To move older dc to a rural location after living in the city?(83 Posts)
I'll try to be concise.
We currently live in the suburbs yet where we live means we needs to use car/ public transport for: dc school/ swimming baths/ cinema etc. The only things within 30mins walk are very small library, a handful of shops and a couple of small parks. When dc1 is old enough (currently 9) to travel to his friends, it would be a 15min bike ride.
We long for a more rural location and currently, older dc would love it for all the reasons we would (bigger house, huge garden, countryside on doorstep). My concern is that he will resent this when he's a teenager (several people we've spoke to about it have also mentioned the same issues, especially for when dc is 13-18).
The place we would be moving to is very small with only one shop and a pub, but it is only a ten minute bike ride to the two nearest villages who (though still relatively small) offer a Scouts group/ park but also, a bus that runs every ten minutes into the city centre (the journey itself taking about 20mins, which is the same on from where we live now if we go on public transport).
Is it selfish to move, or should we just go for it? Heard such differing views in rw I thought it would be helpful to get a range of thoughts on here.
Check the bus times and routes then double check them. Make sure they go until late in the evening.
I also had the following experiences - magic mushrooms, racing round the woods on mo-peds without helmets at terrifying speeds, lots of drinking/sexual activity in the group at very early ages, and more soberly, two deaths and two serious injuries arising from teenagers on bikes/in first cars tearing round the village lanes showing off. When I was 17 my UCCA choice selections were all deliberately in big cities at least 100 miles away from home, and i spent the next 15 years in big cities. Looking back it was actually a fun way of growing up (although I felt very naive at uni), but I do worry about my own kids (we moved back to the same area when my kids were born to give them the whole extended family experience). I worry less about the taxi service bit (my mates have the same experience in the heart of London) but I am sure that once my kids start driving or being ferried around by other kids I will be losing an awful lot of sleep waiting for them to come home. Only a few weeks ago there was another 17 yo died in a car crash not far from our village, and last week was the anniversary of the death of the 16 yo son of a friend in the village (hit from behind whilst driving carefully on a moped). That for me is the very worst bit of village life.
No, I had some friends who grew up in a rural village and they said they basically spent their time getting stoned in fields... which is pretty much what all my friends in the city did (except in parks)!
Oh I know that teens everywhere "do drugs", but some people have a rose-tinted view that the teens in the country live in Enid Blyton books and are protected from the modern sins of drugs and sex. As long as you know that doesn't work.
I don't mind idea of being taxi driver, dp and I rarely drink (normally if we go out which is about once every 2 months), plus, it's not as though we'll have 'our lives back' as ds1 is an older teenager as ds2 will only be around 9 and we're hoping for a dc3 so essentially we'd still have two young ones and so be up early/ driving them places etc.
Yes, I'd be happy with schools and yes bus stop is walking distance (the village only has about 20 streets so everything is walking distance)!
I'm not sure the 'bored kids in the country do drugs' is any different to anywhere else, there will be teenagers everywhere who take drugs (I've taught in inner-city, suburbs and rural schools and there have always been a proportion of kids who will experiment (and in sad cases, be fully consumed) with drugs.
I think it sounds great. Just make sure they can walk to school on their own and walk from the bus stop for secondary. This is crucial or you will be tied to school runs until the youngest is 18.
We live in a totally isolated spot. I have to take the kids to the bus stop and pick them up again. This afternoon 2DCs have clubs so wont be on the bus. One has to be picked up at 4.30 and one at 6.30. Its a 35 minute round trip. I could do without all the driving and am desperate to move.
BUT I would only move to the village where the primary school is and where their friends live and where the school bus comes to. I would never go back to the city. My friend grew up in the centre of London- she says she spent her teens hanging outside 7eleven as they werent allowed in anywhere.
Let them grow up in a small community and then revel in the big city when they go off to uni.
I remember a debate on this subject on Radio 5 once, and the general consensus was it is a very selfish thing to do, young children then great, but the various experts made the point that having stuff to do for teenager's is critical to their development...
All I can tell you is we have done the opposite, I was bought up by parents who love the country and I had zero friends where we lived, a tiny village of 50 houses
and I was bored a lot, and I vowed to raise our DS in a urban environment, despite its shortcomings..
I don't know the right answer as obviously we now have the internet etc,
Its a gamble. I was moved to a village at about that age, along with my two brothers (both younger). In our teen years:
I was still the outsider and bullied/socially isolated
DB1 was in a close group of friends who stayed active in Scouting and did outdoors activities most weekends
DB2's friendship group fell apart and he ended up a group who took drugs out of boredom.
How far is it to the secondary school, and is it a school you are happy for DS to go to? Because his friends as a teen may not be from the village you are in/primary school he goes to.
Lol, are you sure it's in the countryside, 3 buses an hour with a 20 min trip into Newcastle sounds like the suburbs.
I was picturing a remote hilltop farm out in the middle of the moors.
I think it sounds a perfect place to be.
If there is a bus into town every ten minutes I wouldn't really class that as rural. Ny parents moved us from London to a village in Cambridgeshire when I was 9. I detested it for two years as the kids were really unpleasant in the junior school. there was only two buses a day which made life as a teen very tough - if I missed the 7.25 but I would be 2 hours late for 6th form and if I missed the 5.45 bus I was at the mercy of my Step father for a ride home. With so little transportation I had to beg to be allowed to any social events in the evening and only ever found two friends local enough to walk to their house.
If you are willing to be a taxi and take him to friends houses in villages all over, prepared for drives into town when he misses the last bus and think he will enjoy the countryside, go for it. A bus every 10 minutes sounds great.
Vivica- yes, there are currently schools within a 30min walk of us, there are several, I should have been more specific and said there are none that I would choose to send my child too.
Massive thanks for all your replies, it's really food for thought.
Have since spoke to woman in local deli (who lives in village) and discovered that there are actually 3 buses per hour into city (Newcastle) with 20min travel time. She has one dd past teenage years and one dd that is 9, she said they both love it and that kids are all very friendly/ play out together and transport links were no issue at all for her older dd. I know that's just her own experience but was good to hear, (she invited us to have a cuppa with her in her deli when we next visit (which is tomorrow) to find out more).
As for eldest ds's personality- it's a tough one. On one hand, he adores the outdoors- biking, football, walking etc etc but on the other he's quite happy reading/ playing lego/ going to cinema etc etc. I guess that's typical of most kids his age, it'll be hard to predict what he'll like as a teen. I would say that he's happiest with friends.
Also spoke to village school (few streets from house) and there are 30 kids in his class (so not that small), of which 19 are boys (and of those 19, around half are from the village, others from nearly villages). There is also a bus service which takes kids from village to next school. All of the schools are ones I'd be happy to send dc to (and dp and I are both teachers so we're fussy)!
This is a really interesting thread, and KMC's post struck a chord with me.
I think a move to the country also possibly depends on your children's personality type. I grew up in a small place and hated it. The only way to have enjoyed it would be to embrace the outdoor life, but that wasn't me at all. I think my experience was coloured by the fact I was a bookish, arty child. I now live in London, and am utterly in my element. There is so much to do here. All the children's theatre, galleries and museums and the millions of other off-beat things there are here for kids to do would have meant the world to me when I was much younger, and I often wonder whether a childhood in a big city would have meant an easier time of things for me.
I haven't read the whole thread, but I remember from school that the DC who lived in the villages were the ones who couldn't go into the town for a drink in the Wimpy with their friends; they were the ones who couldn't/didn't meet up in town to go shopping or just mooch about. My teenage DC have some friends now who live in outlying villages and they are the ones who don't meet up at the weekend, or if they do, it's a big faff and can't be done on the spur of the moment. I would hate to live rurally. I don't mind suburbs, though. I wouldn't move. We particularly chose our house so it is near enough the town centre for DC to walk into and close enough to the schools, too.
If your children might like country hobbies - riding ,shooting, young farmers then they will have a lovely time (and they can also find part time work beating, mucking out, calf feeding etc).
If you need swimming pools,galleries,broadband etc then they'll hate the rural life.
If someone starts a thread saying I am thinking of moving from the countryside to a town - what are the potential downsides then feel free to list them all!
Or list the crap things about living in a town here, just label them as this is why you SHOULD move to the country
Oh and possibly I was slightly chippy as I get quite defensive about the listings of all the reasons living in the countryside is crap
as I am about to give birth and am very hormonal
I just wouldn't dream of listing all the reasons I think living in the town is crap as I think it could be seen as rude to those who live in towns. Although that is the point of the thread so maybe I should just retire gracefully and shut up.
Oh, I know that Trills. I was coming from the perspective that I wouldn't think that the consequences being pointed out were not necessarily relevant as the circumstances are all so very different.
It is not just town v country, it is a million different places versus a million different places.
Humphrey - of course you should live where you want to live. We're just pointing out some of the potential consequences, which will affect the OP as well as her children.
Living in villages/suburbs/towns/cities all have different pros and cons. It's good to be aware of them when you make the decision, but ultimately the decision is up to the adults.
We moved to country when DS was 14 and he happened to thrive in new much smaller school and met a great and still v close bunch of mates. It was friendlier and parents shared lift giving, unlike in the town where we had previously been.
that should say that all it was ok to grow up in villages have chosen to bring my kids up in a town as there is more to do and it's easier for them to be independent as they grow up.
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