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Walmerironman

At a turning point - Not sure what the future holds

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Hello, here goes!

Our dream has turned a bit pearshaped! We moved out here in May of this year, 7 months ago. I was on a half promise of a job that eventually materialised into reality early August. During the interim we stayed with in-laws, friends etc and were unable to commit to an area, let alone a suburb in Perth. I was chasing theee jobs in the end, 2 in Perth and 1 in Albany. I started the job in Perth in August and we rented a house in Duncraig, based on the suburb and the High School. Trouble is the job was a nightmare. It was soon clear to me that the owner was a bullying, rude tyrant. After 7 weeks I was made redundant. The job was in the waste industry and due to proposed changes the project was shelved. 

I now find myself working for a haulier in Albany whilst my family are living here in Perth. I leave home at 0330 on a Monday and get home late Friday evening! Not the cohesive family life we envisaged. I am looking for work up here but it's been to no avail so far. It doesn't help that I'm doing 12hr days, so very little time to look. 

Thats not the only thing. The only one of us who is happy is my 15 year old son. He seems to have settled in well, he's in the triathlon squad, has a shop job in Hilary's at the weekends and loves the skating, though he gets frustrated at some of his friends reluctance to get out and do things. Our other son, 13, has become a hermit. He's not made any friends at all, spends all of his time on the Xbox or Mac, totally different to the fun, gregarious boy he was in the UK. My wife has not managed to make any friends either. She lacks the school gate friendship portal now as the boys are older. As for me, well I just don't have any time at all to do anything. I was cycling with a group up here, but come Sat morning I'm just too tired to get up and cycle, plus I've missed my family and want to spend time with them. It's the friends thing really, we've have found that Australians are friendly, but in a very shallow, low level way. Very polite, but that's it  we have some South African Acquantences but they seem to stick together, so they're happy  We had a big social circle in the UK, we think we are nice people, so it's very wearing  Basically we feel we have no friends and no support, we've both got family out here, but I'm afraid they've been a disappointment  

we are now faced with the choice of A) Upsticks and move to Albany for my job or head home to the UK. Albany is beautiful, but the job has its drawbacks, well paid but some of the practises worry me; it's a long way from anywhere and I worry about taking the boys there as it's limiting for their social Developements, plus they don't want to go there. Financially we will be on a winner there as housing is much cheaper  

Not sure what I'm asking really, maybe some input, maybe I just need to put pen to paper. But we are both feeling desperately unhappy, I for one have never felt this way. I've always been an upbeat mood lifter if you like, not the person I find I am now.

Any advice or words of encouragement gratefully received  

thanks

Bryan 

 

 

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I'm sorry the move isn't working out how you envisaged.  We purposely didn't move to be near family (QLD), as my brother could have moved at anytime and we'd have been on our own anyway.

The friendship thing is hard, If you think back to your friendships in the UK they will have developed over time and we can't just re-create it within a few months.  Have you thought about inviting the parents of your sons friends over?  Inviting the neighbours round?  Does your wife work? Inviting people from work - or if she doesn't work - volunteering somewhere.  It is sometimes about putting yourself out there - you're going to like some people and not others.

My own instinct would be to consider a move to Albany so that you can all be together as a family.  When we moved we said that if we didn't like Perth then we'd move somewhere else - have you considered looking for work interstate and moving?

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Making friends is hard and what you have described is not the first time I have read pretty much the same post. 

We were in WA for eight years and never made friends. Well, not until very near the end, which was ironic. Australians are the same as us in that way in that most of the friends we have we have got to know either at university or even school. So, suddenly finding yourself in a very alien environment is going to be an issue. 

I can't advise you on what to do, other than to say try to be as objective as possible. Write down the pluses and minuses of your options and let that be a guide. 

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Your situation is one that we hear about often, and usually at this time of year as it is only natural that you miss family and friends at Christmas.

It isn't easy to uproot a family and expect it to settle into a new life straight away on the other side of the world from everything you have known, but part of the adventure is to explore other avenues and try new things etc.  

Have your family been down to Albany and spent any time there?   It is a beautiful part of WA and a thriving community, and it might be worth giving it a go down there as a family for a while.   Do remember that as adults, you and your wife make the family decisions and rules, so don't let an adolescent over-rule you.   By all means take into account their comments and wishes, but don't let your family be hostage to a decision a teenager has made for the whole family.   Talking with my "experience" hat on here!

As far as making friends is concerned, you have to remember that a lot of your friends in UK you probably made from school, uni, work, neighbours etc.   You can't expect to replicate that network quickly or easily, but you can do things to meet people.   If you are into sport in any way, join a club - volunteer for a charity  -  invite your neighbours in for a coffee - chat to people at work..... It does take time to make friends, but it does happen (as the ad says!)  

Workwise you have to realise that things are done differently in Australia, and in WA particularly for some reason, so you have to step back a bit at times, and I personally found that very hard.  One of the worst things you can do is to harp on about how things are done in UK.   You don't live in UK now, and people you work with will get a bit cheesed off, and I learned that one the hard way!   However, if you really feel that things are not being done well for safety reasons, or perhaps there is a better way financially, you can always couch your comments in such a way that you are suggesting perhaps things might have a better outcome for everyone if XYZ was considered.  

I feel very much for you and your family and totally understand where you are  coming from as this was me at the beginning of my migrant journey 26 years ago.  By the time the second year was well under way, I finally began to think that it would all work for us.... and it has.    So take a deep breath and keep trying things and just embrace the adventure.   No shame on you though if it doesn't work out.

 

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I can't help you with the work situation but your not going mad,  the social life thing I totally get. I am from a good social circle in the uk but find it very private here ( been here 17 yrs ) it may or may not happen , who knows??

But I would definitely give it longer if you feel you can all cope. 

 

 

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Hi Bryan,
I can really relate to your post. We’ve been here 3 years in Feb and found it really tough at times. My hubby is gas engineer/plumber and has really struggled with work since we arrived, he’s only now starting to settle down and has a permanent job, but it’s taken him this long to build up contacts etc. luckily I got a job 3 months after getting here so we were able to manage but it was never the plan for me to work full time and as such it’s meant that I haven’t been able to build any meaningful relationships in the suburb (we live in Duncraig too!) as I wasn’t able to do the whole school thing. Completely get what you mean about your wife not making ‘school’ friends, it’s harder when they get older. We’ve got 2 kids - our son is also 13 so probably in same year as your son, now going in to Year 8, and got a daughter now about to start year 7 so they’ll both be at DSHS. Are your boys at DSHS or Carine HS?
We do have some friends in Tapping and Carramar and also close friends in Duncraig but they are friends from UK who we have known for years so that makes life a lot easier.
We have had many ups and downs since we’ve been here but we always decided that we’d need to stick it out for 2 or 3 years to really make a go of it, and it seems like we may just be getting there.
I’m not very good at putting myself out there and starting new friendships but would be happy to have a cuppa (or wine) with your wife if she wants, I work in a school so off work for another few weeks! And I’m sure my hubby wouldn’t mind a beer or 2 - we’d be happy to lend an ear for you both to unload
Sally


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Hi Bryan, we can also relate to your post, been here nearly 2 years and have found the Aussies superficial or so I thought. Sadly, in October my wife was diagnosed with Breast Cancer, I was shocked as the offers of help we've had from our Aussie neighbours, while my wife was having surgery food was left on our doorstep so when I got back from the hospital there was something for the kids other than McDonalds. One lovely lady has taken my daughter too and from school for us because Ive had to go work early etc. These people were neighbours or people from the school who we now consider friends. I'm not suggesting you need a crisis to bring people out of the wood work but thinking back all they needed was asking round for a beer. 

We have no family here and its been really tough lately, would we go back, I dont think so, what would we go back to? After the initial euphoria of us coming back it would all die down and youd be in the position of finding a job, house etc. 

Admittedly, it must be tough to work so far away and I cant imagine how difficult that is for you and your wife but something will come up, get your wife to keep checking SEEK and INDEED for jobs for you and text/email them to you. When something crops up you want its a great motivator to stay up and fill out an application. Or as others suggest, move everyone to Albany, its doesnt have to be for ever and they may love it.

Also, I dont think I would worry too much about your 13 year old, if I remember my 3 oldest girls this was the age where they got into ipads/computers etc and I remember whinging at them to go outside, go and play with friends met with "I aint go no friends" now they are late teens they have loads of friends and are never in!

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Hello Everyone

Thankyou all for your comments, having an unload on line and hearing from others who have been through the same really helps. 

Rest if family with me in Albany this week, so all good. Trying to sell the idea to them. 

Definately up for a chat Gaz and Sue. I'll be in touch.

Thanks

Bryan

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It's sometimes good to off load Bryan - it's the right place for it.  Enjoy family time - you might be able to sell Albany (which is a beautiful part of the world).

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On 04/01/2018 at 14:46, Walmerironman said:

Thankyou all for your comments, having an unload on line and hearing from others who have been through the same really helps.

Anyone who comes here thinking that life will be easier than back in the UK is fooling themselves. It's a bloody hard slog for a good few years at least. But stick it out for long enough and your endeavours will bear fruit.

My best advice is to stick it out because every year under your belt brings a better year in front of you.

I speak from experience.

Good luck.

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3 hours ago, Warnbro said:

Anyone who comes here thinking that life will be easier than back in the UK is fooling themselves. It's a bloody hard slog for a good few years at least. But stick it out for long enough and your endeavours will bear fruit.

My best advice is to stick it out because every year under your belt brings a better year in front of you.

I speak from experience.

Good luck.

I agree, we'd been here 10 months and took a short break in Bussleton and it was the first time I realised we'd stopped still in all that time, always something to be doing, establishing in this new life we were carving out.  Not directed to the OP but a general comment, but I think people are naïve if they come to Aus believing it's the UK with sunshine - there is so much research that you can do now .. even more than when we started our journey when Poms in Oz was in it's infancy.

 

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9 hours ago, ali said:

I agree, we'd been here 10 months and took a short break in Bussleton and it was the first time I realised we'd stopped still in all that time, always something to be doing, establishing in this new life we were carving out.  Not directed to the OP but a general comment, but I think people are naïve if they come to Aus believing it's the UK with sunshine - there is so much research that you can do now .. even more than when we started our journey when Poms in Oz was in it's infancy.

 

When you come here, you might as well be going to Mars or Venus if you want something similar to the UK. Australians look a bit like English people, talk a bit like English people but it ends there. 

You have to be prepared for a sea change in attitude, values and outlook on life in general.

Every time you open your gob, you'll be a pom. If you complain about anything, you'll be a whingeing pom. After two or three years, you'll be a whingeing pom with a bit of a local accent. 

On the other hand, after a few years, your kids will be true Blue Ocker Bondi Aussies with dual nationality and the freedom of the planet.

And after all, that is what is all about. :)

 

 

 

 

 

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On 1/3/2018 at 10:19, JaseandAnne said:

Hi Bryan, we can also relate to your post, been here nearly 2 years and have found the Aussies superficial or so I thought. Sadly, in October my wife was diagnosed with Breast Cancer, I was shocked as the offers of help we've had from our Aussie neighbours, while my wife was having surgery food was left on our doorstep so when I got back from the hospital there was something for the kids other than McDonalds. One lovely lady has taken my daughter too and from school for us because Ive had to go work early etc. These people were neighbours or people from the school who we now consider friends. I'm not suggesting you need a crisis to bring people out of the wood work but thinking back all they needed was asking round for a beer. 

We have no family here and its been really tough lately, would we go back, I dont think so, what would we go back to? After the initial euphoria of us coming back it would all die down and youd be in the position of finding a job, house etc. 

Admittedly, it must be tough to work so far away and I cant imagine how difficult that is for you and your wife but something will come up, get your wife to keep checking SEEK and INDEED for jobs for you and text/email them to you. When something crops up you want its a great motivator to stay up and fill out an application. Or as others suggest, move everyone to Albany, its doesnt have to be for ever and they may love it.

Also, I dont think I would worry too much about your 13 year old, if I remember my 3 oldest girls this was the age where they got into ipads/computers etc and I remember whinging at them to go outside, go and play with friends met with "I aint go no friends" now they are late teens they have loads of friends and are never in!

Your experience is certainly the same as mine in times of trouble.  Wishing you and yours all the very best.

 

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On 06/01/2018 at 17:31, Warnbro said:

When you come here, you might as well be going to Mars or Venus if you want something similar to the UK. Australians look a bit like English people, talk a bit like English people but it ends there. 

You have to be prepared for a sea change in attitude, values and outlook on life in general.

Every time you open your gob, you'll be a pom. If you complain about anything, you'll be a whingeing pom. After two or three years, you'll be a whingeing pom with a bit of a local accent. 

On the other hand, after a few years, your kids will be true Blue Ocker Bondi Aussies with dual nationality and the freedom of the planet.

And after all, that is what is all about. :)

 

 

 

 

 

Can you imagine if you are ESL? I dread our accent and heck I stumble making correct sentences sometimes. But people are friendly about it. Annoys me more than anyone else :)

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On 09/01/2018 at 23:51, Arwen said:

Your experience is certainly the same as mine in times of trouble.  Wishing you and yours all the very best.

 

Thanks Arwen

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