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Dear all i need advice.  My husband and i have been here for 6 years. He loves it and i hate it and i no longer know how i can bear to be in such a superficial and uncultured city.  He's fifo and I'm left alone while he's away with our children to fill our time. I've struggled to make friends and our marriage  has suffered so much from the lack of support and we bicker all the time. I'm exhausted from trying to make things work here and just want to go home; something that Australia has never been. Please give me some guidance.

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You need to have a long conversation with him. Have you considered counselling? 

It is though a more common issue than you may think. 

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Where did you move from since Perth seems so superficial and uncultured?  Maybe that attitude is one of the reasons you cant make friends?  Which suburb do you live in?  Maybe a move to another suburb could help.  We are a FIFO family and manage just fine, yes its not for everyone but you do have to put a bit of effort in as its like being a single parent some of the time. Does family ever come to visit? Do you make sure you do daytrips etc on your partners R&R week?  it all helps

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when i describe perth to folk i know - the best way to describe is its "like the trueman show" 

But yep i honestly have 50/50 feelings for Perth and suburbs  As i do the UK. ..... But yep as stormy said - perhaps counselling . And youre doing right by being honest and confronting your feelings . Hope all goes well 

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I think being English people don't expect there to be a culture shock when they arrive in Aus.  I too find it hard to think of Perth being uncultured and superficial.  One of the difficulties making friends is that you may unawares be projecting some vibes and people might just be seeing the negativity and finding it hard to get to know you?  What motivated you to move from the UK?  Ask your GP for a Mental Health care plan for some psychology sessions - I think you need to talk out how you feel initially on your own - then I would consider couple counselling  (Try relationships Australia).  Your homesickness and negative feelings are affecting you, your relationship and probably your children if you're both bickering.  With the couple counselling, you both have to be prepared to listen to the other person .. you say lack of support - what will help the session is to be able to identify what that means for you and that will give your partner a better chance to respond.   You may find that the bickering is just a big a problem for him too ... once you can both identify what it is you need from each other - you can then work/look at if either of you can provide what the other is asking for.  

One of the things that happens when we're down/depressed is that everything around us becomes negative - as hard as you try, you're probably not going to see Perth in any different a light due to your unhappiness which you have to get sorted first.  I do think that you probably need to sort out these issues here,  if you both decide to go back then these issues are just going to be in your suitcase to rear their head at another time. One note of caution is that should your relationship end - you won't be able to just go back with the children. 

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Hi SB11,

Sorry to read that you're feeling down.  I think the key phrase in your post is "I've struggled to make friends" which is something a lot of us can relate to over here and it can make the difference between enjoying the place where your living and making it seem soulless and totally wrong for you. I've been here 13 years and still don't have the close friends I had in Blighty and there have certainly been times when making banal smalltalk with locals about things that I really couldn't give a stuff about has really got me down so I can certainly relate to where you're coming from even if your situation seems a lot more extreme than mine.  However, I do disagree with your statement that Perth is uncultured. There are a lot of interesting people, places and events out there and that side of the city seems to be improving all the time. The key is having people that you can really enjoy the "culture" with.

Here's what I'd suggest for you.  In your post there's no indication  of which part of Perth you're living in and what sort of things you like doing.  Put that stuff out there and see if anybody's interested in meeting up.  There will be a lot of people out there who have experienced alienation in Perth to some degree and would be interested in having a new chum.  Quite a few of them may not be people you click with but just finding one who lives close by, likes similar things to you and, most importantly,  gets you can make all the difference between enjoying the place where you live and hating it. 

Put yourself out there and persist with it until you find those elusive arch-chums.  It might take a while but when you do you'll end up seeing Perth with new eyes. Good luck and hope things get better for you soon.

Baggy

 

 

 

 

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Perth is an isolated city but it is also an oasis to get away from it all.  Kings Park is absolutely beautiful and I think SYD or MEL struggles to provide a city park that is as pristine, unhurried and not commercialized.  Cottesloe Beach gets my vote for the golden sunset views over the hip vibes of overcrowded Bondi Beach.  Subiaco Markets over touristy Victoria Markets for me.  There is not a lot going on but I make it a point to plan ahead and actually attend the few key acts or events that get into town, and I find it is enough for me as a busy parent.

Realistically, your friends are going to be fellow parents with kids in the same school or suburb.  Singles or non-parents are less likely to understand. Any parents with whom you can get sufficient contact time are more likely to be the mates you seek than the 'touch and go' set.  I'm thinking parent volunteer groups and play groups around coffee before the kids get off school.  Try the 'expat with kids' circles  Else, interest groups - yoga, boxercise, or whatever you fancy that meet during school hours. 

Meetup.com and perhaps InterNations.org helps.  There is no substitute for getting out there and making the first move, and it does take effort making friends in a spread out place like Perth.  Once you get a small circle of friends going it will start to be better.  Give it a shot and good luck.

 

 

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On 24/02/2018 at 20:20, Snowbunny11 said:

Dear all i need advice.  My husband and i have been here for 6 years. He loves it and i hate it and i no longer know how i can bear to be in such a superficial and uncultured city.  He's fifo and I'm left alone while he's away with our children to fill our time. I've struggled to make friends and our marriage  has suffered so much from the lack of support and we bicker all the time. I'm exhausted from trying to make things work here and just want to go home; something that Australia has never been. Please give me some guidance.

hi. sorry to hear you feel like this. sounds so much like my family at the moment.  although we both would like to move home but due to various reasons it’s not possible.  we’ve been here for 11 years and it’s got harder.   if you fancy a catch up anytime just let me know.  homesickness is dreadful. 

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sorry to hear that you are feeling this way

we have also been in Perth 6 years and feel at times very much like yourself - I've become friends with ladies from various parts of the world living in Perth and we all have the same experiences - worrying about aged parents back home, older children not sure were they fit, partners who can live off the smell of an oily rag and like there own company therefore don't care were they live !!!

it would be nice to meet up -  I'm a good sound board !!!

were in Perth are you ? I'm in the city so can travel north or south

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On 2/24/2018 at 20:20, Snowbunny11 said:

Dear all i need advice.  My husband and i have been here for 6 years. He loves it and i hate it and i no longer know how i can bear to be in such a superficial and unculturncoed city.  He's fifo and I'm left alone while he's away with our children to fill our time. I've struggled to make friends and our marriage  has suffered so much from the lack of support and we bicker all the time. I'm exhausted from trying to make things work here and just want to go home; something that Australia has never been. Please give me some guidance.

How sad that you think Perth is superficial and uncultured.  Perhaps this is your view  because you came from a close family and lived in a major city in the UK with so much on your doorstep.  

The pleasures of Perth are myriad.   It is remote from any other big city in the world, so it has developed a character all of it's own that is a bit laid back, very spread out geographically, a bit country town grown big, some incredible scenery (both inland and on the coast), and a good melting pot of different nationalities all coming together. 

Whilst WA doesn't have international stars visiting every day, we have some amazing venues for concerts and attract all the big names. We have a world class  Ballet Company (WA Ballet), a world class Symphony Orchestra (WASO), just to name a few. But apart from that, there are so many amateur dramatic groups, music groups, art clubs etc, scattered all over our spread out metro area.  Is this the sort of "culture" that you are missing?  

No way is Perth superficial.   It is a country town grown big too quick, but it is no way superficial.   I actually think you might be living in a suburb that you don't feel comfortable in.  If so, have you considered moving elsewhere?

It is very hard to make a new life when you first emigrate, and it took me a couple of years to feel that I was comfortable in my new "place", so I totally understand how you must be feeling.  Are you working or are you stuck at home all day after your children go to school?

Homesickness is terrible - it is a physical hurting as much as a mental one.  We have all been there and I hope you can find a way through this.

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