So if you are backpacking Europe for six months without coming back, does this make you an expat? Yes, it does! How about living in South East Asia teaching English for a year or two, and maybe you decide to stay indefinitely? Once again, you are an expat.
Leaving your home country, local food, family, and friends is not an easy task. Going to a new country where the food is different, the customs are different, and the foreign language can bring on some culture shock to many people.