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Divorced American, want to go back home..

(110 Posts)
QueenandKingMum Fri 02-Jan-15 18:33:13

Apologies if this is the wrong place. I've been here 10 years, I have indefinite leave to remain and originally spousal visa. We divorced 3 years ago and separated 4 years ago.

Over time I've gotten more homesick, I'm pretty unhappy. My sister and a few friends are back home, I just feel very removed and lonely after a couple failed ltr.

Problem is I have two children, 6 and 9 that are very very close to their dad and see him every weekend. ExH also pays for them to go to an independent school.

Cons are massive, they'd miss their dad and lose an excellent if not financially crippling education. My daughter especially would want to stay. I can't see exH being able to have her, he's got an intense city job and home late, even in divorce I help him work like this. I'm a childminder so I can have them in the summer while he works and then he sees them weekends. Also, no house, no job and no money.

Pros is that my chronic condition is better catered there, also my sister is there, she's my twin and I miss her. She's offered to put me up until I'm on feet. I'm miserable and want to go home. I've spent my life making sure everyone is happy, apart from myself. I'm actually miserable. Am on counselling waiting list.

So cons clearly say no, but I so want to go home. What do I do? The children and ex would be devastated.

AnotherEmma Fri 02-Jan-15 18:38:21

Personally I think that if you do what's best for you, it will have a positive impact on your children. They need their mum to be happy! I'm sure they would adjust to life in the USA, especially as they're still relatively young. The problem is obviously being able to see their dad. If you're on good terms with him, could you discuss it? Ask if he would ever consider moving to the USA? If he wouldn't, could he afford regular trips to see them? With a job in the City maybe he could?

CalleighDoodle Fri 02-Jan-15 19:00:32

Go home. Your children will adjust. Your exh can visit.

RaisingMen Fri 02-Jan-15 19:25:22

Go home sweetheart. If you're happy, your children will be happy. Good luck x

PiratePanda Fri 02-Jan-15 19:30:28

Ignore the advice of the previous posters. You can't go back to the US with your children unless your XH gives his permission. Otherwise it constitutes child abduction.

I am incredibly sorry you feel stuck and homesick, but either you need to get your XH's agreement to take your DCs to the US permanently with you to live, or you need to accept the fact that you will have to remain here, at least until your DCs are both 18.

xmasDonkey Fri 02-Jan-15 19:31:16

Sorry to be the voice of dissent, I think it would be incredibly selfish of you to move your kids that far from their dad, especially as he is so involved.

PiratePanda Fri 02-Jan-15 19:31:24

Or, of course, go back to the US without your children.

Petallic Fri 02-Jan-15 19:34:50

Could you hold out until the children are of boarding school age? As if they were to board (and presumably with exdp long hours it might suit for other reasons) And then it would be less upheaval for the children to see you only in holidays? Really tough one though, I sympathise and don't know what I would do in your position.

Pooka Fri 02-Jan-15 19:39:11

Unfortunately unless your exh gives you permission to leave the country with the children, it would most likely be a matter of applying to a court. Do you think your exh would agree?

You would need to argue what pros for the children would ensue from the move. What are the benefits in terms of the children that would outweigh the harm of disrupting their relationship with their father etc.

From your post, there isn't much info on how the children would benefit, and in fact you've said that they would be devastated. In addition, your legal status here is secure, and you have work and an income now, whereas you'd be talking presumably about potential job/living situation in US. Lots of uncertainties and I think courts tend to want definite plans and solid arguments to change the existing situation unless there are clear and defined benefits for the children.

I feel terribly sad for you being stuck here - it's something that is a massive downside of having kids in a foreign country, the fact that you might find yourself unable to leave and disrupt the status quo if the relationship breaks down. I've read several threads about this exact thing recently.

I hope that the counselling helps. Just to ascertain the legalities of the situation, it wouldn't hurt to get a consultation with an expert lawyer.

chantico Fri 02-Jan-15 19:40:58

Have you checked the legalities of your moving these life-long British resident children away from their home country, especially when one does not want to go?

Have you discussed this with your XH, and if so in what terms?

The interests of the DC come first, and if they will be devastated, it's totally possible you would be prevented from taking them.

Are there any ways, short of full relocation, that would alter the balance of your life? Can your sister visit more? Can you go on longer trips back?

YellowTulips Fri 02-Jan-15 19:57:05

Quite shocked at some of glib "of course you should go" comments here.

OP I really feel for you but I don't think your plan is realistic. You talk about putting everyone else first but trying to be gentle - this is what mums do for their kids.

Assuming the kids have a good relationship with there father I think it would be cruel to relocate - legalities aside and like other posters I'm pretty sure you would not be allowed to do this without his consent.

I think you need to think about a middle ground here. Perhaps your ex would agree to you and the kids having long visits to the U.S. over the summer?

Could your sister come and visit you?

QueenandKingMum Fri 02-Jan-15 19:59:41

Sorry should have said, he wouldn't stop me, it's something he considered when we split up. And had children. I've given a lot of my life for him, and I won't leave them behind. I'd stay here forever before I left them.

I realise it's selfish. When I moved here we were going to be married forever. Reality is I'm alone, financial in trouble, have the day to day slog (he doesn't do homework or any of the important stuff, he's Disney dad).

My mental health has to be taken in consideration. I'm not happy, I've tried, 10 years isn't not trying. We moved here as he was missing home. After two years.

I just don't know. I'm never first

Littlefish Fri 02-Jan-15 20:01:21

I think you need to take legal advice. You say that your children would be devastated. You would be disrupting their education and a very regular pattern of seeing their father.

Presumably the courts will want to know how you are going to support the children if you return to the US.

Could you start your counselling here and see if that changes how you feel about things?

lljkk Fri 02-Jan-15 20:02:58

How are you going to afford medical care in the USA for your chronic health condition?

Cornonthecob Fri 02-Jan-15 20:04:49

I feel for you. Just throwing a few thoughts out there. Have you spoken (gently) to your ex about how you feel? Roles reversed if he was in the US would he have stayed or come back?

Could you plan long visits home over Easter and summer? Sometimes it's just geography and you might end up feeling the same back home?

It sounds like something distracting while you are here may help? Are there any interests or new skills you'd be interested in trying out? What about dating? Would a love interest help?

In terms of school, would you consider boarding then working out logistics around the school year?

Sorry disjointed post but couldn't read and run! Take care.

oneowlgirl Fri 02-Jan-15 20:05:06

I really feel for you Op but unfortunately when you have children then they have to be first, which means you're not.

From the sounds of it though, if you were to talk to him, there may be the opportunity to work something out which helps you. Good luck Op.

PiratePanda Fri 02-Jan-15 20:13:04

"Sorry should have said, he wouldn't stop me"

You STILL legally have to seek and receive his permission to take them to live with you in the States. Why don't you put this idea to him formally and see how he takes it? I'm afraid if he is resistant to the idea when push comes to shove, and you say your children will be "devastated", then it's very unlikely the courts will let you take them. But you won't know until you ask him.

Petallic's idea of boarding school is not a bad one in these circumstances, actually; even with your XH's long hours he could still have them on weekends, while you could have them with you in the States during the holidays without it affecting their residency status. Easier if you were on the east coast of course.

QueenandKingMum Fri 02-Jan-15 20:24:30

As I haven't asked them or him, this is just my thoughts. I know for a fact he would give me permission.

My son would see it as an adventure but be sad about his dad. My daughter is daddy's girl who can see no wrong in him. Which there isn't much, he's an amazing dad and a great man and friend. He's an ostrich though and can't handle emotive things.

A frank conversation with him and a less frank one with the children is needed. After the counselling.. I'm not stupid, or rash, my children will always come first but my life as it is right now isn't one I want or need.

Thanks for your views, it's not anything I haven't thought already.

gregsageek Fri 02-Jan-15 20:26:06

I really sympathize. I wonder if (as it sounds like your husband has a relatively well paid job?) you could take the children to the US to see your sister and to get your "fix" for most of the school holidays? Other than that, I really think you are going to have to put off relocating til the kids are at least at college.

getthefeckouttahere Fri 02-Jan-15 20:27:26

Oh poor you, you sound so desperately unhappy.

The problem of course that what is best for you , a return to the States, isn't on face value what is best for the kids. So on the bare facts of it you lose, either you go back without your children or stay and remain unhappy.

Is there though any possibility of a middle way. I assume given the private education and his city job he is reasonably well off? Would you all consider your moving back with the children and there being frequent visits both ways, perhaps paid for out of the savings made in school fees? Could you return alone but again frequent trips back. (he could get an au pair and perhaps pay for accommodation for your stays). Remain as you are but with much more and frequent trips home? Again an au pair might help?

From your posts he sounds like a mature and reasonable man, have you discussed any of this with him? He may have ideas.

I agree with other posters that any uprooting of the children from a loving involved father against his wishes would be unacceptable but i do hope that you can find your own way through this.

I too am interested how you would pay for your medical care in the states (and the children's if they were to move)

FunkyBoldRibena Fri 02-Jan-15 20:28:45

As a Canadian living here - GO HOME!

oneowlgirl Fri 02-Jan-15 20:31:49

What about the children Funky?

ToomanyChristmasPresents Fri 02-Jan-15 20:35:08

How will you manage your chronic medical condition in America? You will need medical insurance the minute you step off the plane, and it is expensive?

If you can surmount that, and your husband doesn't mind then go! If you don't go now, your kids will never know America or adjust to it. You will grow old in America while they live their lives in Britain. This is your last chance to ground them where you want to spend the rest of your life.

getthefeckouttahere Fri 02-Jan-15 20:36:27

Oh i forgot to mention, is it possible to make your life here happier and more satisfying? If in the end you do have to stay that does not mean you have to stay and remain unhappy. Change things up, retrain, dating, hobbies, new friends etc etc?

knightofswords Fri 02-Jan-15 20:38:20

Hi OP, have PM'd you.

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