Reverse culture shock

Old Nov 5th 2017, 5:59 am
  #1  
Just Joined
Thread Starter
 
Joined: Nov 2017
Posts: 1
Holly_J is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Reverse culture shock

Hey everyone. Forum newbie - strangely it has never occurred to me to join an expat forum until I'm on the brink of repatriating!

I have been out in NZ with my partner and kids for the last 4 years, but we are about to leave in the next 2 or 3 months. Honestly I'm terrified about returning - I know I have rose tinted glasses on about England and I am bracing myself for the inevitably disappointing reality, lol. We are just craving home comforts and both of us suffering depression now (was not the case before) and while there is a fab close knit community here like nothing you ever find in the UK, it's just not... home. Plus, things have turned sour for both of our jobs and there is bugger else here. Oh, and we are bored out of our brains.

Our UK friends & family are obviously pleased but all shocked and can't understand why when they think we must have the dream lifestyle out here, and quite a few have urged us to reconsider as they say it's so horrible over there. (My response: why don't you leave then? The answer: well because it's home. Lol)

Can anyone offer me any reassurance that we are not making a terrible mistake?! My biggest worry is for our young kids who haven't worn shoes in years and are complete rural kiwi kids in every sense of the word, how they will adapt to a much more 'uptight' (in some ways) way of life. And I keep reading about reverse culture shock and how it is supposed to be much harder than the culture shock of settling in a new place. I can completely imagine it too... I definitely suffer from that feeling of being stateless now and like nowhere truly feels like home any more.

On the other hand I am super excited... just frightened!

Can anyone relate?!
Holly_J is offline  
Old Nov 5th 2017, 6:27 am
  #2  
Forum Regular
 
Joined: Oct 2015
Posts: 159
Johnboyuk is a glorious beacon of lightJohnboyuk is a glorious beacon of lightJohnboyuk is a glorious beacon of lightJohnboyuk is a glorious beacon of lightJohnboyuk is a glorious beacon of lightJohnboyuk is a glorious beacon of lightJohnboyuk is a glorious beacon of lightJohnboyuk is a glorious beacon of lightJohnboyuk is a glorious beacon of lightJohnboyuk is a glorious beacon of lightJohnboyuk is a glorious beacon of light
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Originally Posted by Holly_J View Post
Hey everyone. Forum newbie - strangely it has never occurred to me to join an expat forum until I'm on the brink of repatriating!

I have been out in NZ with my partner and kids for the last 4 years, but we are about to leave in the next 2 or 3 months. Honestly I'm terrified about returning - I know I have rose tinted glasses on about England and I am bracing myself for the inevitably disappointing reality, lol. We are just craving home comforts and both of us suffering depression now (was not the case before) and while there is a fab close knit community here like nothing you ever find in the UK, it's just not... home. Plus, things have turned sour for both of our jobs and there is bugger else here. Oh, and we are bored out of our brains.

Our UK friends & family are obviously pleased but all shocked and can't understand why when they think we must have the dream lifestyle out here, and quite a few have urged us to reconsider as they say it's so horrible over there. (My response: why don't you leave then? The answer: well because it's home. Lol)

Can anyone offer me any reassurance that we are not making a terrible mistake?! My biggest worry is for our young kids who haven't worn shoes in years and are complete rural kiwi kids in every sense of the word, how they will adapt to a much more 'uptight' (in some ways) way of life. And I keep reading about reverse culture shock and how it is supposed to be much harder than the culture shock of settling in a new place. I can completely imagine it too... I definitely suffer from that feeling of being stateless now and like nowhere truly feels like home any more.

On the other hand I am super excited... just frightened!

Can anyone relate?!
We moved back to the UK after over 30 years in three different countries. When we moved back, we moved to a different part of the UK that suited us and our life style, rather than where we came from. That way, it was more like a new experience rather than our lives going full circle - if that makes sense. The UK has a varying degree of landscapes and every county is different. You can still find solitude if you want it. Counties such as Norfolk and Herefordshire are not as densely populated or you may prefer the city, or, somewhere in between.
Johnboyuk is offline  
Old Nov 5th 2017, 6:34 am
  #3  
Lost in BE Cyberspace
 
mrken30's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: Portlandia Metro
Posts: 7,375
mrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Not quite a UK experience, but I had a work colleague , his wife was from the US and he was from the UK. They had been in NZ for several years and then came to the US to be near his wife's family. After a year of being here in the US, they returned back to Wellington. However they both had jobs to go back to. They just thought NZ was a better place for their kids I believe was the reason.
mrken30 is offline  
Old Nov 5th 2017, 9:09 am
  #4  
The Brit is back
 
Joined: Apr 2010
Location: NS, Canada 2007-2013. Now....England!
Posts: 2,207
Lorry1 has a reputation beyond reputeLorry1 has a reputation beyond reputeLorry1 has a reputation beyond reputeLorry1 has a reputation beyond reputeLorry1 has a reputation beyond reputeLorry1 has a reputation beyond reputeLorry1 has a reputation beyond reputeLorry1 has a reputation beyond reputeLorry1 has a reputation beyond reputeLorry1 has a reputation beyond reputeLorry1 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Originally Posted by Holly_J View Post
Hey everyone. Forum newbie - strangely it has never occurred to me to join an expat forum until I'm on the brink of repatriating!

I have been out in NZ with my partner and kids for the last 4 years, but we are about to leave in the next 2 or 3 months. Honestly I'm terrified about returning - I know I have rose tinted glasses on about England and I am bracing myself for the inevitably disappointing reality, lol. We are just craving home comforts and both of us suffering depression now (was not the case before) and while there is a fab close knit community here like nothing you ever find in the UK, it's just not... home. Plus, things have turned sour for both of our jobs and there is bugger else here. Oh, and we are bored out of our brains.

Our UK friends & family are obviously pleased but all shocked and can't understand why when they think we must have the dream lifestyle out here, and quite a few have urged us to reconsider as they say it's so horrible over there. (My response: why don't you leave then? The answer: well because it's home. Lol)

Can anyone offer me any reassurance that we are not making a terrible mistake?! My biggest worry is for our young kids who haven't worn shoes in years and are complete rural kiwi kids in every sense of the word, how they will adapt to a much more 'uptight' (in some ways) way of life. And I keep reading about reverse culture shock and how it is supposed to be much harder than the culture shock of settling in a new place. I can completely imagine it too... I definitely suffer from that feeling of being stateless now and like nowhere truly feels like home any more.

On the other hand I am super excited... just frightened!

Can anyone relate?!

Hi Holly,

When people in the UK say....'what are you coming back for?'....'England is worse than it ever was!'....'stay where you are, you have such a great lifestyle!'....well, they have probably never left the Uk, not to emigrate anyway. A holiday is nothing like living somewhere permanently.
People in UK get drawn into the negativity of the press and start to believe everything is all doom and gloom.

My family and I returned from Canada in 2013 after 6 years. I suffer with depression but was so much worse there. I just wanted to come home. Plus, I was totally bored too!

We have now been home over 4 years and am still really happy. I have absolutely no regrets at all. Even my husband, who loved Canada and didn't want to return here, agrees we have a much better lifestyle and is happy.

When people ask why I returned, I simply say 'because it's home.' You don't have to explain yourself.
Canada was same shit, different Country. We still had to work, pay bills, pay mortgage, do housework, go shopping, drop kids to school, etc etc....People don't get that.

I do not read any newspapers. I do not get drawn into negative discussions from people who often have a fabulous lifestyle but somehow get drawn in themselves.
I live my life and am happy where I am. If it doesn't affect me, I don't let it get me down.
I am lucky that my friends generally love the UK and wouldn't live anywhere else. It's people I've just met that are negative, but they're not important to me.

Good luck and just enjoy returning home

Last edited by Lorry1; Nov 5th 2017 at 9:12 am.
Lorry1 is offline  
Old Nov 5th 2017, 4:27 pm
  #5  
Forum Regular
 
Joined: Oct 2016
Location: Scotland
Posts: 200
Caroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond reputeCaroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond reputeCaroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond reputeCaroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond reputeCaroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond reputeCaroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond reputeCaroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond reputeCaroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond reputeCaroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond reputeCaroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond reputeCaroline in Arizona has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Having made the decision to return to Scotland after 32 years in Arizona (and having spent 6 months there this summer) please don’t be terrified about returning. I think you will be pleasantly surprised at how quickly you adapt to live back in the UK. I only joined this expat forum when we’d made the decision to return. I didn’t know that forums like this existed. Also, about the depression, after many years on anti-depressants I have finally come off them and feel fine months after weaning myself off them. And we’ve just made the decision to return - we’re not even back there permanently yet! All the best to you and your family.
Caroline in Arizona is offline  
Old Nov 5th 2017, 6:37 pm
  #6  
BE Enthusiast
 
Spacecake799's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2006
Location: Was Torbay, NZ now North Yorkshire UK
Posts: 813
Spacecake799 has a reputation beyond reputeSpacecake799 has a reputation beyond reputeSpacecake799 has a reputation beyond reputeSpacecake799 has a reputation beyond reputeSpacecake799 has a reputation beyond reputeSpacecake799 has a reputation beyond reputeSpacecake799 has a reputation beyond reputeSpacecake799 has a reputation beyond reputeSpacecake799 has a reputation beyond reputeSpacecake799 has a reputation beyond reputeSpacecake799 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Originally Posted by Holly_J View Post
Hey everyone. Forum newbie - strangely it has never occurred to me to join an expat forum until I'm on the brink of repatriating!

I have been out in NZ with my partner and kids for the last 4 years, but we are about to leave in the next 2 or 3 months. Honestly I'm terrified about returning - I know I have rose tinted glasses on about England and I am bracing myself for the inevitably disappointing reality, lol. We are just craving home comforts and both of us suffering depression now (was not the case before) and while there is a fab close knit community here like nothing you ever find in the UK, it's just not... home. Plus, things have turned sour for both of our jobs and there is bugger else here. Oh, and we are bored out of our brains.

Our UK friends & family are obviously pleased but all shocked and can't understand why when they think we must have the dream lifestyle out here, and quite a few have urged us to reconsider as they say it's so horrible over there. (My response: why don't you leave then? The answer: well because it's home. Lol)

Can anyone offer me any reassurance that we are not making a terrible mistake?! My biggest worry is for our young kids who haven't worn shoes in years and are complete rural kiwi kids in every sense of the word, how they will adapt to a much more 'uptight' (in some ways) way of life. And I keep reading about reverse culture shock and how it is supposed to be much harder than the culture shock of settling in a new place. I can completely imagine it too... I definitely suffer from that feeling of being stateless now and like nowhere truly feels like home any more.

On the other hand I am super excited... just frightened!

Can anyone relate?!

Hi Holly

6 years and 3 children in NZ when we moved back. I agree it was harder to move back than move out there. Part of that was people asking why and just the feeling of did we fail? Should we have gone in the first place.

Firstly we did go and we did try it and that does change you forever in a good way. As someone else said, the people asking why on earth your returning have likely never left the UK or even the very town they were born in.

We made the decision to move to a totally new area. We had heard of people going back and things not being the same so we made a new adventure and went somewhere new.

For your children, it will be different, but thats no bad think...Is it? They will adapt, it will be something new but they will make friends and learn a new way of life.

I have never regretted our decision to return. Yes that is our choice and we love it.
Im sure you all will.
Good Luck
Spacecake799 is offline  
Old Nov 7th 2017, 4:59 pm
  #7  
Just Joined
 
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 14
SJones76 has a reputation beyond reputeSJones76 has a reputation beyond reputeSJones76 has a reputation beyond reputeSJones76 has a reputation beyond reputeSJones76 has a reputation beyond reputeSJones76 has a reputation beyond reputeSJones76 has a reputation beyond reputeSJones76 has a reputation beyond reputeSJones76 has a reputation beyond reputeSJones76 has a reputation beyond reputeSJones76 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

I lived overseas for a long time and then returned to the UK. I could never recommend to anyone to come to live in the UK unless they were in really dire state of affairs. It is awful here. That is just my opinion, you may love it.
SJones76 is offline  
Old Nov 7th 2017, 5:26 pm
  #8  
Born again atheist
 
Novocastrian's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2005
Location: Europe (to be specified).
Posts: 30,256
Novocastrian has a reputation beyond reputeNovocastrian has a reputation beyond reputeNovocastrian has a reputation beyond reputeNovocastrian has a reputation beyond reputeNovocastrian has a reputation beyond reputeNovocastrian has a reputation beyond reputeNovocastrian has a reputation beyond reputeNovocastrian has a reputation beyond reputeNovocastrian has a reputation beyond reputeNovocastrian has a reputation beyond reputeNovocastrian has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Originally Posted by SJones76 View Post
I lived overseas for a long time and then returned to the UK. I could never recommend to anyone to come to live in the UK unless they were in really dire state of affairs. It is awful here. That is just my opinion, you may love it.
I returned to the UK after 38 years in several other countries, but mostly in Canada. It's not awful. It's home and for the most part very pleasant.
Novocastrian is offline  
Old Nov 7th 2017, 6:01 pm
  #9  
Lost in BE Cyberspace
 
mrken30's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: Portlandia Metro
Posts: 7,375
mrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond reputemrken30 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

I think a lot depends on what part of the UK you are returning to. London and the SE has increased in population a lot over the past few years. Also the cultural diversity in the SE has changed a lot. The North has not changed quite so much.
mrken30 is offline  
Old Nov 7th 2017, 7:08 pm
  #10  
Concierge
 
spouse of scouse's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2013
Location: Western Australia
Posts: 19,223
spouse of scouse has a reputation beyond reputespouse of scouse has a reputation beyond reputespouse of scouse has a reputation beyond reputespouse of scouse has a reputation beyond reputespouse of scouse has a reputation beyond reputespouse of scouse has a reputation beyond reputespouse of scouse has a reputation beyond reputespouse of scouse has a reputation beyond reputespouse of scouse has a reputation beyond reputespouse of scouse has a reputation beyond reputespouse of scouse has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Originally Posted by SJones76 View Post
I lived overseas for a long time and then returned to the UK. I could never recommend to anyone to come to live in the UK unless they were in really dire state of affairs. It is awful here. That is just my opinion, you may love it.
Hi, sorry the UK hasn't worked out for you. Would you mind elaborating a bit on why you say the UK is awful? It helps others reading if you flesh out a statement like that, and also allows for others to respond. Ta.
spouse of scouse is offline  
Old Nov 8th 2017, 2:01 am
  #11  
Forum Regular
 
Joined: Sep 2016
Posts: 30
Jayney2 has a reputation beyond reputeJayney2 has a reputation beyond reputeJayney2 has a reputation beyond reputeJayney2 has a reputation beyond reputeJayney2 has a reputation beyond reputeJayney2 has a reputation beyond reputeJayney2 has a reputation beyond reputeJayney2 has a reputation beyond reputeJayney2 has a reputation beyond reputeJayney2 has a reputation beyond reputeJayney2 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Hi Holly,

I am in the USA and have been for eighteen years. I've not had a great year in that my father died in the UK in February leaving my mother living alone there. My 23 year old daughter is moving to the UK next week after having graduated college in the USA and having a job for a little over a year.

I began to think, with my only daughter and my mother in the UK, what am I doing in the USA? I visited the UK for ten days at the beginning of October. I found out my National Insurance number (couldn't remember it) scouted out houses online, checked out jobs etc.

In the end I just wasn't feeling it. I like my life out here. Sure, there are things I could do without in the USA, but moving back didn't seem right to me.

If it feels right to you and your husband, then do it. We're awfully lucky to have the choice, aren't we?
Jayney2 is offline  
Old Nov 8th 2017, 9:02 am
  #12  
BE Forum Addict
 
michali's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2012
Posts: 1,221
michali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

I agree with SOS that it would be helpful to hear why you feel the UK is awful, SJones. What matters to one person may not be important to another. I left a very pleasant life in The Bahamas to come back here, with all the stress of getting a visa (and future visas) for my husband. But my children and grandchildren are here and there are so many pluses to being here, in my eyes! The only tbing I don’t like is the rubbish and fly tipping, but we live in London, and that problem is more than compensated by all the wonderful walks I have. Of course there are other issues but most are universal in one form or another, eg homelessness.
michali is offline  
Old Nov 9th 2017, 10:42 am
  #13  
 
Lion in Winter's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2003
Location: City of Broad Shoulders
Posts: 66,654
Lion in Winter has a reputation beyond reputeLion in Winter has a reputation beyond reputeLion in Winter has a reputation beyond reputeLion in Winter has a reputation beyond reputeLion in Winter has a reputation beyond reputeLion in Winter has a reputation beyond reputeLion in Winter has a reputation beyond reputeLion in Winter has a reputation beyond reputeLion in Winter has a reputation beyond reputeLion in Winter has a reputation beyond reputeLion in Winter has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Originally Posted by Holly_J View Post
Hey everyone. Forum newbie - strangely it has never occurred to me to join an expat forum until I'm on the brink of repatriating!

I have been out in NZ with my partner and kids for the last 4 years, but we are about to leave in the next 2 or 3 months. Honestly I'm terrified about returning - I know I have rose tinted glasses on about England and I am bracing myself for the inevitably disappointing reality, lol. We are just craving home comforts and both of us suffering depression now (was not the case before) and while there is a fab close knit community here like nothing you ever find in the UK, it's just not... home. Plus, things have turned sour for both of our jobs and there is bugger else here. Oh, and we are bored out of our brains.

Our UK friends & family are obviously pleased but all shocked and can't understand why when they think we must have the dream lifestyle out here, and quite a few have urged us to reconsider as they say it's so horrible over there. (My response: why don't you leave then? The answer: well because it's home. Lol)

Can anyone offer me any reassurance that we are not making a terrible mistake?! My biggest worry is for our young kids who haven't worn shoes in years and are complete rural kiwi kids in every sense of the word, how they will adapt to a much more 'uptight' (in some ways) way of life. And I keep reading about reverse culture shock and how it is supposed to be much harder than the culture shock of settling in a new place. I can completely imagine it too... I definitely suffer from that feeling of being stateless now and like nowhere truly feels like home any more.

On the other hand I am super excited... just frightened!

Can anyone relate?!
One thought really, as a would-be repat after many years in the US - consider the thought that you are not so much going back, as going on to another new and exciting phase. You probably aren't the same as you were when you left the UK, and nor is the UK if it comes to that although 4 years isn't very long. You will see things differently, but embrace the difference. It's good. "What should they know of England, who only England know?"

Young kids are very adaptable. Help them make some friends before they start school, talk to them ahead of time about what things will be like - show them the UK on tv, video, anything, skype with friends and relatives, etc.

Good luck.
Lion in Winter is offline  
Old Nov 9th 2017, 12:30 pm
  #14  
BE Forum Addict
 
michali's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2012
Posts: 1,221
michali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond reputemichali has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Originally Posted by Lion in Winter View Post
One thought really, as a would-be repat after many years in the US - consider the thought that you are not so much going back, as going on to another new and exciting phase. You probably aren't the same as you were when you left the UK, and nor is the UK if it comes to that although 4 years isn't very long. You will see things differently, but embrace the difference. It's good. "What should they know of England, who only England know?"

Young kids are very adaptable. Help them make some friends before they start school, talk to them ahead of time about what things will be like - show them the UK on tv, video, anything, skype with friends and relatives, etc.

Good luck.
michali is offline  
Old Nov 9th 2017, 3:44 pm
  #15  
Happy
 
Howefamily's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2009
Location: Nova Scotia
Posts: 2,942
Howefamily has a reputation beyond reputeHowefamily has a reputation beyond reputeHowefamily has a reputation beyond reputeHowefamily has a reputation beyond reputeHowefamily has a reputation beyond reputeHowefamily has a reputation beyond reputeHowefamily has a reputation beyond reputeHowefamily has a reputation beyond reputeHowefamily has a reputation beyond reputeHowefamily has a reputation beyond reputeHowefamily has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Reverse culture shock

Originally Posted by Lorry1 View Post
Hi Holly,

When people in the UK say....'what are you coming back for?'....'England is worse than it ever was!'....'stay where you are, you have such a great lifestyle!'....well, they have probably never left the Uk, not to emigrate anyway. A holiday is nothing like living somewhere permanently.
People in UK get drawn into the negativity of the press and start to believe everything is all doom and gloom.

My family and I returned from Canada in 2013 after 6 years. I suffer with depression but was so much worse there. I just wanted to come home. Plus, I was totally bored too!

We have now been home over 4 years and am still really happy. I have absolutely no regrets at all. Even my husband, who loved Canada and didn't want to return here, agrees we have a much better lifestyle and is happy.

When people ask why I returned, I simply say 'because it's home.' You don't have to explain yourself.
Canada was same shit, different Country. We still had to work, pay bills, pay mortgage, do housework, go shopping, drop kids to school, etc etc....People don't get that.

I do not read any newspapers. I do not get drawn into negative discussions from people who often have a fabulous lifestyle but somehow get drawn in themselves.
I live my life and am happy where I am. If it doesn't affect me, I don't let it get me down.
I am lucky that my friends generally love the UK and wouldn't live anywhere else. It's people I've just met that are negative, but they're not important to me.

Good luck and just enjoy returning home



I like your view on life and I too am going that way, trying so hard to stay away from negativity which is everywhere regardless of where in the planet you live, and I still fail in that quest myself but I am getting better at it.


Originally Posted by Jayney2 View Post
Hi Holly,

If it feels right to you and your husband, then do it. We're awfully lucky to have the choice, aren't we?
We really are
Howefamily is offline  

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.