Adjusting after an overseas tour

Adjusting after an overseas tour

Making a move to a foreign country as part of military service is a big adjustment, but probably one you were prepared for, expected and were ready to deal with; however, people are often surprised to find that they experience a form of reverse culture shock when their tour ends and they move back home.  The good news is that there are ways to both recognize and minimize the impact this can have on you and your family.

People who found it very easy to adapt to living in a foreign country following a military move are often the ones who fall victim to reverse culture shock when they come home.  There can be some short-term side effects, including feeling isolated or disoriented, losing self-esteem, romanticizing your overseas experience, and strain being placed on your relationships.

It will take time adjust after a move back to the United States from an overseas posting.  You may realize that you have changed during your time abroad and have a new respect and appreciation for other countries and cultures, along with an increased willingness to try new things.

It is important to take the time to say goodbye to the friends you have made overseas.  Reverse homesickness can often take place when returning to the US and you need to say goodbye to the places and relationships that have become familiar and comfortable.  Another good tip is to find a mentor who has also returned from a trip overseas and who can offer advice to make your readjustment easier.