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20 months to go, how to turn things round, make the most of it, deepen friendships and stave off loneliness?

(8 Posts)
ExpatAgain Mon 01-Aug-11 04:58:44

that's it really. We've decided on a timeframe, am trying not to be miserable to be back after fantastic visit back to UK. it feels my good start when loads of people made an effort (was I just flavour of the month?) has all dissipated and I'm left with a variety of nice enough acquaintances. I'm still smarting somewhat over 2 local people who I had seen as proper friends but who backed off rather after a few months..Am trying to be strong and sanguine about it all and just get to know yet more people, deepen friendships with acquaintances etc etc but tbh it's all rather exhausting/demoralising after a while esp when sitting at home alone..that's probably most of the problem, hard to see things in perspective, no good mates to have a laugh with..
Just to add, I have joined various groups, got involved with the schools, do voluntary work etc etc..I just feel like my clockwork is winding down..

bubbleandbubble Mon 01-Aug-11 05:35:16

I know what you mean, we have just had 3 weeks back in the UK and although life is pretty settled here, I really miss home. Not sure how to do the deeper friendships thing, like you I have lots of acquaintances but no real friends, and it always feels like it's only me making an effort, everyone else has the friends and the social life and we are always looking in from the outside.

The only way I have found to deal with it is to really make an effort with doing family things all together at the weekend, and to do nice things for me (there are some fantastic walks here etc) so the friends part of my life takes up less space, if that makes sense. Am envious of you knowing when you are going back though!

ExpatAgain Mon 01-Aug-11 05:58:14

sorry to hear you feel the same. Good idea about doing family things and filling up the space. Shall ponder that.

TheRealMBJ Mon 01-Aug-11 06:21:21

Hi there. I'm an expat the other way around. I live in the UK but home is elsewhere. I found the first year and a half almost impossible and still struggle whenI come back from visiting home.

I still after years here only really have 2 friends and they themselves are not locals. They're English but have moved here from elsewhere and so needed friends as much as I did (we live in a very small town with a very insular community.)

Unfortunately, I think it is true that as the newcomer, you ALWAYS have to make the bigger effort, after all, the locals already have their own lives.

I have found MN invaluable to, in meeting new people. Could you maybe use this board to see if there are other MNetters near you?

ExpatAgain Mon 01-Aug-11 10:49:17

you're right about the effort, i know. it's just that sometimes it would be nice to be equal finally and not have to make an effort ALL the time with EVERYONE just in case...Not that I do, actually, lost much of my motivation since coming back..If people like me, they like me, if they don't, they don't.

Glad MN helped you, I'm quite far from anyone else I think, but there are general expat groups I might join.

TheRealMBJ Mon 01-Aug-11 16:00:37

I know it is exhausting sad.

By best friend just moved back home with her DH after being i Britian for 6 years, and they are having quite a difficult time of it too, because although all their old friends are still there, they've been away for so long that they've all grown apart somewhat.

Good lick.

ExpatAgain Tue 02-Aug-11 11:24:51

oh you must miss her..Hard how people grow apart, even old friends, inevitable, I guess but easy to forget when you're overseas..

TheRealMBJ Tue 02-Aug-11 13:35:56

I do miss her terribly. We lived together at Uni for years and again when we both started working, she relocated to London with her company and I had absolutely no intention in moving to Britain. But... then I met DH and fell in love and when he wanted to move back home, I came with.

It was great being in the same country as her again, but we live in rural North Yorkshire and se we didn't see that much of each other anyway.

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