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Anyone regret moving back to the UK because they were so homesick.......

(160 Posts)
scottswede Mon 20-May-13 16:11:21

Following on from the homesickness threads. I was wondering if anyone had moved back to their home country because they just couldn't settle, only to regret the move back home.....
I know everyone has bouts of homesickness, from every day to only on special occasions, from little things like not being able to buy certain foods to huge hating the weather issues. From taking a couple of months to settle to unbearable homesickness after 10 plus years.
What made you say"I just can't do this anymore"
Was moving back what you though, did you settle in, did you regret moving back, wished you'd stuck it out longer, taken more trips home to quench the thirst.
I am lucky I have the opportunity to return to the UK, with a willing dh (living in his home country now) we are making plans for next year. We have lived here for 3 years and I knew almost immediately it wasn't going to work though we have tried hard to make it, just not feeling the love.....
I know the UK is not the perfect place, but I know we can can a more enjoyable life there.

Salbertina Sat 01-Jun-13 09:15:30

<would love to hot foot it to the Gulf for the tax-free income & long holidays, but dh never been keen on ME>

yetanotherworry Wed 05-Jun-13 21:50:44

RubyonRails, we did this. We spent a year in Oz. I enjoyed the first 3 months and then hated it enough to the point where I lost loads of weight and seriously considered divorce. We came back to the UK to consider our options. Then we went back to Oz as a permanent move but I thought about the things that I didn't like and considered how I could change these things. First time round I tried to join in with lots of things because I knew I had to make friends for both myself and the kids. Second time round I lowered my expectations of what I wanted and found it a lot easier.
Also, I made sure that DH realised it was a 5 year plan and if I didn't enjoy it then we would come back. I found the second time round was much more relaxing because I knew it wasn't forever.

MrsLion Thu 06-Jun-13 09:54:14

Interesting thread. 
I have posted on the homesickness threads and since then (and only in the last 2-3 weeks) I have sat down with dh and we have agreed to go back to the uk next year.

I am so so homesick here (NZ) and tbh have never settled. Not really. Dh is kiwi.

I am so excited. So happy I cried  but I am also terrified. I'm absolutely petrified that it will be a bad decision, that we'll hate it. That dh will be really unhappy. That we'll be struggling financially, that we won't get jobs... That I'll screw up my dc- especially seeing as dd1 is loving her school and doing well. 

I feel horribly and gut-wrenchingly guilty. 

I am also overwhelmed by the enormity of the task. Even getting a spouse visa for dh is a nightmare. I have to sponsor him, to do that I have to work for 6 months prior to applying for the visa (thank god I have a good job and went back to work after dc3- I nearly didn't). I also have to get a job offer somehow from over here for him to be able to work in the uk.

Moving with 3 dc seems a huge task.  I also have been out of the uk for 8 years now- I don't feel English anymore sometimes sad 
Will I fit in?

A lot if my friends have moved away, it's going to be very hard settling back- and where to? I used to live in London but I don't think living in London will be possible financially.

But I still want to do it- I feel it's now or never because of the DC and school. 

I feel like if I don't I'll regret it forever- I'm just not happy here.

I'm very interested in others' experiences and will be watching this thread with interest.

WhataSook Thu 06-Jun-13 14:46:04

Hi Mrs, are you sure about the spousal visa thing? I only applied for one 4 years ago and it was very simple (I have a residence card for a Family member of the EEA). We applied while we were living in Ireland and it was a very straight forward procedure, think it took 2 weeks to get an approval via email but I did have to do an interview at the British embassy in Dublin before I got approval.

WhataSook Thu 06-Jun-13 14:55:16

erebus I have just read your reply to my post, and I am actually laughing! "I was the soul of good manners, being English and all" and "did remind me of a strong aspect of Aussie-ness that I don't miss" . Do fuck off with you generalisations, English, good mannered and Aussie's materialistic?? hmm

And you completley missed my point Erebus, I don't give a shit if she was on the phone or actually in front of you, my point was why didn't you point out to you SIL that being racist wasn't on, doesn't matter what age a racist is, they should be called on it. You were being gutless not good mannered!

IsThisAGoodIdea Thu 06-Jun-13 15:23:42

WhataSook, oh the irony of your last post...

WhataSook Thu 06-Jun-13 15:49:29

no room for irony in some instances in life IsThis...

Lozzamack Fri 07-Jun-13 10:51:33

Really interesting thread.
We are heading back to the UK after 14 years away and I am absolutely terrified. Everything is so different now. I have lost both of my parents since being away and now have 2 dc.
I don't really want to leave here although I am not happy here and haven't been for a long time, I'm so scared about going back. I feel that part of it is that I don't work here so that if my dh wants to go back I have to. He is really unhappy in his job and feels it takes him away from us all too much, he wants to have more time with us at home. How can I tell him I want to stay?
Reading this has made me feel more confident though as so many of you seem to have made the move and not regretted it

Erebus Fri 07-Jun-13 11:57:14

No, sook, I am of an age and maturity that I know which battles to fight and which ones to leave alone.

Sure, I could have 'had my say' and felt all warm, self-righteous and glowy that I'd 'put 'er straight' but the fall out for DH would not be worth it. I live with DH 24/7, and he just the one DB as his 'family' now. There's every chance I may not see my BIL's new woman ever again. She has grown up in a culture that is far more casual about racism than we are here in the UK. She is 70. Many people of Italian descent in Oz refer to themselves as 'wogs', for instance!

It may not be 'right', it may offend you to the point of offending me, but that doesn't change the fact that me 'challenging' her would be both pointless and destructive.

complexnumber Fri 07-Jun-13 14:10:03

"Erebus- love that poem, evokes Africa for me! Which i love and hate in equal measure. It's in my v bones but is fucked up and frustrates me"

I felt exactly the same way Salbertina.

I spent 9 years in Africa (Nigeria, Botswana and SA), I know raising a family and getting the right job would make things almost impossible, but I can't help but miss Africa, I always will.

WhataSook Fri 07-Jun-13 14:17:46

I disagree erebus! Nothing about being all warm and righteous but you come on here, saying Australia has this casual racism as if it's a bloody FACT and not suffered anywhere else in the world, but when it's in your face you chose to allow it. I live next door to a lovely old (British) lady who insists on referring to our other neighbour as a Paki.

Yes I told her not to use that word to refer to our other neighbour, that in this country (UK) it's highly offensive. And she keeps saying it. And I keep reminding her. That's how it goes. I don't say it rudely, we are neighbours with our doors about 1.5 metres apart facing each other, there's no need for there to be a 'fall-out', no ones saying you need to be rude about it, but YES you do need to pull people up on it, regardless of their age.

Not think poor old DH??

Erebus Fri 07-Jun-13 14:49:51

I think we have hijacked this thread enough, sook.

MrsLion Fri 07-Jun-13 20:47:48

Sook, they changed the regulations last year sad
To stop sham marriages and people bringing hoards of relatives back to the uk to claim benefits and use the nhs apparently.

Hard to believe that if I was a sahm here in Nz, I wouldn't be able to come back to the uk with my 3 British citizen dc and kiwi husband, even though he earns good money.
unless of course I have £65k in savings...

WhataSook Mon 10-Jun-13 14:11:27

Mrs, that is not good, sorry to hear that. I wish you luck then as I found it a very easy process, hope it goes well.

Erebus agree smile, apologies OP

pupsiecola Tue 11-Jun-13 09:34:49

We moved back 5 weeks ago after a year in Asia. I've been analysing what happened as it was all a bit of a whirlwind. I don't think I was homesick per se. Perhaps a bit disengaged as per the other post (and certainly the school stresses became all consuming and it was hard to relax and just enjoy). Apart from a few close friends I didn't really miss anyone from the UK, and I didn't really miss the UK as a place to live either. I think for us Asia was just a bad fit. We all struggled with the climate and island living. We much prefer big impressive outdoor spaces. I think had we gone somewhere that was a better fit (California/Canada) we'd have stayed for a lot longer. But ultimately we came back because of the international school system not suiting my DS2. Which sounds trivial but it got worse and worse and worse and there was no other solution. Again, I do feel that Asia was a bad fit in this respect too. Partly due to their being little choice in type of school and partly because of the worth ethic (generally). Having said all that we are glad we went. DCs seem more wordly wise and we had some great adventures whilst there. Also met some lovely friends.

But I am so very glad that we came back. Once I put aside the feelings that we "failed" because we were meant to be there for 2 years. But I have a new appreciation for the UK. We've come back to a different area where we don't know a soul so it's not that we've just come back and slotted into our old lives. We are half an hour from the New Forest and went cycling at the weekend and it was just breathtaking. 5 weeks on I look around and still take pleasure in the small things. Last night I slept with the bedroom windows open and could taste the fresh air.

DH doesn't feel the same in that the move to Asia for his work was very successful. He's transitioning slowly but will be commuting between there and here until December (2 weeks in Korea, 2 weeks in the UK). Thankfully the company want him to stay even if that means in a UK based role. But for him the UK is tired and in the doldrums. Things like long delays at Heathrow having also got stuck in traffic on the M25 vs a quick and cheap taxi drive to Changi where there are no crowds and no delays are quite indicative. But we're committed to supporting him whilst he transitions and he's committed to accepting that for now we will all settle in the UK.

But we still feel the pull of trying again, though in a more suitable country. It's hard cos of the age the DCs are.

So no, we don't regret moving back because in the circumstances it really was the best option for the DCs. DH and I agreed I would come back and settle the children and I tried to give him the space to decide what he wanted to do. Which we has. So here we are.

I really think it depends on why you're not happy in the country you're living in. If it wasn't for the children we'd have gone straight from Asia to the US/Canada but we just needed to be somewhere familiar where we understood the school systems etc and would have our expectations met.

Sorry, that got a bit long!!

BegoniaBampot Thu 13-Jun-13 23:27:26

Agree about the restlessness and not quite knowing where you want to be. most of my family and old friends still live in our little hometown and have never really considered moving. I sometimes envy them not having to face the decisions on where best to live.

We made our home mostly in England, moved to Asia for some years where we had a great time and enjoyed the experience, moved back to England and children and I have been fairly happy. Husband isn't settled and wants to move to Europe. Hate the indecision and restlessness and worry that you could be giving the kids a better life.

GordieAcorn Mon 24-Jun-13 18:32:16

Howdy! I moved back to Canada (Winnipeg, god forbid) after living 28 years in London, England. I'm 51 now. Things were 'fine' the first year or so here as I was readjusting, getting used to the novelty of being back. Now, I'm pretty much resigned myself to the fact this was most likely the worst thing I've ever done! I don't know why I am posting on here as I don't know what I will get out of it. I guess I just wanted to 'share' and see if anyone else has experienced these horrid regretful feelings. They say you can never go home! Well, I do believe this now!

Everyone likes to think Canada is some sort of safe, homey wonderland. I find the climate brutal, the city of Winnipeg very rough and things here, generally, not as efficient as I thought they would be. In fact, I'm surprised how lumbering this country is!

I miss the English wit, humor and bitchiness! i miss the climate, zero presence of mosquitos, the food, the style, most everything! i never thought I could miss a place so much. It's like a loss - and I'm not sure when the grieving will stop!

more REAL soon!!...ggx

robroy1 Tue 22-Oct-13 12:52:07

I was just wondering if anyone has similar circumstances to me. I have been living in Germany for 12 years, some how I have never really been able to settle here. The reason I have stayed here is because of my daughter ( currently she lives with her mother my ex ). I somehow miss home Newcastle up on Tyne. I miss the English humor and easy going way of life, I miss living by the sea, miss my family. Here me and my new girlfriend ( who has to children ) wish to leave but I cant bring myself to do it because I love my daughter, but I see not a lot of her. Every day is a battle to stop here, it create stress just trying to Live here, it makes me feel guilty leave my daughter but its killing me stopping here. I don't know how to continue this, I wish I could some how put the guilt in the back of my mind. Germany isn't far but it still costs money, flights expensive finding somewhere to stay would be a problem. Also getting my daughter to visit here would be really difficult, has anyone found themselves in this situation has anyone any thoughts on this situation.

I love England and wish I could be there :-(

marmalademomo Wed 23-Oct-13 16:23:50

We are moving back next year after what will be 8 years in the US, we moved here for DH job and hoping they will let him work remotely in UK. Our reasons are mainly child based, though homesickness is high up there and craving some roots. Oldest DD is at secondary school age this year and has started US middle school, 2 others coming through the ranks. It occurred to us that if we don't make the move now, there is no chance for a long time to come. I don't want to grow old in the US, if we wait there is no good time to leave - you have to think about different curriculums in UK schools, before you know it everyone is the wrong age to move -GCSE & A levels in UK, Uni, jobs, partners, babies etc all come faster than you think and you are stuck. I miss the culture ( yes UK has one!), healthcare( scary in US), good free education- yes I know that's another thread, British sense of humor and a wealth of other things. I am screamingly nervous and trying not to have the rose tinted glasses, we are moving to rural Suffolk not back to London but change is good and though we have had a great time here, I am not cut out for the American way of life. I know the weather is also a deal breaker for some, but an average 3 months of grimness Jan - March I will take over 4 months of searing heat when you are restricted to AC and can't do anything. Ultimately a lot of expats move back to their country of origin once the children reach secondary school age.

pupsiecola Wed 23-Oct-13 16:50:37

If you don't mind me asking marmalade, which part of the US were you in?

bluebayou Wed 23-Oct-13 17:51:20

You may well regret moving to rural Suffolk after the USA , such a tremendous change , and not really all that good in Suffolk , Beware I say .

Salbertina Wed 23-Oct-13 21:26:13

Marmalade, with you on being "screamingly nervous", hard to know whats for the best. Can it really be that one can never go home? Been overseas 30% of my entire life. Dont even know if thats long any more. Long enough to see taking off as a solution to boredom, whatever (silly me!) but not long enough for me not to get homesick or consider UK home

I regret moving quite so much more than i regret fact of being overseas. Several times over, i chucked in a good life (job/friends) for some
bloke flight of fancy. I was so short-term focussed and never allowed myself to embed my roots.

karyncake Wed 23-Oct-13 22:00:53

We moved back to the UK where we lived for 6 years.
I often wonder what my life would be like now if I had stayed out there as it did seem so much easier (and indulgent) back then.

I fell pregnant less than a year after getting back so can't really compare the differences as life has changed so much.
Financially we struggle more than we did in America (Again, having a family now makes it hard to compare to life before) but I value my friendships so much more over here. I never really clicked with anyone in NY, I made good friends but there was always something missing which made it feel like more of an effort when socialising.
I worked in the restaurant industry and it became tedious being asked 40 times a day where I was from, what brought me here, do I like it? etc, etc. Sometimes I just wanted to blend in.

I love being nearer to my family now. My sister passed away while I was in NY and we never really got to that stage in our life where we could appreciate each other as individuals although we started writing to each other the year she died (she was 20 and I was 22). I didn't want to go through that feeling again of missing out on time with my family which was the main reason we returned.

One thing I do miss is my health insurance. I used to have weekly Chiropractic treatment, no idea what for but my therapist looked like a greek god!!

BeautifulThief99 Wed 25-Jun-14 02:34:51

Just following on from last years thread about moving back to the UK due to homesickness. Did any of you who mentioned you were moving back last year, regretted it at all? I moved to Aus with work 11 years ago with no intention to stay really - it was just an adventure at the time to see where it took me. I met my husband over here and now we have a little girl. I was young when I moved and had no idea that missing my family, the UK and all that it offers would take such a stronghold over me. I am extremely homesick, and just want to go home. The longer I am here, the worse I feel. I feel like I am just existing day by day and am longing to be around what I know and feel comfortable around again. But it is so hard as my husband is a true blue Aussie who will find it hard to leave his beloved country. I am working on him, but would love to hear some success stories of moving back home, particularly from couples who are from different countries. It is so hard, and makes me regret coming here in the first place.

differentnameforthis Wed 25-Jun-14 03:08:30

BeautifulThief99 This thread is fairly old, so you might want to strt another one, you might get a few more responses.

But I get it, I have been here 8yrs (Australia, too) and as time goes on it gets harder to leave (friends, girls school etc) but it also gets harder to stay because you realise what you are missing out on 'back home'

If I had the money I would leave in heartbeat, but I took dd1 away from her friends all those yrs ago & I don't know if I can do it to her (and dd2) again.

I am stuck. It's horrible.

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