Nowhereland

Old Aug 19th 2020, 6:04 pm
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Default Nowhereland

Well, from perusing all these posts it seems like I'm suffering from a problem I didn't even know had a name or that even existed until today. The dreaded Expat Disease otherwise known as "I belong in Nowhereland."
That about sums up how I feel. But, my travels back and forth to the US have been now stopped because my US spouse and I have separated.
I'd really appreciate hearing from others who have experienced this uncomfortable limnal state and what you've done to resolve it. Or is it unresolvable.
Advice? I'm really hurting.
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Old Aug 26th 2020, 2:13 am
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Hi Jensmate

I don't normally stray into this part of BE (I moved from the UK to Australia five years ago and love it here), but I was at a loose end and came across your thread in the Back Home section about how happy you were to be back in the UK, started in 2018. I though how eloquent you were, how nice it was to see your happiness shine through. Then I clicked on the "find more posts" by you and that led me to the rose tinted glasses are off thread last month and it made me really sad. Then this one. Even more sad.

I don't really know how to help, but maybe reread your original thread and see if you can focus on the good things and push the bad things to the back of your mind. And do things that make you happy. I'm not sure if you are in the UK or US at the mo, but if you are in the UK, could you go and see your sister for a few days, to at least take your mind off your separation for a little while?

Really the point of my post was to say that I am thinking of you and sending positive thoughts your way and I'm sure there are many others on BE doing the same!
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Old Aug 26th 2020, 3:36 am
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Originally Posted by Jensmate View Post
Well, from perusing all these posts it seems like I'm suffering from a problem I didn't even know had a name or that even existed until today. The dreaded Expat Disease otherwise known as "I belong in Nowhereland."
That about sums up how I feel. But, my travels back and forth to the US have been now stopped because my US spouse and I have separated.
I'd really appreciate hearing from others who have experienced this uncomfortable limnal state and what you've done to resolve it. Or is it unresolvable.
Advice? I'm really hurting.
Can you get out of Folkestone now? A fresh place would likely help.

And perhaps reread this post for a perspective.
Why did I not love this country before???????


You've had a lot going on, and a personal relationship breakup can be crushing. You might consider asking your gp about possible depression since your state of mind has changed hugely for the worse. There's no benefit or point in unnecessary suffering.

Last edited by Lion in Winter; Aug 26th 2020 at 3:48 am.
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Old Aug 29th 2020, 10:13 pm
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Originally Posted by Jensmate View Post
Well, from perusing all these posts it seems like I'm suffering from a problem I didn't even know had a name or that even existed until today. The dreaded Expat Disease otherwise known as "I belong in Nowhereland."
That about sums up how I feel. But, my travels back and forth to the US have been now stopped because my US spouse and I have separated.
I'd really appreciate hearing from others who have experienced this uncomfortable limnal state and what you've done to resolve it. Or is it unresolvable.
Advice? I'm really hurting.
Sorry - I really don't have any advice - just wanted to say sorry about you and your spouse separating (I've been there). I truly believe that us Expats never really fit in anywhere (I know I don't). I think about moving back all time time my kids and grand-children keep me here and I often feel I am too old to make the move (I'm 67). As a few other people have suggested, perhaps if you could move to a better area, you would feel better. So sorry for your situation. Hope things get better for you. Take care of yourself.
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Old Aug 30th 2020, 2:19 pm
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Default Re: Nowhereland

The ones I feel sorry for are those who stayed in the small town I grew up in. I know there are dozens of them who left school, went to college, got a job back in their home town and stayed there. I left, travelled had adventures and experiences. I saw something of the world outside that hick town where I was born !
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Old Aug 30th 2020, 2:37 pm
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Originally Posted by scot47 View Post
The ones I feel sorry for are those who stayed in the small town I grew up in. I know there are dozens of them who left school, went to college, got a job back in their home town and stayed there. I left, travelled had adventures and experiences. I saw something of the world outside that hick town where I was born !
Where were your born? What hick town? I notice that you live on the Isle of Bute now?
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Old Aug 30th 2020, 2:50 pm
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Default Re: Nowhereland

All small towns in Scotland are similar. I grew up on the East Coast. Not there now, so no no one can say of me "Ah kennt his faither !" (the typical put-down in this country where we know The Tall Poppy Syndrome.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tall_poppy_syndrome
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Old Aug 30th 2020, 5:57 pm
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Originally Posted by scot47 View Post
The ones I feel sorry for are those who stayed in the small town I grew up in. I know there are dozens of them who left school, went to college, got a job back in their home town and stayed there. I left, travelled had adventures and experiences. I saw something of the world outside that hick town where I was born !
Perhaps your peers who remained in your old "hick" town are, on balance, happy with the way their lives have turned out. Just like you are. Why put them down?
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Old Aug 30th 2020, 6:17 pm
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Originally Posted by tooboocoo View Post
Perhaps your peers who remained in your old "hick" town are, on balance, happy with the way their lives have turned out. Just like you are. Why put them down?
That may very well be true. I know when I go back to Derry/Londonderry (whatever you want to call it) in Northern Ireland and meet up with cousins, friends, etc they are all in a better place than I am and seem reasonably happy with their lives. They are all retired where as I (at age 67) am still working here in the US (divorce didn't help my financial situation), my friends seem to be able to manage very well on their company pensions, etc, take some nice vacations. In fact I have one good friend who has probably seen more of the US than I have as she likes to vacation here (well did until Covid hit).
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Old Aug 30th 2020, 6:29 pm
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Default Re: Nowhereland

My message is "See the positives in your life."
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Old Aug 31st 2020, 5:14 pm
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Lots on the internet about the idea of "Somewheres" and "Anywheres". That helps to explain things but may not help how you feel. https://thinktheology.co.uk/blog/art...and_somewheres

Here is an extract from Wikipedia - "The Road to Somewhere was published in 2017. A fault line in Britain existed, he suggested, between "Somewheres", those people firmly connected to a specific community which consists of about half the population, "Inbetweeners", and "Anywheres", those usually living in cities, who are socially liberal and well educated, the latter being only a minority of about 20% to 25% of the total population, but who in fact had "over-ruled" the attitudes of the majority.
Jonathan Freedland in The Guardian believed it could be argued New Labour had actually often had the Somewheres in mind in policies espousing an "Asbo culture" and the "prison works" attitude which they continued from Michael Howard's earlier period as Home Secretary.[size=8333px]"[/size]

Last edited by scot47; Aug 31st 2020 at 5:24 pm.
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Old Aug 31st 2020, 6:01 pm
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Originally Posted by scot47 View Post
My message is "See the positives in your life."
Such positivity sits rather uncomfortably with the sneer with which you dismissed your peers in your old hometown, no?
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Old Sep 1st 2020, 6:13 am
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Originally Posted by Jensmate View Post
Well, from perusing all these posts it seems like I'm suffering from a problem I didn't even know had a name or that even existed until today. The dreaded Expat Disease otherwise known as "I belong in Nowhereland."
That about sums up how I feel. But, my travels back and forth to the US have been now stopped because my US spouse and I have separated.
I'd really appreciate hearing from others who have experienced this uncomfortable limnal state and what you've done to resolve it. Or is it unresolvable.
Advice? I'm really hurting.
Jensmate

I’ve been looking back at some of your old posts written when you first moved to Folkestone. You were brimming with optimism and seemed to find plenty to like in the town.

Can I ask what steps you’ve taken recently to get to know people in your local area? Have you joined any clubs? If the town is rundown there are presumably lots of opportunities for volunteering. Charity shops? Food banks? Adult literacy?

The first few years in any new place can be very hard work - especially if you don’t have a job or, say, school age kids, with all the opportunities that that brings to mix with colleagues or fellow parents.
Even with a job it can feel like an uphill struggle. My best mate in Germany says it was a good 2 years of making the effort with colleagues and always being the one to take the initiative before people started reciprocating. It did get him down at times but he’s a sensible guy and recognized that, as the newcomer, the onus really was on him to reach out and organise things.

I dare say it’s harder, too, when we’re older because people tend to have their well-established circle of family and friends and aren’t looking to expand it.
Although personally I think even if you’ve lived somewhere for years and have a regular set of friends it’s important to keep making new ones because friends are only mortal and are apt to move away, become infirm, get dementia or - God forbid - snuff it.

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Old Sep 1st 2020, 4:55 pm
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Tooboocoo

What positives are there in your life ? I rejoice that I have seen something of that wide world out there and have found a safe place to spend my last days.

When I go back to Kirkcaldy, wher I gre up, two things hit me. 1 The effect of de-industrialisation and 2 The small-town mentality of the locals.

If that is "sneering" so be it !

Last edited by scot47; Sep 1st 2020 at 5:04 pm.
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Old Sep 2nd 2020, 4:50 am
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Default Re: Nowhereland

Back in SCO, I find myself very often in the company of two other categories of "Returned Expats"..
1. Ex-Teflers and 2. Ex merchant navy types.

Both are a vanishing breed. TEFL is no longer a way to carve a career, and the Merchant Fleet is now in the hands of foreigners. I am reminded of tales I have heard of vets returning from Vietnam to the US who could only communicate with others who had been in The Nam.
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