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Expat mums in Denmark?(10 Posts)
I have recently moved to Southern Denmark with my family. It's hard. Are there any other Mumsnetters in this little part of the world, that might have advice (apart from "Get the hell out of here while you still can")?
I'm not in Southern Denmark, but Copenhagen, where there are lots of expat Mums (don't know about MNers though).
It sounds like you're having a tough time...
I am not in Denmark.
What are you finding so hard there?
Hi. Sorry, I haven't been able to check back in for a while...
I know that if I were in Copenhagen or one of the larger cities, there would be more Expats. It's not that I only want to meet other Expat mums, but there are no Mums & Tots groups at all and most Danes seem to put their little ones in daycare very early... so I feel very isolated.
I'm sure things will improve, but I just wondered if there was anyone else around?
It can be difficult getting to know Danes as they tend to be quite family oriented, rather than 'friend' oriented if you see what I mean.
Do you speak Danish at all? That is a big help as in spite of the generally good english skills here, there is definitely still a bit of a language barrier, and the english classes the kommune offers are a good way to meet other foreigners in a similar situation.
Have you tried contacting the kommune regarding children's activities? Here there are loads of things on offer, but you have to go out and actively ask about them, they're not generally well advertised (and not usually in English either!).
It may also not be that useful to you but have you tried looking at Mødrehjælpen?
They are sort of an equivalent to the NCT, though not nearly as big and with an emphasis on families in financial difficulties but they have local branches who organise local events for all families. Several of the local branches run cafe butikken where you can meet up for a coffee, buy second hand stuff etc etc. There's usually someone around who doesn't mind chatting in English if you're not up for it in Danish. So, it might be worth looking into.
I can't imagine living in the back of beyond of rural Denmark, so I can quite see why you may be finding it tough to adapt and integrate, how long are you planning on staying?
Whereabouts in South Denmark are you? I'm in Nordborg on Als.
I've been here for 5 years now, moved to be with now DH, and it's been a really tough 5 years. Why did you move?
We have 2 DSs now and definitely agree it's very isolating, there really isn't anywhere to go with children at all is there!
The thing that's helped the most for me is learning the language, especially down here as a lot of people don't speak English. I did the learn Danish course at the LOF skolen and found it quite good, met a lot of really nice people there too.
It is very hard though, I will definitely agree with you there. Very hard to find friends as Danes tend to keep work and private life very seperate.
How long will you be staying?
Hi Corkscrewkisses. Sorry to hear you are having a hard time. I am not in Denmakr at the moment, but I am Danish, and might be able to help you out, if you let me know a bit more about you and your family, e.g. where in Denmark are you and how old are your DC?
As you might know, in Denmark most mums work and many of them full time, hence the need to put DC's in day care from an early age and the lack of toddler groups.
In quite a few towns, though, the church organises toddler groups on a weekly basis (without being overly religious, usually just with a few hymns, and otherwise free play, cake and gossip).
Hope it get's easier for you soon!
Thank you all for your advice. I guess I have just been having a bad week ... but the sun is shining again now
Glacierchick, I will investigate"moedrehjaelpen". Thanks for the link.
I do speak Danish fairly fluently, having been with DH for 13 years, but it's more the fact that I miss having a network of friends or somewhere to go for a coffee and a chat. (Thank God for the internet!)
mummytosquidges I am totally in awe of you for surviving 5 years. I have never been to Nordborg. We bought a house in Aabenraa, which is great for nipping over the German border to find stuff that the local shops don't have, but that's about it.
NewDKmum, you are right about most mums working and it's clear I won't be able to be "just a housewife" for long. My DS is 14months and my DD is 8 years. Luckily DD is settling in really well and loves her new school and friends. I wouldn't mind taking DS to a church group, so that's another thing I will try and investigate.
Thanks again for your helpful messages.
Glad to hear the sun is shining again!
I have been trying to do a bit of research and apparently there are some playgroups (legestue) in Bov and in Bylderup. I don't know if you would be able to drive there? If you google it, the contact details should pop up.
I see that the site is warning me this is a dead thread. However, since I landed on this page with my search, others might too, and I just wanted to update everyone that I found a new expat mums in Denmark forum. Seems promising, if it manages to find more members. expatmothers.dk/community/index.php