How to cope when your friends study abroad for summer

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A side effect of attending the world’s No. 1 public university is the fact that opportunities continue even when school doesn’t. Among our many study-abroad options for summer 2015 are programs in China, France, Spain … countries around the world. Sure, this is good news for those of us who want to get out of our comfort zones and explore the world. On the other hand, it’s bad news for the friends of said adventurers. If your friends are flying across the world to spend their summer elsewhere, here’s a guide to coping with their absence.

Acceptance is the first step.

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Media File

Have you avoided your friends or made blatant attempts to hate them ever since they told you about their summer plans? We understand. It’s hard to come to terms with such abandonment. But it’s very important to accept this fact before you can proceed with the coping process. As is often said, “everything happens for a reason.” Realize that this type of experience might help your friends grow as people and that sometimes you have to sacrifice a little for that to happen.

Set up Skype dates. 

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What is time difference in the world of Skype and FaceTime? Even Facebook lets you video chat nowadays. Before they leave, make sure you decide on regularly timed Skype sessions. Maybe it’ll be your 1 a.m. and their 5 p.m. Whatever it takes, let it happen. After all, what does your sleep matter if it means catching up with your BFF?

Make a countdown.

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Virtually, literally, anything — a countdown to when you will be reunited will make this process feel faster. It could be as simple as crossed-out dates on your calendar or as intense as a 30-minute dance party at midnight celebrating the passing of another day before you get to see your buddies again.

Make a care package.

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Give them something to remember you by: provide them with a care package before they leave. Toothbrushes, bug spray, sunglasses and extra ballpoint pens — these are the things that make up one’s quotidian traveling life, and they are the items you should provide. This way, they will think of you in their quiet moments, the evenings and the early mornings.

Take something from them.

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Remember that cardigan one of your friends really cherishes, or that beanie the other can’t live without? Take it. This is a foolproof way to make sure your friendships will survive the long distance. How can they cut off contact with you if you have their most treasured possessions? When fall hits, they won’t have an excuse to avoid hanging out and to let your friendship die.

Image Sources: Marco Raaphorst, Steven Depolo, Daniel Ross, 55Laney69 under Creative Commons

Contact Linsha Qi at [email protected].