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To not want to move to DH's home country?

(196 Posts)
fannysatdawn Sun 25-Dec-16 20:08:07

We have 3DC, 10mo, 2 and 3. DH and I met and married in the U.K but he is originally from Egypt. The situation in Egypt was always very problematic (from 2011) and is not ideal now either for a family as a preference over England. We always agreed that if the situation improves we may consider having a house there when we retire. At the moment we go there 4 times a year for about 2 weeks to a month each time.

DH has suddenly decided he wants to move there now. He says he is having an identity crisis, feels separated from his homeland and he wants his children to feel they have Egyptian heritage.

This could not have come at a worse time for me. I have had severe PND since the birth of 3rd DC, I am in the wilderness of hormones and lack of adult company (I am a full time SAHM) and I too am having an identity crisis and DH fails to see that, just because it's not cultural or patriotic, it is the full time being a mum cliche.

My parents are very close to the DC as we live in England, they are a total saving grace for me because they offer me a lot of support where DH doesn't. DH feels that his parents do not get enough time with the DC (even though we spend about 4 -5 months a year with them.)

I am very torn because I believe in equality and treating both cultures the same and allowing them equal influence and weight in the DC's lives. But I feel I have already bent over backwards to accommodate DH's wishes. Eg we always holiday in Egypt and never go to any other country. All our free time is spent in Egypt. We are teaching the DC Arabic as well as English and I am learning Arabic. I have told DH's parents our house is an open house to them, even though they are not particularly nice to me and have made it clear they are angry DH married outside of his culture.

I asked DH if I refused whether it would be a deal breaker. He said it wouldn't end our marriage but he would feel that I would have "deprived our family of an experience essential to our health, growth and happiness." Which is basically opening things up to lay blame at my door for anything that might go wrong in the future.

What do you think?

glentherednosedbattleostrich Sun 25-Dec-16 20:12:20

I wouldn't.

You have pnd and there is no way you should be away from your support network.

Also, as a feminist, I don't think I could live in such a culture. Add in the volatility iin the region and its a definite no go.

ChasedByBees Sun 25-Dec-16 20:13:15

I wouldn't. I think this is the type of thing both parties in a relationship have to be in complete agreement about. I would refuse for the reasons you give:

* It was never part of the deal when the children were small
* You rely on help from your parents
* His parents would not necessarily give the same support (and may even cause you issues as they are angry about your relationship)
* the political situation is not ideal

I'd add a point - I don't know if Egypt is covered by the Geneva convention but if Egypt becomes your children's normal place of residence and you later change your mind and want to return, it may be that you cannot return with the children without your DH's permission so you would either be stuck there or you would have to leave your children behind.

Based on the last reason alone it would be an absolute no from me.

MrsMozart Sun 25-Dec-16 20:15:07


It's not a stable country, so I wouldn't go.

You've done a lot already and it sounds like you spend nearly half the year there already.

aprilanne Sun 25-Dec-16 20:16:03

dont go .say you go and the marriage ends anyway you will have very few rights as a woman in egypt my friend went abroad her marriage collapsed and she lost her children because like it or not some countrys dont see females as equal and egypt is one of them and the fact your inlaws dont like you no way but thats just my opinion

Peppapogstillonaloop Sun 25-Dec-16 20:16:07

I really wouldn't especially at this stage when your kids are small and you have pnd. Stay out with your support network. If his parents are not nice to you now they will certainly be worse when you are there full time.
Could you compromise and offer to re visit the idea in. Couple of years?

ChasedByBees Sun 25-Dec-16 20:16:09

I meant Hague convention, not Geneva.

Found this, no idea of its provenance or if it's up to date but it's on a website:

NotStoppedAllDay Sun 25-Dec-16 20:16:57

Wow what job does he do which gives him that much time off?)

John4703 Sun 25-Dec-16 20:17:12

It is such a difficult decision and you will know the situation in Egypt better than most people on here. The news shows problems but that is probably limited to some areas. I also am place marking as I'd love to know what you decide I have visited Egypt once and loved the place but that is different to living there. What would education be like for your children?

pklme Sun 25-Dec-16 20:17:31

No. You would be very vulnerable there.

Christmasmice Sun 25-Dec-16 20:17:50

Dear God no. I have no doubt there are many incredible things about Egypt but it's too patriarchal and unstable. And as someone said above, if you wanted to return to England with your children (alone), you'd pretty much have zero chance.
Don't do it.

AmberEars Sun 25-Dec-16 20:19:41

I wouldn't go. It sounds to me as I he's waited until you are in a vulnerable position and then moved the goal posts.

KC225 Sun 25-Dec-16 20:20:09

I did it two years ago from London to Sweden. It's so bloody hard. I still cannot speak the language, I have no friends and I feel very isolated. I have offered to volunteer (even speak English with the teenagers for practice at the secondary School) all efforts have been rebuffed. We have an amazing house, a property that would require a lottery win in London but it is a guilded cage. The scenery is stunning and my son's asthma disappeared overnight. But think one. I am only in Sweden and I have regrets

Sittingunderafrostysky Sun 25-Dec-16 20:20:40

No, I wouldn't go either. You are being more than fair already.

When the children start school, you will some stability. Would you want them educated in Egypt?

Cherrysoup Sun 25-Dec-16 20:21:09

No, no, no. You'd lose your support network, women are treated very much as second class citizens over there and his parents aren't fond of you. I hate to say it and I might be completely wrong, but if you agreed, I dread to think what position you would have, if any.

Loopytiles Sun 25-Dec-16 20:21:37

No way, even if it was a deal breaker for DH.

joangray38 Sun 25-Dec-16 20:25:04

I wouldn't it will be very hard for you to take the children back to the UK without Dh permission if you decide you want to leave or even for a holiday.

user1472557500 Sun 25-Dec-16 20:25:21

Do NOT go!

It's massively unstable there plus it's going to give your Husband such power over you if anything goes wrong in your relationship and you may never be allowed to leave with your kids if Egypt is a Hague Convention signatory.

It's a dangerous situation for you as a woman. Power will shift away from you.

KimmySchmidtsFakeXmasSmile Sun 25-Dec-16 20:26:38

Not a chance in hell.
No no no no no no no <insert Ben Kingsley>
I say this as an ex pat, albeit in Europe, but with experience of PND.
It's a TERRIBLE idea.

PotteringAlong Sun 25-Dec-16 20:27:02

No no no no no.


catwoman0815 Sun 25-Dec-16 20:27:58

I kind of see his point but I wouldn't want to go for a multitude of reasons.

even though we spend about 4 -5 months a year with them - are you children in school yet? if so how can they spent that much abroad?

ButteredToastAndStrawberryJam Sun 25-Dec-16 20:28:06

No way. If your husbands difficult now, that'll more than likely get worse if he's in his own surroundings and culture.
Have you seen the film/book Not without my daughter. When I read your OP that was the first thing that came to mind.

KimmySchmidtsFakeXmasSmile Sun 25-Dec-16 20:28:23

^ Hello Ben. grin this only works if you lot have seen Sexy Beast.

RandomMess Sun 25-Dec-16 20:28:43

No way, his parents are a huge red flag let alone all the other points people have raised. It's almost as though he's keeping you barefoot and pregnant to manipulate you...

I'd tell him to move back there and sort himself out, then potentially divorce him if he continues to be so selfish angry

yellowfrog Sun 25-Dec-16 20:29:04

Sod that for a game of soldiers. He's not supportive and he wants to take you away from your support networks? And he's trying to emotionally blackmail you with all that talk about depriving the family?

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