This may sound counter-intuitive but one difference between a good host family and a great host family is that great host families know when not to include the home stay student. They understand that while they want to make the host student feel like part of the family, they also keep in mind they they are still a guest. All families have their ups and downs. Great host families don’t burden their home stay students with things like obligatory visits to the hospital to see a terminally ill grand parent. They also avoid having heated arguments in front of the home stay student. Ideal host families shield their home stay student from distressing experiences, understanding that the student is experiencing his or her own stress from culture shock, missing their own family back home and stress from school. While it is normal for family members to disagree from time to time, the best host families understand that “domestic drama” does not make for a pleasant home stay experience.