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The should I stay or should I go question

Here's where to discuss the practicalities and issues involved in moving back to the UK.

The should I stay or should I go question

Postby catisfaction » Mon 13 Aug 2007 05:36 GMT

Hi there, I'm new to this forum and thought I'd stop in and ask some advice.

I've been living in the US for nearly 10 years, at first as a student, living with my father and step mum and for the last 6 years as a self supporting adult with a dead beat husband.

I've reached a point where I need to decide if I should stick it out here even though times are tough right now or head home, but I'm worried I might have the "grass is always greener" syndrome.

Here's a short rundown on my situation...
1/ Husband and I have recently split up
2/ My green card application has been dragging forever and now there's complications due to my husbands birth cert having the wrong name.
3/ I feel so isolated here, even though I have moved back in with my parents I feel like the social aspect of life here is almost impossible for me to maintain, can't go out to a pub to meet people because they're all so far away you have to drive, I work at home on my own business so I don't meet people there and I just can't seem to find a niche to fit into.
4/ Both my grandmothers are getting towards the end and I haven't seen them in 7 years.
5/ I have a 2 year old niece I've never even met.
6/ Oh yeah I can't get a job because of the green card issue and my home based business is not raking in enough for me to support myself at the moment.

If the green card situation goes down the tubes then the choice is going to be made for me pretty much but the more I think about home and all the things I miss the more I wonder if it wouldn't be the right thing to do.

On the other hand if I get my green card maybe a holiday or two would satiate those memorys *Sigh*

I'm at a loss, I just don't know what to do. Does anyone who is thinking about going back or has gone back have any advice?
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Postby Savannah_Alan » Mon 13 Aug 2007 08:30 GMT

Hi there. I understand your situation. My advice (such as it is) would be to work toward getting your green card sorted. Tell yourself that it's not because you're making a decision either way, but you're working toward giving yourself the option.

I got divorced a year and half ago and thought about going back home then. More out of plain laziness than anything, I simply moved to a different part of the state.

I have the pull of newly reunited daughters that I love dearly and they live in England. I also went back in March and stayed for ten days and loved every moment. Granted, it was bound to be a good time because I was with my daughters, but it just felt so good to be back where I felt I belonged with all the familiarity and comfort that that brings.

As I said, I would suggest getting your green card sorted so that you do have the choice and then consider some extended holidays back home to see whether the grass really is greener.

As for the isolation, stick around here a while. We have a great bunch of people here - although very few are in the US. I know my friends here help me to feel less isolated.

I hope things work out for you.


P.S. Where in the US are you?
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Postby Kay » Mon 13 Aug 2007 11:43 GMT

Hello and welcome to BE.

I agree with Alan - keep your options open. Imagine if you did come back to the UK, regretted it, and the door was closed for you to return to the US.

But also, it doesn't have to be an either/or situation, does it? Britain or USA? With a British passport you could go anywhere in the EU, so that might be worth considering too. Maybe you could have a look around at other options.

We have many people on here who've felt the pull home after several years abroad but have been disappointed by what they found. Things have changed and probably not for the better - so throw away the rose-tints! :wink:

I think you're just feeling a bit homesick because of the isolation, and you've been through a very difficult patch. Hang on in there and don't make any quick decisions which you might regret later.

As Alan also said, there are plenty of good people on here who will happily give their friendship and support. You're not alone, so don't feel like you are.

Good luck!
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Postby Trev » Mon 13 Aug 2007 17:34 GMT

I agree with Alan and Kay, keep your options open, returning to the UK could be a bad mistake.

I left over 8 years ago, and do not have any regrets, mind you, for me it wasn't a big wrench, for many years before leaving I had been lucky enough to extensively travel the world at Her Majesties expense.

Still get the odd pang of homesickness though, until I realise that home is where I am now. And I guess I an also fortunate that I have no relatives in the UK, so no draw there either.

Providing you get your green card I would then sit down and draw up a list of pros and cons. Bet you find the good things about NOT being in the UK overcome the others.
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Postby SSue » Tue 14 Aug 2007 01:08 GMT

Hello and welcome.

I'll just agree with the others. When we're a bit down or unhappy with our lot, it's easy to wish we were back 'home' in a safe familiar place, where we were happy, surrounded by family and friends. The reality is that just as we have grown and changed, so have the people and places we left behind. I'd like to bet that what you find there now, is not the same place that you left. At least that was my experience.

I think you should go back for a trip, before making any life changing decisions, and then at least you can decide which option is best for you.

Best wishes,

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thanks for the input

Postby marknir » Fri 12 Oct 2012 03:33 GMT


I have been in the US for about 8 years and recently lost my job, marriage to my US wife is breaking down and we will probably loose the house.
Can it get any worse, lol.

Anyway, I had been thinking about moving back to the uk but the advice in this post has made me stop and think a little. I guess some things are better here but not medical coverage without insurance or help when there is no money. I have about 4 yrs left on my green card but I will just have to see what happens here. Not sure about returning to the uk at all if things have changed that much. :brickwall:
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Postby Graeme » Fri 12 Oct 2012 14:00 GMT

Rest assured it is not the UK that you left that would be waiting for your return, things sound to be very different over there. Try reading the on-line newspapers to get a flavour of what has been going on, it's an eye opener. :shock:
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