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OT: Feeling homesick and disappointed. (long)


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  #1  
January 20th, 2013, 09:34 AM
Joanne Nicole's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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A couple years ago we were living in Arizona. We were massively in debt, and housing market had tanked so bad that our house was worth 1/3 what we owed on it. Then my husband got laid off his job of 10 years. At that point, we made the decision to move to Ontario to live closer to my family. I never really liked living in the desert and missed my family, and I had missed living where it's green and beautiful, plus free healthcare, better schools, lots of job opportunities, etc. We got going on the immigration process for my husband - which was very costly, and took almost 2 years to complete. While we were waiting for the paperwork to process, my husband found a contract job, and we made the decision to stop paying our mortgage. In the 2 years that we waited, we were lucky enough that the bank never even reported us as having missed a payment. Somehow we fell through the cracks. Because of that, we were able to pay off over $60,000 in debt and even save a little. In the end, we were able to do a short-sale on our house (not quite as hard on your credit rating as a foreclosure) so now we're free and clear.

We moved to Ontario at the beginning of summer last year. My husband was able to find a good job within a month, although he has to commute over an hour, and that's taking a toll on him. We're living in my parent's house, so that we can save up enough money for a down payment on a house. We figure it's going to take us about 3 years of hardcore saving to have enough. It's been difficult living here and I'm becoming more and more disenchanted with the idea of living here. I haven't lived here since I was in my early 20's and I find I have no desire to live in a big city anymore. It's just not as fun as it used to be. And the sprawling suburbs that we're living in now are just depressing. I want to live out in the country, or at least on the outskirts of the city where we can have more space. But my husband has to work in the city.

It's so incredibly expensive to live here, and that makes this really hard. It would cost anywhere from $500,000-$800,000 just to buy a decent detached 3-4 bedroom house here. This seems absolutely astronomical to us, especially since the house we sold in Arizona was a beautiful, new, 3-bedroom home with a huge open floor plan and gorgeous kitchen, and it sold for $89,000. It was so much better than the houses here that cost 5x as much. I guess I'm not feeling homesick in the traditional sense - I don't miss living in Arizona, but I miss my beautiful, spacious home.

On top of that, my dad is incredibly difficult to live with, and I imagine that's just going to get worse when the baby is born. I was looking forward to coming back to all my friends from university and high school, but we're in such different places in our lives. Not a single one of them is married or has kids yet. There was a flurry of invitations to parties and get-togethers when I first moved up here, but as it's become more evident that we have nothing in common anymore, the invitations slowly petered out. So, now I'm pregnant, dealing with depression, friendless, and dealing with a difficult home life.

My husband's mom lives in Ohio, a little ways outside of Cleveland, in a 150 year old house in the country. I had never been there before, but I had it in my head for some reason that Ohio was a backwards, awful place to live. Well, now that we're only 5-6 hours away, we go to visit every few months. And it's so beautiful there! And as far as cost, it's a little more than Arizona but incredibly affordable compared to Ontario. Every time we visit I think, I could totally see myself living here. But then I think about how much work we did to move here, and that we sold everything we own, and my family is here, and the schools are so much better, and on and on and on. I feel like after everything we've done to get here, it would be like admitting failure just to leave again. And as difficult as my dad is to live with, I would really miss him and all the rest of my family if we didn't live here.

I'm not really looking for answers to my problems or anything, I just needed to share with you ladies how I've been feeling lately. I'm sure the winter-blahs are exacerbating my mood, but even before winter the doubts were creeping into my mind.

Thanks for always being there when I need to vent - you guys are the best.
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  #2  
January 20th, 2013, 09:41 AM
navywifey2003's Avatar Home Birth Mama
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Being military we move a lot. So I know how you are feeling. I miss San Diego so much right now and the life we had there. Family was close but not too close and it was nice. I've lived with my parents on and off since getting married its so tough. Hang in there Hun!
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  #3  
January 20th, 2013, 11:04 AM
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Hugs!!! You have been through a lot, and your feelings sound totally normal for someone in your situation. I hear ya on moving from a low cost of living area to a high cost of living area... I *love* where we live now in California, it's my hometown, and I would never in a million years want to move back to Mississippi, but we pay almost 3x monthly rent what we paid on our mortgage in MS, and we had a 2400sq ft 4br 2ba on over an acre of land, and now we have a tiny crummy old house that grows mold everywhere and doesn't even have a dishwasher (or room for one, the kitchen is itty bitty). But, we have a great location and can walk places and I love that.

It must be hard seeing all your old friends in a different place than you, too. Maybe you should seek out some new/expecting-mom groups, through your health care provider, local yahoo groups, meetup groups, etc? I had a hard time getting plugged in when we first moved here, M was 4 months old, but eventually I subscribed to a few mailing lists and found a meetup group and then M got old enough for activities, and I met moms that way too. Free events like library story time. Just some ideas. You will find new friends I hope it gets easier for you soon!!!!
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  #4  
January 20th, 2013, 11:36 AM
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I can't offer you any advice, but I can offer you prayers that things improve and I can offer you hugs.
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  #5  
January 20th, 2013, 11:53 AM
BabyBirdies's Avatar over the rainbow?
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Having moved a lot (even between Canada and the US as a kid), I understand a little of what you're going through, and I wanted to chime in, even though I'm not in your DDC.

There are a couple of things that you're dealing with. One, the cost of living thing is making you feel like you will never get out of your cruddy living situation. I get that. We rent in a very small apartment in NYC for more than twice what my parents pay for a 4bd/3ba house. We have to be here for graduate school, so it is what it is. The thing is, what you're talking about with the great schools, etc., is why you pay so much. It's tough, but it is what it is. Maybe you can talk to a financial planner to get a solid plan about how long it will take to get enough money for a house? Something so you know what the end goal is? Another thing to consider, depending on how bad the situation is, is how much a 1- or 2-bedroom apartment would be. It will slow down your savings some, but it might be worth it for the peace of mind, and to keep you from making decisions that you might regret later (i.e. leaving the good schools and your family)

The other situation is your friends. That is partially about disappointment - you figured coming home you wouldn't have to worry about the making friends part of moving, and turns out, you do. Those friends aren't in the same place as you, and that's okay too. So now, think about ways to meet people who are closer to your life-stage. Someone previously mentioned a mommies group, and I think that's a good way to go. Even a group for new people to the city or something might be good. It's hard to put yourself out there, and you're unlikely to meet exactly the right people you want to be friends with right away, but I do think you can make inroads into the "feeling friendless" aspect.

Many of us have been there. I hope you find your way soon!
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  #6  
January 20th, 2013, 12:14 PM
Joanne Nicole's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Thanks for the sympathy, ladies. I need to stop looking at houses for sale online...it's depressing.
Here's an example of what I'm talking about. The first house is in the town in Arizona that we lived in, the second one is in Medina, OH and the third one is where we live now. Each of these costs $215,000.
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  #7  
January 20th, 2013, 12:52 PM
navywifey2003's Avatar Home Birth Mama
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Huge hugs Hun! That's a huge difference! The area we live in actually has some of the best schools. Which is why we chose this city to another one close by. I am so happy with David's school. When we move again that's something we will be researching like crazy.
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  #8  
January 20th, 2013, 12:53 PM
MamaSkunk's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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The first two are very pretty homes....each for their own ways. I totally get it. We used to live in Idaho and i miss the mountains...the deserty parts with sagebrush and cedar not as much but the job market was awful there with 38% unemployment rates and in more recent years a huge increase of meth users. So we opted to move back to my home state which has lots of green everywhere and pretty however cost of living is almost double...grocery prices gave me quite a shock. But jobs are more available. We do have a beautiful home thanks to my dads help but he seems to take that as an open invite to stop in anytime...he doesnt knock...just walks in. And has walked in while i was showering or getting dressed. Yet yells at me if i lock the door. Hes retired so he comes by all the time. He makes comments about my preg belly sticking out and i should "suck it in" I dont miss the economy in Idaho but I miss my privacy and my home being my own!
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  #9  
January 20th, 2013, 01:00 PM
PurpleStar's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I feel for you girl. I moved to Maui to follow then BF, now DH. I had DS in Vegas (where I was living at the time - also low cost of living), closed up shop at work and my condo, visited my family in my hometown in CA for a couple weeks and made the big move over by the time DS was 2.5months. I have no family, no friends and until 5 months ago no job (job market sucks, daycare SKYHIGH so decided to be SAHM). Even with the job I have now, I haven't really clicked with anyone to say "hey, lets go get drinks" or whatever. It costs a ridiculous amount of money to live here just for the basics and the fact it costs me $400-800, depending what time of year it is, for ONE roundtrip ticket to visit my family is depressing and painful. I hate that I have to THINK about if I can afford to see my loved ones. I try to think the grass isn't greener, but the thing is - I know it is. And that has started to take its toll on me. A big reason is also because I want to my children to have the kind of upbringing I did, to have their family and know what I know life can be like. I grew up in a "it takes a village" environment...this solo living is super alien to me & I hate it. I have already told DH I'm done and that at the end of his contract I want to back to the mainland.

I think in the end, everyone has to be happy...I'm not, this isnt' what I want and am at a point where I'm moving pieces of life around to get us moving. I feel like in order for us to be good to our babies & family, we have to remember to take care of ourselves. Not in a selfish way, but to be open and communicate...cause when stuff festers, its just makes you feel worse, like you're all alone in it.

So maybe you can just start making some dialogue with DH...you never know, he could be thinking the same thing...Sending you good thoughts ~
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  #10  
January 20th, 2013, 01:38 PM
Joanne Nicole's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I just found out that Medina has some of the top rated schools in all of Ohio...

And then I found this house in Medina... (I really need to stop!) $74,900!!!! That's less than the down payment we need here to buy a house!

221 North Elmwood Avenue, Medina OH - Trulia


And the thing is...it's ONLY 5 hours away from here. We could visit my family once a month if I wanted to. Arg. This is killing me.

I hear you, PurpleStar. I could never live away from family. It's so hard to be isolated and not have your kids around their grandparents/uncles/aunts/etc. And the thing is, my husband feels exactly the same as I do about all this. He's sick to death of living in my parent's house, and he's having a hard time coming to grips with the cost of living here. He's not super close to his mom, so he doesn't feel the strong desire to live near her like I do with my family...but..but...only 5 hours! And honestly...as much as I love my parents...they're not really into the whole grandparent thing. They're very strict with DD, never want to play with her...kind of "children should be seen and not heard" sort of people. My mother-in-law has her faults, but she's super-grandma. She adores DD with all her heart, and already loves baby #2, even though it's not here yet! It would be nice for my kids to have that kind of relationship.
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  #11  
January 20th, 2013, 05:06 PM
QueenCrafty's Avatar Courtney
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I think maybe you guys ought to sit down and have a serious conversation and reevaluate your goals. Renting a small place closer to your DH's job would put a dent in the house buying goal, but isn't your sanity worth it? Or maybe Ohio could have some potential for you guys. A 5-6 hour trip is very doable. A lot of DH's family lives 8 hours away from us in the Cincinnati area. We drive up there with the kids once a year and DH goes a few more times. Even that 8 hour trip is worth it to see family.
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  #12  
January 20th, 2013, 06:17 PM
MamaSkunk's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Wow that is a pretty house! And if your DHs mom is such a great gma then itd be a good move for your kids to be nearer a gma that is awesome to the kids. And sounds like she would be a trustworthy babysitter if ya needed one. There are some drawbacks Im sure between the US and Canada but I think getting out away from your parents would not only do you and your DH and kids good. But it may help your relationship to your parents by not being around your parents constantly. And then you wouldnt have to spend so much for a home.
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  #13  
January 20th, 2013, 06:25 PM
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sounds like time to really sit down as a family( you and DH) and figure out what would make more sense...if DH can find solid work in OH it may be worth looking into. I moved 5.5 hours away from home to be with DH and as much as I get homesick sometimes bc I miss my family and perks of the big city(shopping ect.) I was at a place in my life where all my friends were in a completely different place and frankly were not the best for me. So I made a decision to move to a little Podunk town I had no friends and all DH friends were friends with his ex so it was very awkward(small town stuff). At first it was very hard but I met a few people and now have a few really close friends am happy and go home to see my family every few months. The best of both worlds! I just wanted to share my experience and hope you can find what will make you happy soon best of luck!
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  #14  
January 20th, 2013, 07:51 PM
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We are living 4 1/2 hours from family right now and we see my parents often. We make the drive then they do. Very very doable. I think it's time for a sit down as well.
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  #15  
January 20th, 2013, 09:33 PM
edgeofelise's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I grew up in Stow, OH (suburb of Akron) which is very close to Medina. I have to say, it was a fantastic place to grow up and if I could handle the weather extremes I'd consider living there now. The schools really are pretty great, too. I know how you feel being frustrated with your living situation; we've been stuck in a crummy condo in the city for three years and it sucks out more of my soul every day. I'm really unhappy living in such a cramped space, with zero access to nature. Cost of living in Seattle is insane, too. I hope you guys find a solution that makes everybody happy. If moving to Ohio is something you're actually considering, I just wanted to let you know firsthand that it's not a terrible place to live.
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  #16  
January 21st, 2013, 02:19 PM
zkat's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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From what I read in your post, the main thing keeping you in Canada is the initial cost to move there, the school system, decent healthcare and your DH's job, which he could do in Ohio.

Talk to your husband. Have a serious conversation about what you guys want to do long term. If you stay where you are simply because of the money you spent to get there, then you will be unhappy. The US has some really amazing schools and like you said, cost of living is considerable less.

As far as friends, can you find a mommy meet up group or something in your area where you can meet new friends? It is even harder to be lonely on top of everything else.

Big hugs to you.

Kat.
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