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Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Old Jul 9th 2020, 11:59 pm
  #16  
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

I always read the 'Moving back to the 'UK' thread with interest. I've only been away from the UK for 2½ years and still have a few months of my work contract to go. Myself and my wife are still undecided as to whether or not to renew and stay 1 more year (Cayman was always just an adventure for us and there is ZERO chance of progression in my area of work). When people say they haven't assimilated despite being away for 30 years, I'm intrigued as to why.

Cayman is slightly different in that the very nature and size of the island means a lot of transient workers coming and going all the time. Friendships can sometimes last mere months but if you are in a big country with a stable workforce and residents, what makes it so difficult to make that place your 'forever' home? We try and get home once a year to see our kids and are definitely not blind to some of the things Brightongirl mentions e.g. the power drinking culture and the associated problems in the UK, the graffiti and litter and antisocial behaviour. My wife has accused me several times of looking through rose-tinted glasses about home. And then reminds me how desperate I was to get away! We also miss plenty though. The cost of living in Cayman is mind-blowing at times. We are regularly the most expensive place to live in the world. The food is mostly imported in from the states and is packed with additives and shite. Even the milk has vitamin D in it. We live in the Caribbean! We get plenty sun! Getting off the island even to the states and Cuba is a fortune. It's a 16 hour journey and £2500 to get back to Scotland.

And without being disparaging about the states (apart from their crap food), most of the people wanting back to the UK are living there. Is it that bad?

Last edited by Jamesy5008; Jul 10th 2020 at 12:14 am.
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 12:16 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Originally Posted by Jamesy5008 View Post
And without being disparaging about the states (part from their crap food), most of the people wanting back to the UK are living there. Is it that bad?
It's not *all* bad. I get paid more and have a bigger house than I would have had in the UK. We have lots of nice 'stuff'. So that's nice, but it's not the be-all and end-all.

But, especially right now, there's a whole bunch of additional stressors that simply don't exist in the UK - the guns, the ridiculous healthcare situation, the rampant jingoism, the way everything boils down to money or your credit rating, the low quality food, the stupidly expensive supermarkets, the lack of interest in world affairs and so on. And, right now, with COVID, the utter barefaced incompetence of both the government and a certain subset of the population who refuse to take advice. It grates after a while, and keeps me up at night. There is simply no need for us to have to deal with all this when we have other options. Over here, I see no light at the end of the tunnel.

Yes, going back to the UK introduces another set of problems - dealing with another government that's only marginally more competent than the one here, a COVID response that's almost equally awful, and all the fallout that's going to be coming from Brexit. But at least you don't have to worry about guns, nationalist brainwashing of your kids or that you might lose everything you have if you get ill. And I can deal with having a smaller house and paying more for petrol.

It'd be an easy decision if it didn't put my kids' grandparents out of easy reach, and there's no way for Americans to retire in the UK anymore.

Last edited by Rusty Chainsaw; Jul 10th 2020 at 12:23 am.
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 2:02 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

I have had a nervous breakdown. The constant assessment and criticism in academia has driven me to the wall. I have lost my hearing in one ear, and the high dose prednisone drove my psychotic. America can be utterly ruthless on your self-esteem. At least I have good health coverage for the time being.
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 2:29 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Another one in the states who wants to move home (I have a thread on the go!) - for me I think it’s the fact that you speak the same language and have a similar current inept government and so you ought to assimilate but you don’t because culture and history is so different and you don’t realise how different until you’ve been here a while.

it’s really interesting to hear about people who’ve been here for decades who now want to move back to retire. Did you all have children here? Are they still in the US? A big fear of mine is if we don’t move home soon (my eldest is 11) then we will stay, they’ll finish school and go to american universities and see themselves as Americans and then I’m stuck if I want to live on the same continent as my kids. I can see myself being stranded here for the rest of my life
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 2:30 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Originally Posted by Streetlegal View Post
I have had a nervous breakdown. The constant assessment and criticism in academia has driven me to the wall. I have lost my hearing in one ear, and the high dose prednisone drove my psychotic. America can be utterly ruthless on your self-esteem. At least I have good health coverage for the time being.
Hi Streetlegal. I'm very sorry to hear that the stresses of your work have affected you so badly. You're obviously a very intelligent and self-aware person, traits that will help you to get through what is a very difficult time for you. Be gentle with yourself as you rest and recover, big life decisions can wait until you've regained your strength and clarity. Take care.
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 2:32 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Thank you, Spouse. That is good advice I need to hear.
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 2:40 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Originally Posted by Streetlegal View Post
I have had a nervous breakdown. The constant assessment and criticism in academia has driven me to the wall. I have lost my hearing in one ear, and the high dose prednisone drove my psychotic. America can be utterly ruthless on your self-esteem. At least I have good health coverage for the time being.
Take good care of yourself. We're living under very trying conditions right now and I understand a little of your situation. Be careful with the prednisone; my partner had some very serious side effects from long term use due to an auto immune disease. Take advantage of your health insurance and get as much help as possible, both physically and emotionally. Will be thinking of you.
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 2:47 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Thanks Brightongirl. I also have a number of autoimmune diseases. I was doing very well, until two weeks ago when I had sudden hearing loss out of the blue and was put on 60mg prednisone per day and a shot in my ear. At the same time, I was going up for tenure and kept being told to rewrite rewrite rewrite. I went mad with anxiety. Instead of getting better, my hearing loss has got worse (just got back from doctors)--and that is with treatment. I've been in the same small flat for 5 months teaching remotely. Then I receive evaluations from students which say "Get rid of him" and a letter that is meant to support me actually damned me with feint praise. Most evaluations were good but you take to heart the ones that hate you. I know i'm sensitve but sometimes you are only human. I'm done here. Just want to recover as best I can and go home in the next year (two at most). I have a partner (gay) who has looked after me but don't not what will happen now. All i know is that for the sake of my soul, I have to leave America.
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 3:08 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Originally Posted by Streetlegal View Post
Thanks Brightongirl. I also have a number of autoimmune diseases. I was doing very well, until two weeks ago when I had sudden hearing loss out of the blue and was put on 60mg prednisone per day and a shot in my ear. At the same time, I was going up for tenure and kept being told to rewrite rewrite rewrite. I went mad with anxiety. Instead of getting better, my hearing loss has got worse (just got back from doctors)--and that is with treatment. I've been in the same small flat for 5 months teaching remotely. Then I receive evaluations from students which say "Get rid of him" and a letter that is meant to support me actually damned me with feint praise. Most evaluations were good but you take to heart the ones that hate you. I know i'm sensitve but sometimes you are only human. I'm done here. Just want to recover as best I can and go home in the next year (two at most). I have a partner (gay) who has looked after me but don't not what will happen now. All i know is that for the sake of my soul, I have to leave America.
My partner takes care of me financially since I was no longer able to work because of anxiety. I can't imagine the stresses of teaching remotely and dealing with unkind evaluations, on top of physical and emotional conditions. You can only do your best; that's all that can be expected of you. Be kind to yourself and do what's best for you. My wife is my absolute rock and I'm sure your partner will be there for you. 60 mg of prednisone - I hope that's only short term! What a nightmare of a drug it can be. I hope your hearing improves. I hope you are able to take some time for yourself soon. I truly understand the need to leave America; you'll get back home! Take care.
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 5:11 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

So sorry to hear of the trauma you’re going through Streetlegal
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 5:23 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Thank you, all so much for sharing kind words. I never imagined I'd be someone breaking down and sharing such thoughts on a public forum. But there you are. This all started two weeks ago--sudden hearing loss overnight. To add to colitis, celiacs, peripheral neuropathy and addisons disease. I had been running every day, working out 5 days a week, not drinking a drop over the last 4 months while teaching online. And I felt like I was in control.

One reason I was thinking about retiring early (I'm 55) is that I wanted to enjoy a healthy time back in the UK while my conditions were under control.

I need to learn to smile and laugh again, and put things in perspective. At the moment, it's limbo. I know I am rapidly losing hearing and it will likely be life-changing, but I don't know how it will pan out.

One irony: as a state employee, my healthcare is excellent, better than NHS. But at least I will be able to get my meds once in England. Sorry to be such a damn wet blanket.

Ed
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 9:00 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Originally Posted by Brightongirl View Post
Each time I go back home I'm shocked by the amount of rubbish on the streets, the graffiti (in Brighton) and the rowdy pubs.
That's Brighton though, and I'd imagine any city. So find a nice village instead and then you get all the good bits you miss without any of that!
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 9:34 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Originally Posted by christmasoompa View Post
That's Brighton though, and I'd imagine any city. So find a nice village instead and then you get all the good bits you miss without any of that!
We've decided to move to Newhaven or Seaford, just along the coast. We can catch a train or bus into Brighton whenever I need my city "fix" and those hot, fresh doughnuts they sell at the base of the Palace Pier! Streetlegal, feel free to private message me any time.
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 10:02 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

When we retired at age 55 in 2010 we had 2 adult children, a daughter on the west coast, and a son living very close to us in Texas. The son is very needy, has cerebral palsy, was on anti-seizure drugs until age 16, had a period of cluster migraines and clinical depression during his early 20's, but has done remarkably well under the circumstances since then, and had been working in IT at the same company for 5 years. We had no plans to leave the USA but wanted to do lots of travel so for 6 years we left and traveled for about 6 months each year, escaping the Texas summers. In 2016 we rented a house in England for a year with the plan to split our time between Texas and Yorkshire but after a few weeks 'home' we found that we didn't really want to do that and our thought process was that our son, age 34, was going to have to live without us once we are gone so he may as well learn to manage now while he is still in his prime. Our daughter was already a long flight away, had a partner and loads of friends and activities and was very supportive of us doing what was best for us, what we wanted.

As it happened our son decided to move back as well, which was very brave as he hadn't lived in England since he was 5 years old. It has worked out great, his move back worked out really well, he got a job within 6 weeks and he is now living in his own house a 15 minute walk away.
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Old Jul 10th 2020, 10:13 am
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Default Re: Wanting to move back - sounds like I'm not alone

Originally Posted by Rythmik View Post
I found Florida a nice place to visit, but I found it quite transient and where we were living (St. Pete) at the time felt really devoid of life after having just spent three years back in London. I didn't really like such high humidity either. For me, it was just the general vibe of the state - just not my cup of tea I guess.

As for a future move back to the U.K., it would likely be somewhere in the SE near London, but not in London. I really like parts of Hertfordshire and know that county quite well.

UkWinds5353 What about you and your story? Are you in the USA or in the UK now?
Thanks for responding.

I have members of my family that point out the exact same facts about Florida why they choose to live elsewhere. They love Florida for a summer stay but the transient nature of our state doesn't lend it self to building long lasting friendships quickly and especially for new arrivals. Places like St Pete really do require a large investment of active socializing in order to build up a network of friendships. And to be quite honest that can feel like a lot of work. Probably more work than should be necessary. Even in our case most of our close friends here in Florida are from other states and different countries but we've been here for a very long time. But the mishandling of the pandemic in Florida is over shadowing a host of other concerns in this state.

My wife is the Brit and I'm American and we've planned a move to the UK but like for a lot of people everything is up in the air until things calm down. Hopefully by mid next year conditions in the UK and America will be substantially better. We are even considering a possible move to a neighboring country in Europe like Ireland if conditions on the ground in the UK are still problematic. That would at least allow for easier visits with her family in Manchester. My darling wife who has been extremely patient about extending our time in America just wants to see the American shoreline in her rearview mirror.
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