Gee, it's good to be back home
September 5, 2017 1:28 AM   Subscribe

I am thinking about moving back to the US after a decade in Europe. In the current political and social climate, it feels like contemplating a move into the wolf's den. Help me decide if this is really a good idea or actually a very, very bad one.

I'm 33 years old, US citizen, married, with a 4-year-old. I've been living in Spain for the past decade, but I'm thinking about moving back to the US for two reasons. First, I would like to be closer to my parents, who are getting older, and who I really miss. Even the other side of the country is closer than where I live now.

Second, I want to get access to that sweet, sweet job market. Spain is quite traditionally minded, work-wise, and it is really difficult to change careers once you're established. I'm pretty sick of what I do (teaching, translating, editing, proofreading), and I'd love to be able to parlay those skills into something else, but in the eyes of Spanish employers I am first and foremost a teacher with some language skills on the side. It is difficult to get them to consider that I might be able to do anything else. Plus, with an 18% unemployment rate, jobs are just harder to come by. Money is a secondary consideration- potential earnings for white-collar jobs in the US are far higher than in Spain.

However, right now I have a low cost of living and access to excellent socialized health care, as well as (what I think is) a generally more open, laid-back society. It seems like moving to the US, even if it were to bring a step up in terms of money and career, would bring a step down in terms of stability and quality of life. Based on what I read on the internet and talking to my own family, the US seems perpetually poised on the brink of nuclear war and/or fascist dictatorship. I know this may not be the rational view of things (or is it??), but the general feeling I get is that things are going from bad to worse.

For the record, my (Spanish citizen) husband is totally on-board with this (although I think it'll take him a lot longer to find work, and I will probably have to be the sole breadwinner for a while), and I'm not worried about my 4-year-old adapting. In part, I feel like this is a decision to make right now, rather than wait for another few years, because the older he is the more difficult and painful it will be to tear him away.

So there's my dilemma. Is there a different way I should be thinking about this? Another way to frame it? Details I need to consider? Are you/have you been in my position? What would you do if you were me? Anecdata welcome.
posted by lollymccatburglar to Grab Bag (26 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I work in a similar field and I'd say it's worth thinking about these things:

- what it will take to reestablish a credit history in the US and what it will be like to operate without one for things like apartment rentals

- what visa/status your Spanish partner will need to work in the US - despite him being married to you, does he have the ability to just show up and work?

- whether you want your child to be educated in Spanish, English or both, and where you could move with schools that would provide that on your expected income; also, whether the move would mean giving up the free/low-cost university system your family could benefit from

- whether getting a cheap(er) EU-resident priced MA/whatever in your field now will be worth doing before going home, where education is eye-wateringly pricey

- what you are willing to accept in terms of, as you say, increased precarity in terms of health care - if you have any chronic medical conditions you treat with what is a cheap or free medication in Spain, say, would that drug suddenly be $200 a month? $2000? Would you accept a job that didn't provide any healthcare at all?

- how much you are willing to live somewhere cheaper if you will be the breadwinner and what that means for you and your partner in terms of child care and general sanity - there are inexpensive homes across America, but do you want to live there?

- whether you are willing to rely on cars as much as the vast majority of Americans do, and whether you can afford as many cars (and as much gas and insurance) as you would want or need

- how this move would affect your Spanish partner's state pension - could he collect it or still contribute to it?

I am wondering if instead it would be worth...

- moving to a more economically dynamic EU country like Ireland, where you both could probably find work and, if you were outside Dublin, perhaps not have to spend a fortune on a place to live - you'd also be near his family and Ireland is getting better and better links with the US every year; this way you would also be able to maintain some semblance of a social welfare structure in your life if things are financially tricky at first

- you naturalising as a Spanish citizen (really, you should all be dual nationals) and moving your family to you

- downsizing/relocating in Spain to lower your cost of living

- opening your own school or going into corporate English training for a multinational

Regardless of the occupant of the White House or the composition of Congress, the US is not going to have anything like the Spanish national healthcare system anytime soon. We don't have as much public space, don't walk as much, work longer hours, take less vacation time. Only you know if those compromises are worth a move; I have lived abroad for ten years because they aren't for me. Good luck!
posted by mdonley at 2:05 AM on September 5, 2017 [25 favorites]

Those homesick glasses look good on you. Yet can you see real life through them? Being located closer to your parents and the ideal of better paying work are the only positive aspects in your question. All the others are losses; free health-care, employment for your spouse, lower cost of living in a more permissive (i.e. less fearful) society. These are the safety nets we require in life and they would be so missed once you don't have them.

You think you have to make this decision now because leaving it longer would disadvantage your child. I don't believe that concern is valid enough to outweigh your immediate losses should you return to the US now. Your child will be enriched at any age by sharing his two parents' cultures. You don't have to rush on kid's behalf. Why not wait until 2020?

Take everything I say with a grain of non-US salt. I am not from the US although I have lived there. As the mozzie ad in Australia says: When you are on a good thing, stick to it.
posted by Thella at 2:08 AM on September 5, 2017 [6 favorites]

I see you set up a dichotomy between the US and Spain. Many of the drawbacks you note are peculiar to Spain and may not apply as much in other European countries. Your husband is an EU citizen. You are his dependent and thus also can benefit from his free movement rights. Have you considered a move within Europe?

I am biased. I am an American here in Europe without intentions to go back anytime soon. It is not because of politics (those are in flux all the time) and the international situation is what it is and affects all of us. My reasons come down to healthcare, the regulatory environment and a less car-focused culture.

Earnings are higher in the US it is true. I work for an international company and, if I transferred to the US, could make about double what I make now. But there's a reason this is the case. I have more than double their vacation time, much cheaper healthcare (knowing it wont bankrupt you is wonderfully relieving), and, in general, much greater public services and resources and support. You have to take this all into account instead of just looking at salary.

I am infering from your question that your parents aren't in such a bad state that you actually need to be there with them since you mention "Even the other side of the country is closer than where I live now." The flight from one US coast to another is at least 6 hours. My flights to San Francisco from Europe can be as little as 9-10 hours and cheap if you book on Norwegian or other carriers. So this may be about your parents but it just may be homesickness, wanting to be around other Americans and American culture? It may be that Spanish culture itself bothers you. If those are the case, then consider other options to ensure you aren't just giving in to an urge to cut-and-run. Even Spain itself is a large place and I find, for example, the progressive Catalonian culture much different than stuffier Madrid or the very traditional southern part of the country. So, all I am saying is that there may be other options besides A or B.
posted by vacapinta at 2:37 AM on September 5, 2017 [10 favorites]

Being away from parents can be tough. As mine get closer and closer to the age where they need more help, well, for all of the mess of family I don't feel good being so far away. I haven't come to terms with this yet. Having other family near them helps, but ... it's tough. They live away from a 'big' airport so getting there involves one or two transfers so that is sadly not easy either.

But, we as a family could likely not survive in the US anymore - pre-existing conditions would make health-insurance near impossible or exorbitantly expensive (before we left, ten years ago, we were quoted something like 5,000 a month for a family of four in NYC - this was before getting sick.) And the cost of college, much less the intense care needed to make sure your kid gets into the right public school, if you can't afford private school. Here (Berlin), we had a great kindergarten for cheap, a family-centric (as opposed to career/work- centric) culture that doesn't freak out when we take six weeks vacation a year - I don't talk about this with US friends because it causes hurt feelings. And Health Insurance that is totally manageable and comprehensive (the cost of medications is null - in the US it would be hahahahahaha. And you can't plan for this.)

And then there's the ICE business - which a lawyer friend insists will not be a big deal as we have kids who have US citizenship - but still, it can be even more ridiculous than the more tedious forms of European bureaucracy.

I miss aspects of the US - without a doubt, but the difficulty of living there, now that I've lived outside of that struggle, is hard hard hard to reconcile.
posted by From Bklyn at 3:13 AM on September 5, 2017 [5 favorites]

Do consider getting a Spanish passport now before moving away after a decade there.
posted by ellieBOA at 3:56 AM on September 5, 2017 [4 favorites]

Just a few points to consider:
1. It's dangerous to base your decision off healthcare/university subsidies. Assuming you and your family are generally healthy, you are right now providing, not receiving, subsidies to the university and healthcare system. It's an open question what those systems (in both Europe and US) will look like in 15-20 years when you are going to be using them. It would stink to pay the higher taxes for a decade and then not receive the full benefits when you're poised to tap them (even if the will is there, the budget may not be). Factor in higher earnings and possibly lower cost of living, and the savings in US can really add up and provide a buffer for whatever the government services are lacking in two decades.

Rather than healthcare being a lay-up in favor of Europe, you're actually trading off the probability of you having a major medical expense in the next 5-10 years vs the probability that Spain is able to maintain its finances to support subsidized medical care for decades. Further complicating the matter is that a US employer can and often does offer medical insurance that would cap your out-of-pocket costs so that your true economic risk in living in US even with a medical emergency is limited. How you handicap those odds and weight the risk is up to you but it's certainly not a clear win for Spain.

2. The US is huge. You are comparing something concrete that you know and like and holding up against a ill-defined stereotype. Pick an actual spot in the country--maybe a college town in the middle of the US and do some research on what your day-to-day life and cost-of-living will look like. I think you'll find that the US stacks up well. But even if that type of town does not meet your needs, you have to pick one location or a type of location for comparison. NYC and Missoula are two very different places.

3. Are your husband's parents involved in your son's life? Having grandparents around kids is awesome. If you currently have daily or similar access to your husband's parents and would be moving back to a situation where your parents were only around on quarterly/major holidays, I'd think that would be a big vote in favor of Spain.

We lived in Europe (French speaking Switzerland) and moved back after several years. We found it a very closed-minded society, which was the biggest driver of our move. Other factors were the cost of living and the quality of schools--in the US that's going to depend very much on where you live but our government school system in the US is superior for our family to the expensive private school in Geneva.

At the end of the day, there are so many subjective and individualized factors (career prospects, general health, etc) that what's right for one is not going to be right for another and no one location is better than another in every aspect.
posted by limagringo at 5:06 AM on September 5, 2017 [3 favorites]

As I'm sure you know, the US is a highly unequal society. Most of the social problems that you say you are worried about apply disproportionately to people who are poor and/or not white. If you have a high-paying job and can afford to buy a house, pay for health insurance and deductibles, save for your child's college, and save for retirement, you can essentially buy yourself the safety net that the government does not provide and that is not available to people without means. So whether those concerns apply to your own situation depends on, well, your own situation.

Living under the Trump presidency is awful and demoralizing, but living in the world under his presidency is as well.

I am not familiar with Spain, but in Italy, for example, though Americans tend to have a very romanticized perception of its supposedly freewheeling ways, there are myriad unwritten rules that determine what is and is not okay to do. In the US, at least culturally, you can pretty much do anything you want (this may require living in urban areas). No one cares if you go out in your pajamas or have ice cream for breakfast or keep an unusual schedule. There is also a great diversity of cultures and perspectives. In short, the US has many advantages, and personally I would rather live here than in Europe.
posted by Vispa Teresa at 5:30 AM on September 5, 2017 [2 favorites]

I can't make a case either way. Personally, I'd probably move back, but my friends who have moved to Spain are pleased as punch with the decision, and they'll probably never move back. So it can go either way. What I will suggest, though, is to leave politics out of your decision. It's not the best time to be an American, yeah, but really, for most Americans, especially ones in traditional family arrangements like yours, things haven't really changed. The people affected by the current politics are mostly people of color, LGBT, chronically ill, etc. If you belong to one of those groups, I'd recommend staying in Europe. But healthy, middle-class white heterosexuals married with children aren't going to be in danger anytime soon. As an ally, it can hurt to see what's happening to those being marginalized, but it won't hurt you directly. So if everything else in your decision making process is pointing to coming back, then come back. Don't let Trump keep you away from your parents and your dream career. That's giving him too much power.
posted by kevinbelt at 6:04 AM on September 5, 2017

I don't think the job market here is all that awesome or amenable to trying to switch careers, necessarily. I have been very blocked into my field and can't seem to find a way out of it so I'm biased, but "transferable skills" doesn't really seem to be a thing any more as far as I can tell. Everyone wants you to have done every single aspect of the job before, you're really doing 4-5 different types of jobs for 2, 3, or 4 different bosses at once, and they don't want to train anyone--and they don't have to because they can find what they want anyway. The best way to get more job skills is for your job to give you more work in different fields (probably because they're short staffed again), but transferring? Good luck. I would not give up the sweet life in Spain for the American job market.

Basically, if your two reasons for moving are parents and jobs--I can't speak for your parents, but jobs here aren't that sweet and easy to get. I don't think it's a guarantee that you'll find something else to do that isn't what you already do.

Also, in all honesty I wouldn't encourage anyone from another country to move here as long as the current regime is in power.

(Disclaimer: I spent yesterday talking to a bunch of happy people who live in Europe, so that is probably influencing this.)
posted by jenfullmoon at 7:20 AM on September 5, 2017 [6 favorites]

Response by poster: These are all wonderful answers and I will reply to some things soon, but because it has come up a few times:

you naturalising as a Spanish citizen (really, you should all be dual nationals)
Do consider getting a Spanish passport now before moving away after a decade there.

I should note that there is no bilateral agreement between Spain and the US , so I cannot become a citizen of one without renouncing the other. And passports are only for citizens. *sob*
posted by lollymccatburglar at 7:36 AM on September 5, 2017 [1 favorite]

You may want to check with the US consulate/embassy nearest you. Just because you tell Spain you are no longer a US Citizen doesn't mean that it has any impact with the US government.

Here are two links from the State Department on the matter. This seems to indicate there would be no problem while this is a little more ambiguous.
posted by limagringo at 7:53 AM on September 5, 2017

As far as I know, you can be a citizen of both Spain and the US. Spain will not recognize your US citizenship and will require you to "renounce" it, but the US will still recognize it, so in effect you will be a citizen of both. (I am not a lawyer.)
posted by Vispa Teresa at 8:01 AM on September 5, 2017 [2 favorites]

In part, I feel like this is a decision to make right now, rather than wait for another few years, because the older he is the more difficult and painful it will be to tear him away.

I want to bold this, underline it, highlight it, skywrite it then blast it in a laser light show onto Mt Rushmore.

My parents moved me from a very cosmopolitan US city to rural racially segregated England (there were riots) when I was 13. Please do not do this to your child. Maybe it works for some people but I'm rounding on 30 and this decision still profoundly impacts every corner of my life.

I hate that it's still affecting me so much, but there it is. My teenage years were devastating and now nowhere is home. I strongly urge you to move while they are still little or wait until they're grown.
posted by bizarrenacle at 8:31 AM on September 5, 2017

There's a lot to be said for being close to family. However, I think this decision only makes sense if you have good assurances of landing in a good job back in the States. This:

I'm pretty sick of what I do (teaching, translating, editing, proofreading), and I'd love to be able to parlay those skills into something else, but in the eyes of Spanish employers I am first and foremost a teacher with some language skills on the side. It is difficult to get them to consider that I might be able to do anything else.

concerns me. It reads as "I have generic liberal arts skills and want to do...something else." (Except the Spanish-language skills, but you don't want to do translation!) There are approx. 9,381,391 people in the US with those skills, and probably 8 million of them are un- or under-employed. Publishing is consolidating, journalism is collapsing, and you don't have the credentials for academia. Just moving back with those skills and hoping for the best is very risky, especially knowing that your spouse may not be able to work for a while.

In short, this is not a decision that can be made based on a hypothetical job back here. Only when you have an actual offer in hand can you decide whether it's even practical to come back, much less desirable.
posted by praemunire at 8:31 AM on September 5, 2017 [17 favorites]

I've never lived in Europe, but I just got back from a vacation in Scandinavia and I've been thinking about the political aspect of this, so...

First, the good news. We are not on the verge of a fascist dictatorship in the US. We are not even particularly close. I was somewhat concerned about this six or eight months ago but now I am highly confident that it ain't happening.* Trump is unpopular and he has absolutely no fucking idea what he is doing. The Republicans in Congress are just as unpopular (maybe more) and only a smidge more competent, if that. There is strong opposition to Trump from the media, many corners of civil society - including within the government - and the political opposition.

What we are experiencing in the US is a VERY high, almost unfathomable, degree of political dysfunction, coupled with a near-inescapable level of politicization of, well, basically everything. It's like living in a reality TV show that's actually real. Sometimes the news feel like it's pulled straight from a dystopian film; not the sort of dysoptia where everyone marches in lockstep and there's death camps but the sort of dystopia where nothing works anymore. If you are someone who cares about politics, it takes a psychological toll, and in a way that is very different - and in my view worse - from, say, the George W. Bush years (when lots of bad things were happening, but there was still a sense that the world mostly made sense). When I was in Europe, it was so refreshing being in a place where adults were still in charge and the world didn't seem like it might fall apart due to the ego of a single delusional narcissist. I'm not gonna lie, I was sad to come back.

So it can be stressful. But day-to-day life is basically the same, at least if you are middle-class or above and a fully-fledged US citizen. There's this steady drumbeat of insanity in the background, and it can be hard to handle, but daily life is going on much as before. Also, while I wouldn't go so far as to say that we are on the brink of nuclear war, the thought of Trump with nuclear codes is definitely a big contributor to the overall feeling of uneasiness.

So, maybe you can handle that, maybe you can't. Personally, I'd probably stay in Spain, at least for the time being, because who needs it? But I don't know enough about the ins and outs of your situation, or even of the practical considerations like healthcare, to feel qualified to give you good advice.

One more thing: while the job market in the US probably is better than in Spain, I have heard laments similar to yours from many USians who want to change career tracks. So I don't know that that would be any easier. Do some research and talk to people on both sides of the Atlantic before making the jump based on that.

*I still wouldn't rule out fascist dictatorship, or something close-ish to it (say, Erdogan's Turkey) if there is another 9/11-scale terrorist attack.
posted by breakin' the law at 8:35 AM on September 5, 2017

Earnings are higher in the US but you have to pay for so many more things. My EU relatives always forget that but I am paying things like property taxes and $1200 health care premiums and student loans at 40 years old and $100 internet bills and $100 mobile phone bills that they simply can't comprehend. All they see is big houses nd cheap electronics and everyone has a boat. I tell them that most of the people with those things will still die with $0 in the bank and they don't believe me. I'm Europe everyone of my elderly relatives is financially comfortable. Every one.

Also without hard skills I think you'll find the job market here to be a lot less friendly than you think.
posted by fshgrl at 8:38 AM on September 5, 2017 [4 favorites]

Nthing the advice about your job skills, and I would definitely take another look at that "sweet sweet job market".

Unemployment is technically low in the U.S. right now (not really accurate), but the market for good jobs with middle-class salaries never recovered from the 2008 recession. It was already hard for soft-skilled workers to get jobs, then the economic apocalypse happened. Now it's bordering on impossible.

Secure a good-paying job first, then move. When deciding your definition of "good-paying", consider that cost of living not including rent will be 25% higher on average and rent will be just over double. And that's average, including small towns in the middle of nowhere. If you compare large cities, as in moving from Madrid to New York, the difference is way worse.
posted by FakeFreyja at 8:53 AM on September 5, 2017 [3 favorites]

I should note that there is no bilateral agreement between Spain and the US , so I cannot become a citizen of one without renouncing the other. And passports are only for citizens. *sob*

Dual citizenship is not a problem from the US side. The State Department doesn't particularly like it, and there are repercussions for things like security clearances, but largely Americans can acquire second citizenships without problems. It maybe a problem from the Spanish side. (It's entirely likely/possible your child is dual citizen. You probably want to figure out how this impacts them. Some countries don't permit dual citizenship and they'll need to resolve the issue by some age, other countries permit it if all citizenships were acquired by birth, and still other countries (like the US) broadly don't care.)
posted by hoyland at 9:10 AM on September 5, 2017

Things aren't working too well for people traveling into the US. US citizens, yes, Spanish citizens, maybe. Your passport needs to be renewed if you haven't done that yet. They expire every 10 years. I would take care of that, before pursuing a Spanish passport, before you somehow find yourself locked out of your own country.
posted by Oyéah at 9:12 AM on September 5, 2017

I would take care of that, before pursuing a Spanish passport, before you somehow find yourself locked out of your own country.

This is not actually possible. FYI.
posted by praemunire at 9:51 AM on September 5, 2017 [1 favorite]

A third way might be to move to Canada where you are physically closer to your parents (if you choose the same time zone) and you have excellent healthcare and education. We are not as laid back as Spain, but at the same time in my cohort it is unusual to work more than 35 hours a week and professional jobs come with at least three weeks of vacation you are expected to take, as well as the paid year of parental leave when eligible. I'm not sure what jobs you were looking at, but Canadian jobs in female dominated fields like teaching are paid better than US counterparts (generally, male-dominated fields pay better in the US. So, for example, where I am, a teacher in an elementary school earns just under $100,000/year with ten years experience, but the competition is fierce for those jobs. The job market is very regional as people do not move as frequently as they do in the States. We do not, however have as strong a demand for Spanish speakers as the States does. French would be more practical (and probably easy for you to pick up).

Similarly, Mexico may be a better option if your parents live in the South, but I do not know enough about Mexico to speak of it. But the Spanish would certainly help there.
posted by saucysault at 10:01 AM on September 5, 2017 [1 favorite]

I should note that there is no bilateral agreement between Spain and the US , so I cannot become a citizen of one without renouncing the other. And passports are only for citizens. *sob*

This is incorrect (source: I'm a British citizen married to an American who is now also a naturalised British citizen, so have done extensive research into dual citizenships as they relate to the EU).

Spain does require the renunciation of your original citizenship, but this is a statement made to the Spanish government, not a legally binding renunciation of US citizenship - that's really difficult to do and requires a trip to a US embassy or consulate (it's deliberately difficult to stop people doing it to avoid US income taxes, since the US is one of the few countries that taxes on worldwide income).

In practice, you would be both a US citizen and a Spanish (and therefore EU) citizen. Neither country would acknowledge the other and you would have no formal legal status of 'dual citizen'. You would just have two passports and enter the US on your US passport and Spain on your Spanish one. More details here.

I'm not a lawyer etc, but from what I've seen your married status and residency in Spain for over 10 years and your child would all independently qualify you to apply for Spanish citizenship. Regardless of whether you move to the US you should secure a possible future in (or return to) Spain.
posted by Happy Dave at 1:12 PM on September 5, 2017

I skimmed a little. Did anyone mention daycare costs? With one kid only one year from age 5 this is maybe smaller for you than for other families, but some people pay as much as their rent payment just for daycare.
posted by puddledork at 5:36 PM on September 5, 2017

Just to add some perspective about moving, I moved quite a lot as a child and frankly I think it was good for me. I moved inside one country, so YMMV, but whether moving is good or bad really depends on the kid.
posted by Ahniya at 3:11 PM on September 6, 2017

My husband (Australian) and I are going through the same exact question - I was actually thinking about posting a very similar question (might still). We live in Sydney with our 3 yr old. I miss my family (whom we're closer to) and as with you, even a cross country flight is shorter (and much cheaper!) than the 14hr trans-pacific haul. The larger, often denser, population means it was much easier to find our niche/subculture socially. We're unexpectedly in a position to start the small farm we dreamed of, and there are large swaths of the States where the cost of living and property is reasonably cheap and our resources will go much farther (property prices here, even hours and hours from the city, are atrocious). I'm open to staying here, but I do think it's looking like we may end up moving back. Like you, we're hoping to make the move before kiddo starts kindergarten. Moving from one side of town, one town (or even state) to another is very different than moving overseas. (In some ways I've found it much harder in Australia than I did in Japan, because the differences and more subtle and taken for granted here - in Japan I was Different right away and that was acknowledged and dealt with.)

Do not overestimate the US job market, but at the same time, I don't think many people appreciate just how conservative and inflexible other markets can be or the realities of 18% unemployment.

Health care gives us a pause too, but some states manage it better than others and if you're in a position (either via a job, nest egg, whatever) to mitigate some of that risk... it's up to you. I think one thing we both have is the ability to bail: if one of us is diagnosed with something terrible, chronic, expensive, we could always go back to the country with single payer. Whether it's worth it, for you, and under what circumstances, is highly individual.

I know part of the issue in my case is that I love my husband and Australia is only okay. I know people who have moved overseas (including to Australia) because they just love that country, love being an expat there, feel like they belong... I don't. Heck, my husband feels like he fits better in the US too. Australia is the practical "safe" choice, but... meh?

Like you say, there are so many moving parts it makes my head swim. I am utilizing my work's EAP service to talk to a therapist. I am talking a lot to friends and siblings back in the States. We will likely talk to a consultant or two who specialize in small farms. We might vomit thoughts all over a giant piece of paper and Ask Moxie (her website's down she says to check back in a few days). We're going back for my sister's wedding next year and will use the chance to scout out potential towns.
Me mail me any time.
posted by jrobin276 at 8:20 PM on September 6, 2017

Apologies for the double up.

Swiss Lark
is a blog started by an American living in Zurich, she repatriated a while ago and some very thoughtful posts on the process. It sounds like they recently tried to go back, things fell through, and they've resettled in WA after all... I've really enjoyed some of the posts and comments about expat/repatriating.

There was a lively Facebook group for expats called I am a Triangle - looks like they've migrated off FB to their own site! They may be a good resource too.
posted by jrobin276 at 10:55 PM on September 6, 2017

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