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What to do if you want to go home, but are afraid to return to Ukraine – psychologist’s advice

How to overcome emotions and is it worth it to return home if fear rolls over?

According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, more than seven million Ukrainians have gone abroad since the start of the full-scale war. More than two million have already returned. According to polls, 11% want to come soon, 36% of IDPs plan to do so when they are sure that it is already safe. Many Ukrainians are very homesick and want to return for various reasons, but are afraid. What to do in this case – Yulia Zoriy, a psychologist and host of the Rank at the Great Mist on ICTV, shared her advice in the digital project What Robity, Like … from the New Channel.

Why do they want to return?

Life abroad is a test that not everyone can do, because we are all different, we react differently to overcoming difficulties. Some of the migrants have already returned home. Some turn to the No matter how scary and dangerous it is in Ukraine, it is easier for them at home than abroad. It is perfectly normal to be afraid to return to a country where there is a war, shelling is going on and people are dying every day, and no city is safe from explosions. Considering all the horrors that people have experienced when leaving Ukraine, their anxiety is absolutely justified. After all, fear is a defense mechanism that is embedded in us as a basic setting. So we can’t cross it out just by saying, “Don’t be afraid.”

Control over emotions

It is important to accept fear. Without this, it will not be possible to balance it. It is to balance, not to overcome. That is, to put something in opposition, to do what is in your power. Ask yourself frankly: “What exactly am I afraid of?” The answer may be: get under fire or hear a siren and run for shelter, or fear of the road in case of an emergency trip abroad. Then, next to each fear, write your options for action. For example, you are afraid of a siren signaling danger. What can be done? Find out where the nearest shelter is and invite loved ones to go down there together.

Share your fears

Expressing emotions is very important. So share your fears with loved ones who support you. This will help relieve the psyche.

Return or not?

If you have weighed all the pros and cons in the list of fears, and the value of your desire to return, despite all the dangers, is higher than fear, then you will make a definite decision. If you understand that you are very afraid, then it will be right to stay in a safe place for a while. For none of us knows when the war will end, and when it will be possible to return home. There is uncertainty to be accepted. So is fear. If you accept it as a part of our life, it will cease to be the only factor influencing you. You will get the freedom of choice and the ability to counter the fear of action.

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