Agony Aunt

Updated on: Sunday, January 31, 2021, 09:29 PM IST

#MentalHealth: Dealing with homesickness

While we are still far from winning the war against the coronavirus pandemic, even though the arrivals of vaccine has offered hope. Our daily struggles continue, so do the rise in problems related to mental health. Those struggling to cope with dilemmas, paranoia, anxiety, stress, depression, and other problems, renowned psychiatrist Dr Anjali Chhabria offers solutions

I am a student living away from my family for the past two years. I last visited home in December 2019. Due to Covid my family has advised me to stay where I am as they worry about my well-being. We don’t come from a well to do background and they think if I make a trip back home and fall sick due to the virus, they won’t have enough resources to provide medical help. I really feel homesick, but I don’t know how to convince them. Please suggest.

Ans: I can understand feeling homesick, and also the helplessness associated with it. Your parents’ concern is valid to a certain degree as travelling is still an uncertain medium of transmission. You can take a few precautions though, like picking a mode of transportation which is less crowded, using protective gears, maintaining distance wherever possible, and getting tested once you are home. Government has also made it possible to avail facilities at subsidised rates so avail those if need be. Convey your plan so that they are less worried and looking forward to see you.

My wife and I got into an ugly fight a few days ago that resulted in her moving back to her parent’s house. This distance somewhere helped me gain a perspective on marriage, which was quite a revelation. I realised that our marriage had few red flags right from the beginning and that we chose to ignore them as other things were falling in place. We have been married for little over a year now and have fought constantly during this period. I think we aren’t compatible with each other and she feels I am saying this in the heat of moment. What can be done here?

Ans: You mentioned gaining some perspective in last few days, hold on to it until you get into a meaningful discussion with your wife. I believe you both can benefit from seeking marital therapy just so that the two of you can make informed decisions with respect to your marriage. The process of working with a professional can be of great help in understanding not just your individual selves, but also each other. The problem areas in marriage are discussed so as to get an idea what’s workable and what’s not. This could help decide whether calling it quits is the best option or not.


I have been working as a sales manager for almost a decade. My colleagues who transitioned from sales to other fields are doing really well, both financially and personally. I have given a lot in the last decade to this field and felt like switching as well, but the comforts here kind of demotivated me. I have been struggling with striking work-life balance as everyone thinks I am there to handle all the problems at any given hour. Is it too late to set things right?

Ans: In order to set things right we need to first start working on setting healthy boundaries. In absence of such boundaries you face the issue of others taking you for granted and entrusting you with work without being considerate about your availability. Additionally, there is a comparison drawn between you and your colleagues. For this, look at areas in which you have excelled at, professionally, and in what way you can focus on more such achievements. Both these approaches might help fix the imbalanced work-life equation.


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Published on: Monday, February 01, 2021, 07:00 AM IST