by starting your own holiday traditions. Research fun and unique ways to join the festivities and get your mind off missing home.
  • Find some entertainment: relax and listen to your favourite holiday music or watch your favourite holiday movie. This may help you feel more excited about the season.
  • Decorate your space: add a festive touch to your current living space with new, old or borrowed decorations. You could use items that remind you of home or try something completely different.
  • Send greetings: consider sending holiday cards or other festive greetings to friends and family. This can help you feel better about the situation and boost your mood.
  • Treat yourself: if you’re feeling down, it can be nice to treat yourself to something you enjoy. You could take a warm bath, go for a walk outside or pick up your favourite holiday snack.
  • Go out: if you can, try to get out and enjoy the season. You could go holiday shopping, meet a friend for hot chocolate or try a new winter activity.
  • Make a holiday meal: consider inviting some friends over and making a holiday meal together. You could make your family’s traditional dishes or try something new.
  • Give back: the holidays are a season of giving back to your community. You could volunteer your time or donate to a cause that’s close to your heart to help spread the spirit of giving.
  • Accept change: try to embrace the season as it is. If you can, accept the change in your holiday celebrations as something new. Remember, you can celebrate in your own way, even if you’re far from home.
  • Talk to someone: it can be a good idea to talk to someone if you’re struggling with being away from home. You can always call a Kids Help Phone counsellor at 1-800-668-6868.

Being away from home for the holidays can be hard to deal with. If you’re missing home this year, try to embrace the season by staying in touch with loved ones and starting your own traditions.


If you would like to know more about this topic, you can connect with a counsellor by phone or Live Chat.