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Starting a new life abroad

(13 Posts)
debster Sun 20-Jan-02 21:20:04

Has anyone made a complete change to their life? My partner and I were both made redundant late last year and we have not found work yet. To be honest I have been feeling increasingly maudlin about life in England (especially at this time of year) and have been discussing the possibility of moving to another country with my partner. Does anyone have any experience of starting afresh somewhere new? How much money would you need to emigrate for example?

Kia Sun 20-Jan-02 21:40:14

If you really want to do it, then do something you really want to do, then you'll do it 100% and more than likely make a go of it.

Your post reminded me of a tv programme where they followed 3 or 4 families to France and watched how they managed. One was a couple who bought a vineyard and the husband got sick and she ended up managing it herself. But the priceless one is that of the yuppy couple with the 2 children who bought the renault and she sold all her ballgowns (as one does!) and they played at it for a couple of years and then separated and went back to UK!

Years and years ago in the 60s my parents upsticks and took their 4 children to live in Aden which at that time was a warzone with British Soldiers a la Belfast on the streets etc etc. Everyone said they were mad, but they made a go of it and altogether we lived in the ME for over 25 years before they retired to Cyprus. It can work, but you've really got to believe!! I know people who are millionaires several times over because they took risks then, as singles or marrieds without children. My parents couldn't do so much of that having 4 kids to provide for, but had no regrets at all.

Pupuce Sun 20-Jan-02 22:09:20

DH and I came to the UK 5 years ago... and we had both been living in several countries before so for us the issue is not can we adapt - we can but it is hard (and South East England is as hard as it gets!!!). And both our families live in several countries - we counted over 15 at our wedding !

How much money you need varies from country to country and what standard of living you are expecting... Rural France is cheaper than the UK for example. I would not leave without 10K + some kind of a house (rented or bought).
We enjoy changing countries but I think we'll stick to the UK for the next few years. We like it here but I could start a list of things that are better elsewhere - let's not go there.... the grass is always greener.

robinw Mon 21-Jan-02 07:47:45

message withdrawn

chiara71 Mon 21-Jan-02 13:36:02


my dh and I moved to the UK 5 years ago. When we arrived he already had a job as a waiter I had to look for one. In the meantime we graduated and eventually got good jobs and managed to buy a house and have a baby.

The first couple of years were not easy, but we did not have children, and really if things did not work out we could always go back to our families. We did not arrive with a lot of money (I think it was around 1,000 pounds), but we managed by not going out much and sharing a flat for the first 2 years.
Obviously with children is an entirely different matter, and I would find it daunting. But I guess it's just a question of planning carefully and don't be too optimistic about the financial side.

good luck!!

Kia Mon 21-Jan-02 20:19:53

Before I came to work tonight I had a look at the TV guide and there's a programm on C4 at 9pm on Tuesday or Wednesday this week about people changing their lifestyles completely. Can't for the life of me remember what it was called, sorry.

Pupuce Mon 21-Jan-02 22:50:22

It's called "no going back" and we had a chat on last week's episode on another thread...

caramel Tue 22-Jan-02 13:52:01

we moved to Manhattan from suburban London when my son was 5 months old, it was a fantastic experience, we did the NY thing which means tapping every resource in the entire city from Central Park (daily in Summer and in the Snow in Winter) to all the museums, the shows, the kiddi stores, classes, and mostly the Sesame St style playgrounds on every street with sand boxes and sprinklers in Summer. Child rearing in small apartments necessates planning and constant excursions but it is a brillantly stimulating environment to learn in. Have returned home to have #2 as couldn't face "cabin fever" with 2 children under 2 but had a great time. I would recommend it to open your eyes and make so many friends.

debster Tue 22-Jan-02 18:53:48

Thank you all for your comments.

A not very original dream of mine is to do what the family did in the first episode of 'No Going Back' - i.e. move to Spain/Italy/any other warm rural area(!) and be almost self-sufficient. It's just that I don't have the guts to do it. If I was on my own I would but I've got a toddler and a partner to think of as well. Although my son would probably love being in another country.

I think I'm just feeling low and sorry for myself with neither of us having a job but I also find it incredibly hard to get motivated at this time of year. I just want to do something more interesting than the usual 9 to 5. Not that I'm doing that either! The other problem is that when dp gets a job (he's a product designer/model maker if anyone knows of any jobs!) he is likely to have to work in London (we live in Brighton) and I know the commute there and back is going to affect both of our lives. I don't know whether we should move nearer or what.

I'm sorry for rambling but even trying to get my thoughts into some kind of rational order is an effort at the moment. Does anyone else feel this way? Blimey what to do?!

Tinker Tue 22-Jan-02 19:27:13

Oh, debster, I know excatly how you feel about wanting to escape - it's my current dream. Am reading 'Extra Virgin' at the moment - the author bought a place in Liguria, Italy, on a whim, for £2000.00. I'm soooo jealous - she's living MY life. Grrr.

What about taking a Teach English as a Second Language course? At least you'd have a way of making a living out there if you went. There are plenty of courses in the South (unfortunately, for me) and if you're unemployed you now have the time do it - money and childcare permitting, of course.

Pupuce Tue 22-Jan-02 21:27:21

Debster, I know how you feel.... believe me I know !
DH was a marketing man, followed me to the UK (I was hired by a company in London). He had no job but was told (by an outplacement agency) that he would easily find a job within 3 months but that proved to be SO NOT TRUE ! Anyway after over a year of not finding anything, he decided to teach himself HTML, dreamweaver, etc to build websites. He built 2 but was making peanut money and let's face it he doesn't have a commercial sense so wasn't great at getting clients (except for friends), so he went into alternative therapy - more his thing and now he is into yoga and this is finally strating to look like his vocation but it has taken 5 years and he is far from where he started.... In the meantime he has been a home dad which has been very valuable for the kids and myself.
It might be worth for both of you to think outside the box, what could you do??? I don't think my husband would have imagined thet he'd become a yoga teacher 5 years ago !
Also do you think you can cope without family and friends. There is another thread on this at the moment where mums who are from abroad (including me) find it difficult to cope (sometimes) without the convenience of having relatives near by ! And I sometimes feel quite lonely... I don't want to disturb the few friends that I have here so I don't call them as often as I d'like and end up feeling a bit isolated.

monkey Wed 23-Jan-02 11:37:57

We moved from a big UK city to Germany. both dh & I wanted to go. I've never regretted a minute. I was fed up with UK & wanted to go for ages. Luckily dh was as keen as me.

Issues I've found ; language. It is hard, even if you alrerady know Spanish/Italian/whatever. You are always marked out as an outsider. Plus, no matter how good your language, there can often be times where you can't say what you need to say and that can be very frustrating & humiliating. If you don't know the language, it can make things very very difficult on a daily basis. Plus it would make finding work very difficult if not impossible.

Family. I get on really well with my family, but we're not very close as such so it's not been too bad, although it has worked out expensive ('phone calls) for us and for them (as we have young children it's not so easy for us to travel, so family tend to come to us).

While neither dh or I miss them, dd really does, and asks all the time to go & see grandad, which makes me feel bad. It's very upsetting for her when a visit comes to an end. Friends in a similar position who are closer to family find it very hard themselves.

We rarely get to go out because baby sitting is so expensive & obviously have no family about, and not really any people to make reciprocal arrangements with.

Loads of other negatives,

But, like I said I love being where I am. Every day I think how lucky I am. I'm glad I left the Uk and don't want to return. A couple of times I have felt 'homesick', but i usually get over that about an hour after landing, then can't wait to get back home to Germany.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do. Oh, and if I can be of any further help..

Tel83 Fri 06-Sep-19 12:35:18

Feeling exactly the same as this post. Anyone done anything different? 🙂

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