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AIBU? put reception class time before big holiday/relocation?

31 replies

VickyA · 23/09/2007 20:45

DH and I have been thinking for ages about moving to Australia. Time has run away with us, and DH is also having cold feet about the whole "other side of the world" thing, as well as leaving behind his cats....

So we're now thinking about taking a long holiday over there, which would enable us to see if we really want to settle out there for good.

The problem is time - DS starts in reception in January, and he's not a good mixer and will struggle to establish himself there, even though there are 8 kids from his nursery going up to school with him, and 5 are there already.

After I've already refused to contemplate going to Oz in Jan/Feb, meaning DS would go to school at Easter, on his own, DH has suggested we should go at Easter, so DS has had a chance to get his head around the school "idea", then have a few months out and go back into school in September (which may or may not be the same school, god knows where we'll come back to - long story...!)

I feel it'll compromise DS's settling into school "per se", and we should now wait until, say, Easter 09 to take a big trip (ok I know there are issues with taking kids out of school but will deal with that nearer the time or squeeze into school summer hols.) Am I being over-sensitive? He is my PFB, and, unfortunately, has inherited my tendency to observe rather than join in...

Any ideas/comments?

OP posts:

wheresthehamster · 23/09/2007 20:49

I'd do summer hols personally. Are you expecting a place to be held open for DS? I don't think many schools will do this.


bookwormtailmum · 23/09/2007 20:58

You can skip reception year and send them in yr1 if you want but that's not advisable in many respects. Will you be sending him to school in Australia?


ivykaty44 · 23/09/2007 21:09

Is it really a way out? Is it an excuse not to go? If so then put ds into school in January and leave the plans alone. Otherwise
I really wouldn't worry about school for the first 6 months of next year. Go to AU in January and have a look at what the place is like. Come home and decide what you are going to do. Then if you are going to stay put ds into school in September. If you decide to relocate then when you do find a first new school for ds in Astralia.


VickyA · 24/09/2007 09:25

I'm very keen to go, and my preferred route is to go straight out there in March (assuming we sell the house), then I start a university course in April (which I've already been accepted on, in order to get myself up to speed with local practices and get into local job networks (I currently work in Training and will be studying HR)) and then DS goes to school in Sept at the latest, which is the last term of "Kindy" before their Yr1 equivalent starts in January.

DH is stalling - quite understandably he's concerned he'll miss his family (not partic close to mine so no loss there...) and also doesn't want to have to give our cats away (while not wanting to put then through the flight and quarantine to get them out there with us...) That's why I'm unwilling to compromise DS's establishment in School - he has never gone to nursery happily, in the 4 years he's been going, although he soon calms down and (apparently) enjoys it, but my attitude is if DH is delaying and wanting to visit Oz first before committing (he's already spent loads of time there in gap years - it's me leaping into the unknown!), he'll just have to wait.


OP posts:

HonoriaGlossop · 24/09/2007 10:03

I think you're right, judging on how you think your ds will find it hard to settle at school; your dh is wrong to want to hike him out and unsettle him.

From your posts, your DH really doesn't sound too keen on emigrating...............Do you have a plan B, a compromise at all, if he really can't face it?


VickyA · 24/09/2007 10:55

Ironically, he's been the one banging on about emigrating since the year dot, although shorter-haul eg Portugal or Madeira. I vetoed that on the grounds that
(a) we don't speak portuguese (although could learn, to what standard I don't know)
(b) the only jobs out there are in the tourism service sector and are long hours for not fantastic rewards so we wouldn't get the "family time" we want, and
(c) I'm not at all convinced it's wise putting ds through schooling in a different language and in, how can I put it tactfully, what's basically a third world country as far as infrastructure and education etc goes... I'm happy to be proved wrong on the last one, but the other points just don't make it a goer for me...

Logically speaking, dh hates his job, it's coming to an end in the middle of next year anyway, I'm self-employed currently (although working part time so not a resounding financial success) so on paper this is the ideal time to go. And now he gets cold feet... Duh! Best off now though, rather than unsettled 10,000 miles and £££ away...

Plan B is one of us finds another job, which would probably be in another part of the country to where we are now, maybe closer to PIL so we'd get the odd day's support for ds, while the other gets on with the school run, school hols etc. The problem is, I DON'T want that to be me....! Selfish I know, but I've spent the last 5 years working part-time and then self employed, and I really need to get my teeth stuck into a decent job. But my skills lend themselves to ad hoc work, while dh's do not, and he'd have to face retraining into something else. So if I shut up and get on with it, that leaves dh to get a job, in a sector he hates (unavoidable - he's a lawyer and therefore basically unemployable outside that) and we're both miserable and grouchy...

Anyone any ideas for Plan C...?!

OP posts:

HonoriaGlossop · 24/09/2007 12:13

hmm. Not an easy one, is it?! I see what you mean about you both getting stuck into roles you neither actually want

Could you both chuck it all in and run a B & B or something? I know, I'm clutching at straws now. I will give plan C some thought for you though


VickyA · 24/09/2007 12:37

Oh don't even go there on the chucking it all in route - if we could find/afford to buy a llama farm (where all llamas are tucked up in the house and never fall ill or have to do anything strenuous obviously), dh wd be there like a shot...

OP posts:

HonoriaGlossop · 24/09/2007 13:06

Surely there must be a middle way, between the Law and Llamas

He sounds a bit of an all-or-nothing person


3andnomore · 24/09/2007 13:09

Hm...seing that Reception class is actually not compulsary, why not lump that bit completely and Homeeducate for that year, and then start your child off in year 1. Also, I have no idea what teh school system is like in OZ, do they start as young as over here....


3andnomore · 24/09/2007 13:11

Just read your 2. would be best to go out there and bite the bullet, espeically as you have already been accepted at the Uni....would be a shame not to use it...


HonoriaGlossop · 24/09/2007 13:19

OK, I have formulated Plan C.

You move to an area near the PIL. You downsize to a two bedroom house so that you can give yourselves flexibility over jobs as far as possible. Your DH thinks outside the box and applies for jobs outside his experience (charity/voluntary sector?)OR settles for a Law job, which may have to be HIS go for the job career that you want and make it clear to DH that he needs to take responsibility for school runs/holidays, maybe with help from your PIL/school clubs.

This gives you the chance to get your dream job and to get some help and support from your ILs.

Is the area where they live nice? Would you want to live there? Would you be able to forget the Oz idea - would you WANT to forget it?


Roskva · 24/09/2007 13:26

VickyA, lawyers are very employable in other careers - legal skills are immensely useful in lots of other areas.

My roll call of ex-lawyers includes:
an editor in a publishing company
a corporate training manager
a pilates instructor
a hotel manager


Judy1234 · 24/09/2007 13:45

I think you should stay here. It's very hot over there and not very cultural and extremely sexist and sometimes racist. Not a very nice place for some people and your husband doesn't want to go anyway.


Cammelia · 24/09/2007 13:46

at xenia


nospeak · 24/09/2007 13:48

Lol at your dh not wanting to leave his cats.


HonoriaGlossop · 24/09/2007 13:52

i do agree nospeak; I think someone for whom the cats are an issue really DOESN'T want to do it....which must be utterly annoying since he's the one who has been going on about moving abroad!


3andnomore · 24/09/2007 13:52



3andnomore · 24/09/2007 13:52

oh, and why can't you tkae your cats?


Anna8888 · 24/09/2007 13:55

Xenia - but there are excellent schools, lots of sport and healthy outdoor activities, the standard of living is generally high and society is far less consumerist and class-ridden than the UK


VickyA · 24/09/2007 14:20

The cats are getting on, although not old (3 of them, between 9 and 12), but dh doesn't think they'd cope with the flight and then 1 month quarantine. It would also severely limit our house rental options, and cost about £2k to ship them over The problem is dh's family won't take them, and he won't let mine have them (well, they have had about 4 cats run over in the last few years, so I can see his point... )

Good thinking HG, but PILs live in Buckinghamshire, where a 2 bed wd cost all our equity plus a sizeable mortgage (coming from oop north), and would mean I'd be working in London, which I've done and really don't want to do again. His only law jobs from there wd be London or Milton Keynes, and women find it hard enough getting workable part time hours in the law, let alone a bloke... I take people's points about non-law, but wd still be a huge issue re. PT working. To add to that, PILs love their holidays and bugger off to their timeshares for 3-4 weeks at a time (which they're fully entitled to - they've earned their retirement) when their other DDs haven't monopolised them, so I'm loathe to get them involved except sparingly...

I've heard Oz is making progress on sexism etc, and they even have air conditioning, so I've few worries there Xenia . The poisonous spiders and snakes are more of an issue though... Imagine if I forced the issue, shipped the cats, and then they get wiped out by a rogue whiteback spider...


OP posts:

3andnomore · 24/09/2007 14:38

Vicky...just thought you might be interested in this website...


VickyA · 24/09/2007 14:44

Thanks 3andnomore - there seem to be loads of those sort of sites - we've already looked at british expats, poms in adelaide, adelaide brits... Now if there was one called "Brainwash your husband and get a new life just like that (oh and the cats can be teleported over)...", I'd definitely subscribe...

Actually, that's partly what's doing my head in - dh spends hours every evening poring over aussie housing websites, showing what huge houses can be got relatively cheaply... Why??? Why??????

OP posts:

3andnomore · 24/09/2007 14:51

Vicky, I assume your dh isn't a risk taker...and that might be his problem (I know, no shit sherlock )...but I suppose, if he is the main earner, etc...he might just be to scared to "let you down"....

Friends of a friend have just emigrated to OZ, well, first they emigrated to NZ, but they didn't like it (they had never been, so, had no idea what to expect) and now they are over in OZ, but no idea how they getting on is quite a move...dh and I have been pondering about a "one day we will"...Canada or OZ or South Africa are the ones that appeal...well, the first 2 are the main ones, really, lol...if it will ever happen...who knows...


Judy1234 · 24/09/2007 14:55

My uncle and aunt emigrated to Tasmania in the 1960s and were very happy out there. They have a house and also a farm/shack and my uncle was doctor until he retired. AMusingly given what Anna wrote my aunt never spoke particularly well but over the years out there in Tasmania seemed to develop an accent like the Queen in 1950s as if Tasmania were a version of England preserved in aspic. Anyway it's never appealed to me. Think about the skin cancer risk and it's just not England, not the same at all.

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