Poor DB in OZ, SIL doesnt want to be there. (Long)

(56 Posts)
ShamelessHussey Mon 10-Jun-13 11:09:57

Have just had a distressing call with my DB.
He and SIL and kids moved to Oz a couple of years ago from Ireland.
He had been unemployed for 5 yrs, and got a fantastic offer, so they moved.
There have been ups and downs in their relationship over the years, (she had quite bad pnd after 2 of the kids.)
She left him a couple of times and went home to her parents. A lot of this was while she was ill, though I am sure my DB is not that easy to live with either.
Anyway, they are on a 457 visa, and he wants to apply for permanent residency. On his own, he doesnt have enough points, (he is 45, she is 43) but with her qualifications, he has been advised by a migration agent that they stand a much better chance.
She has refused to apply with him. She is now saying that she needs to go back to Ireland. She has accused him of tricking her to get her to go to OZ. She wont believe him that PR just means they can stay forever if they want to, not that they have to stay forever. Aything he tries to explain with regards to situation in Ireland vs Oz she says he is lying.

He is trying to do whats best for the family.That they will have more options if they get PR. She has said she needs to go back to look after herself.
They have plenty of money, have cleared the debt they had before they left, and are saving. They have a good standard of living. He is well qualified but there are no jobs for him in Ireland in his area.
They would have no home to go back to.

She said they can live with her parents. Her parents dont like him, partly because of some of the insane stuff she said when they were having problems. She has actually told me that she said a lot of things that werent true because she was so angry with him. So I know this is not all me being biased.

One of their children is disabled, they get a hell of a lot more services in Oz than they would get in Ireland. Obviously they pay for it, but those services are being withdrawn or are already unavailable in Ireland.

I am sure it is very hard for her, being away from home, but surely you do the best you can for your kids, for your family. None of her immediate family have been over to visit. I have been a couple of times. She seems to have a good social circle. She seems to have a good network set up. Obviosuly thats not the same as family though.

He thinks she is getting sick again. He is afraid to say anything about it to her though.

He has suggested she go home for a holiday. He said he would organise a live in helper for the kids for while she was away. She refused.
He suggested they move out of the tiny town they are currently living in, to somewhere with a bit more going on. She refused.
He has told me they dont ever go out without the kids, because whatever he suggests, she refuses.

If she is getting sick, I am sure its related to being so far away from home. But if they go home, he will be unemployed and they will have no where to live. I cant see how that can be better.

I dont know what to suggest to him. I don't have any answers but have told him I am on the end of the phone for him.

Mosman Tue 02-Jul-13 06:41:34

I completely agree the 457 situation with a family is stress nobody needs in their lives.

glastocat Tue 02-Jul-13 06:16:54

Oh and you need to have PR for four years of residency before qualifying for citizenship, so it's 2017 for me ( husband and son are already citizens). I don't underestimate the stress of living on a 457, I have friends who have had all kinds of problems and you really have no security, it is an uncertain way to live.

glastocat Tue 02-Jul-13 06:14:26

This is a dreadful situation that touches a lot of buttons for me. I have emigrated from Ireland to Oz, fortunately I love it here as the country really is ruined financially, and will be for a long time, our childrens' children will still be paying the debt. I have also suffered from depression in the past, both PND and reactive, so I do sympathise a lot with the wife, and can see no easy solution to this. If the children like Oz ( and my son has said from week one he never wants to go back to Ireland, he loves it here!) then I think it unfair to bring them back to a country with little hope or prospects, appalling health services and little future prospects. It's also unfair to expect the mother to stay where she is unhappy, and unfair to expect the husband to work away, either in Oz or ME. So, there will be no happy ending. Above all IMO it is completely unfair of the wife to refuse to discuss the issue, this affects the entire family, she does not get to make a unilateral decision!

So, as no one will 'win', barring discussion ( which is of course preferable) I would advise the Ops brother to decide what the best outcome is for the majority of the family and tailor his actions accordingly.

nooka Tue 02-Jul-13 03:01:37

PR isn't permanent, you need citizenship for permanency/options later. Having PR just unties you from work sponsorship, so if you lose your job you don't have to leave the country. I don't know what the citizenship requirements are for Australia but you probably need anything from 2-5 years of PR before you can apply for citizenship.

I feel for the OP's B and SIL. My sister is in the SIL's position, and coming home this summer after four years of being miserable. She's not depressed, just incredibly homesick. BIL is Australian, and hated living in London, so it's a lose lose situation for them. She said she'd come home without him, we worried hugely that she might as a result lose her children, but they are both coming back. I doubt that their relationship will last, and expect he will return at some point. She worked very hard to get established in Australia, got jobs, made friends etc, but it hasn't worked.

Emigration is very hard on people, it's a very difficult transition, and if you move because you have to, and not because you wanted to I suspect the chances of being happy are fairly small.

I'm 100% behind my sister returning, but I do hope that she manages to re-establish in the UK. Sadly it can be just as hard coming back as going.

Mosman Tue 02-Jul-13 00:15:35

PR makes no difference he can stop her leaving with the children now. I think they should get PR if nothing else but to give the children options when they are older.
The lady here might be in for a shock if all her kids want to live in Australia.

JustinBsMum Sun 30-Jun-13 22:24:51

cjel said *Just want to say that depression is quite often internalised anger. It may be that she is not 'ill' just not being listened to and feeling very out of control. decisions have been made around her and now she is being made to feel bad by not putting her own needs down to satisfy his. I wouldn't say that the depression is leading her decision. I would argue that her life situation has made her depressed and he is underestimating the control he has over her.
It also doesn't matter about the economy in any country, if she is not being listened to and feels she has not got control over what happens to her being rich, poor, broke or not she is living a life she doesn't want, and that is the worst feeling in the world*

And I agree 100% with it. I've been overseas for years and finally flipped and it's the long term not being in control of your own life/decisions/happiness/needs etc etc etc that eventually drags you down - trying to reason with someone in the pit of this type of misery is pointless. Brow beating her and guilt tripping by lecturing on what is best for the family, DH or DCs is only making her more depressed, she will feel as if everyone matters except her.

I would send SIL home immediately, probably if DCs primary school age their education won't be messed up. Then she can breath and relax and decide what she really wants. Surely DB can be on his own for say, 6 months?? By then SIL will have had time to decide what she DOES want, perhaps she wants a new career? perhaps she doesn't want to stay married to DB, perhaps she will realise that OZ for a few more years is bearable. But until she gets that opportunity to make her own decisions things will not improve.

yetanotherworry Fri 21-Jun-13 22:14:52

RichMan, when I was in this situation I did not think rationally. All I knew was that I had to get back home again with my kids. Money didn't matter! I remember my PIL coming to visit and them asking what was wrong with me because I am normally one of the most rational laid-back people possible.
I was back home for about 3 months before I could think clearly again and we did end up going back to Oz again.

cjel Fri 21-Jun-13 21:15:13

I don't think she will be in a fit state to choose anything other than home. when she has a bit of control back over her life who knows what she will choose?

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Fri 21-Jun-13 11:26:15

cjel I'm not saying she should stay. He should stay in Oz. She should go home. There's no point in him going home to Ireland because it's bankrupt. However, I do think the fact that she wont entertain anything other than Ireland is rather short sighted when she considers her children's futures. It's all very well saying money isnt important, but it is. Most people who are poor are miserable. Having money wont make you happy but it does remove something that makes many people very stressed and miserable.

lisianthus Thu 20-Jun-13 13:04:11

Why are they assuming that the children can't stay with him, though? It sounds as if the children are in a great place for them, with really good SN provision and so on. Why is it your DB that has to lose his family if it is your SIL that wants to leave? It sounds from the OP's last post that she won't even entertain a solution that allows him to be within a relatively short commute of the children. That's really unfair. (Clearly your SIL is in a terrible situation herself and there isn't going to be a solution which makes everyone happy, but the children shouldn't have to lose out as well, which from what SummerRain is saying re cuts in services, they will.)

What I am getting at here is that they don't even seem to have considered having the children live with their father - why not?

echt Wed 19-Jun-13 20:06:45

Sorry you're going to leave, Savoy, I remember you coming to Australia on Living Overseas. I hope it turns out well for you. Happy landings.smile

HappyAsASandboy Wed 19-Jun-13 09:56:58

I think I would advise your brother to separate the PR issue and the 'stay or go' issue.

If they apply for PR, then they will always have the option of living in Australia (either separately or together). Would their children also get that right? If so, it would seem daft to me not to get them that possibility for their future if it is just a case of applying for it.

The 'stay or go' issue is separate IMO. A miserable mum is no basis for a happy family, so if she's sure she wants to leave Austrailia then I think your Brother has to work on that with her. Is it Australia she doesn't like? Or the fact it's not Ireland? Or the distance from her family? If its the distance, then how far would be too far?

I agree that moving from an indepedant life with own house, job and family to living in his MIL spare room with no job, no house and fitting in with someone else's family would be a BIG pill for your brother to swallow. Particularly because with no job, he won't have a way to ever get out of there! I wouldn't make such a move.

cjel Wed 19-Jun-13 09:36:25

whats the point of having money if you are living like you are dead? if they can't make the realationship work whatever their situation then why should she waste her life(this is not a dress rehersal) on being that miserable, not seeing her friends and family just so her dh has the life he wants?

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Wed 19-Jun-13 06:13:55

Cjel I understand that, but the issue is that stay or go, the relationship most probably won't survive, so if I were him, that is how I would assess it. Option 1: She'll be back in Ireland, looking after 3+ (not sure qite how many) kids, including one with SN, on her own, seeing him around once a month. Very few people weekly commute from the ME, especially as the weekends dont line up (Thurs/Fri or Fri/Sat vs. Sat/Sun). Option 2: they're all back in Ireland living on benefits. Neither is conducive to the survival of an already rocky relationship.

cjel Tue 18-Jun-13 20:21:38

yes i'd move it!

Vitvale Tue 18-Jun-13 15:22:52

This thread sums up my problem. I am just like the OP's SIL. Glad I'm not alone. Go home or stay? I am the only one who wants to go. I am not unaware of the economic problems back home and how difficult moving will be. I have given it 11 years but I don't see a future here for me or our kids. Plus the economy in this Mediterranean country is worse than the one at home. confused. DP mostly refuses to discuss it or if he does he agrees to going home but then does nothing to find a job and a few weeks later talks about buying a place here and generally talking like we are staying here for ever......should I post this in Relationships?

cjel Sat 15-Jun-13 10:34:45

I wouldn't say they suggest that, I'd say they suggest she is so desperate that she will do anything to change it. she has told him , he isn't understanding her desperation, he keeps using financial reasons to stay so she is at least trying to come up with a financial situation for him.

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Sat 15-Jun-13 09:11:50

This is one of these situations where both outcomes are equally likely to be miserable for all concerned. It's not fair of him to expect her to stay in Australia against her wishes but at the same time it's not fair of her to expect him to live on his own in the Middle East so she can move back to an economically ruined Ireland and be financially supported by him. If I were him I'd probably take a hard look at whether the marriage could survive the move back. If not, I'd probably stay and let her move back. Her comments re him living in the Middle East suggest she doesn't really expect the relationship to last.

cjel Fri 14-Jun-13 23:56:51

Hope your healing goes smoothly and you get back as soon as you cqn.xxx

Longdistance Fri 14-Jun-13 23:27:36

When my broken leg is fixed. I'm not allowed to fly at the minute as I've had surgery on it, and need some physio.
Don't think I'll be able to do the flights back alone with dds 2 and 4. I did last year, but need to get back on my feet so's to speak.
Having an accident and very little help and support has brought it back to me, that really, I haven't a fucking clue why I'm here?????

cjel Fri 14-Jun-13 22:37:33

long distance so sorry to hear you are in that situation. How soon are you able to leave?

yetanotherworry Fri 14-Jun-13 13:02:19

Justa quick warning to people planning on separating whilst on a 457. If this happens, if you are the secondary applicant you are legally obliged to inform DIAC and leave the country. However, because your children are also secondary applicants but still linked to the primary applicant they do not have to leave the country. I had a friend this happened to - she ended up getting permission to remain with her children but had to apply for PR. She is still there 3 years later and still very unhappy about being forced to live in a country where she doesn't want to be. Its a very difficult situation.

Longdistance Fri 14-Jun-13 12:49:54

I'm so jealous of you Scone envy

Shamless I'm like your sil, and it's fucking lonely and miserable place to be. We are on a 457 visa, and on a 'see how we go' basis. I hate it, dh likes it. It is stressful too.

My dh is putting pressure on me constantly. He put pressure on me to move, with decisions made for me like cjel has already pointed out I could kiss her for being right My car was even chosen for me ffs!!! I'm driving a car I hate, no one has ever chosen a car for me.

I can tell dh til I'm blue in the face that I hate it here. He still doesn't listen.

I gave up my job of 15 years for this move, and pressure, and I resent my dh immensely. My ife s going nowhere here.

The only thing keeping me going is knowing that I am planning to leave with or without him!

Savoy I can't tell you how lovely it is to be back - even with all the crap around our relationship - being home is like putting on your favourite slippers and curling up under a familiar blanket.

I have been back nearly six months and still get a feeling of euphoria when I go to the next town for a walk down the high street. Seeing bumblebees made me cry (in a good way)!

Dh is still surprised I don't miss Australia. I miss some of the people I met, but not the place. This is my home.

mummytime Fri 14-Jun-13 09:57:21

Why can't your DB retrain for some job there is in Ireland?

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