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Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

Old Aug 22nd 2011, 5:58 pm
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Default Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

Hi All,

Just wanted to update eveyone on how things are going since my last update.
I have now been in Toronto coming upto 3years, have been working at the same company for 2 years, my kids go into a nice, local school... BUT.. I still can't get used to life here! I'm trying really hard but really miss home.
We went back for a visit in July for a family wedding. Then Seeing everyone and having a great time just reminded me of what I was missing, and what I had left behind.

My husband prefers the lifestyle here and has said he would'nt want to move back, my kids are 5 & 7 and they like it here aswell, but for me... I don't know if I could ever make this my home from my heart. I've tried, and tried, but something just keeps pulling me back. We have no family here, so it gets very lonley at times.

How do I make this home? I know things are'nt great back in England but it's not all that bad is it?????

Just need to pick me up.. to get on with things are make a real go of my life here.

I just needed to tell someone how I was feeling, and what better than to share it with people in the same boat.

Thanks.
Jinn
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Old Aug 22nd 2011, 6:24 pm
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

IMO, if you feel like that now, I doubt you'll ever really feel settled. You might be able to endure it, but is that a life? You probably miss having girlfriends to go out with and have a laugh and a joke. Then there's Sunday lunches and all the family milestones you will miss out on. And as the years drag on you won't even be really part of your family, you'll simply be the one who lives in Canada. Some people like that and love it here though.
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Old Aug 22nd 2011, 6:57 pm
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

Welcome to the life of an immigrant......
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Old Aug 22nd 2011, 6:59 pm
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

Yes, it's a harsh lesson to learn that England is absolutely fine and people have a good life there.
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Old Aug 22nd 2011, 7:10 pm
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

On the other hand you cant expect to replace a lifetimes worth of friends in a few years, so in that respect it does get better with time.

Replacing family is a big ask though, if you are close to family then emigrating is going to be a big wrench.

I dont know how much effort the OP has made into getting out there and connecting with the locals, but to make friends here you have to be the outgoing one I think. No use moping around, either plan to go back to the UK, or get out there and make the best of what you have here.
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Old Aug 23rd 2011, 12:06 am
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

Everyone who's done or doing this crazy move has gone through this.

I have a view on the whole family thing...

You have kids, as do we.

Soon, your kids will start making friends and forming relationships. That may lead on to marriage and children.

You will get to know their partners families and friends.

This group will be your new family

You need to think about everyone's future, not just your own. Think positive and you'll start to see things in a different light.

All this from a Canadian Wannabe sitting in a semi in Glasgow

If/when we make the move, I'll update this post without the bolloks
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Old Aug 23rd 2011, 12:15 am
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

this isnt for everyone and you have been here for 3 years. Personally I cant imagine going back but we all have very different reasons for moving and very different feelings about doing it. I think you need to follow your heart, life is just too short to exist.
Good luck
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Old Aug 23rd 2011, 12:48 am
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

If your husband and your kids are against the move back, you have no choice but to start controlling your thoughts (either that or drive your family against their will back to the UK or worse still divorce). Homesickness is completely in the mind, and if you allow it to dominate every thought, then you will be forever unhappy here. You need to take control of the negative thoughts and get out of the mental rut which will cause you to see only negative things here.

Every time you become conscious of the fact that you are dwelling on thoughts of home, try this simple technique (quoted in about a billion self-help books). Acknowledge the thought, don't judge it as good or bad, but say something to yourself like - that's interesting but not for me, and dismiss it. Let's face it you can control what you think. If a thought like "I'd like to smash my neighbours head in" comes into your mind because they did something irritating, you don't dwell on it because it's not something that you could do in reality, instead you dismiss it. The same goes for less obviously bad thoughts, but in your case, potentially very distructive.

Once you are conscious of the thought...monentarily looking at yourself thinking the thought...and once you have "dismissed" it, think about something here that makes you happy...seeing your kids enjoying the outdoors, or your husband doing whatever he does that he likes here, or something that you do that you can't do back home. Also, try to engage in positive activities that are uplifting, ideally with others...sports, music, faith groups, hiking, painting, photography, cycling, cross country skiing etc etc.

Ultimately you can choose to be happy here by choosing what thoughts reside in your mind. Also, really engage with all the great things that canada has to offer, and avoid people on this forum who are negative...you might think they are comforting you, but in reality they are reinforcing your negative cycle of thinking.

Finally, paint a picture of a realistic future in your mind that is based here. It may be Christmas with your kids, and one day grand kids, in a home big enough to fit them all. It could be in the summer, or thanksgiving...but a picture that is not possible at home. regulalry picture your future family, and it being a wonderful new beginning for your branch of the family, and focus on that future.

I hope you find happiness
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Old Aug 23rd 2011, 12:50 am
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

Originally Posted by TheBear View Post
If your husband and your kids are against the move back, you have no choice but to start controlling your thoughts (either that or drive your family against their will back to the UK or worse still divorce). Homesickness is completely in the mind, and if you allow it to dominate every thought, then you will be forever unhappy here. You need to take control of the negative thoughts and get out of the mental rut which will cause you to see only negative things here.

Every time you become conscious of the fact that you are dwelling on thoughts of home, try this simple technique (quoted in about a billion self-help books). Acknowledge the thought, don't judge it as good or bad, but say something to yourself like - that's interesting but not for me, and dismiss it. Let's face it you can control what you think. If a thought like "I'd like to smash my neighbours head in" comes into your mind because they did something irritating, you don't dwell on it because it's not something that you could do in reality, instead you dismiss it. The same goes for less obviously bad thoughts, but in your case, potentially very distructive.

Once you are conscious of the thought...monentarily looking at yourself thinking the thought...and once you have "dismissed" it, think about something here that makes you happy...seeing your kids enjoying the outdoors, or your husband doing whatever he does that he likes here, or something that you do that you can't do back home. Also, try to engage in positive activities that are uplifting, ideally with others...sports, music, faith groups, hiking, painting, photography, cycling, cross country skiing etc etc.

Ultimately you can choose to be happy here by choosing what thoughts reside in your mind. Also, really engage with all the great things that canada has to offer, and avoid people on this forum who are negative...you might think they are comforting you, but in reality they are reinforcing your negative cycle of thinking.

Finally, paint a picture of a realistic future in your mind that is based here. It may be Christmas with your kids, and one day grand kids, in a home big enough to fit them all. It could be in the summer, or thanksgiving...but a picture that is not possible at home. regulalry picture your future family, and it being a wonderful new beginning for your branch of the family, and focus on that future.

I hope you find happiness
You are Kwai Chang Caine.... I claim my $5.
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Old Aug 23rd 2011, 12:52 am
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

Originally Posted by Tangram View Post
You are Kwai Chang Caine.... I claim my $5.
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Old Aug 23rd 2011, 2:19 am
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

I think it also helps to differntiate between the experience of short visits/vacations versus real life. In much the same way as people are shocked by initial migration. Usually peoples first experience of the new place, Canada in this case, is a vacation experience. You spend a lot of time relaxing, enjoying what the location has to offer in terms of lifestyle etc. then you compare it to your 'real life' back in the UK which seems very full of work and stress and Canada (or wherever) seems so big and laid back etc. but when you move there and you have to get a job, and work every day and commute and pay bills etc. you realize it isn't really that much different.
A similar thing happens, I think, in reverse when you go back to visit after a while. I'm going back to visit family on Saturday for a few weeks and haven't been for a few years and again you are entering a vacation type experience, different from the reality of living there. You have lots of free time, you visit with family and friends and go to places with nostalgic associations etc. No work etc. you relax and think hey it wasn't so bad here after all, sat in the beer garden of a country pub, compared to an hour on the 401 in a blizzard.
However, if you moved back that is not how it would be. First you need to find jobs, can you guarantee they will be so close to family that you can visit all the time, if you still want to once the 'homesickness' wears off. Even if you live in a city not too far away you then get everyday life, work and commitments, you still only visit on holidays, odd weekends. Sure more than when you were in Canada but still, beyond a certain distance the time and hassle of driving multiple hours for a visit versus other commitments etc. means you never visit as often as you think you will.
Maybe you can get back in touch with old friends but friends also tend to change, move on. You don't want to move back, another transatlantic relocation, and then find 3 months alter your friends have decided to go to Australia and your parents are downsizing to a small place on the south coast etc.
All I am saying is you need to be sure of what it is you think you miss about a place. If it is family connections then yes it is hard but a reality that families don't often all live in one location. Friends is hard too but unless you want to be room mates and follow each other around forever it is again something that changes over time.
It is easy to yearn for idalized versions of things.
If on the other hand the life you have created now is not what you wanted, you don't like your job, or the town/city you are living in, you don't like the people or culture or way of life then that is different. You can't change those things without moving, but do you need to move back to the UK, or just move to a different town, city, street, job etc. What was it that made you want to move in the first place?
The driving ideal behind most migration is the desire to start from scratch and build something, which is hard and requires effort to create from nothing or very little (or maybe more if you come with a large wad of cash rather than $100 in your pocket) but it is a drive for something new, a re-invention. The desire to recreate what you have left is an oddly common theme, I think maybe understandable if you left because you had no choice (e.g. war, famine, persecution, poverty etc.) and didn't really want to recreate yourself.

anyway I digress and I have to make dinner so I don't know, take from that idle thought what you will.
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Old Aug 23rd 2011, 2:42 am
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

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Old Aug 23rd 2011, 3:12 am
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

Originally Posted by wizzard View Post
I think it also helps to differntiate between the experience of short visits/vacations versus real life. In much the same way as people are shocked by initial migration. Usually peoples first experience of the new place, Canada in this case, is a vacation experience. You spend a lot of time relaxing, enjoying what the location has to offer in terms of lifestyle etc. then you compare it to your 'real life' back in the UK which seems very full of work and stress and Canada (or wherever) seems so big and laid back etc. but when you move there and you have to get a job, and work every day and commute and pay bills etc. you realize it isn't really that much different.
A similar thing happens, I think, in reverse when you go back to visit after a while. I'm going back to visit family on Saturday for a few weeks and haven't been for a few years and again you are entering a vacation type experience, different from the reality of living there. You have lots of free time, you visit with family and friends and go to places with nostalgic associations etc. No work etc. you relax and think hey it wasn't so bad here after all, sat in the beer garden of a country pub, compared to an hour on the 401 in a blizzard.
However, if you moved back that is not how it would be. First you need to find jobs, can you guarantee they will be so close to family that you can visit all the time, if you still want to once the 'homesickness' wears off. Even if you live in a city not too far away you then get everyday life, work and commitments, you still only visit on holidays, odd weekends. Sure more than when you were in Canada but still, beyond a certain distance the time and hassle of driving multiple hours for a visit versus other commitments etc. means you never visit as often as you think you will.
Maybe you can get back in touch with old friends but friends also tend to change, move on. You don't want to move back, another transatlantic relocation, and then find 3 months alter your friends have decided to go to Australia and your parents are downsizing to a small place on the south coast etc.
All I am saying is you need to be sure of what it is you think you miss about a place. If it is family connections then yes it is hard but a reality that families don't often all live in one location. Friends is hard too but unless you want to be room mates and follow each other around forever it is again something that changes over time.
It is easy to yearn for idalized versions of things.
If on the other hand the life you have created now is not what you wanted, you don't like your job, or the town/city you are living in, you don't like the people or culture or way of life then that is different. You can't change those things without moving, but do you need to move back to the UK, or just move to a different town, city, street, job etc. What was it that made you want to move in the first place?
The driving ideal behind most migration is the desire to start from scratch and build something, which is hard and requires effort to create from nothing or very little (or maybe more if you come with a large wad of cash rather than $100 in your pocket) but it is a drive for something new, a re-invention. The desire to recreate what you have left is an oddly common theme, I think maybe understandable if you left because you had no choice (e.g. war, famine, persecution, poverty etc.) and didn't really want to recreate yourself.

anyway I digress and I have to make dinner so I don't know, take from that idle thought what you will.
Excellent post. Your point about how much you see relatives in the UK vs from here is a good one...if you live more than 2 hours away, it won't be much more than 2-3 times a year, and then for a weekend rather than a week.
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Old Aug 23rd 2011, 4:51 am
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

Originally Posted by jinn View Post
Hi All,

Just wanted to update eveyone on how things are going since my last update.
I have now been in Toronto coming upto 3years, have been working at the same company for 2 years, my kids go into a nice, local school... BUT.. I still can't get used to life here! I'm trying really hard but really miss home.
We went back for a visit in July for a family wedding. Then Seeing everyone and having a great time just reminded me of what I was missing, and what I had left behind.

My husband prefers the lifestyle here and has said he would'nt want to move back, my kids are 5 & 7 and they like it here aswell, but for me... I don't know if I could ever make this my home from my heart. I've tried, and tried, but something just keeps pulling me back. We have no family here, so it gets very lonley at times.

How do I make this home? I know things are'nt great back in England but it's not all that bad is it?????

Just need to pick me up.. to get on with things are make a real go of my life here.

I just needed to tell someone how I was feeling, and what better than to share it with people in the same boat.

Thanks.
Jinn
Does sound like you had a strong relationship with family and friends in Britain, which makes it worse. What is it about life in Canada that you can't get used to? Is it not having family around or something more?

If you're all feeling the same then I wouldn't hesitate in saying go back, but it seems that your family is doing ok, and you're at least in work. If you go back your OH will quickly find reasons to not like it there and who knows. I don't think Britain is as bad as people make out though. Would definitely consider moving at any time, but I wouldn't (and haven't) at the first sign of trouble. Moving back has to be planned like moving here, even though it's probably a lot easier (and 3 years isn't so long).

I think the fact you're employed makes a big difference, assuming it's meaningfully employed. This is a mighty lonely place if you're not. Same goes for Britain though, you'd have to be sure you would walk quickly into employment, and nowadays that's really uncertain there. GL!
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Old Aug 23rd 2011, 10:27 am
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Default Re: Went back to the UK for 3 weeks and.......

i agree 100% with wizzard, its the time-capsule of happiness that you are comparing to your every day life. maybe try and remember why you moved to canada in the first place?

i see my mum ( who lives 3 miles away) 4 or 5 times a week, most weekdays to be frank, and it will be horrible to leave her knowing i wont see her again for at least a year, but the pull of getting out of this country and getting into the life we want to lead is stronger at the moment. im not saying that i wont miss my family, i will desperately miss them, it may be too much to bear, but im willing to risk my whole family's future ( family here meaning my hubby and my kids) on going. it may be a mistake and in 3 years i may feel like you do and want to come back, but having gone thru so much to get to canada, i hope i can make a life out there.

i hope you find a way to be happy.
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