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Is rural life shit for teenagers?

172 replies

inmyshoos · 06/07/2015 19:31

We live rurally in the Highlands. Eldest dc is last year in primary school. Secondary here has great reputation but very small.

We used to live an hour from Glasgow but moved here for work and thought nice place to raise dc. I can now see that as they get older they might need more. Teens that i know here say they love it. There is a very active youth club etc but I wonder if moving back where we were would give them a better life as they grow. More opportunity?

I am never sure because I love this area for being clean/safe etc but I wonder if they will get bored. Eldest dc already complains of 'nothing to do' but that could be lack of pals around (tiny school of 30 pupils in huge geographical area so no one to call round for here)

Aibu to leave a nice area with good schools or do you think teens need a big city nearby and the facilities that come with that?

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Appleblossom82 · 06/07/2015 19:34

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inmyshoos · 06/07/2015 19:36

Dd1 has a 2 friends close enough to call for but the other two rely on arranging play dates which for eldest is tricky now he is older.
We are 26 miles to nearest supermarket to give idea of how rural we are.
Also in a really midgie place which depresses the hell out of me each summer. Midhies love me and youngest dd. Little bastards. Angry

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Roseformeplease · 06/07/2015 19:38

We are similar and it is wonderful for teens. They go off camping, see friends in their homes and DD is in a traditional band. We head to the big city every couple of months and they get "city" in short, intense bursts.


RinkRashDerbyKisses · 06/07/2015 19:38

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inmyshoos · 06/07/2015 19:38

Yes absolutely easy to keep a close eye, cant get up to much here. Actually when i had dd2 the neighbour rang before the after birth was out so folk here dont miss much Grin

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Appleblossom82 · 06/07/2015 19:40

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GirlWhoWearsGlasses · 06/07/2015 19:40

If you had an only child I'd say move but with siblings and a group of good friends they will be fine. Be prepared for driving lessons ASAP turn 17 ;-)


AlpacaLypse · 06/07/2015 19:40

I was brought up in deep countryside and really missed the ability of my friends at school to just bike or walk round to my mates in the evenings.

The one time I did do it, with an Herculaneum bike ride, I was mortified to discover that my parents had called the police out as I hadn't been home by teatime. They had no phone at the time, otherwise I could have called. I have posted on 'Stately Homes' about this, but under another nn.


GirlWhoWearsGlasses · 06/07/2015 19:42

Also I'd say it's better to be 'countrywise' than street wise as an adult. You can get used to a city but learning to be practical and outdoorsy isn't as easy for an adult.


AlmaMartyr · 06/07/2015 19:44

I grew up rurally and loved it. I wasn't quite as rural as you to be fair, but would have liked to have been.


LashesandLipstick · 06/07/2015 19:44

Personally yes, I'm very much a city person and as a teen even the suburbs was a bit far out for me! Once you've looked at the nice view what else do you do...


Duckdeamon · 06/07/2015 19:45

Having had a fun city upbringing and cousins who were bored and miserable in the highlands in their teens I would personally not choose it as a place to live with teens.


BabyGanoush · 06/07/2015 19:46

But cities are so boring! And everything in cities costs money, it makes kids more materialistic.

Though the country is grim and cold and muddy in winter...


VoldemortsNipple · 06/07/2015 19:47

Ds's friend moved from a big city to rural Scotland when he was 10. He has had a much more fulfilling life in his village than he ever had in his busy city where there was gangs, alcoholics in the bus stop, busy traffic etc. he couldn't play out safely before. He has been able to get involved with sports and activities that he never would have here.


chronictreehugger · 06/07/2015 19:47

No - rural life is amazing! I'm so grateful for the fact that I've grown up in such a beautiful area.


Philoslothy · 06/07/2015 19:49

We have 4 teenagers - all raised in a rural area. We spend a lot of time driving and it is fair to say that at least one of ours would prefer to live in a town. However I think it is a case of the grass is greener. I think you need to be prepared to give up a lot of time if you live rurally. Most nights we have at least one other young person round for tea. Most weekends at least one child will be having a sleepover.

Ours gain a lot by being in a rural setting and I think they can see that,


violetwellies · 06/07/2015 19:50

I was a rural teen, and for those who think you can't get into bother who are you kidding?
My brother and his mates hotwired a digger and mananged to do a fair bit of damage.

But it is fabulous, and I hope my son will think the same.


EastMidsMummy · 06/07/2015 19:50

But cities are so boring!

Yeah, the pinnacle of human civilisation - what a drag.


FindoGask · 06/07/2015 19:52

I grew up in a very rural place and some things about it did annoy me - mainly how far we were from everything and how dependent I was on my parents to take me anywhere (non-existent public transport) until I passed my driving test as soon as I could and was allowed sometimes to borrow my mum's car. I would disagree that rural environments are necessarily safer than urban ones - most serious car accidents are on rural derestricted roads, for example; ones which don't tend to have pavements.

But there were other things about it I will always miss - it was a very beautiful and peaceful place, I could spend all day out on my own on my bike or visiting one of my various dens (at first to read or be windswept and interesting, later on to smoke purloined cigarettes and later still, joints). Parties at friends' houses might involve camping out all night under the stars, that sort of thing. I don't feel I missed out on normal teenage stuff, we got up to plenty of mischief despite logistics being more complicated sometimes.


ethelb · 06/07/2015 19:53

As someone who grew up on murder mile and then moved to a rural town and married someone from a small village, I think people who grow up rurally but near/in a small town or village have it much better than they realise. Plus they have something to winge about and a reason to move out even if they are deluded about how green the grass it.
I aspire for my children (not had them yet!) to grow up semi-rurally. They can complain all they want but I know it is better really!


TuckingFablet · 06/07/2015 19:54

I grew up in a tiny village about 6 miles from the town I went to secondary school. life was a but dull, but we made our fun. lots of drinking in fields Grin


JimmyCorkhill · 06/07/2015 19:55

I grew up rurally. I wouldn't do it with my DC.

The plus points were that we did lots as a massive group of friends, so nights out/sleepovers/days in town involved all of our group as we had to combine lifts. I also did lots of horse riding so spent a fair bit of time outdoors. It was also a beautiful place to grow up.

The downsides (as a teen) were that you had to rely on people for lifts or learn to drive early (I had a mean mum and no cash so that was an issue for me, you are probably lots nicer!) I couldn't get to a job so didn't feel very independent. You can't just visit a mate, it took lots of organising.

I could easily live rurally myself now. I miss the space and the quiet. I love the community feel. I love the beauty of the countryside. However, I want my DC to be independent teens with access to a variety of clubs/Saturday job opportunities/public transport. I currently live in a city and the most isolated I would move with teens is to the suburbs.


howabout · 06/07/2015 19:57

I could not stand the midgies. I would also not cope very well with everyone local being in my business or with not being able to walk to the supermarket.
The great outdoors is all very well when the weather is kind.

I do love the highlands though and can see that rural communities seem much better at pulling together to make their own fun. If you have decent broadband you are not really isolated.

I grew up an hour from Glasgow by train but that was not really close enough for a teenager to take advantage of City Life.

My DC are of necessity growing up streetwise. I would actually worry about them having misadventures in the great outdoors if we lived rurally.

No idea which is better really.


tywinlannister · 06/07/2015 19:59

I understand the countryside is beautiful and part of me thinks one day I would love to move to the country but in reality unless there is a 24 hour shop and a train station, I can't deal with it. Even on holiday for more than 5 days. Unless I can freely leave a place without planning my day around the bus times, then I feel like I am being held hostage.

I don't think I could move my family to a place like that, but DH and I are London born and bred so are used to urban surroundings. We don't have a car, we'd be stranded in a place like this.

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