How long did it take you to feel settled?

(20 Posts)
AndMiffyWentToSleep Wed 01-Jan-14 09:14:27

I've been overseas for 5 months now. Just wondering how much longer before I start to feel settled a bit.
Or if there is a point when you realise it'll never happen?

OP’s posts: |
Roshbegosh Wed 01-Jan-14 09:18:57

A lot will depend on where you are and your circumstances. If you are working it helps, if you have a way of meeting other SAHMs it helps. You need to work on preventing isolation and boredom. Where are you OP?

TheGhostOfPortoPast Wed 01-Jan-14 09:20:50

About 2 years to be honest. I found it a lot harder to make friends than I thought it would so I felt quite lonely and isolated initially. Whereabouts are you?

TheFunStopsHere Wed 01-Jan-14 09:22:21

It differs for everyone, but I think you're in the hard phase at the moment. In my experience, the first 3 months are taken up getting accommodation sorted, adjusting to new jobs, settling kids into schools, finding out where to do shopping, finding nice places to explore on the weekends, then from month 4 onwards, the novelty wears off and you're back to normal life but not yet with friends, noticing the less than perfect aspects and hyper aware of how everything differs from "home". I don't think it's unusual for it to take quite a bit longer to feel settled. Hang in there! Many people need up to 2 years or more to feel settled. After that point I would think it's fair to say that it might not ever happen. But it's early days really.

eidsvold Wed 01-Jan-14 09:32:02

I found the first year a bit tough but the second was much better.

ernesttheBavarian Wed 01-Jan-14 09:35:54

They say 2 years. I've been here 5 years now. I am happy. Didn't take 5 years! 5 months is still very new. Where are you? Culturally and geographically if it's very far or different I can imagine it's harder. I'm in Germany.

We have twice decided to return to the UK. And looked into it, house hunting, choosing schools etc and both times realised it wouldn't be right. Maybe we'll return to retire. We are kind of (happily) stuck here now due to dc education.

Can be tough if you're isolated, have no friends or support. Hope you're feeling ok.

WhataSook Wed 01-Jan-14 09:57:36

Two years for me, the first six months here I hated it. I went home in that time for two weeks and came back feeling better, I had confirmed what I thought, that home was always going to be there smile


AndMiffyWentToSleep Wed 01-Jan-14 10:09:20

Two years!! Oh lordy!
I'm in Germany, so not too different. But working from home for my UK job, so no time to meet SAHPs but also no work social life either. And a toddler. So not much time to socialise at all, or even get to know the place.
But maybe the new year is making me feel extra-bleak.

OP’s posts: |
butterfliesinmytummy Wed 01-Jan-14 14:31:51

It can take ages and depends on so many factors. As fun says, the first few months are a blur. We have been in the USA for 5 months and have just seen the end of new house, new schools, social security cards, driving tests, car buying, figuring out where to get and how to do stuff and I can feel it slowing down. I'm not settled yet but I'm not unhappy or lonely. I know some mums from meetup in my area and mums from school, mostly expats where friendships move at a gratifyingly alarming pace!

We're away from new year (few hours drive from home) and I'm looking forward to getting back to our house already so I think it's a good sign.

Our move back to the uk after 10 years away was funnily enough the hardest and took me over a year to feel settled.

You'll get there, a few months in can be the hardest part, just bear with it.

ernesttheBavarian Mon 06-Jan-14 09:54:46

whereabouts in germany are you?

AndMiffyWentToSleep Mon 06-Jan-14 18:06:02

Not in Bavaria, ernest!
I'm in Berlin. Doesn't matter how great a city everyone tells me it is, I'm still lonely and don't even feel I have time to get to know it.

OP’s posts: |
SongYee Mon 06-Jan-14 20:35:58

It took me around 1.5 years. I remember waking up one day and realising that I was happy.

I am in the same boat: toddler, baby and working from home for UK company. At first it made me so unhappy, but I got used to it, although I still dislike working from home. Fortunately I made friends through DH's work, although they're all very much of the single boozing persuasion so I've had to work hard to make friends outside of the pub. Not many SAHMs here at all.

Very sorry you're lonely, OP. It's a horrible feeling and I hope it passes quickly.

somersethouse Mon 13-Jan-14 20:49:02

At least two years. I have lived in 4 different countries. It is tough.

Fancyashandy Tue 14-Jan-14 17:12:08

Depends. We were very lucky and met great friends really soon so felt relatively about 3- 6 months. I wouldn't expect it all to be that easy next time.

PeppaPigsMum Fri 17-Jan-14 23:29:18

Around 2 years for me too. Found the first year very lonely, but put everything into meeting people and making new friends and bit by bit I started to feel more settled. I am not an outgoing person by nature, so it was tough at first, but has become easier over time. It took a long time to be in the position where I have a couple of good friends I can go out in the evening with - that was the point I really felt at home here. I still find it difficult when we have friends and family visit though, as goodbyes are hard, even 8 years down the line...

scottswede Fri 24-Jan-14 14:33:30

Been here nearly 4 years and haven't settled for a multitude of reasons.
Everyone has different adjustment periods I think.
This is my 4th country and the hardest.
We are planning to return to the UK though, even though this was supposed to be our 'final' move.
Oh, and I probably knew it wasn't going to work within the first 6 months.
Sorry, not very uplifting I know.

JapaneseMargaret Sun 26-Jan-14 07:42:54

I lived in the UK 13 years (and loved it immediately, when I moved there in 1998).

We moved back to my home country in May 2011. When I say 'we' moved back, I mean I moved back with my London-born DH and DC.

The first year was spent living in a city that even I didn't know very well. We didn't know anyone there. It was awful. A few months in we knew it wasn't for us and by a year in we had moved to a city I had lived in before (but wasn't my home city). We have been in city 2 for 19 months, but back here in my country for 2yrs, 8 months. Nearly 3 years.

We don't feel settled yet. The move to city 2 was definitely the right thing to do, and we are happier here. My best friend is here. We bought a house. DC1 starts school in a couple of weeks. But it has been hard, and I can't say we feel settled yet.

We had heard the two-year thing, and I agree with it. However, we did a year, and then had to start again, due to moving cities. So for us, it will be taking 3 years.

DH is very, very homesick. He misses his huge circle of old friends in London. It's impossible to replicate that.

He is giving it his all, though. But by the end of this year, if we're still not settled, then it will be decision time for us, I think.

And this was moving back to my home country, not even moving to a new place. I had just been away too long, I think. I'm very torn, and it will not be an easy decision to make.


Salbertina Sun 26-Jan-14 11:07:16

Never have, sadly, not for me in the long-term. Not settled place - too much crime and too insecure with visa hassles, dodgy landlords etc and plummeting rand!

elQuintoConyo Sun 26-Jan-14 11:18:22

Lived here 13 years, married a local, have one dc.
I'd say it took me maybe a year to feel settled - but I still don't feel 'accepted' iyswim, I'm still Johnny Foreigner <grrrr emoticon>

A friend has lived in a big city all her adult life, has one son aged 30, lived in the same flat since 1968, still gets referred to as The American by the neighbours. Pisses ht off.

poncedeleon Sun 26-Jan-14 23:19:25

Agree with the 2 years average. Have been here nearly six now, and still miss home, but am settled and happy and have friends here (USA). For me, it was all to do with meeting proper friends, which I don't think you can force.
Would still love to go home though!

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