Should I leave study abroad?

I studied in Norway for my first semester and it was the best few months of my life but I've just arrived in Japan for my second semester abroad and I am so completely lost. I have never been to Asia before, don't speak Japanese and I'm so unfamiliar with everything. I literally got here four days ago and I know what everyone will say as a response to this - that I haven't given it enough time - but I know myself and I know it's not going to get better. I've decided that after a month if I am still not enjoying it I will leave at the start of May, but I was just wondering if anyone else on here has left before and what the potential consequences are? I am doing a 'sandwich' year and am due to go back to university in England in September.

This question was asked on 21st March 2015 and has been read 3828 times.

  • Katie Lindsay · 8 years ago


    So my experiences are maybe a little different but hopefully I can give you some helpful advice at least. I was supposed to go to belgium for a year but after a few months I realised that I really wasn't enjoying myself. I became very depressed and lonely and I was very unwell. I sat my first semester exams but decided to come home after that. Because I was so unhappy (which it sounds like you are too), my university welcomed me back openly. They told me they would never make me stay somewhere I was so unhappy, and life was too short to do so. Very reassuring. If you have missed second semester (I was toying with staying on a little longer and seeing how it went so I discussed this with them) you would simply have to take an extra semester at the end of your final year. I am from Scotland so this would have meant four and a half years of study for me, but in England I would suppose it means 3 and a half years study? I decided to come home not for that reason, but because I was so unhappy and so lonely. 

    Know that you shouldn't fear coming home, and if you are unhappy and know you will not enjoy your time there then speak to your home university. They are your best port of call and will be able to provide you with information about exactly what the consequences would be if you were to call it a day. Asia is extremely different from the UK so I can understand the massive culture shock you are expereincing. Don't be afraid, you are not alone. Stay in touch with people at home and stay in touch here. 

    If you would like to talk some more feel free to contact me on: [email protected]

    Good luck whatever you decide and I hope my response has been at least a little helpful. X

  • Anonymous Answer · 8 years ago

    I know exactly that feeling after loving my first semester and after a bad start to the second semester elsewhere. I kept saying 'I don't know how it's going to get better'. I absolutely hated my first few weeks and I am still not loving it now to be honest but I have met a couple of people who I occassionally meet up with and I just always make sure I have something to look forward to or something to keep myself busy. Do you have a tutor or know anyone that speaks English (or your native tongue) and ask them to put you in contact with others. The more people you meet the busier you will be, even if its just having lunch out. IT DOES GET BETTER, I got sick of hearing this but it does improve and I always knew I didn't have to be here a long time and by the sound of it you don't have to be there a long time either, 2 months + or so? So just think of it as little chunks and don't forget - it's never going to be easy at the start and it's hard not to compare it to your first semester but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I still have the email I wrote to my tutor after the first week in my drafts saying I wanted to return but I still havent sent it! 

  • Ellen Pusey · 7 years ago

    I've been in Spain for 7 weeks now and had to go home last week for a few days and have since been diagnosed with situational depression due to being here... I really want to go home but I feel like I'm letting myself down as I would have to change my degree scheme and rush a dissertation in the next few months, and I would miss out on graduating with my language friends. 

    I feel like I'm being petty putting everything ahead of my mental health but everyone keeps telling me it's just homesickness... I'm not eating or sleeping, I can barely make myself get out of bed for something even like a glass of water and I'm at a complete loss of what to do. 

    Do you guys have any advice?

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