Anyone else problems re adjusting when returning?

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Anyone else problems re adjusting when returning?


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Old 08-10-2015, 09:31 AM
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Unhappy Anyone else problems re adjusting when returning?

I am Australian born, lived in USA a while with my DH. Originally our plans had been to spend several years in the states, then move to Australia, and build a house and settle.
We returned back to Australia end of 2013, and for me especially the adjustment was mich harder than I thought it would be. Instead of it being enjoyable, it has felt like a constant struggle. Financially very difficult after spending so much money to move. It cost all our savings, it took DH 8 months to find work, and he has a great work history and 16+years experience... He ended up in a much lower position than he is capable of or worked in the states, because in the end we had to take SOMETHING, we had been staying in my mothers house and it was beginning to wear on our relationship. She has early stage dementia/ alzheimers.
Culturally it has been very difficult for me to re assimilate... Perhaps a harder adjustment than DH. I always thought I would be happy to be 'home', but after two years back, I still feel like home is back in the states.
It is difficult to judge whether it has been because the past couple of years have made it feel worse because of the difficulty, and things will get better, or I will always feel like I dont belong here anymore.
When we decided to move back, we felt we would be making a better choice for bringing up kids(we have 1 so far) and school, and healthcare, etc... But the cost of living has made even that feel out of our reach. We arent poverty line, but we are pretty damn close, and were doing much better financially in the states. We cant afford health insurance here, and that has so far put me off wanting to have more kids. First pregnancy was difficult, I have some chronic health problems, and without health insurance I have no choice in a doctor or midwife. Back there we had health insurance through employment, dental insurance, and could afford to rent a much nicer place than we can here. Not to mention that now the idea of ever building or buying our dream house here seems completely out of reach. The houses in our street are around the 900k mark, what a joke.. We will NEVER be able to afford to buy a house here, that is the reality that hurts. We pay very low rent, comparatively to what is around us, and it is still at the higher end of what we could afford.. It doesnt leave much room for any hobbies, and without government family tax benefit, we WOULD be below poverty line.. That is the only reason we stay okay. We cant afford health insurance, nor going out much at all... It has all been fairly depressing and we both wonder often if we made the right choice. We arent big drinkers, but the difference between paying $3 for a margarita and $20 for a cocktail means we cant even afford to have date nights here. Going out for dinner and drink(!) would mean at least $100... We just dont have it.

Both of my parents are getting older so if anything that is what has helped me be okay with being here, at least for now. I had not spoken to my father in over ten years prior to moving back, and now we talk, so that is something. That is about the only comfort from our whole move.

Still, feeling as though we just dont know what we are supposed to do with our future.. The states feels as though it is becoming a scary place, part of the reason we left, to feel ourkids would be more safe in school.... And with police issues, and the same kind of living problems for many people.. And who knows with the future and climate and food.. We thought this would be so much better.... But for us, we were so much better off before, and that feeling is hard to shake.

Has anyone else had re-entry problems emotionally? Even culturally I just dont feel as though I fit in anymore, despite this being where I was born. People are so, so racist, often very unfriendly, and very un genuine... I feel like so many people are fake and rude and angry.. And despite the occasional run in with jerks in the states, in the whole I felt so much more welcome and had more friends than I ever had back here in oz. I've re kindled one or two old friendships from before I left, and I belong to a local club for a hobby I have, but after two years I still havent made any new actual 'friends', people I would consider a friend more than an acquaintance.

It all sounds a bit whiney, but it is an odd feeling to not fit in when you supposedly "come home", and I would just love to know if anyone else is in the same place, coming from any country/vice versa..

And where you feel you'll end up....

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Last edited by Circe; 08-10-2015 at 09:42 AM.

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Old 08-10-2015, 11:49 AM
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Circe, I'm sorry that things haven't been going smooth with your homecoming.

Out of curiosity, how long did you live in the States for?


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Old 08-10-2015, 02:20 PM
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I left UK for Australia, but went back to UK after about 10 years. I was in UK (my country of birth) for 3 years, but it felt so different, so I went back to Australia.

So, it happens, something changes. Us or the Country.

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Old 08-11-2015, 12:57 AM
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I am sorry you are having such a hard time. Things have changed it that time as things have gotten more expensive. Back in the "old days" we use to have all our drinks at the pubs and clubs now we have most of our drinks before heading out and only have 1 or 2 while we are out due to the price.

You mentioned social as well. People just don't go out as much anymore either mainly due to the cost as well. The cost of things have changed things for people.

In regards to PHI I understand where you are coming from however depending on where you live the public hospital system is great. My cousin lives in a different catchment to me and she only got PHI hospital because her public hospital did not have a good name. My 2 local public hospitals have treated myself and my husband and I can not fault them at all. If your local hospital is good thinking about giving them a go. The public hospital drs are good too (they just don't charge you!). I know of alot of people who have either dropped PHI altogether or just dropped the hospital component due to price.

House prices - have you considered looking at anoher area for houses? My cousin couldn't afford where she wanted to buy so had to buy 30 minutes away from it. Unfortunately houses in some places are insane now.

Racism - I am really surprised that you have faced it as an American I would have thought Americans wouldn't face it. What is this world coming too?

Jobs - the reality of it all is that it is very rare for someone coming from overseas to pick up in their career exactly where they left off at overseas.

Have you tried an American expat forum or facebook group to try and make some new friends?

Good-luck with everything


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Old 08-12-2015, 08:35 AM
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Originally Posted by AusIndo View Post
Circe, I'm sorry that things haven't been going smooth with your homecoming.

Out of curiosity, how long did you live in the States for?
About three years. It is an odd feeling, since being back almost two years now... I felt more at home after six months living in Texas than I currently do, after spending so long trying to readjust here.

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Old 08-12-2015, 08:39 AM
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I left UK for Australia, but went back to UK after about 10 years. I was in UK (my country of birth) for 3 years, but it felt so different, so I went back to Australia.

So, it happens, something changes. Us or the Country.
Did you end up feeling comfortable moving back to Australia? Part of me now also worries that maybe I would feel exactly the same as this if i moved back, not knowing how much is just silly things or grass is greener type thing. Not only that but, the amount of money it took us to move here, if we tried to move back to the states, it would be a LONG time before we could make any kind of move again.. Even then I dont think we could afford it yet, we haventmanaged to save any money since settling here.. We dont eat into what little savings we have left, but that is about it. So, the responsible parent in me so far has just decided it is better to deal with not feeling at home any more, in the name of at least a little security for my child. But... The feeling is always there.. I miss "home" regularly..

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Old 08-12-2015, 08:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Mish View Post
I am sorry you are having such a hard time. Things have changed it that time as things have gotten more expensive. Back in the "old days" we use to have all our drinks at the pubs and clubs now we have most of our drinks before heading out and only have 1 or 2 while we are out due to the price.

You mentioned social as well. People just don't go out as much anymore either mainly due to the cost as well. The cost of things have changed things for people.

In regards to PHI I understand where you are coming from however depending on where you live the public hospital system is great. My cousin lives in a different catchment to me and she only got PHI hospital because her public hospital did not have a good name. My 2 local public hospitals have treated myself and my husband and I can not fault them at all. If your local hospital is good thinking about giving them a go. The public hospital drs are good too (they just don't charge you!). I know of alot of people who have either dropped PHI altogether or just dropped the hospital component due to price.

House prices - have you considered looking at anoher area for houses? My cousin couldn't afford where she wanted to buy so had to buy 30 minutes away from it. Unfortunately houses in some places are insane now.

Racism - I am really surprised that you have faced it as an American I would have thought Americans wouldn't face it. What is this world coming too?

Jobs - the reality of it all is that it is very rare for someone coming from overseas to pick up in their career exactly where they left off at overseas.

Have you tried an American expat forum or facebook group to try and make some new friends?

Good-luck with everything
Thanks for your kind words..

Expenses... It is what it is I guess.. Which makes it feel both more acceptable since I cant change it, but also very angry and trapped that I cant change it.

PHI.. Ive had both good and bad doctors so far here, when i needed to re settle in and find a new gp. I now have a great gp, which I ended up going back to in favor of a poor mannered specialist I was seeing. My GP was taking better care of my overall health.. I guess I worry about trying to find a doctor like that amongst the stress of trying for/carrying a child, so far it has just been too much of a headache to even consider. On top of the general sads I already have over being here, I dont think it would help me at all, and I might end up in a really bad place emotionally after it all. Just not the right time yet..

I think wih his job, it was more the fact it took so much more out of our savings than we had planned, and even then we couldnt start to put money back, because the job doesnt pay as well.. Just a downer that still lingers at times.

I havent looked into any expat forums, I guess I havent really thought of that. Not sure if it would make me feel better or worse.. But maybe it might help to talk thoughts over with others who have moved also. It is a good idea. Id really love to find at least an ex pat group with kids, to be able to celebrate holidays and that kind of thing. I had tried to have a thanksgiving dinner here the first year back... And my FOO pretty much poo-pood the idea and werent interested. Last year I tried again but 'no one could make it' I invited some very old school friends over for a thanksgiving lunch instead.
But just little things like that...
We are the only house on our street that has Halloween decor up.. That is a big one we seem to cop the grumpies over too.

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Old 08-12-2015, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Circe View Post
Did you end up feeling comfortable moving back to Australia? Part of me now also worries that maybe I would feel exactly the same as this if i moved back, not knowing how much is just silly things or grass is greener type thing. Not only that but, the amount of money it took us to move here, if we tried to move back to the states, it would be a LONG time before we could make any kind of move again.. Even then I dont think we could afford it yet, we haventmanaged to save any money since settling here.. We dont eat into what little savings we have left, but that is about it. So, the responsible parent in me so far has just decided it is better to deal with not feeling at home any more, in the name of at least a little security for my child. But... The feeling is always there.. I miss "home" regularly..
I did settle, after knowing I had been back and tried, and realised that the grass wasn't greener after all. I had only remembered the good and forget the bad. Going back I saw it all again.

It is a difficult thing especially if finances are tight for constant moving.

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Old 10-11-2015, 08:57 AM
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From my own experience, I believe it is easier to settle somewhere new, than return home. Preconceived ideas and all that. I tried it once after 5 years away and felt like a total stranger. I eventually came back down under, but to a different city...I was, by then ,too nervous to return to where I had been in case I had a similar disappointment . I assume, that with time, things improve.


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Old 10-13-2015, 03:49 AM
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I was born in the UK and have settled in Australia, I've been here over three years now and when I returned home for an extended holiday everything felt wrong, I didn't enjoy myself and while it was great to see Family and a few friends, I just longed to come back to Australia.

I can understand how you feel, and its sounds like after two years things haven't improved. At the end of the day it's where you feel most comfortable, it's where you'd be happier to raise children and build a home and a life. Having seen what my life would be like if I did that in Australia, I don't think I could do it in the UK now..

Although the extra expense of moving again would be huge, maybe it would be better in the long run?

Whatever you decide to do, I wish you all the luck in the world.


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