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For The Swederlish!

(59 Posts)
Boomerwang Sat 01-Dec-12 23:33:04

Thought I'd start this thread in case someone like myself is looking for such a place. Seems to be tucked far into a corner though, so I'd be surprised if many checked in.

I'm a 33 year old English woman living with her Swedish boyfriend near Avesta. I discovered him online whilst playing a mmorpg in November 2010 and we have an 8 month old daughter.

I don't really like Sweden, if I'm honest. I miss the friendliness of Brits, the cheaper prices and much wider variety of products plus the more frequent and flexible availability of things such as transport and I really resent having to pay for my healthcare when it's for something I have little control over.

I was dreading the weather when I moved here, but it's not so bad. Sure, you get a lot of snow and it can slow things down, but it's a lot drier here so doesn't feel as cold as it is.

I miss my family very much, and I hate that they aren't getting to see my baby grow up, but I do like my boyfriends family a lot and I'm glad that we are living close to them, so that's something at least.

So why are you here? smile

honeytea Sat 01-Dec-12 23:56:54

Hej! smile

I'm a 28 year old English woman. I live in Stockholm and until recently worked as an English tutor/teacher (only for young kids who couldn't yet read as my written English is pants because I'm dyslexic.)

Snap with the meeting my DP on an mmorpg, we met in 2008 and I moved to Sweden in 2010. I have some lovely friends but no Swedish friends, I worked with ex-pats and made some lovely friends at SFI but they are all Englsih/Australian/Spanish/Dutch. My DP's family and friends are lovely but they don't yet feel like my "own" friends which is a shame.

I have pretty simalar feelings to you regarding the things I miss from the UK, I love popping into town when I'm in the UK and buying what I want/need cheaply and easilly.

I am pregnant and my baby is due next weekend, I feel like he is pretty well settled in now and will probably be late, hopefully not too close to Christmas.

I have enjoyed learning to ski since moving to Sweden, I also like mushroom picking and swimming in the lakes, I have really tried to throw myself into enjoying Sweden but I do miss beaches with proper tides and fish and chips.

I am loving the pretty crunchy snow!

Kram smile

FlaminNoraImPregnantPanda Sun 02-Dec-12 11:59:34

I'm 40 and live in Vara Kommun (about 1.5 hrs up the E20 from Goteborg). I'm English/Irish and moved here with my English husband and daughter(19) 5 years ago. He's a professor at the university in Goteborg. Our son is due in May shock. Didn't see that one coming.

I find the people in Vara very friendly and welcoming. This is very different from the kommun we lived in when we first moved here which was really closed and unfriendly. We left there after a year and the only person who had ever spoken to me was a Finnish neighbour. Within a week of moving to Vara we knew all our neighbours. The difference is so great it's like we've moved to a different country not just across the kommun boundary.

I was very homesick for the first 3 years and would have gone back in a flash, given the opportunity. It was quite a shock to realise one day, that now I only want to visit. Although there is lots I miss (like Cadbury's chocolate, pot noodles and Fry's turkish delight). But aid packages from our parents help with this grin

TeddyBare Sun 02-Dec-12 12:23:25

Can I join the Sweden thread too please? I grew up in Sweden but I now live in the UK. I'd love to move back one day but it's very difficult to find work in my field in Sweden.

Boomerwang Sun 02-Dec-12 12:43:48

Anyone can join it's just a thread :D

Boomerwang Sun 02-Dec-12 12:50:33

I said I live near Avesta but that's not strictly true although we ARE moving in to our new house today. We're moving from a house in the middle of nowhere near Uppsala. I We decided that our daughter needed to grow up in a community and have friends and places to go, and to be much closer to a doctor and hospital and school. We can't afford the move to the UK yet and the houses in Avesta are dirt cheap. Apparently it used to be a haven for addicts and criminals which more or less made the place die out and there are a few completely empty apartment blocks.

This is one of the times I'm glad we have an Alsatian because if I have to go to the shops in the dark I'll be taking her with me!

I need to get a job, but my Swedish is terrible so it looks like I need one where I don't have to deal with the public. My best bet is cleaning work I guess sad

tribpot Sun 02-Dec-12 12:54:34

I lived in Sweden (Blekinge) for 3 years and a lot of what you all say above rings lots of bells for me smile Having the munchies for Walkers Smokey Bacon crisps was a major problem. Sweeping 6 inches of snow off the car in the morning was less time-consuming than scraping the ice off here!

I miss living by the sea - whenever I live in the UK I seem to end up right in the centre of it, which is annoying. When ds is older I think I will miss the very safe environment the kids in my town were growing up in.

In those days there were no Kindles, so getting books in English was a bit of a chore - we all had to read whatever everyone else had with them, and likewise watch each other's box sets or go to the house of the person whose satellite dish was facing the right way to get Sky, or something! I definitely don't miss the one-screen cinema that was all there was for about 100 miles, and the shopping <shudder>. I once brought a hoover from the UK as my checked-in bag, because it was impossible to buy a bagless one there.

I also don't miss having to carry three purses full of currency (or even four on occasion) but this was because I was commuting from Sweden via Copenhagen and Amsterdam every weekend. What a joy that was.

FlaminNoraImPregnantPanda Sun 02-Dec-12 13:00:38

I'm studying with the OU at the moment part-time. Once you've been in Sweden for 4 or 5 years (can't remember which sorry) you can get CSN funding for foreign distance courses.

MrsMerryMeeple Sun 02-Dec-12 13:20:19

Hej! Good job Boomerwang, I was thinking we should stop hijacking Honeytea's moan about the brits inability to deal with the cold.

I'm an Australian whose now been here gulp, almost 9 years! Living in Stockholm with Swedish DH. DS is 1.8, DC2 due next year.

Sitting here munching Walkers crisps, went to the English Shop a couple of days ago! grin

BeedlesPineNeedles Sun 02-Dec-12 14:45:50

Hi there

I'm in Göteborg, been here about 3 years with my Swedish sambo. I think I'm the opposite to you honeytea as I have no (native) English speaking friends. All of my foreign-to-Sweden friends can speak English but it would be a bit rude for me to speak my own language whilst they're speaking a foreign one. Actually I think that's what I miss most, just having normal conversations in English with people other than my boyfriend.

I do also miss shopping and still buy most of my clothes on trips to England.

I do have a job here but although I only speak Swedish at work I don't actually have to speak too much to do my job. grin

honeytea Sun 02-Dec-12 15:55:19

So many of us in Sweden!

Flamingnora that is really interesting about studying OU, I will be looking into that once my mammaledigt ends smile

I am envious of my non Swedish/non English speaking friends who have trilingual kids, I feel like my poor baby will "only" have 2 languages.

Does anyone have any advice about what happens in terms of paperwork after the birth of a child? I have read that you have to apply for a name if it isn't on the skatterverket list, our baby will have the middle name bryan after my grandpa I don't think it is onthe list, any ideas how long it takes to get a name approved?

FlaminNoraImPregnantPanda Sun 02-Dec-12 17:26:16

All I know is that it costs an arm and leg to get them registered at the embassy and get their first passport. I might go for an Irish one instead of British as it's a heck of lot cheaper.

honeytea Sun 02-Dec-12 18:16:10

Do you think I have to register the baby at the british embasy? I was just thinking we could have him be Swedish and register him in the UK when we visit. I should have really looked into this, poor baby will be born nationality-less

FlaminNoraImPregnantPanda Sun 02-Dec-12 19:09:20

Your partner is Swedish isn't he? So your baby will be Swedish by birth. Neither of us are Swedes so our baby can't be Swedish. I've just read on the gov website that if you want your baby to be registered with Britain, and have a British birth registration document (they can't have a UK birth certificate sad), you have to do it through the embassy or the consular department in London. Although it also says you don't have to do it and it isn't necessary in order to get a passport. Which is good to know as it cost £200 to register them shock

honeytea Sun 02-Dec-12 20:09:04

200 pounds that is so silly!

yep DP is Swedish so the baby will be Swedish, but me and DP are not married so DP needs to officially accept responsibility for the baby before we can apply for the passport.

We plan to go to the UK in March I hope we get a passport in time!

fraktion Sun 02-Dec-12 21:05:48

Not that I live in Sweden but you definitely do not need the registration. If thy want to apply for a British passport later they will need their birth feet translated and your birth cert but the nationality is automatic. I wouldn't be paying the cash. That's assuming you have the other nationality.

Otherwise you just need to apply for the passport at the embassy/consulate but I think all the European ones go via Paris now which takes an age...

MrsMerryMeeple Mon 03-Dec-12 07:23:30

DS is Swedish. I had to apply for his certificate of Australian citizenship, which was the usual bureaucratic saga with accompanying fees. Then apply for a passport. Ditto the saga and the fees. Hope he appreciates it when he's older!

surroundedbyblondes Wed 05-Dec-12 09:34:14

Been here for nearly 2 years now, initially Gothenburg and for the last 18 months in Stenungsund, a bit north of Gbg on the coast.
DH is Swedish and our DD (2 & 4) have only Swedish nationality. They were both born in Belgium where we lived previously and where I still get homesick for.
After 2 years of mammaledighet I started SFI in August and have progressed with that to SAS and am now doing SVAN part time while working part time as well.
Most friends here are Swedish though I know a couple of English girls which is good to have as a back up, but generally I socialise with other swedes and speak swedish with them. Getting on top of the language has really helped me in feeling settled here.

surroundedbyblondes Wed 05-Dec-12 09:39:55

Re the paperwork for our DCs, most of that was done via the swedish embassy in brussels as that was where we lived but it was all v smooth and didn't cost much iirc. The British embassy system was so complex and pricey we just didn't bother!

Have just shelled out a small fortune on renewing my UK passport... hmm

gingercurl Wed 05-Dec-12 11:28:39

Hi! Swede living in the UK here. Can I join? I moved here 14 years ago. Am from Stockholm, but have been an expat most of my life, and now live in the East Midlands. The OP struck a chord with me because I could have written pretty much the same thing but about Britain and the Brits. Up until I had my DS five years ago, pretty much all of my social life revolved around work. Now, I've met some people through him and it's made living here much better. But... I still feel to some extent that I have made and existance for myself here whereas, if I was in Sweden, I would have had a life.

FlaminNoraImPregnantPanda Wed 05-Dec-12 11:43:32

My English husband wants me to apply for an Irish passport for our baby when he's born. Irish citizenship can be passed on for generations whereas British can only be passed on 1 generation. He's worried that when the EU collapses (in a hundred years or so) his descendents will be trapped in Sweden forever. Irish citizenship will mean the back door is propped open grin.

surroundedbyblondes Wed 05-Dec-12 12:27:58

Because DH has lived outside of Sweden for many years, there are only a few school friends who he still knew to socialise with when we arrived here. Spread out accross the wider Gothenburg area, so not really able to just pop in for coffee with them.

When we lived 6 months in Gothenburg I didn't make any friends at all. I hated it and found the people really rude, pushy and unfriendly. Since moving to a small town I love it. I like that I know most of the people I see out and about. We live on a street of newly built houses which means lots of young families and parents at home with kids. I found really genuine, warm friendships and support from several neighbours when we were home together on parental leave. And the DDs' dagis has loads of lovely parents whom we have got to know to the point that we no longer need to talk about our kids when we meet but we can talk about other things as well. So that makes it feel like a good place to be.

Those of you with DC, what language do they speak? And what language do you speak with them?

surroundedbyblondes Wed 05-Dec-12 12:30:24

Oh, passports out of Sweden go through somewhere in Germany I think. Whole thing is a nightmare!

FlaminNoraImPregnantPanda Wed 05-Dec-12 14:40:45

Not anymore surroundbyblondes. You now have to apply through the IPS in Liverpool.

BeedlesPineNeedles Thu 06-Dec-12 07:41:18

surrounded do you think the difference in friendlyness of you neighbours is just the difference in living in a flat to living in a house (I'm assuming you lived in a flat in Gothenburg!)? When I first moved here we lived in a flat where DP had lived for about 10 years, but hardly anyone spoke to us. Now we live in a house, we know the names of almost everyone on our street, and one of our next door neighbours comes round with cakes she has baked etc (it is a very small cul-de-sac, which probably helps).

Though I was in Stenungsund last month and it did seem very nice grin

Well done on getting through SFI, I never did it but did read a few horror stories about it on TheLocal

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