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To uproot my children for a year........yet again

(22 Posts)
Secondcity Thu 09-Jun-11 22:26:12

my husband has been offered a secondment to Bermuda for one year. We are currently in NYC and although I am still not totally happy with it, have decided to stay as my children are both in secondary school and are very very happy here. When they were little we moved all over the place, but would it be unfair to uproot them now they are older?

squeakytoy Thu 09-Jun-11 22:27:42

I have a friend who worked in Bermuda for a while. It is a fantastic place.

I would do it. It is educational for the kids and adds to their life experiences.

thisisyesterday Thu 09-Jun-11 22:30:40

why don't you put it to them and see what they say?

hairylights Thu 09-Jun-11 22:34:47

Yabu. Once is difficult. Three times at that age is awful. Let them
at least finish their secondary education in one place.

If they have already been uprooted a lot then dont do it again. It's really not fair on them.

DogsBestFriend Thu 09-Jun-11 22:35:28

Which would they prefer? To stay in NYC or be with their Dad? Have they exams coming up and what would the standard of education be if they moved to Bermuda?

If they're used to moving they might well consider it no big deal. What do they think?

It sounds like an exciting prospect to me, not one I'd want to turn down on my behalf or that of my DC.

That aside, how do YOU and DH feel about being apart for a year and how will it affect your relationship? You can't base this JUST on the DC, you need to have a strong marriage at the end of the year too.

AgentZigzag Thu 09-Jun-11 22:36:43

Only in a very general way through my own experience, but I've noticed that just the people I've come across (either myself or on the net/in the media) have always resented their parents moving about a lot when they were children.

Meaning that once they've established themselves with friends/routine/a base, they've been uprooted from it only to have to start all over again, being the newcomer/odd one out.

So in the end, to protect themselves from the pain of being involved and having to leave, they've just not let themselves become part of any groups or make friendships.

I'm not saying this is always the case, or that your DC would find it like this, but they've always seemed to be unhappy people who find it difficult to feel secure.

DogsBestFriend Thu 09-Jun-11 22:37:09

Sorry, I've misunderstood haven't I? I realise now that both you and your DH have turned the post down, not that you've decided to stay and DH is going to Bermuda! blush

Secondcity Thu 09-Jun-11 22:45:12

We haven't turned to post down yet, We had made the decision to stay in NY (before we were offered Bermuda) at least until the end of their schooling, now this has come up, I am very tempted to go.

microserf Thu 09-Jun-11 22:49:15

i was going to say go for it, then i saw that your kids are in high school. hmm, much tougher. i moved a lot as a child, and loved it, but if your kids are prepping for college applications etc, bermuda is a tough sell. how far off graduation are they?

Dozer Thu 09-Jun-11 22:51:57

Will it be bad for his career if he doesn't go? I would stay in nyc, fab place!

Secondcity Thu 09-Jun-11 23:44:14

My children are in middle school, so no college applications yet. It won't be bad for his career not to go, but could be very very good! I am not asking my kids yet, as I want to get my head straight first. I think they would say no, although they are very used to moving and mostly have had extremely positive experiences.

duchesse Thu 09-Jun-11 23:52:15

Are they in the IB programme? That would make it easier to transfer anywhere.

Having said that I personally feel that the benefits of living in another place outweigh the inconveniences. I am very jealous, as once your child in year 10 (age 14-15) in the UK it's very difficult to go anywhere for the next 4 years as they are stuck in a vicious cycle of Very Important Exams.

pingu2209 Fri 10-Jun-11 00:04:22

If your children are 'normal' and have no special educational needs, I would do it.

Who is to say what is the right way to bring up a child/educate a child?

Some of the most interesting people I have ever met have moved around the world with their parents. It is just different, not wrong.

izzywhizzyletsgetbusy Fri 10-Jun-11 05:33:01

I must be the exception to the rule, ZigZag as I don't feel unhappy, insecure, or resentful, because I didn't have a 'conventional' childhood living in one place and only attending 1 or 2 schools before leaving home to live with strangers at university.

I got moved around a lot as a child, and attended a considerable number of day and boarding schools in 5 different countries on both sides of the pond. My education didn't suffer as I was always able to make the necessary transitions (at some schools I was way ahead of my class, and at others I had shift my ass to catch up) and get good grades.

When I was very young I did find it hard to say goodbye to friends and familiar routines before venturing into the unknown - however, I soon learned to welcome change and began to get a tad bored if I had to stay in one place longer than a year or two.

Looking back, I believe that my nomadic childhood made me more socially capable and self-reliant at an earlier age than my peers, and the wealth of experience that I'd accumulated by osmosis stood me in good stead when I went to college a year earlier than my peers.

A big plus is that my early travels have resulted in my having a number of long established friends in Europe and the US that I enjoy visiting and hosting and we, and our dcs and other assorted friends/family members, all benefit from relatively cheap holidays/breaks without extensive planning - to say nothing of a wealth of local knowledge on tap for guidance to the best places to visit/eat/shop/play/rent cars/change money etc.

It's my understanding that educational standards in Bermuda are high, but you can seek advice from your dc's present school(s) if you have any concern that they may fall behind their peer groups.

Will the year in Bermuda conclude with your dcs returning to their present school(s)? If so, it's likely that their friends will be green with envy as am I, and as it's only a 2hr or so flight away from NYC maybe they could have their special pals over for vacations and/or stay in touch via skype or similar?

One school year is short, and so is life - go for it!! The only downside I can foresee is that you may not want to leave such a beautiful island.

ScatCatShoo Fri 10-Jun-11 06:11:38

Secondcity, I remember you from the thread about leaving your kids to study...

So you've decided not to take the funding after all? Just wondering.

Re: Bermuda, go for it. Kids are adaptable, and every new experience will only enrich their lives.

ZZZenAgain Fri 10-Jun-11 06:43:09

I agree with izzy, I have no regrets at all about all the uprooting done in my childhood. It was great. I think a year in Bermuda at this stage could be very good for them, however I would first check out the school situation there and see what schools they would be attending and whether there would be any problems invovlved in getting them back into their current school after your year abroad (if that is the plan).

And I agree with someone else who suggested asking the dc for their opinion. I would do so after I know the schooling situation

wordfactory Fri 10-Jun-11 07:57:02

I'm not a person to have regrets - more of a forward motion kinda gal - but the only regret I have is DH turning down a placement in the carribean a few years ago.

We managed to talk ourselves out of it because of stability for the DC. I think we listend far too much to those conservative folk around us who are convinced that any change is damaging.

We've since met so mnay people who are globe trotters and had expat childhoods themselves and it seems a very positive experience for them.

kreecherlivesupstairs Fri 10-Jun-11 09:06:22

I would go for it as long as your DC will be doing the same curriculum. I assume it is IB so that should not be a problem.
We had a totally different dilemma. Should we stay in Belgium for another couple of years or should me and DD go to England so she can do top juniors before starting senior school.
Her first day of term is 5th September.

LiegeAndLief Fri 10-Jun-11 09:22:08

Another here who moved around loads as a child and loved it (apart from the first week at each new school!). However, I did go to the same boarding school from 11-18. How old are they? I don't really know anything about IB or the American system but I reckon I could have moved around until the beginning of GCSEs (about 14-15), after that would have been trickier.

Kreecher, if it's any consolation I had no trouble starting senior school in the UK after various primary schools around the world.

tinkertitonk Fri 10-Jun-11 10:10:57

The things people worry about.

OP, you have choices others can't even dream of. Enjoy your life.

Tortu Fri 10-Jun-11 10:23:41

Agree with an earlier poster about asking whether they are doing the IB. In my teaching experience, teaching several different curricula, this is, hands down, the best one. It deliberately tries to produce well-rounded and academic students- successfully, in my opinion.

Thing is, it is also designed for students to move around between schools and, when I have taught in international schools, this is exactly what students are doing. Get them into a good international school in Bermuda and they will develop a friendship group of students who are in their exact situation and will be studying a good curriculum, as well as gaining the cultural and social benefits of living in a new environment.

The problem will only come if you want to get back into a non-IB school when you return, or your kids want to apply to an American University (though the top ones recognise the IB, lower rank universities remain confused).

Do it- how exciting for your kids!

p.s I moved around a lot as a child and think I've benefitted from it. Most of the kids in the international schools where I've worked have also done this and, to be honest, seem much more 'rounded' than the majority of the kids I work with in the UK. Think it tends to make them more socially confident (because they have to be) and able to talk to adults more easily. The IB also pushes this through CAS and TOK, mind.

Secondcity Fri 10-Jun-11 21:59:38

Scatcatshoo, I have reapplied because I really wasn't ready to leave them. But that is what makes this offer so difficult, I wasn't prepared to uproot my children for a year for me to come back to the UK, but as soon as Bermuda is mentioned I consider it! grin I guess the difference is we would all be together, but my original fears are still present, I don't think it would disrupt their schooling, they are in a more progressive school. I just worry about them missing their friends and life here, because after a shaky start they now love it. Thank you for all the responses, it is always so reassuring hearing the positive stories.

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