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samt4

Been in Oz 8 months and struggling - advice please!

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Hi everyone,

I’m a 31 year old female from England and have been living in Brisbane for 8 months now, whilst awaiting a decision on my partner visa. I have been dating my boyfriend for just over 2 years now, after meeting him right at the end of my working holiday visa. After a couple of long stints apart (me in the UK, him in Oz), we have been living together in Australia for 8 months now. However it feels completely different from my working visa, because I know it could be permanent. 

I am missing home a lot, mostly feeling disconnected from my family and friends but just as strongly missing the English countryside and London. I had both on my doorstep back home and I’m missing my countryside walks, as well as the culture/ history/ excitement of London. I don’t know if I’m looking at the UK with rose tinted glasses or whether I will feel like this permantely.

I realise that 8 months is not long enough to really know, and plan to give it 2 years at least to see how I feel after that, however I feel like if I was to have children (this is something I really want and preferably no later then 35 ish, so not much time left!), then I would want to go straight home to where I have support from my own family, am familiar/ comfortable with my surroundings and for my kids to have a British childhood. This is hard for me as I love the lifestyle in OZ and think its great you can get outdoors and active with your kids, but how much good will that be if I feel depressed about being here away from everyone I know?

I am undecided on the difference of raising kids in the UK vs Australia- if any parents have any views or advice on this I’d love to know! I’ve read a lot of posts already and views are mixed. I guess both countries have good education systems and pluses and minuses, etc so I guess it’s where the parents will feel happiest?

Ok I rambled in that topic for a while- what I am really feeling is that I will still feel like in wont want to be here in say 2 years time and I am struggling as my partner has his whole life here and I guess more to give up. He works in business/ property and has plans to develop some land, which is basically his life’s dream and he has all these long term plans for the future which would mean we would have to stay here.

He said that it’s the only thing from holding him back and that if it wasn’t for his work/ re development plans he would already be living in the UK. But he did say he would give everything up if necessary. Thing is how could I ever ask him to do such a thing?! And he says he likes the UK but I know he also loves the sunshine and blue sky (which we don’t get much of in the UK) and he gets kinda miserable when its cloudy. I also think he would find it hard to adjust to the UK (more people, the mindset of the people there, the weather, far from family). I’m not sure he realises how tough it is to move and I would feel horrible to make him give up all that he’s worked for over the past 10 years or so, building his business/ plans up from scratch.

Do I sacrifice my happiness for him? Or does he do the same for me? I’m worried that I’m getting older and I would like to start a family within the next few years but our living arrangements might alter that and I do not want to wait until im in my late 30’s to start having kids (especially if I want more than 1!). My partner is not even thinking about proposing, let alone kids but I feel like we need to think about this as I would like to settle somewhere first (and soon).

I have spoken to him about all of this and he feels bad that I’m having a hard time adjusting but realistically there’s not much he can do. I feel a bit up and down, sometimes depressed when he works a lot, as I am on my own otherwise. I have job from home and have made no friends, so I feel bored and isolated here. There’s not a huge amount to do in Brisbane it seems. Everything is at least an hours drive away which is too far. I’m a bit sick of going into the city, with about 2 shops I actually buy clothes from, and going for the occasionally walk in the bush- I miss the culture and pretty villages of the UK.

Thing is it’s like I don’t want to make friends, I have no energy to put on that smiley face and get out there. I know it will help me but its like I don’t want to try because I don’t want to settle here in my heart. I realise there’s lots of things could be doing such as joining social clubs, sports groups etc but I can’t bring myself to do those things just now. I feel detached from my family, even though I’m probably messaging them more than I would normally do if I was back home. It’s like I’m not part of my family anymore. I miss everything about home and it is really where I would like to raise kids, to be able to see my sisters children if they eventually have them. But then someone is going to have to give up their whole life- how do you decide who?! Could I live with the guilt if I asked my partner to move to the UK?

If anyone ese has had this struggle and come out the other side- or who has moved back home, then I would love to here your thoughts and advice! Sorry for the long post!

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Sadly, there isn’t going to be a simple answer to your dilemma. Some people grow through the displacement. Some grow through to actually love the place, others grow through and become inured to the feelings but never really grasp the wonderful ness of it all. Others just live in miserable limbo for the rest of their days.

I guess I was different in that in the beginning it was an adventure and we had moved about quite a bit in our early marriage so that I thought at some stage there would be another move. I had my kids in Australia and, being very independent and self sufficient, that wasn’t an issue for me. I prioritised trips back to see my family and eventually my parents did 6/6 months visits. While the kids were growing up we opted for stability. It wasn’t until the kids had left home and we began talking about retirement that I realised how different were DH’s expectations from my own and CLANG the iron bars came down. Bit of a slow learner I suppose but the thought of being trapped in Australia which, by then, I had come to loathe, really did bad things to my health, both physical and mental. 
 

However, I got hit with the “lucky” stick and one holiday 8 years ago (rarely, one of the few that I had actually been able to drag my DH back) - the deterioration in my parents was obvious and my DH said “we can’t leave them here like this” - so we didn’t, with just our backpacks, we stayed ....... for 8 years!  I can honestly say that living in UK has given me my life back. I am literally half the woman I was, I am fit, lift weights, have lots of friends, do interesting things whilst all the while caring for a couple of nonagenarians.  My dad has now decided that he is better off in a care home - and he is, there’s more going on, trained people instantly on tap so we are selling up his home (making us homeless) and in the last stages of moving back to Australia. I no longer vomit at the prospect much as I don’t want to go. 
 

How you decide whether you choose to be the sacrificial lamb in your relationship is up to you but I guess it depends on how strong you feel and how well the two of you communicate. My rationale was always that I would happily live with the least worst option and you have to decide if he is the one you want to grow old and have grandkids with (even though he hasn’t proposed yet!) in which case, which is your least worst option - in a place you don’t want to be with him or in a place you want to be without him. I chose my DH over the place (he's a better cuddler) and whilst I felt there was an escape route potential that was ok. I think moving on from here the gratitude I have for all that he has given up to care for my parents here will armour me through a few more years in Australia anyway and our plans are to come  home for frequent visits given the 95 year old dad in care and a 5 year old grandson we need to connect with.

Whatever you do, don’t bring kids into the equation until you are convinced of your ability to live with the least worst option for a long time. But meanwhile, might I suggest you seek out some counselling to help you focus on moving forwards in whichever direction. Sometimes the ideas just go round and round in your head and just get more and more muddled.  You might find, for instance that there might be barriers to your progress - could your OH actually live in U.K. with visa for starters (that’s a frequent big hurdle), would their skill set be transferable, do they have other family imperatives which makes leaving unlikely?  Your GP can facilitate counselling as it seems that your preoccupation with your situation could be leading you into situational depression.  CBT and ACT are quite useful therapies in this regard. They can't solve the situational problem but, done well, they can give you tools to deal with it. 

At the end of the day, your dilemma is just between two first world countries, there is nothing magic about either but the ephemeral sense of “belonging” is worth millions I reckon.  Good luck! Some of us do understand only too well and maybe it helps you to know that you aren't Robinson Crusoe!

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Hi samt4,

First of all, Quoll is 100% correct in saying that there is no simple answer........

And yes, in my opinion, you are seeing the UK through rosy glasses at the moment, and I can justify saying this because I've been in exactly the same position as you,  many years ago.

However, I stuck it for two years, and it was battle !!  but i then realised how lucky I was to live in such a great country, and I went on to have a fabulous 28 years there, and boy was I glad I'd stayed.

We're currently in the UK now, but heading back to live in Australia early 2020.

PLEASE stick it out, I know it's hard, I truly do, but no one can settle in a new country in just 8 months.

I wish you well and good luck.


Left UK 1990 / WA for 28 years / UK / returning Australia as soon as the CV issue allows !

 

 

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2 hours ago, Quoll said:

Whatever you do, don’t bring kids into the equation until you are convinced of your ability to live with the least worst option for a long time. But meanwhile, might I suggest you seek out some counselling to help you focus on moving forwards in whichever direction. Sometimes the ideas just go round and round in your head and just get more and more muddled.  You might find, for instance that there might be barriers to your progress - could your OH actually live in U.K. with visa for starters (that’s a frequent big hurdle)? ......  

At the end of the day, your dilemma is just between two first world countries, there is nothing magic about either but the ephemeral sense of “belonging” is worth millions I reckon.  Good luck! Some of us do understand only too well and maybe it helps you to know that you aren't Robinson Crusoe!

This is great advice.  

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Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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Your life will be hell if you will have kids and you are still struggling. Don't do it, your future kids deserve better. 

Not saying you shouldn't have kids. You should if you want to. But life is tough when you have kids and if you already have a rough and unstable situation, you will make your life, that of your partner and of your kid(s) unpleasant.

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Lived in Perth for 18 months. Pingponging back in Juli '15!

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11 hours ago, samt4 said:

Hi everyone,

I’m a 31 year old female from England and have been living in Brisbane for 8 months now, whilst awaiting a decision on my partner visa. I have been dating my boyfriend for just over 2 years now, after meeting him right at the end of my working holiday visa. After a couple of long stints apart (me in the UK, him in Oz), we have been living together in Australia for 8 months now. However it feels completely different from my working visa, because I know it could be permanent. 

I am missing home a lot, mostly feeling disconnected from my family and friends but just as strongly missing the English countryside and London. I had both on my doorstep back home and I’m missing my countryside walks, as well as the culture/ history/ excitement of London. I don’t know if I’m looking at the UK with rose tinted glasses or whether I will feel like this permantely.

I realise that 8 months is not long enough to really know, and plan to give it 2 years at least to see how I feel after that, however I feel like if I was to have children (this is something I really want and preferably no later then 35 ish, so not much time left!), then I would want to go straight home to where I have support from my own family, am familiar/ comfortable with my surroundings and for my kids to have a British childhood. This is hard for me as I love the lifestyle in OZ and think its great you can get outdoors and active with your kids, but how much good will that be if I feel depressed about being here away from everyone I know?

I am undecided on the difference of raising kids in the UK vs Australia- if any parents have any views or advice on this I’d love to know! I’ve read a lot of posts already and views are mixed. I guess both countries have good education systems and pluses and minuses, etc so I guess it’s where the parents will feel happiest?

Ok I rambled in that topic for a while- what I am really feeling is that I will still feel like in wont want to be here in say 2 years time and I am struggling as my partner has his whole life here and I guess more to give up. He works in business/ property and has plans to develop some land, which is basically his life’s dream and he has all these long term plans for the future which would mean we would have to stay here.

He said that it’s the only thing from holding him back and that if it wasn’t for his work/ re development plans he would already be living in the UK. But he did say he would give everything up if necessary. Thing is how could I ever ask him to do such a thing?! And he says he likes the UK but I know he also loves the sunshine and blue sky (which we don’t get much of in the UK) and he gets kinda miserable when its cloudy. I also think he would find it hard to adjust to the UK (more people, the mindset of the people there, the weather, far from family). I’m not sure he realises how tough it is to move and I would feel horrible to make him give up all that he’s worked for over the past 10 years or so, building his business/ plans up from scratch.

Do I sacrifice my happiness for him? Or does he do the same for me? I’m worried that I’m getting older and I would like to start a family within the next few years but our living arrangements might alter that and I do not want to wait until im in my late 30’s to start having kids (especially if I want more than 1!). My partner is not even thinking about proposing, let alone kids but I feel like we need to think about this as I would like to settle somewhere first (and soon).

I have spoken to him about all of this and he feels bad that I’m having a hard time adjusting but realistically there’s not much he can do. I feel a bit up and down, sometimes depressed when he works a lot, as I am on my own otherwise. I have job from home and have made no friends, so I feel bored and isolated here. There’s not a huge amount to do in Brisbane it seems. Everything is at least an hours drive away which is too far. I’m a bit sick of going into the city, with about 2 shops I actually buy clothes from, and going for the occasionally walk in the bush- I miss the culture and pretty villages of the UK.

Thing is it’s like I don’t want to make friends, I have no energy to put on that smiley face and get out there. I know it will help me but its like I don’t want to try because I don’t want to settle here in my heart. I realise there’s lots of things could be doing such as joining social clubs, sports groups etc but I can’t bring myself to do those things just now. I feel detached from my family, even though I’m probably messaging them more than I would normally do if I was back home. It’s like I’m not part of my family anymore. I miss everything about home and it is really where I would like to raise kids, to be able to see my sisters children if they eventually have them. But then someone is going to have to give up their whole life- how do you decide who?! Could I live with the guilt if I asked my partner to move to the UK?

If anyone ese has had this struggle and come out the other side- or who has moved back home, then I would love to here your thoughts and advice! Sorry for the long post!

Do you know what ,- if you love each other, above all else 

IT WILL WORK ITSELF OUT 👍


BUT I DONT FEEL AFRAID

AS LONG AS I GAZE AT

WATERLOO SUNSET

IAM IN PARADISE

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3 hours ago, bunbury61 said:

Do you know what ,- if you love each other, above all else 

IT WILL WORK ITSELF OUT 👍

NO IT WON'T

This is such dangerous advice.   The only place that love conquers all is in a movie or a book.   

To @samt4 I would say - it's possible to feel terribly lonely even if you have a loving partner, and being lonely can make everything look black.  But one thing you said is telling:  

"I feel like if I was to have children, then I would want to go straight home to where I have support from my own family, am familiar/ comfortable with my surroundings and for my kids to have a British childhood."

I don't think making friends will change that feeling.   I think the solution is to go back to the UK and more importantly, I think you need to stop putting thoughts into your partner's head that aren't there.

You're assuming he's like you - while you're in Australia, you've got a deep emptiness in your heart where your family and country should be, so you think he must feel the same when he's in England.  That's a HUGE assumption!   Some people - like you - have such a deep attachment to their homeland, they can never be truly happy anywhere else.   But other people - like me - can cheerfully live wherever takes their fancy.   I call them nomads, and they're the ones who make successful migrants.

As a nomad, it took me a long time to accept that people like you truly existed.  I couldn't believe how people got to the point of suicide because they were so homesick.  Likewise, your boyfriend is telling you that he'd prefer to live in the UK, and you can't believe  he could possibly leave his family and homeland behind so lightly.  Well, if he's like me, yes he can - you're the one thinking it would be a sacrifice for him when it's not. 

 

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Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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I'm sorry for your dilemma and no easy answer - things may feel easier if you can start feeling connected to something outside or your relationship and establish some friendships/acquaintances that you can do things with.  I missed people terribly when I first moved and often say I had people sickness in those first few months.

On the practical side (and those who know more about this can comment), there may be some practical issues if you both want to move back to the UK as it's not easy I believe to just move with a partner.

Can you afford a holiday back to the UK either on your own or as a couple?  Is your location the best one for both of you - do you need to be somewhere busier?


I just want PIO to be a happy place where people are nice to each other and unicorns poop rainbows

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1 hour ago, Marisawright said:

NO IT WON'T

This is such dangerous advice.   The only place that love conquers all is in a movie or a book.   

To @samt4 I would say - it's possible to feel terribly lonely even if you have a loving partner, and being lonely can make everything look black.  But one thing you said is telling:  

"I feel like if I was to have children, then I would want to go straight home to where I have support from my own family, am familiar/ comfortable with my surroundings and for my kids to have a British childhood."

I don't think making friends will change that feeling.   I think the solution is to go back to the UK and more importantly, I think you need to stop putting thoughts into your partner's head that aren't there.

You're assuming he's like you - while you're in Australia, you've got a deep emptiness in your heart where your family and country should be, so you think he must feel the same when he's in England.  That's a HUGE assumption!   Some people - like you - have such a deep attachment to their homeland, they can never be truly happy anywhere else.   But other people - like me - can cheerfully live wherever takes their fancy.   I call them nomads, and they're the ones who make successful migrants.

As a nomad, it took me a long time to accept that people like you truly existed.  I couldn't believe how people got to the point of suicide because they were so homesick.  Likewise, your boyfriend is telling you that he'd prefer to live in the UK, and you can't believe  he could possibly leave his family and homeland behind so lightly.  Well, if he's like me, yes he can - you're the one thinking it would be a sacrifice for him when it's not. 

 

Great advice. Sometimes love isn’t enough and can even turn to hate if one person is so unhappy.  For some it does take time to settle but I’m a big believer in gut instinct, it sounds like you just know you can’t stay there for ever. You working from home isn't ideal in your situation.  If your partners happy to move to the UK and give up his business then go for it. A business isn’t worth total misery but be sure he is keen otherwise you’ll have the same sad situation the other way round. As for kids, definitely do not have any until you’re in a good place. Kids will thrive in either country. I believe they are both equal in terms of education, health services, things for kids to do and importantly, in values. Desperately unhappy parents will have a big impact on kids wellbeing. You are not alone, so many couples are in the same situation. I wish you luck. 

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1 hour ago, Marisawright said:

NO IT WON'T

This is such dangerous advice.   The only place that love conquers all is in a movie or a book.   

To @samt4 I would say - it's possible to feel terribly lonely even if you have a loving partner, and being lonely can make everything look black.  But one thing you said is telling:  

"I feel like if I was to have children, then I would want to go straight home to where I have support from my own family, am familiar/ comfortable with my surroundings and for my kids to have a British childhood."

I don't think making friends will change that feeling.   I think the solution is to go back to the UK and more importantly, I think you need to stop putting thoughts into your partner's head that aren't there.

You're assuming he's like you - while you're in Australia, you've got a deep emptiness in your heart where your family and country should be, so you think he must feel the same when he's in England.  That's a HUGE assumption!   Some people - like you - have such a deep attachment to their homeland, they can never be truly happy anywhere else.   But other people - like me - can cheerfully live wherever takes their fancy.   I call them nomads, and they're the ones who make successful migrants.

As a nomad, it took me a long time to accept that people like you truly existed.  I couldn't believe how people got to the point of suicide because they were so homesick.  Likewise, your boyfriend is telling you that he'd prefer to live in the UK, and you can't believe  he could possibly leave his family and homeland behind so lightly.  Well, if he's like me, yes he can - you're the one thinking it would be a sacrifice for him when it's not. 

 

I agree with Marisa.  

I am a bit like her in that I never felt homesick here BUT I was lucky enough to go back to visit Mum and friends often and Mum came out to Australia to stay with us every 2nd year until she died.  If your feelings are so strong about the UK and you miss your family so much and you can't afford to visit them as often as possible then I would think very seriously about returning to the UK.  It's not worth the unhappiness to stick it out because you feel you have to.  Some members on this forum are still very homesick and yearn to return to the UK after living here for decades.

Your partner has told you he could live in the UK if it wasn't for his work and that he would give everything up if necessary.  If you still feel the way you do now after a few more months perhaps that is the way to go.  

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It’s not easy when you work from home if you have no friends yet. It means you are pretty isolated.
I know you say in some ways you don’t want to make friends, but even joining in a group or club might give you some positive interactions and you might find yourself reaching out.
A few people have mentioned children and I think it’s worth adding - if after having a child you decide you don’t want to be in Australia and your partner decides they won’t move to the U.K., you wouldn’t be able to take the child without their permission. Also, by reading threads such as these and talking to a friend who is in this situation, what people ‘agree’ with their partner at one point in time does not necessarily come to fruition later down the line sadly.
I haven’t felt the pull of the U.K. personally, I have enjoyed it in Australia from the moment we arrived. My OH though suffered terribly for a long time and it was no cruise for either of us as a result.
I wish you all the best with your decisions

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Some great advice here especially re: waiting till you’re settled to have kids. I’d be tempted to give it a little more time but beware that you could get yourself into a tricky situation. I came over to Brisbane in my 40’s over 12 years ago. If you’re used to the vibrancy of British cities it is very dull, albeit improving. My kids were young and personally I think if you have a young family, and are not so into the social side of things you can make it work. The flora and fauna are fantastic but like you, I find it wearing to drive for hours to get anywhere decent. My kids are grown up now and have had fabulous opportunities here (one is a nurse and about to buy her own house aged 25!).  I now feel stuck. I have had a great time but never stopped missing the British countryside, European travel, the weather (!) that enables you to be outside most days of the year with correct clothing. I have met a lot of nice people here through work and activities but no close friends. If I retire here, it is likely to be just me and my husband and we get on well thankfully but I miss our friends and family and the company of others.
I am so tired now of the heat and the climate has changed notably even in a decade here. I find solace in my trips home and the prospect of spending at least  part of my retirement back home. If I was alone and child free I’d be on the plane tomorrow, grateful for the experience but excited about moving on with my life! Sorry to ramble - but you need to completely enthusiastic about making it work in Australia before you commit completely - and I suspect that moving your partner over with you to the UK may not be the best outcome for him. 

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1 hour ago, Chortlepuss said:

Some great advice here especially re: waiting till you’re settled to have kids. I’d be tempted to give it a little more time but beware that you could get yourself into a tricky situation. I came over to Brisbane in my 40’s over 12 years ago. If you’re used to the vibrancy of British cities it is very dull, albeit improving. My kids were young and personally I think if you have a young family, and are not so into the social side of things you can make it work. The flora and fauna are fantastic but like you, I find it wearing to drive for hours to get anywhere decent. My kids are grown up now and have had fabulous opportunities here (one is a nurse and about to buy her own house aged 25!).  I now feel stuck. I have had a great time but never stopped missing the British countryside, European travel, the weather (!) that enables you to be outside most days of the year with correct clothing. I have met a lot of nice people here through work and activities but no close friends. If I retire here, it is likely to be just me and my husband and we get on well thankfully but I miss our friends and family and the company of others.
I am so tired now of the heat and the climate has changed notably even in a decade here. I find solace in my trips home and the prospect of spending at least  part of my retirement back home. If I was alone and child free I’d be on the plane tomorrow, grateful for the experience but excited about moving on with my life! Sorry to ramble - but you need to completely enthusiastic about making it work in Australia before you commit completely - and I suspect that moving your partner over with you to the UK may not be the best outcome for him. 

The only reason I would return to the UK   ................   Scotland in particular  ..............  would be to see my sister.  As she is now retired and comes to see me for up to 3 months of the UK winter I just don't feel the need to go back anymore.  Our two sons are living overseas    ....... one of them will be back but the other may decide to live there permanently so I know how my Mum felt when I migrated.  It's not easy but it's his life and he is happy.  OH and I are very content where we chose to retire to   ............  away from the heat and hustle and bustle of city life.  As you say Chortlepuss, you do have to be completely enthusiastic about making it work in Australia.  Over the nearly 40 years I have lived here, I've had very good friends return to the UK and been very happy.  Others like myself have always been settled and happy here.  Of the  close friends I had in the Sydney area two couples are now living nearby and another couple are moving here in March though to the south coast   ................  we are in the north west coast (Tasmania). We have all known each other for 30 years so I am more than happy to have my old friends living close to us again. I always think you can never be bored or lonely if you have good friends and I have been lucky with my friends in the years I've been in Australia.

Samt4 and her partner have some fairly big decisions to make before they decide to have children.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Chortlepuss said:

you need to completely enthusiastic about making it work in Australia before you commit completely - and I suspect that moving your partner over with you to the UK may not be the best outcome for him. 

Why do you say that, Chortlepuss?  

I do think that people like yourself and Samt4 have a hard time understanding how nomads feel.   I've had people tell me that a deep longing for your home country is "natural" and "fundamental" - "you must feel it, you're just in denial!", and so on.   But that's not the case. People are different, and some people ARE able to transfer their allegiance to a new country.  

It would be tragic if Samt4 stayed in Australia because of flawed thinking:  "I know my partner says he'd be happy to move to the UK but I know his mind better than he does".     

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Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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I say it because I know a couple in a similar position and her partner loved the UK to bits but for work reasons they had to return to Australia and he is now reluctant to go back to the UK due to family obligations.  Also know a couple of Australian families from work who lived in (and loved) London for at long while but eventually couldn’t cope with the climate and returned. So just my observation of experience - the OP’s partner could well be different but her message seemed to suggest an attachment to work here.

 

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13 hours ago, bunbury61 said:

Do you know what ,- if you love each other, above all else 

IT WILL WORK ITSELF OUT 👍

Dont often disagree with Bunbury - in an ideal world I think this might be true but, sadly, the world is far from ideal and what starts out as deep love sometimes can end up as deep loathing when one's actions impinges on the other's mental health to such a point that all love is lost.  It's hard to hang on to a person who, even unwittingly, hurts you.

I think I would have described myself as one of Marisa's nomads for 3 decades or so - it wasnt a problem, I believed I was free to go where I wanted and do what I wanted but when the man I love more dearly than life itself said that one of my options was not on his radar then whammy!  The longing to "belong" after that time just became almost too much to bear and whilst I wasnt actively suicidal, my behaviour was very self destructive as a way of coping (I was a couch potato who ate - I saw some pictures yesterday evening and they were ghastly!!!!) - that destruction can take many forms as your mental health crumbles.  I probably knew exactly what I was doing but after a life time in the mental health industry I didnt think it would attack me in quite the way it did - some things I knew about academically and may once have had the disdain of those for whom it hadn't happened, became an uncontrollable monster in my life.  Dispassionately standing back and looking at what happened I am surprised that I succumbed but there ya go, it was a perfect storm, in hindsight

 As it happens, we did love each other enough and it has worked out brilliantly - I think for both of us.  He didnt get his self sufficient life in the bush but with the advantage of 10 years of retirement and a few health problems I think he is sanguine about that now and realises (especially after the DS got totally burned out in a bush fire) that it wasnt quite the paradise he anticipated. I got a period of "belonging" which has been enough to kick start my life again - slimmer, fitter and generally much happier. 

The key to all here is compromise. That I survived at all was due to the compromise positions we both took and whilst, for neither of us, was it ideal, it was liveable.  That's why I think counselling is a good way to help you work out what you are prepared to compromise on and what you would hope for in return.  Some of us, I guess, are lucky with the people we love but you never can tell back at the beginning, can you?!

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6 hours ago, Quoll said:

Dont often disagree with Bunbury - in an ideal world I think this might be true but, sadly, the world is far from ideal and what starts out as deep love sometimes can end up as deep loathing when one's actions impinges on the other's mental health to such a point that all love is lost.  It's hard to hang on to a person who, even unwittingly, hurts you.

I think I would have described myself as one of Marisa's nomads for 3 decades or so - it wasnt a problem, I believed I was free to go where I wanted and do what I wanted but when the man I love more dearly than life itself said that one of my options was not on his radar then whammy!  The longing to "belong" after that time just became almost too much to bear and whilst I wasnt actively suicidal, my behaviour was very self destructive as a way of coping (I was a couch potato who ate - I saw some pictures yesterday evening and they were ghastly!!!!) - that destruction can take many forms as your mental health crumbles.  I probably knew exactly what I was doing but after a life time in the mental health industry I didnt think it would attack me in quite the way it did - some things I knew about academically and may once have had the disdain of those for whom it hadn't happened, became an uncontrollable monster in my life.  Dispassionately standing back and looking at what happened I am surprised that I succumbed but there ya go, it was a perfect storm, in hindsight

 As it happens, we did love each other enough and it has worked out brilliantly - I think for both of us.  He didnt get his self sufficient life in the bush but with the advantage of 10 years of retirement and a few health problems I think he is sanguine about that now and realises (especially after the DS got totally burned out in a bush fire) that it wasnt quite the paradise he anticipated. I got a period of "belonging" which has been enough to kick start my life again - slimmer, fitter and generally much happier. 

The key to all here is compromise. That I survived at all was due to the compromise positions we both took and whilst, for neither of us, was it ideal, it was liveable.  That's why I think counselling is a good way to help you work out what you are prepared to compromise on and what you would hope for in return.  Some of us, I guess, are lucky with the people we love but you never can tell back at the beginning, can you?!

Brilliant reply as always Quoll 

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1 hour ago, Paul1Perth said:

There are some people who won't settle and never be happy. It's not worth it, go back.

I'm inclined to agree.  

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Anybody who expects to be settled in 8 months, has to be kidding.  Takes at least three years if not longer.  

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1 hour ago, Bulya said:

Anybody who expects to be settled in 8 months, has to be kidding.  Takes at least three years if not longer.  

Now see I felt settled straight away and stayed that way for 10 years, then the niggles started.  🤷🏻‍♀️
 

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1 hour ago, Amber Snowball said:

Now see I felt settled straight away and stayed that way for 10 years, then the niggles started.  🤷🏻‍♀️
 

And how many locations did you try?

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2 hours ago, Bulya said:

And how many locations did you try?

What does it matter? 
The point was I felt settled straight away in Geelong as it happens. 
Don’t need a fight or a lecture thanks, was just saying...

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6 hours ago, Bulya said:

Anybody who expects to be settled in 8 months, has to be kidding.  Takes at least three years if not longer.  

.....and may never ever happen, which is why you don’t have kids until you’re sure. 

But actually I felt settled in Sydney as soon as I arrived 

Edited by Marisawright

Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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Hi Sam

I was adamant during most of my first year in Sydney that I would be moving back after one or two years; I stayed for fifteen! I think it's important to immerse yourself in a hobby that will get you out meeting people, if you can? I have always been into horses and that made all the difference to me - as soon as I started riding, I met kindred spirits and eventually bought a horse (and a dog and a cat) and started to feel as though I was 'home' and the homesickness faded. Ultimately, however, the pull of the English countryside and London got the better of me and I did return three years ago. It was relatively easy, as I was single and childless. My sister, who had also been in Australia for roughly the same amount of time (having grown up in England), also moved back, but has since returned to Sydney (and still occasionally feels torn).

The longer you stay, the more you will feel as though you have a foot in both hemispheres (if my experience is anything to go by). I do wonder if you might be happier in Melbourne or Sydney, though (as both cities probably feel more European than Brisbane), but perhaps that's not an option for your partner?

I am writing an article about 'ping pong Poms' and the Australia vs UK dilemma, which will be posted on my website early in the New Year and I think you may relate to much of it - keep an eye: https://potp.uk/

If it's any comfort, so many Brits go through this and so often one partner wants to stay in Oz, but the other is desperate to return. I have friends in WA who were one such couple, but having children changed everything and anchored their family a bit (although it has taken ten years for their mum to feel truly settled and no longer yearn to return). 

One thing I have learnt is that rationalising the pros and cons does not provide the answer. You have to search your heart and, if you make the decision to give it your best shot for the sake of your relationship, you have to do just that, not follow too many English Instagram accounts and try to find as many positives where you are as possible, outside of your relationship, so that you feel there are other benefits of your location (such as the wonderful weather, wildlife, great coffee, the beach, amazing night skies, etc, etc).

Wishing you the best of luck figuring it out and know that you're not alone!

Sarah

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